No. 3 AFC South Power Ranking Post-Week 5: Houston Texans (2-3)
One week after being on the top of the world (or at least the AFC South), the Houston Texans fell to the Atlanta Falcons. This was a bit surprising because a) the Texans executed in all three phases in previous games and b) Atlanta didn't look particularly great when they faced the Jaguars the week before.
C.J. Stroud looked like his usual self, completing 63.6 percent of his passes for 242 interceptions. This is more impressive when you take into account that the offensive line continues to struggle and the running game was non-existent.
Speaking of the Texans' rushing attack, 2022 rookie sensation Dameon Pierce tallied a paltry 66 yards on 20 receptions. Now, this may not have mattered if Houston had won but they have a couple of talented backs — Devin Singletary — and they've failed to get them involved this season. That may be a direct result of their porous offensive line but the Texans should look for ways to get their playmakers the ball.
While the Texans offense must carry some of the blame, the defense isn't free of fault. They couldn't consistently apply pressure to Desmond Ridder, who looked like a fringe starter/journeyman when he faced the Jags in Week 4. Moreover, they allowed Atlanta to convert on 50 percent of their third downs. Simply, you won't win many games, if you can't stop your opponent on money downs.
The silver lining is that the 2023 Texans have been better than expected, so it shouldn't be long before they get back into the win column.