Deshaun Watson did everything he could to lead the Houston Texans to a Week 7 win over the Indianapolis Colts, but, in the end, he may have been asked to do too much.
The Houston Texans had a critical Week 7 game against the rival Indianapolis Colts, as both teams are jostling for first place in the AFC South. Houston have looked capable of challenging the New England Patriots as the best team in the AFC after defeating the Kansas City Chiefs in a showdown between MVP candidates at quarterback, but Deshaun Watson’s team may have fallen back to earth this Sunday.
A late interception to Darius Leonard, who made his return after an injury, sealed the deal for the Texans, who are now 4-2 after a 30-23 loss to the Colts. This was a back-and-forth affair, but Watson failed to outduel Jacoby Brissett, who was nearly-perfect with four interceptions against a Texans defense that had no answers for his offense.
On the other hand, Watson’s performance was more of a mixed bag. He threw for 308 yards and made a few jaw-dropping plays, including a deep bomb to Kenny Stills on the right sideline that later set up a touchdown to DeAndre Hopkins that got the Texans back into the game.
But Watson also threw two interceptions: an early pick to Colts star cornerback Pierre Desir before a back-breaking interception on what could have been the Texans game-winning drive.
The Texans live and die by Watson’s play at the quarterback position because they don’t really have the consistency on defense. Coming into Week 7, the Texans were in the middle of the pack in terms of points per game allowed, and this 30-point effort by the Brissett-led Colts offense will knock the Texans down the list a few slots.
Watson’s performance on Sunday will be defined by his two interceptions, which were both awful, soul-crushing picks that undid all of his good work throughout the four quarters. He gave the Texans a chance to win this game, but he also took away their sliver of hope with that late mistake to Leonard.
There’s no doubt that Watson is still an MVP candidate, the face of the Texans franchise, and a great quarterback in this league. But these are also the mistakes that players like Russell Wilson don’t make in the game’s critical stages. That’s why Wilson is the established quarterback with a ring and the frontrunner in the MVP race, while Watson is still on the ascent towards entrenching himself as elite.
This loss shows that while Watson is a great quarterback, he still has a little ways to go before he can be considered on the Wilson or Aaron Rodgers plane. And it would help Watson if the Texans defense didn’t have to ask their quarterback with trying to conjure up magic in every single shootout.