The Houston Texans just lost their season opener in heartbreaking fashion on Monday Night Football. Head coach Bill O’Brien and defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel are taking some heat.
With six seconds left, the New Orleans Saints had the ball at the Houston 49-yard line, trailing 28-27. With one timeout remaining, it was obvious what they planned to do.
Saints quarterback Drew Brees was looking for a quick pass in space, allowing his receiver to immediately get down. New Orleans would call its final timeout, and set up a long Will Lutz field goal attempt.
The Saints executed this to perfection, and Lutz drilled a 58-yard game-winner. However, the Texans made this scenario possible with a curious defensive play call on the second-to-last play.
Instead of pressing up on the Saints receivers, Houston gave cushions to the two wideouts split out right. The Texans safeties aren’t even in the screen.
It was way too easy for Brees, and O’Brien and Crennel are paying the price by (rightfully) being criticized.
I want to be sure I get the picture accurate. Here is the #Texans’ corner alignment on the play that gave up the yardage which allowed the field goal. Ted Ginn is in the slot. Why the corners aren’t in press with the safeties over the top, I’m not sure. pic.twitter.com/ktz2rI66bc
— Charles Robinson (@CharlesRobinson) September 10, 2019
On final offensive play Texans DC Romeo Crennel was playing defense like the #Saints needed to score a 49-yard TD with no timeouts remaining, not like they needed nine yards with a timeout remaining. Easy money for an offense.
— Landry Locker (@LandryLocker) September 10, 2019
Romeo Crennel should be doing the post game press conference tonight, and not Bill O'Brien
— Mike Meltser (@MikeMeltser) September 10, 2019
Last season: Deshaun Watson leads a fourth quarter comeback against the Eagles, and Jadeveon Clowney blows it.
This season: Deshaun Watson leads a fourth quarter comeback against the Saints, and Romeo Crennel blows it.
— Matt Hammond (@MattHammondShow) September 10, 2019
being a texans fans is watching deshaun watson tap into the magic of the cosmos to save a game only for bill o’brien to let the texans line up in a prevent defense when the other team only needs seven yards https://t.co/khfSIe29t6
— Shea Serrano (@SheaSerrano) September 10, 2019
Rush two, drop nine, WTH O’Brien?!
There are six seconds left & these guys are backpedaling like Brees is gonna actually reach the end zone on a Hail Mary to end the game. pic.twitter.com/kD8VhGS9s4
— Warren Sharp (@SharpFootball) September 10, 2019
Now, O’Brien doesn’t call the defense. Crennel does, and he should definitely know better as a longtime defensive coordinator.
Still, the head coach should probably have some sort of input there as well. The whole sequence was just inexcusable.