Houston Texans, New England Patriots

Tyrann Mathieu is ready for the challenge that is Tom Brady

Tyrann Mathieu has yet to face Tom Brady in his career, and he’s looking forward to doing it in Week 1.

The Houston Texans added one the NFL’s top tier safeties — Tyrann Mathieu — to add to what should already be a pretty stacked defense. The Texans have a chance to make a run at the Super Bowl in 2018, assuming they stay healthy, which is something they failed to do in 2017.

But this year, things look to be a lot different. We will see just how good the Texans can be when they open the regular season with a trip to Foxboro to face the New England Patriots, a team that is never easy to beat. That game is one that Mathieu has marked on his calendar, as he’s looking forward to the challenge of facing the greatest quarterback of all time, 41-year-old Tom Brady, for the first time in his career.

“I was just talking to somebody about that,” Mathieu told reporters, according to Pro Football Talk. “It’s going to be fun. Brady’s special. He’s a special player. I look up to him in a lot of different ways. He’s the ultimate competitor. For me, it’s just about getting in front of him and seeing what he’s got.”

Mathieu spent his first five seasons with the Arizona Cardinals after being drafted by them in 2013. Being in the NFC for those years, Mathieu’s Cardinals only played the Patriots once, which was the 2016 season opener while Brady was serving his four-game Deflategate suspension. Now that Mathieu is in the AFC, he might get a few chances to go after Brady in the near future — in the season opener in New England for sure, and possibly in a playoff matchup down the road.

Next: 5 things to look for in the AFC South in 2018

The Patriots have always had a dangerous offense with Brady under center and that’s not likely to change in 2018, so getting to open the season against them will be a nice test for this Houston defense that features Mathieu, J.J. Watt, Jadeveon Clowney and Whitney Mercilus.

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