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Houston Texans vs Kansas City Chiefs - NFL Week 1

Thursday
September 10, 2020
8:20 PM ET

Kansas City, Missouri
Arrowhead Stadium

About the Texans

The Texans will be looking for revenge after being embarrassed in their playoff defeat at the hands of the Chiefs after they gave up a 24-0 lead in the 1st half and lost the game by double digits. While hoping to erase the sting of last year’s playoff loss, QB Deshaun Watson returns as the starter and should have another MVP-caliber season, but he will be without his top WR DeAndre Hopkins after he was traded to the Arizona Cardinals. Watson built a solid rapport and had undeniable chemistry with Hopkins who was usually his 1st read going when going through his progressions. The Texans attempted to supplement their WR corps by signing WR’s Brandin Cooks and Randall Cobb during the offseason. RB David Johnson, acquired in the Hopkins trade, will be the feature back and the Texans are keeping their fingers crossed hoping that he will stay healthy due to his extensive injury history. The Texans do have solid depth at RB with Duke Johnson, Karan Higdon, and rookie Scottie Phillips in the mix for playing time. The Texans failed to upgrade their offensive line after Watson was the most sacked QB last season. The only sure thing is LT Laremy Tunsil and the Texans have high hopes that Tytus Howard takes another step forward concerning his development. While the Texans had a top 20 defense, there still is room for improvement. J.J. Watt, one of the most dynamic players in the NFC is the heart and soul of the Texans defense but will need the other players to step up. They were 16th in takeaways and 27th in sacks last season.

About the Chiefs

Fresh off a Super Bowl victory, the Chiefs will attempt to become the first back to back Super Bowl winners since the New England Patriots did it in 2004 and 2005. The Chiefs rewarded QB Patrick Mahomes a record 10-year deal worth up to $503 million and is currently the largest contract in sports history. The Chiefs will once again feature an aerial assault with the “Legion of Zoom” as WR’s Tyreek Hill, Mecole Hardman, Sammy Watkins and TE Travis Kelce return for the 2nd ranked offense from a season ago. After a stellar performance in the Super Bowl, RB Damien Williams decided to opt-out of the upcoming season, therefore, opening the door for rookie RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire to be the feature back. The 1st round selection out of LSU has balance and good vision with 3-down potential with short-area quickness. The Chiefs defense was terrible against the run ranking 26th in the NFL in rushing yards allowed. They helped their cause by re-signing DT Chris Jones to a deal worth $85 million for 4 years with $60 million guaranteed. Jones was the Chiefs' most productive player on the defensive side of the ball recording 9 sacks and 8 TFL’s in only 13 games played.

Players to Watch

J.J. Watt (Texans): If the Texans have any chance of winning this game, Watt will have to put pressure on Mahomes and try to force a turnover or two.

Tyreek Hill (Chiefs): A threat to score every time he touches the ball, with his elite speed and nifty moves, he is a nightmare matchup for any cornerback.

Impact Rookies

Charlie Heck (Texans): Heck should figure into the offensive line rotation and play at right tackle. He should develop into a solid depth player with time and experience.

Key Statistic

Mahomes became the youngest player in history to win an MVP award and a Super Bowl.

Prediction

This should be a shootout between two elite QB’s fighting for supremacy in the AFC, but Mahomes triumphs with the better overall playmakers on his squad.

Final Score: Texas 31 / Chiefs 49

Daniel I. Outerbridge

Daniel I. Outerbridge

A contributing writer with aspirations and ambitions to become a sports journalist.

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