Arizona Cardinals vs Houston Texans: Preview, prediction
The Arizona Cardinals will travel to NRG Stadium to take on the Houston Texans in the third preseason game of the season.
The Houston Texans will be hosting the Arizona Cardinals in what is the most meaningful game of the preseason schedule. The Texans (2-0) beat the New Orleans Saints last week 16-9 and look to continue their winning streak against Arizona. The Cardinals (0-2) struggled on all sides of the ball in last week’s 19-3 loss against the San Diego Chargers.
History: The Cardinals and Texans have faced each other 3 times in the regular season. Arizona has an all time 2-1 record against Houston. The latest win against the Texans came in Week 10 of the 2013 season. After struggling initially against quarterback Case Keenum, the Cardinals were able to regroup on their way to a 27-24 victory.
What: Arizona Cardinals vs. Houston Texans
Where: NRG Stadium, Houston, Texas
When: 1:00 PM Arizona Time (4:00 PM EST)
Radio: Arizona Sports 98.7 FM
Keys to Victory:
When it comes to the third preseason game, the starters usually play well into the second quarter. That may not be the case this time around. Head coach Bruce Arians says he knows what the starters are capable of and will play it by ear whether or not they need more work.
The offense has struggled mightily in the first two games and have yet to get into any rhythm. Last week, Carson Palmer was 4 for 8 and threw for 37 yards along with an interception. While it is still only preseason, the lack of offensive production should make Arians leaving his starters in a little longer.
Aside from Palmer, the other quarterbacks haven’t performed too well either. Drew Stanton has looked anything but a potential replacement for Palmer. Matt Barkley responded well after a tough first game and led the Arizona offense to their only points of the game against the Chargers.
Fourth string quarterback Jake Coker will miss Sunday’s game with a sore knee.
Texans’ All-Pro defensive end J.J. Watt will not be playing. Arians was hoping for the starters to go up against a quality pass rush, but Watt’s absence takes away that opportunity.
Arians mentioned that almost every starting job has been decided. This means D.J. Humphries and A.Q. Shipley are the team’s new starting right tackle and center respectively. It is unclear as to whether Kameron Canaday or Daniel Dillon will be the team’s new long snapper.