Houston TexansThe Houston Texans, an American professional gridiron football team, were created after the NFL’s Houston Oilers relocated to Tennessee. When the NFL awarded an expansion franchise to Houston in 1999, the birth of the Texans was set. In 2002, the team played its first game, a victory over the Dallas Cowboys. Despite this initial success, the team’s inaugural season was rough, ending with just four wins. The following years saw the team placed last in the AFC South in five of its first six seasons. The offensive line’s struggles were notable during this time, which allowed a record number of sacks on quarterback David Carr in 2002, 2004, and 2005.
A Turning PointThe Texans’ fortunes turned around in 2009. With an offensive line led by wide receiver Andre Johnson and quarterback Matt Schaub, who was also one of the best quarterbacks in the league, the Texans posted their first winning record (9–7) in franchise history. The momentum continued as Houston captured its first division title in 2011 and set a franchise record with 12 wins in 2012. Unfortunately, the success was halted in the divisional round of the following postseason.
Challenges and Triumphs
The Texans faced adversity in 2013 with an injury-plagued season that led to a 2–14 record. Recovery was swift, though, and the team rebounded the following season with a 9–7 record, narrowly missing the playoffs. Success continued with division titles in 2015 and 2016, and an opening playoff game win in 2016. However, the 2017 season presented new challenges as standout rookie quarterback Deshaun Watson’s mid-season injury affected the team’s momentum, leading to a 4–12 record. Despite an 0–3 start in 2018, the team rallied to win 11 games and a division title but lost in the postseason. Another division title followed in 2019, with a victory in the wild-card round before elimination by the Kansas City Chiefs.
Rebuilding YearsThe Texans began a rebuilding phase in 2021 by hiring David Culley as the team’s head coach. Key changes included releasing all-pro defensive end J.J. Watt and trading away starting quarterback Deshaun Watson. However, the team’s direction saw frequent changes with the firing of Culley in 2022, the promotion of defensive coordinator Lovie Smith, and his firing in 2023. On January 31, 2023, former player DeMeco Ryans was hired as the new head coach, making him the sixth head coach in franchise history. The Texans boldly chose Ohio State quarterback C.J. Stroud with the second overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft.
Memorable MomentsThroughout its history, the Texans have had their share of memorable moments. From the opening victory against the Dallas Cowboys to division titles and postseason successes, the team has shown potential. A tie game against the Indianapolis Colts in 2022 marked the franchise’s first tie in its 20-year existence, adding to the team’s unique narrative.
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