The Houston Texans were missing a few players at practice today, and the two most notable names- by far- on the absence list are elite defensive end J.J. Watt and standout rookie wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins. According to the Houston Chronicle’s Brian T. Smith, Watt isn’t practicing today due to a sore back, whereas Hopkins is out due to an illness.
It’s interesting to see that both star players are not practicing today, but neither player’s status is in doubt for this week’s divisional game against the Jacksonville Jaguars. It should be a victory to add to the Texans low win column this season, and it should come easy despite the Texans numerous struggles this season. As long as Gary Kubiak doesn’t get trigger-happy with benching players and the Texans don’t make Chad Henne look better than Matt McGloin, then this team should be just fine.
I mention Kubiak benching people, because quarterback Case Keenum wasn’t the only person who Kubiak benched. He also sent Hopkins to the sidelines for apparent mental errors, though I just chalk it up to the fact that Kubiak must have been in a ticked off mood (or was trying some ill-advised, self-preservation tactics, which wouldn’t make much sense).
Hopkins’s illness won’t take him out of this week’s game (unless if it’s in the Mike Pouncey-territory of “illness”), whereas J.J. Watt is almost certainly getting a maintenance day after another amazing game. Watt is easily the game’s best player on defense (and he has plenty of challengers with guys like Von Miller), and he is flat-out dominating on an elite level. I mean, his ability to impact games is unprecedented, and his impact clearly transcends the nether regions of the box score.