Texans coach all too aware of Payments QB Allen’s means


ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — Houston Texans first-year coach David Culley closed his Zoom name with Buffalo reporters asking for…

ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — Houston Texans first-year coach David Culley closed his Zoom name with Buffalo reporters asking for a giant favor.

“Inform them to go straightforward on us up there,” Culley mentioned because the rebuilding Texans (1-2) journey to face the Josh Allen-led Buffalo Payments (2-1) on Sunday.

Allen has no intention to oblige by saying: “Don’t plan on it.”

The great-natured banter was exchanged between two individuals very aware of one another. As Buffalo’s quarterbacks coach throughout Allen’s rookie season in 2018, Culley noticed past the participant’s uncooked inconsistencies to achieve an up-close glimpse of his burgeoning potential.

“Principally what you probably did is you simply wished to get him essentially proper since you knew it was all there,” Culley recalled.

“I’m not stunned at the place he’s at now,” he added, earlier than breaking into fun. “I want he’d return to being inconsistent for a minimum of yet one more week.”

Allen shook off early season jitters in a 43-21 win over Washington final weekend. By enhancing to 9-0 when topping 300 yards passing, Allen threw 4 landing passes and rushed for an additional to regain the dominant type he displayed throughout his breakthrough 2020 season.

“I believe it simply will get the ball rolling, however there are nonetheless a number of issues we are able to be taught from,” Allen mentioned.

No matter glitches stay could be labored out towards a Texans opponent with query marks on each side of the ball.

Houston has allowed a mean of 386 yards and performs a Tampa 2-style of protection which guards towards huge performs, however is prone to a short-passing assault. The Payments characteristic a trio of established receivers in Stefon Diggs, Cole Beasley and Emmanuel Sanders, who’re able to find smooth spots in protection.

On offense, rookie Davis Mills makes his second consecutive begin rather than Tyrod Taylor, who’s sidelined with a hamstring damage. Mills went 19 of 28 for 168 yards and a landing in a 24-9 loss to Carolina final week.

The Texans’ lone landing drive got here when Mills ran a hurry-up offense and capped a seven-play, 64-yard drive with a 1-yard go to Anthony Miller.

In any other case, Houston mixed for 147 yards and 10 first downs with six punts, a area objective and turned the ball over on downs on its different eight possessions.

Acknowledging the offensive sport plan may need been overly conservative, Culley plans to permit Mills to do extra this weekend.

Mills, nevertheless, faces a protection which has but to permit 300 yards, and has gone 9-0 towards quarterbacks with 16 or fewer begins because the starting of the 2019 season.

Culley is equally aware of Buffalo’s protection, which is usually unchanged from 2018.

“It’s a problem once you play good soccer groups,” Culley mentioned. “What it does to us is it makes us need to be nearly as good as we should be to have the ability to have success.”


Allen hasn’t forgotten his earlier assembly towards Houston, wherein Buffalo blew a 16-0 third-quarter lead in a 22-19 OT loss in an AFC wild-card playoff sport in January 2020.

“Clearly it wasn’t a enjoyable journey residence and it was a protracted offseason,” Allen recalled. “Every week’s a greater risk for me to be taught and develop however that one, because it was so lengthy between video games, it actually, actually drove me.”


Buffalo returns 27 gamers from 2019, whereas the Texans have solely 12 gamers left on their roster from two years in the past. They embrace quarterback Deshaun Watson, who has been listed as inactive/not injury-related following his commerce request and after 22 girls filed lawsuits alleging sexual assault or harassment.


Requested what crucial factor Mills must do to achieve success Sunday, Culley didn’t hesitate by saying: “Get off to , quick begin.”

The rookie didn’t do this final week, when Houston punted on its first 4 possessions. Mills is assured he’ll enhance the extra he performs.

“There’s no different technique to acquire expertise than to go on the market and get the stay reps,” he mentioned.


Receiver Brandin Cooks is on his third quarterback in two seasons in Houston. Regardless of the adjustments, Cooks has remained productive and ranks third within the NFL with 322 yards receiving.

“It’s the quarterback that’s throwing us the ball and making these selections,” Cooks mentioned. “So, my largest factor is all the time determining what my quarterback likes and what he don’t like and making an attempt to mildew my fashion.”


The Texans are Buffalo’s second straight opponent coming off an prolonged break after taking part in on Thursday evening.

They’re additionally the second straight opponent that includes a backup quarterback changing a former Payments starter. Taylor went 22-22 in three seasons in Buffalo earlier than being traded to Cleveland in March 2018. Final week, Washington began Taylor Heinicke rather than injured Ryan Fitzpatrick, who went 20-33 in 4 seasons in Buffalo from 2009-12.


AP Sports activities Author Kristie Rieken contributed.


Extra AP NFL protection: and

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