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The Speed Option: Houston Texans come to town as major underdogs

Another reunion canceled

NFL: AFC Wild Card-Buffalo Bills at Houston Texans Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

For the second straight week the Buffalo Bills will have a reunion with a former quarterback canceled. This week it’s the Houston Texans heading to Orchard Park. Just like Ryan Fitzpatrick, Tyrod Taylor was injured earlier this season and will miss a rematch against the Bills. Read on below to find out about the rest of the Texans’ season and team below.

2021 Season Summary

The Texans started the season off on the right foot with a win over Trevor Lawrence and the Jacksonville Jaguars. However, Houston has lost two in row after Taylor went down. Rookie quarterback Davis Mills has filled in for Taylor.

Head coach

David Culley has been coaching in the NFL since 1994, but this year is his first season as a head coach. He has worked as both wide receivers coach and quarterbacks coach at different times throughout his career. One of those stints as a quarterbacks coach came in 2017 and 2018 with the Buffalo Bills.

Offensive coordinator

Culley retained offensive coordinator Tim Kelly when he took over the reins in Houston. Kelly has been the OC in Houston for the last three seasons. So far this season his offense ranks 21st in points per game and 24th in yards per game.

Defensive coordinator

Former Chicago Bears and Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Lovie Smith returned to the NFL after five years running the University of Illinois’ football program to run the defense for Culley. His defense is 18th in points per game allowed and 23rd in yards per game allowed.

Offensive starters

  • QB: Davis Mills *
  • RB: Mark Ingram II ^
  • WR: Brandin Cooks
  • WR: Chris Conley ^
  • WR: Danny Amendola ^
  • TE: Pharaoh Brown
  • LT: Laremy Tunsil
  • LG: Tytus Howard
  • C: Justin Britt ^
  • RG: Max Scharping
  • RT: Marcus Cannon ^

^ = free agent / trade addition
* = rookie

Defensive starters

  • DE: Whitney Mercilus
  • DT: Maliek Collins ^
  • DT: DeMarcus Walker ^
  • DE: Jordan Jenkins ^
  • WLB: Zach Cunningham
  • MLB: Christian Kirksey ^
  • SLB: Joe Thomas ^
  • CB: Vernon Hargreaves III
  • CB: Terrance Mitchell ^
  • SS: Eric Murray
  • FS: Justin Reid

^ = free agent / trade addition
* = rookie