Behind Enemy Lines: Part I

With the Houston Texans set to invade Lucas Oil Stadium this weekend for an AFC South battle, ColtPower.com editor Eric Hartz has five questions about the Texans for BattleRedNation.com's Charlie Bernstein. See what Bernstein had to say about Texans head coach Gary Kubiak's job security, tight end Owen Daniels, the Texans' injury situation and more in Part One!

Eric Hartz: How serious are the Gary Kubiak "hot seat" rumors? From many people's point of view, the Texans are a good team that's been beset with some bad luck and a tough division the last couple of seasons. Is a coaching change really what this team needs right now?

Charlie Bernstein: Although I'm obviously not inside Texans owner Bob McNair's head, I can't see how Kubiak can get the blame for what has occurred this season. The Texans have a ton of talent and a coaching change would likely set the team back. It's been a lot of bad luck and untimely mistakes that have kept Houston from contending for a wildcard.


WR Andre Johnson
Bob Levey/Getty Images

EH: Owen Daniels has emerged this season as one of the top tight ends in the AFC, and is on pace for career highs in virtually every category. However, he struggled last week, with just one catch. Is he missing the chemistry he was developing with Matt Schaub, or was it just a good game plan by Baltimore?

CB: Baltimore's linebackers are elite, and they made sure that Owen Daniels wasn't going to have a big day. The fact that Rosenfels was severely harassed and wildly inaccurate certainly didn't help Daniels. Owen Daniels benefits a lot from the presence of Andre Johnson as most teams tend to roll coverage his way, which leads to one on one situations down the middle of the field for Daniels.

EH: The Texans got CB Dunta Robinson back a few weeks ago and should get Amobi Okeye back this week, but the Texans still have major injury concerns. Other than the quarterback positions, what's the situation with injuries and where do you see the Colts taking advantage?

CB: It's far from a lock at this time whether Amobi Okoye will play and if he doesn't, the Colts should be able to get the running game going if they choose to do so. The loss of Zac Diles is severe, as he was playing at a Pro Bowl level before his broken leg, and linebacker Morlon Greenwood is also banged up. The Colts should have a field day throwing short crosses and hitting Dallas Clark in the seam. If Peyton Manning is on your fantasy team (as he is mine), I would start him this week for sure.

EH: After a shaky start, the Colts have started to protect Peyton Manning better with just two sacks in their last three games. The Texans, led by Mario Williams eight sacks, are 10th in the league with 17 total sacks. Do you think they'll be able to slow the Colts offense down by taking Manning down?

CB: With the possibility of Amobi Okoye being out, I can't see the Texans pass rush having a big day against a quarterback like Manning who gets the ball out so quickly. The Texans corners have been playing poorly which will certainly affect the pass rush. In a word — no, I don't think Manning's jersey will see the turf much.

EH: Matt Schaub was really starting to take off before his injury two weeks ago. Obviously, the Colts have seen Sage Rosenfels before. Rosenfels actually had a good effort against the Colts in their earlier matchup before his fourth-quarter meltdown. What's he need to do this time to finish the job?

CB: I believe a lot of it will be mental this week with Rosenfels, as he faces the team that helped his undoing. Prior to that final four minutes, there was a legitimate quarterback controversy in Houston, and now he looks like a guy with shaken confidence, although he's saying all the right things. He has the weapons around him to be great, but I don't think the pass protection will hold up for him on Sunday.

Charlie Bernstein is the Editor-in-Chief of Sports Media Interactive, covering multiple teams in the National Football League, NCAA, and National Basketball Association. Charlie is a regular syndicated contributor to FoxSports and Sirius NFL Radio, and has been featured on the NFL Network. Charlie is also a member of the Pro Football Writers of America.


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