On Sunday the Houston Texans hosted a red hot Cleveland Browns team at NRG. Coming into this game a lot of the national media were saying this is a game the Texans should lose and a lot of that stemmed from the love for QB Baker Mayfield. In his prior two games Baker had thrown for 474 yards, 7 TD’s, and 0 interceptions. and his stats on the season were 2,242 passing yards, 17 TD’s, and 7 INT’s. Now as we know stats aren’t everything… When you put on the tape you can see that he is extremely comfortable in the pocket, is able to extend plays when necessary, and is willing to throw the ball away.
With that being said the national media missed one key stat before deciding that the Texans would fall to the Browns on Sunday… Romeo Crennel is 9-1 versus rookie quarterbacks as the Texans defensive coordinator. Romeo has been coaching defenses for 47 years and will likely go down as the best (maybe second best behind Buddy Ryan) defensive coordinator in the history of the NFL. RAC has seen it all. What Romeo does better than anybody is disguises his coverages and puts his players in the best position to succeed. The way he uses his safeties and linebackers will confuse a lot of QB’s but specifically will young QB’s.
This play is what comes to mind when I mention how RAC uses his linebackers. This is a soft cover 2 look, when Nick Chubb runs towards the sideline Zach Cunningham notices but also knows he has corner there for help so he makes a subtle move towards Chubb and baits Baker to throw to the crossing wide receiver.
Romeo gives BOB the ability to solely focus on the offense and special teams. If you look at how our defensive players have developed you can look specifically at Romeo. Christian Covington drafted in the 6th round has turned into a nice defensive lineman and continues to improve, it’s hard to shine when you play the same position as JJ and Clowney. Brandon Dunn an undrafted DE who is quietly having his best season as a Texan and is playing a new position this year. The biggest improvement though it Kareem Jackson. Kareem has always been an average to maybe slightly above average slot corner coming into this season, but his turn around is truly remarkable. His transition to the safety position has been somewhat flawless, now sure this should have happened sooner than this year but given he teams lack at corner it just couldn’t happen.
Romeo is why this team can go into the playoffs and shock some people. Just think about the game against the Patriots two years ago when we had Brock in at QB, that was a game that will haunt Tom Brady the rest of his career. We are the last team the Patriots want to play in the playoffs. Will we win the Super Bowl? Honestly I don’t know if we can or we can’t as this team as a whole still has somethings to figure out, but can this defense help get this team to a Super Bowl absolutely!