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Texans Notebook: Defense Goes Back to Their Roots, Ben Jones and B.J. Daniels

A closer look at some key points to start the week for the Houston Texans.

Titans Feel the Texans Defense has Changed

According to interim head coach Mike Mularkey, the Texans defense has turned back the clock, transforming into what Romeo Crennel used in the past with the Kansas City Chiefs and New England Patriots. 

Mularkey explained. 

“I think they have changed a little bit of their philosophy of what they are doing on the back end with their coverages and even doing some things differently up front than they were the last time we played these guys."

He continued, “A little bit more of what (defensive coordinator) Romeo (Crennel) has done in the past, I am starting to see that and it looks like they have kind of settled in and  are comfortable with what they are playing and very confident in what they are doing.”

Over the past month, Crennel has implemented mixed coverages on each side of the field, including 4-3 fronts and multiple fronts with nickel and dime personnel, playing games with opposing offensive lineman. 

Ben Jones is Important in Helping the Quarterbacks

With the different quarterbacks who have come and gone this season, Ben Jones has been a key figure in helping the situation in the field. Jones has been lauded by his fellow offensive linemen for being the smartest of the group and communicating to them during the game, as well as in the meeting rooms. 

Jones does not stop there. There is so much put on the quarterback position on the field to call out protections and adjustments, and with so much change, Jones has been helping the quarterbacks with “Mike Points." You can see these during games when the quarterback points out the linebacker that the offense focuses on for protections. 

In taking some extra pressure off the quarterbacks, keeping them from trying to do too much, Jones has become a complete player, helping in more ways than one. 

B.J. Daniels Welcomed with Open Arms

There were rave reviews of what B.J. Daniels brings to the Houston Texans and both offensive and defensive players appreciate the skills he offers on the practice field. Daniels is a built specimen and sits a 5'10" 216 lbs., looking more like a running back than a quarterback. 

Players also liked the fact that Daniels was in the parking lot on Monday morning at 7 a.m., heading into the facility to get to work with George Godsey on the game plan for the Tennessee Titans. 

The move was met with approval from players who expressed their positivity regarding the team's seriousness in making the team better. One Texans player even called it a “sneaky and smart” addition to the roster. 

The Seahawks were disappointed in the situation of losing Daniels to the Texans. 

“Disappointed that we lost him,’’ Seahawks coach Pete Carroll said Monday. “Happy for him. … I understand they want him to play quarterback, which is exciting for him. He loves that position, and that’s what he likes most and he’ll bring them some special qualities and it will be interesting to see what happens.’’

Daniels was highly thought of by the Seahawks and was paid almost $30,000 on the practice squad, significantly higher than the normal $6,300 a week. They viewed Daniels as an insurance policy at quarterback depth and, with the constant reshuffle, they were not afraid to pay him to stay in Seattle. 

There was no pay increase for Daniels, only the assurance that he was going to be used primarily as a quarterback. It made the move easy for Daniels and the Texans have him under contract for the entire 2016 season. 

From the get-go, it was clear that the Texans wanted Daniels to play quarterback in some form or fashion and it appears that will be the situation when Sunday arrives. 

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