The Houston Texans are a good football team. I can say that with 100% honesty all the while keeping a completely straight face.
So, if we work off the base premise that the Texans are indeed a good football team, why has their season gone from on track to terribly wrong in just a few short weeks? In a word, carelessness.
Houston sports a top-tier defensive unit that, if given the chance, can shut down most offensive teams in the league. At the very worst, the Texans will slow down nearly any team on the defensive side of the ball, but that requires that their offense gives them a chance with support in the field position battle as well as in the form of points.
That's where the Texans have gone wrong in recent weeks. Instead of scoring points and backing up the opposition, the Texans offense has instead turned to handing the ball to other teams, whether that be via pick-sixes or just simply turnovers. In short, the Texans have lost their way.
The good news is the Texans aren't lost. Because the core group of players is still an extremely talented group, the solution is far more simplistic than, say, fixing the Jacksonville Jaguars. The Texans just have to revert to playing smart football. Instead of giving away points, they can punt the ball and give their defense a chance to make plays. For quarterback Matt Schaub, that may mean simply living to see another down instead of forcing passes into tight coverage.
At 2-3, the Texans' season is hardly lost. This weekend's game against the St. Louis Rams should give Houston a chance to get back on track. With a loss, however, the Texans' situation could go from urgent to dire. Bad performances tend to snowball, and if the Texans can't fix their woeful play soon, the rest of the season will be all about 2014 instead of the 2013 postseason.