Another week, another head-scratching play-call by Houston Texans head coach Bill O’Brien.
The Houston Texans opened up their 2020 season as expected with a loss to the defending Super Bowl Champion Kansas City Chiefs. The NFL wasn’t too kind to the Texans, because their Week 2 opponents were the Baltimore Ravens, who stomped all over the Cleveland Browns in their season opener. For Houston to stand a chance, they had to take some unorthodox approaches. But, it’s never a bad thing to play it conservatively. We’re looking at you, Bill O’Brien.
In the first quarter, the Texans faced a fourth-and-one situation while down 3-0 to Baltimore. O’Brien opted to go for it, which is understandable. But, they were on their own 34-yard line! And the decision worked out just as well as you thought it would. Poorly!
O’Brien should play it safe from here on out
The last thing you would want to do was give Lamar Jackson the ball in scoring range. But, O’Brien was feeling dangerous, and it blew up in his face. It took the Ravens four plays to put the ball in the end zone, as Jackson threw a pass to fullback Patrick Ricard to put them up 10-0.
O’Brien has shown that he has the gusto to go for it on fourth-down situations. In last year’s AFC Divisional Round matchup against the Chiefs, O’Brien called for a fake punt inside their own territory, despite holding a 24-7 lead. The play worked out terribly, and the Chiefs used that momentum to defeat Houston by the score of 51-31.
It’s never a bad thing to go for it on fourth down, but maybe O’Brien should do these things while in enemy territory. He might receive better results.