USA TODAY

Texans Have The Red Zone Blues

Red Zone Touchdown Percentage 31st In NFL

October 08, 2018 - 2:41 pm

HOUSTON (SPORTSRADIO 610) – Not forgotten in the Texans 19-16 overtime victory against Dallas was the ineptitude of scoring touchdowns in the red zone.

“It’s bad. We got to get better. It’s just we tried everything down there, nothing really worked. So, we got to go back as a coaching staff and look at it, players, everybody. We all have to look at it and see what we can do to be better, because we’re moving the ball. We move the ball pretty well, but when we get down in there, we got to score touchdowns. Once tonight, we came away with no points, twice, whatever. So, we got to get better there,” Texans Head Coach Bill O’Brien told the media following Sunday’s win. 

The Texans penetrated the Cowboys’ red zone on six different occasions on Sunday, but only came away with one touchdown.  The first chance for the Texans’ to score in that situation was early in the second quarter, and it was the only time they scored a touchdown.  Keke Coutee took a shovel pass from Deshaun Watson 1-yard into the end zone for the score.

“There’s still a menu of plays. We called them all. Not many of them worked. So, that’s what I’m saying relative to the design of the play. What are we anticipating getting? What are we getting? How are we executing it? How are we game planning it? We’ve got to make major improvements there because we’re moving the ball but we’re not scoring touchdowns. We’re kicking too many field goals. Ka’imi’s doing a nice job – other than that first field goal – but we have to score touchdowns. That’s not a sustainable way to win games in this league and we know that. So, we’re going to work hard to get it better this week,” O’Brien told the media during his Monday press conference. 

The remaining five penetrations ended with four field goals, one of which was the game winning field goal in overtime, and one turnover on downs. The first field goal was a 20-yard kick after the Texans were stopped at the Cowboys 2-yard line. Then just before half time, the Texans were stuffed on a 4th and goal from the 1.  In the second half the Texans settled for a 23-yard field goal at the 3-yard line, and then another 19-yard field goal after having the ball 1st and goal from the 1-yard line.

“I think it starts with me. I’ve got to do a better job of teaching it, designing it, and then there are some things that we have to do a better job of executing. There’s no doubt about it. We had more penalties down there again. We had plays that were there that maybe the play wasn’t made and then there were other plays that we have to design better. I think the defenses are doing a real good job down there. You have to be in this business day in and day out to understand how difficult the red area is,” O’Brien said.  “There’s less space, the windows, they open and close very fast, you have to make quick decisions, you have to throw the ball accurately, you’ve got to be able to run the ball by covering people up and blocking support and all these other things. Everybody’s got to do a better job, and it starts with the coaching. Like I always tell you, we’re working on it right now. We were down there six times and we only got one touchdown. We all know that’s not good enough, so we understand that.”