Texans DE Jadeveon Clowney had a big tackle for a loss and a sack on Matt Ryan during the preseason game against the Falcons.
With Week 2 of the preseason between the Falcons and Texans in the books, it is time to take a look at what we learned about both teams from an individual players perspective:
DE Jadeveon Clowney is the real deal – With back-to-back plays reminiscent of his dominating 2012 season in South Carolina, Clowney looked exactly like the player the Texans were hoping they got when they drafted him No. 1 overall. He may not be the 5 sack/game player that he looked like in college, but he is an explosive playmaker that will make fellow DE JJ Watt’s impact even greater.
QB Ryan Fitzpatrick is the best option to start – While the journeyman QB has struggled in his career as a full-time starter – never had a winning season in 77 starts – there is little doubt that he is the most effective option the team has at the moment. Rookie Tom Savage is clearly not NFL ready right now and Case Keenum is simply better suited as a backup. Fitzpatrick may not last more than one season – if he even does last a season – but for now with the combination of his good arm and effectiveness on the ground, he is as good an option as anything the Texans otherwise have.
Rookie OT Jake Matthews may move to LT immediately – Starting Left Tackle Sam Baker was carted off the field almost writhing in pain after suffering a knee injury. If he is out for any extended period of time, the Falcons may have to push No. 6 overall draft pick OT Jake Matthews to the LT spot. Matthews was seen by many as the most polished draft prospect on the board in 2014, but he has struggled in pass protection this preseason.
WR Julio Jones looks recovered – The Falcons fell off a cliff in 2014 after Julio Jones went down with an injury during Week 5 against the Jets. In the preseason game he caught both of his intended passes for 20 yards. Showing few if any signs of the sidelining injury will mean good things for Jones moving forward.