The Houston Texans edged out the Oakland Raiders 27-24 in Week 8, but they suffered a tough injury in the victory. Edge rusher J.J. Watt left the game with a chest injury, and he confirmed that he has suffered a season-ending torn pectoral injury. It marks the third time in four years Watt has suffered a season-ending injury.
The Texans defense has not been great, but Watt has remained a playmaker. He finishes the season with four sacks, a forced fumble, and two fumble recoveries in seven games. He was second on the team to Whitney Mercilus in sacks.
Fantasy football impact
Houston ranked 19th in fantasy points heading into Week 8, and at this point are more of a name brand that is nothing like what it once was. They have two double digit performances on the season, but are coming off zero, one, and five points in their past three performances. Losing Watt won’t drasticall change things, but it does hurt the pass rush, and thus removes a chance for a few sacks in the coming weeks.
They don’t have many great matchups in the coming weeks. They travel to face the Jaguars, have a bye, and then face Baltimore, Indianapolis, and New England. There’s no reason to start the Texans fantasy defense in any of those games.
DeShaun Watson is putting this team on his shoulders, and while he can’t directly help the defense, he can help to get them points and get some key rest. He had a big game in the win over Oakland, throwing for 279 yards and three touchdowns, and rushing ten times for 46 yards.
All of that is to say that Watt’s departure shouldn’t change the perception of the Texans too much. Any success they have will be due more to Watson and the offense than the up-and-down defense. That being said, mire point total over bets might not be the worst idea moving forward.
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