Locker: Takeaways from Texans' preseason opener against Saints


(SportsRadio 610) - The Texans won their preseason opener at home against the New Orleans Saints.

It was a lot of backup quarterback Jeff Driskel and other players just looking to make the team. The offensive starters who played were only in the game for two series as the Texans try to stay healthy leading into Week 1.

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Here are some observations from the Texans' 17-13 victory over the Saints on Saturday:

1. Derek Stingley wasn’t active, but was in uniform. I must say, dude looks like a baller in those Texans GameDay uniforms, just like he looks like a baller in practice.

That’s the No. 1 jersey people should be buying right now.

2. Jack Easterby is no longer in the pre-game area high-fiving guys.

3. Pep Hamilton will be calling plays from the sidelines, not the booth.

4. Harrison Elliot deep snapped for the Texans during a punt where running was required, but Jon Weeks was out there on the field goal in the first. Gotta rest the starters and GOATs.

5. Former Texans center Nick Martin was in action Saturday night for the Saints.

6. 50 Cent was on the big screen for the Texans.

7. Jeff Driskel is a tough watch. His second pass was identical to the one that broke an NFL Network camera early in camp.

8. There were multiple texts and messages I received about the play-calling. Lopez got the same. What are we doing?

9. Dameon Pierce had the in-game juice that he has shown for most of camp. Twenty-six yards on his first two carries.

10. Jeff Driskel hit a security guard in the face before he threw a touchdown pass to Jalen Camp.

11. Tremon Smith had a helluva first half with an interception and TD-saving pass breakup.

12. Isaac Yiadom also had a solid half with some solid tackling on both defense and special teams.

13. The clock management by Lovie Smith at the end of the first half was actually perfect. They didn’t come away with points, but the timeouts were called perfectly and there was a chance to get points on the 60-yard FG attempt to end the first half.

14. Kurt Hinish is nice. Legit shot to make this team. Keep an eye on number 69.

15. Rookie defensive tackle Thomas Booker batted a pass and had a near interception before Saints quarterback Ian Book caught his own pass.

The back of the depth chart defensive line battles are going to be very interesting. I wonder how safe Ross Blacklock’s roster spot is or if he’s going to have to earn it in the final two preseason games.

16. Johnny Johnson was a long shot to make the team no matter what and that blooper drop in the fourth quarter didn’t help the cause. However, he redeemed himself with a touchdown with 25 seconds remaining.

17. Just like at the end of the first half, Lovie had perfect clock management at the end of the second half.

18. Wide receiver Jalen Camp and Hinish are the two guys who did the most to improve their chances at making the squad.