FOXBORO — Earlier this week, Houston wideout Andre Johnson — known for his hyperbolic penchant called Monday night’s Gillette Stadium collision with the Patriots the biggest game in Texans’ franchise history.
Matt Schaub had to cringe when he heard those words. So much individually rides on the game for Schaub. Toss the weight of the franchise on his shoulders, and shouldn’t we be prepping for a colossal Schaub crumble?
Win or lose tomorrow, Houston survives and remains on track for the AFC’s top playoff seed.
But Schaub? Lay an egg with a sure-fire record national TV audience watching? Talk about a direct drop from the penthouse to the outhouse.
For Schaub’s sake, he and the Texans’ offense had better deliver a monster.
A career 64.3 percent passer, who is 18-4 in his last 22 starts with a 95.5 passer efficiency rating, Schaub remains on the outside looking in when it comes to the NFL’s top guns.
Tom Brady, the Mannings, Drew Brees and Aaron Rodgers occupy the luxury boxes.
Schaub’s not sitting in the last row of the bleachers with Mark Sanchez, but he’s still waiting for the call to get out of the cold and sip some Moet with the blue-chippers.
“I don’t even spend one second thinking about it,” said Schaub about what a special showing against Brady and the Pats would do for his league-wide status. “To me it’s about winning football games for this team, getting into the postseason and winning a championship. All that other stuff will take care of itself after that.”
Schaub may not be thinking about it, but America, as a football nation, certainly is. A year ago, he was in a position similar to this, only to have his foot smooshed when Albert Haynesworth belly-flopped on it in Week 11.