On September 10, 2020, the NFL regular edition is back on track. This day will also be the opening salvo, which features the AFC’s best. Last year’s defending champion, the Kansas City Chiefs, will take a home-field advantage against their biggest rival, the Houston Texans. It will surely be an amazing opening game, despite the limited fans allowed to grace the show.
With this set-up, the Chiefs will take the favorite odds while the Texans are the underdogs. However, the Texans should not be undervalued as they are capable of defeating the Chiefs. Taking the same tough schedule like last year, the Texans bested the Chiefs in the Divisional Playoffs, which can possibly happen again in the next few weeks.
While the Kansas City Chiefs are enjoying the luxury of taking the odds in their favor, they should not get too complacent. The Texans this season are bringing their best weapons, with some players who are coming back. Moreover, some NFL gamblers picks the Texans to defeat the Chiefs in no-sweat. Can they do the same stint they did last year? Here are the reasons why Texans can whip the Chiefs when the 2020-21 NFL season opens.
Confidence And Pride
One of the reasons why a team can emerge as a surprise winner in the NFL matches is the confidence and pride they bring upon playing. In last year’s AFC Divisional Playoffs, Houston Texans had shown extreme toughness. They grappled against the Buffalo Bills during the Divisional Playoffs and successfully dispatched them.
That said, they have reached the quarterfinals and faced the Kansas City Chiefs in a head-to-head challenge. Although they lost to the Chiefs, they have shown outstanding performance, giving the defending champs a difficult time to reach the finals. As they face off on the opening day, the Texans are displaying another pride and confidence to execute the Chiefs effortlessly.
J.J. Watt’s Revival
Last year, the Houston Texans were left behind during the quarterfinals after J.J. Watt missed the league playoffs. He played as the starting defensive end who suffered from a pectoral injury. The team couldn’t get him back to continue playing as he needs to rest for the entire season to recover fully.
During the 2020 NFL Draft, the Texans General Manager, Bill O’Brien, confirmed that J.J. Watt is returning to the Texans this season. He will take the same role as the defensive end. With his return, the team’s defense gets tougher, and Chiefs should watch out for him. There is no time for the Chiefs to rest as J.J. Watt can dominate his game.
Although he has played only during the first-half last NFL season, Watt has recorded 479 total tackles. Besides that, he also completed 96.0 sacks, 15 fumble recoveries, 23 forced fumbles, 54 pass deflections, two defensive touchdowns, and one interception. These numbers are already overwhelming, and if he looks even healthier on the opening day, the Chiefs need to hustle harder.
Deshaun Watson Has Stepped-Up
Deshaun Watson will work with the Houston Texans as the starting quarterback for the third year. Since 2017, Watson has shown excellent performances and even looks better in the upcoming season. With J.J. Watt’s return, the Texans can look forward to more consistent plays that Watson will showcase, which will be their key to soar high on the opening day.
Upon joining the Texans in 2017, Watson was recognized as the Best Male College Athlete ESPY Award. Additionally, he was a recipient of the PFWA All-Rookie Team in 2017 and a two-time Pro Bowl Achiever. In the upcoming season, he will take his senior playing year as the quarterback. Although he’s facing a more recognized Patrick Mahomes, Watson’s emerging performance might overcome him.
Last NFL season, Watson recorded 71-79 touchdown-interception. He also averaged 9,716 passing yards, including 66.8 completion percentage. Moreover, he tallied 1,233 rushing yards, 14 rushing touchdowns, and 101.1 QB rating.
There is no doubt that the Kansas City Chiefs are good with their offense. However, with a more diversified people on the offensive line this year, the Texans are a dangerous rival. They had proven it in the past when they smashed the Chiefs in the early season last year and might repeat it.
The Texans have a main trio in the running backs: Chris Polk, Jonathan Grimes, and Alfred Blue. Apart from that, they have more solid receivers like C.J. Fiedorowicz and Ryan Griffin, who had recorded 40 interceptions.
The Kansas City Chiefs this year are surely not planning to make a mistake of letting their title taken away from them. As they face the Texans in the opening game, there’s a lot of things at stake. Can the Chiefs maintain a stable line-up to defeat the Texans right away, or will it be the Texans’ returning players and boosted offense that will help them turn the tables? We will soon find out.
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