June 19, 2018

JJ Watt says his finger is 'pretty messed up'

17 September 2017, 06:25 | Anna Jefferson

Matchup of the Game: Watt next for Bengals up front?

Texans need increased output from Hopkins

During their 29-7 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars, Texans coach Bill O'Brien pulled starting quarterback Tom Savage in favor of rookie Deshaun Watson, who will be getting his first National Football League start tonight in Cincy.

Texans at Bengals was a game controlled by defense.

Watson's first start, coming on his 22nd birthday, was a straightforward one and his passing game will require work having nearly thrown a couple of early interceptions, but he provided the game with its only major highlight.

Two plays later, Watson scrambled on third-and-15, broke two tackles and raced 49 yards for a touchdown, putting the Texans ahead 10-3. Deshaun Watson finished 12-of-23 for the game, throwing for 102 yards, a touchdown and an interception.

The Texans were down to three wide receivers and one tight end for their matchup with the Bengals. "I would love to sit down and watch the film with (Texans coach) Bill O'Brien and go through every single play and tell me why are you benching him after 31 plays". I'm all in on the Deshaun Watson era in Houston, and last night made me even more pumped. Especially considering that both of the Texans' starting cornerbacks were injured against the Bengals, as well.

BAD NUMBERS: The Texans last opened a season 0-2 in 2015. That has not happened, and mostly that is on the Texans quarterbacks. "So just getting that timing down, getting that chemistry and just building".

The Texans relied heavily on their rushing attack, with 168 yards, including Watson's 67.

He made his preseason debut against the Redskins in Game 3 and did not catch any passes but had an 8-yard gain on a jet sweep.

On the final play with multiple laterals, Dalton got the ball back and threw it to centre Russell Bodine, who was levelled by J.J. Watt to end the game.

Dalton has completed 36-of-66 passes for 394 yards with no touchdowns and four interceptions this season. The Bengals have some beasts on the defensive line, led by Geno Atkins, and they'll be in Watson's face all night. He was back in form Thursday with six tackles, one pass deflection and one hit on Dalton. "I spoke to all the leaders, I spoke to coach, I spoke to Deshaun, [assistant coach] Pat [O'Hara], all those guys". Linebacker Brian Cushing is serving a 10-game suspension for violating the NFL's policy on performance-enhancing substances.

For the Cincinnati Bengals, the struggles continue as they are 0-2 to begin the season. They will now head on the road to take on the New England Patriots this Sunday.

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