Pressure point: Texans

Examining who faces the most challenging season for the Texans and why.

Matt Schaub's been Houston’s starting quarterback for five seasons, and he’s played all 16 games only twice. You can’t blame him for a bad luck injury like last year’s right foot Lisfranc issue that required serious surgery. Still, to be a big-time quarterback, you need to be on the field.

Schaub has yet to play in a postseason game. Although the Texans weren’t able to hold everything together off their first playoff team, they still have a strong roster. This should be a playoff team that can challenge for the AFC South crown in 2012. But it won’t get to the postseason or do well in it if Schaub doesn’t have a solid, consistent and healthy season.

His contract situation complicates things. This is the final year of his deal, so he has a lot at stake. I think they’ll look to keep Schaub in place no matter what happens. If he’s banged up and the Texans don’t impress with a deep playoff run, Schaub will get less of a jackpot than he would if they ran away with the division and went to the Super Bowl.

Schaub can be excellent running coach Gary Kubiak’s offense, and the quarterback and coach are probably married for the long term. Kubiak was last year’s pressure point and he performed. This year it’s on Schaub.