This defense of the Houston Texans relies heavily on the defensive line and the linebacker core, which is the major key to their success, which correlates to Jadeveon Clowney being the Defensive Player in the spotlight. With JJ Watt being the leader, visibly and in the locker room, is exactly what Clowney needs to see this year, and if he can avoid the injury bug this year and actually capitalize on his opportunity this year, they could potentially be the best defensive line in the NFL this year.
Clowney played 14 games last year, recording 6 sacks and 40 tackles, including 12 assisted tackles, last year was a better year than the last for Clowney, who was out for a majority of his first two years. Clowney is a major component to making this defense one of the best defenses in the NFL. Considering JJ Watt by himself carried this defense, this entire team, to their first playoff game two years ago. With Clowney and Watt, this could make a nightmare for any opposing offensive coordinators. Clowney could easily be the best counterpart to Watt, and being able to create chaos for every running back and quarterback lining up across from them. Even just the thought of this future healthy defensive line is scary and amazing for the Texans.
Jadeveon Clowney could easily be the spotlight for this defense, but it significantly relies on his health. Last year Clowney was healthy for a majority of the year and was very productive, but he cannot continue to grow and improve himself without staying healthy, and this year will be the year he shines. Honestly, Clowney should, and will, match the numbers of his counterpart, JJ Watt. Expect amazing things from Clowney this year, as he and Watt become the destructive force that leads the Houston Texans to another playoff opportunity.
Editor’s Note: This article can also be seen in our upcoming NFL Preview Edition.