Previous rank: No. 21
Another dispiriting setback for Houston, which sits at 0-3 after a 28-21 loss to the Steelers. The same issues continue to haunt Bill O’Brien’s Texans: They can’t protect the quarterback, they struggle to run the football, they can’t stop the run and they don’t force turnovers (zero through three games). Yes, their losses have come to the Chiefs, Ravens and Steelers (Nos. 1, 3 and 4 in these rankings), but this early litmus test tells us how far Houston is from legitimate contender status. Deshaun Watson finished the first half 14 of 18 for 202 yards and two TDs, but the offense was held to just 51 yards and two first downs over in the final two quarters.