Around the NFL: Osweiler back in saddle for Texans

AFC South: Houston Texans

Houston’s defense finished 2016 ranked No. 1 in total yards allowed per game, and that was with All-Pro defensive lineman J.J. Watt missing most of the season. The Texans need to find a way to maintain that level of consistency on defense while the quarterback situation gets settled in an offseason competition between Brock Osweiler and Tom Savage.

(Eric Christian Smith / Associated Press)

Brock Osweiler will start at quarterback for Houston on Saturday in their wild-card game against the Oakland Raiders, Texans Coach Bill O’Brien said Tuesday.

Osweiler, who signed with Houston for $72 million in March, started the first 14 games this season but was erratic, and he was benched in favor of Tom Savage during a Dec. 18 game at Jacksonville. Osweiler took over Sunday after Savage suffered a concussion against Tennessee, and he threw for 253 yards and a touchdown. 

Savage, who started the last two regular-season games, is in the concussion protocol. If he can’t play Saturday, Brandon Weeden, who hasn’t played this season, would back up Osweiler. 

Cook to start?


The Raiders gave no official word on who will start at quarterback for their first playoff game in 14 years, but players appeared to be preparing as if it will be rookie Connor Cook. 

Pro Bowler Derek Carr is out with a broken leg and backup Matt McGloin has a shoulder injury that could limit his practice time, leaving Cook in line to possibly become the first NFL quarterback ever to make his first career start in the postseason. Cook completed 14 of 21 passes for 150 yards and a touchdown in Sunday’s loss to Denver.

Jones arrested

Cincinnati cornerback Adam “Pacman” Jones was jailed and accused of head-butting police and spitting on a nurse after being arrested on suspicion of disorderly conduct in his latest brush with the law. Authorities said he was so combative that he had to be placed in a restraint chair. 


Court records show Jones is accused of pushing and poking a man in the eye, then struggling with Cincinnati police officers by head-butting, kicking and refusing to get into a police car. He then spit on a nurse’s hand while being booked into the jail, police said.

Police said Jones would remain jailed until a blood test is performed Wednesday. A lawyer representing Jones said he “vehemently denies” the allegations.

Giants criticized

New York Giants wide receivers Odell Beckham Jr., Victor Cruz and Sterling Shepard are drawing criticism for taking a celebratory trip to Miami after Sunday’s victory over Washington.

On a day off for Giants players, the three receivers boarded a yacht owned by singer Trey Songz and met with Justin Bieber. Pictures of Beckham and Shepard with their shirts off circulated on the Internet.


New York Jets offensive coordinator Chan Gailey retired from coaching at 64, and Coach Todd Bowles announced a major staff shakeup. Five other assistants will not return following the Jets’ 5-11 season: Kevin Patullo (quarterbacks), Marcel Shipp (running backs), Pepper Johnson (defensive line), Mark Collins (outside linebackers) and Joe Danna (defensive backs). . . . First-year eligibles LaDainian Tomlinson, Jason Taylor and Brian Dawkins were among 15 modern-era finalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame announced Tuesday. The others were Morten Andersen, Tony Boselli, Isaac Bruce, Don Coryell, Terrell Davis, Alan Faneca, Joe Jacoby, Ty Law, John Lynch, Kevin Mawae, Terrell Owens and Kurt Warner. . . . Cleveland Browns owners Dee and Jimmy Haslam apologized to season-ticket holders following a 1-15 season. “You deserve the best, and you certainly deserve better than a 1-15 team. We are sorry that our results have not been better,” the couple wrote in a letter made public by the team. The Browns are 19-54 since the Haslams took ownership in 2012. They’ve also fired three coaches, although the letter expressed support for current Coach Hue Jackson. . . . Baltimore Coach John Harbaugh said offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg will be back next season.