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Team: Houston Texans

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Houston linebacker Whitney Mercilus (back) is questionable for Week 15.
Mercilus leads Houston with 5.5 sacks on the season and his absence would be a blow to the Texans' defense. The Houston linebacker was limited in practice on Wednesday before missing practice on both Thursday and Friday, and his playing status will be a game-time decision on Sunday. With or without Mercilus, the Texans D/ST will be a quality Week 15 fantasy option at home against the Jacksonville Jaguars, who have the third-most turnovers of any NFL team. Sat, Dec 17, 2016 02:39:00 PM

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The Texans D/ST will be playing without defensive end Jadeveon Clowney (elbow, wrist) in Week 13.

Clowney was ruled out on Saturday due to nagging wrist and elbow issues and did not make the trip to Green Bay with the Texans. Losing Clowney, who has three sacks and 12 tackles for losses in 2016, is a significant hit to the Houston defense preparing to face QB Aaron Rodgers. The Texans D/ST is not an advisable fantasy start on the road at Lambeau Field on Sunday.
Sat, Dec 3, 2016 06:02:00 PM

After allowing 135.4 rushing yards per game in the season's first seven weeks, the Houston Texans have allowed 56 rushing yards per game since.

The Texans haven't faced the NFL's top rushing attacks, but the improvement is encouraging nonetheless. In Week 12, Houston will look to continue its run stopping ways against San Diego and Melvin Gordon, who is fourth among NFL running backs in rushing yardage in 2016. The Texans D/ST has performed well at home this season and is a borderline top-10 fantasy options in Week 12.
Fri, Nov 25, 2016 01:50:00 PM

The Houston Texans have forced just two turnovers over the last six weeks.

The Texans have the second-fewest takeaways among NFL defenses through eight weeks, with six. The lack of turnovers has hurt, but Houston has performed well at home with the Texans D/ST recording four top-10 fantasy performances at NRG Stadium in Houston. The Texans are on bye in Week 9 and will return to action in Week 10 as a mid-range fantasy option on the road at Jacksonville.
Thu, Nov 3, 2016 04:02:00 PM

The Houston defense has been gouged for 126.3 rushing yards per game in 2016, making the Texans the 29th-ranked run defense in the NFL.

Houston allowed 161 rushing yards in Week 6 to Indianapolis, including 106 yards to the ageless Frank Gore. Texans coach Bill O'Brien noted the lackluster tackling of his defense as something that needs immediate improvement. "This is not an easy league. Some of these backs that we go against, receivers that we go against are hard to tackle. We have to continue to work on that and be more consistent tacklers," O'Brien said. Houston will look to slow the Denver running game in Week 7, where the Texans D/ST will be a mid-tier fantasy option.
Wed, Oct 19, 2016 07:25:00 PM

The Houston defense will be without J.J. Watt for "an extended period of time" after the star defensive end re-injured his back.

The report from NFL Network's Ian Rapoport is terrible news for the Houston defense and takes some of the shine of the Texans D/ST in fantasy leagues. Houston won't be able to replace Watt's production, but still should remain usable in most matchups. The Texans D/ST will remain a top-10 fantasy option in Week 4 against Tennessee.
Tue, Sep 27, 2016 09:12:00 PM

With New England's Jimmy Garoppolo (shoulder) doubtful, Houston will likely face rookie QB Jacoby Brissett on Thursday.

The Texans D/ST will be a top-tier fantasy option in Week 3 when they travel to New England to face Brissett in his first career start. Houston leads the NFL with nine sacks through two weeks and will make Thursday night extremely difficult for the young quarterback.
Wed, Sep 21, 2016 07:09:00 PM

Houston OLB Jadeveon Clowney spent Houston's entire Week 1 contest at defensive end.

Clowney was a force in his new spot, recording a sack, four tackles, and three quarterback hits. Asked whether Clowney will remain at defensive end or rotate back to linebacker, Houston coach Bill O'Brien said, "He understands blocking schemes. He understands football, so he can be moved around." Clowney and the Texans D/ST will host the Kansas City Chiefs in Week 2 and will be a top-tier fantasy option.
Fri, Sep 16, 2016 01:52:00 AM

The Houston defense will be without LB Jadeveon Clowney (foot) on Sunday when they host the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Clowney will finish the 2015 regular season with 4.5 sacks and a left foot injury suffered in Week 16. "It’s football and injuries happen. You just got to prepare yourself to get better and get back, so you can get back out there with your team as soon as possible," said Clowney. The Texans D/ST is a back-end top-12 fantasy option in Week 17 at home.
Sun, Jan 3, 2016 01:51:00 AM

The Houston defense will travel to Tennessee in Week 16 to face Titans QB Zach Mettenberger.

With Marcus Mariota (knee) out, Mettenberger will draw the start against the Texans. After Mariota went down in Week 15, the backup threw two interceptions, giving him five on the season to just three touchdowns. The Texans have been tough on opposing passers this season, allowing just 189.5 passing yards per game since Week 8. Mettenberger will have his work cut out for him, and the Texans D/ST will be a top-10 fantasy option this week.
Fri, Dec 25, 2015 01:46:00 AM

The Houston defense travels to Indianapolis this week, where QB Matt Hasselbeck (ribs) is not guaranteed to start for the Colts.

This news comes from ESPN Colts reporter Mike Wells, and implies that there is a chance Charlie Whitehurst gets the start for Indianapolis this week with Hasselbeck still banged up. Houston is third among NFL teams in pass defense this season and is a top-10 fantasy option this week either way, but would receive a slight bump if Whitehurst is under center.
Fri, Dec 18, 2015 03:44:00 AM

The Houston defense will have DE J.J. Watt on Sunday, despite a broken hand.

Watt leads the NFL with 13.5 sacks on the season and is expected to play this Sunday despite missing practice on Thursday and Friday due to a broken hand suffered on Wednesday. "He'll be good to go." Texans coach Bill O’Brien said Friday after practice. "He’s ready to go." Even with Watt in the lineup, the Texans D/ST won't be a recommended fantasy option in Week 14 when they host the New England Patriots.
Sat, Dec 12, 2015 03:20:00 AM

The Houston defense is focused on stopping the Buffalo running game that is fifth among NFL teams at 136.7 yards per game.

"They’re very elusive. We have to rally to the ball. We preach every game about trying to get everybody to the ball and a lot of guys in on the tackle," said Houston OLB Jadeveon Clowney. The Texans have allowed just 70.0 rushing yards per game over their last four contests, which have all been wins for Houston. Week 13 success for the Texans D/ST will start with slowing LeSean McCoy, who will see a huge workload with RB Karlos Williams likely out. The Texans D/ST is a top-10 fantasy option this week.
Fri, Dec 4, 2015 02:51:00 AM

The Houston Texans are focused on slowing New Orleans wide receiver Brandin Cooks in Week 12, who has scored five touchdowns in his last three games.

Cooks has averaged 85.7 receiving yards in those three games and has at least four receptions in each game this season. "He’s a guy that you can throw screens to, you can throw shot plays to, intermediate routes, run him on reverses and speed sweeps and things like that. So, he’s a really good player," said Houston coach Bill O'Brien. The Houston defense has improved during a current three-game winning streak, but will have a tough Week 12 challenge in the New Orleans Saints. The Texans D/ST is a middling Week 12 fantasy option.
Sat, Nov 28, 2015 02:32:00 AM

The Houston defense will look to build on recent success when they host the New York Jets in Week 11.

The Texans have allowed just four field goals in their last two games and haven't allowed a touchdown over their last ten quarters of play. The most recent Texans performance saw the team hold the high-scoring Cincinnati offense to just six points in a Week 10 win. The Texans D/ST is a middling option this week, but can be considered a reasonable streaming target for fantasy owners in need of D/ST help.
Sat, Nov 21, 2015 02:43:00 AM

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