Monday, November 14, 2011

Houston We Have a Problem

And no, I'm not talking about the Astros. Matt Schaub, the star quarterback for the Houston Texans is reportedly done for the season after suffering a "lisfranc injury" in Sunday's win over the Buccaneers. Which means the Texans, who were in the driver's seat in the AFC South, now must entrust their bid to make the playoffs for the first time in franchise history to...(drum roll)... Matt Leinart. Wow. I mean WOW. The Texans are 7-3. They just absolutely dismantled a good Bucs team 37-9 yesterday and now this news? Matt Leinart hasn't thrown a pass in a regular season game since 2009 and hasn't thrown a touchdown since 2008! And what the heck is a lisfranc injury?
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Ok, let's slow down for a moment and try to take all of this in. The 30 year old Schaub had passed for 2479 yards and 15 touchdowns through ten weeks this season and most recently led the Texans to 4 straight wins. He's coming off of back-to-back 4300+ yard seasons with 24+ touchdowns and hasn't missed a start since Week 13 of the 2008 season. To say he's tough to replace is an understatement. And who's been waiting in the wings since signing in Houston as a free agent last September? AFTER he was cut by the Cardinals in favor of Derek Anderson, Max Hall and John Skelton? That's right. Former Heisman Trophy Winner Matt Leinart.
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To say Leinart's pro career hasn't gone according to plan is an understatement. After going 37-2 as a starter at USC, the tenth overall pick by the Arizona Cardinals in 2006 went just 4-7 as a starter his rookie year and then saw his 2007 season end prematurely thanks to a broken collar bone. Kurt Warner reclaimed the starting quarterback job and led the Cardinals to a Super Bowl and Leinart has been in the shadows ever since. Until now. Now Matt Leinart will be asked to lead the Texans to the promised land. Something they have never done. No big deal, right
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In all fairness, the Texans have a heck of a running game with Arian Foster (above) and Ben Tate, one of the league's elite receivers in Andre Johnson, and a top notch tight end in Owen Daniels. And unlike in years past, the Texans play defense now. In fact they allow the fewest points per game in the AFC. That's right. Fewer than Baltimore. Fewer than Pittsburgh. So Matt Leinart shouldn't need to go out and WIN football games. He just needs to not LOSE them. Still, it's a huge blow for the Texans. But hey, Alex Smith is 8-1 in San Francisco this year and Tim Tebow is 3-1 in Denver. Maybe Matt Leinart can get it going too.
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Oh right, "lisfranc". From what I've been able to find out a lisfranc fracture is "a fracture of the foot in which one or all of the metatarsals are displaced from the tarsus." Right... For those of us who did not go to medical school, a lisfranc injury is an injury to one of the small joints of the midfoot. It occurs when there is a dislocation, or fracture AND dislocation between the forefoot and midfoot joints most often requiring surgery to repair. Ouch.
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The Texans have a bye this week and then their schedule the rest of the way looks like this:

11/27 @ Jacksonville
12/4 vs Atlanta
12/11 @ Cincinnati
12/18 vs Carolina
12/22 @ Indianapolis
1/1 vs Tennessee

They are currently a game and a half up on the 5-4 Titans.

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