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Wednesday, May 11, 2011
Flash Points: Texans' decisive moment

By Paul Kuharsky

What key event significantly changed the fortunes of the Texans -- for better or worse? Give us your take and we’ll give you our definitive moment on May 20.

It wasn't easy to come up with a list of four for a franchise that has played only 10 seasons. There are no Immaculate Receptions (or even playoff appearances), there are no iconic players (though Andre Johnson is heading there). I did the best I could.

The awarding of a franchise is a big moment, and it didn’t just change the fortunes, it created the fortunes. But it’s hardly a football moment, and stacked up against the moments we will see from other teams, it will probably rate as a weakling.

A win in the first game was a crazy development. But as glorious as beating the Cowboys was in the official opening of Reliant Stadium after all that build-up, did it really have any sort of long-term effect on the franchise?

The record sacks of David Carr certainly gave the team a reputation it took a long time to get out from under. It’s the sort of mark that leaves a mark. Carr was a highly-regarded prospect who never fully recovered, and how many quarterbacks would have? When the No. 1 overall pick is left to be helped off the ground so often and doesn’t wind up a big hit, it sets a team back a good bit.

We don’t know the complete story of Mario Williams’ career. The defensive end is about to start working as a linebacker in a 3-4 system in which he has never played before. But the Texans went out on their own limb and made the right call in selecting him rather than Reggie Bush or Vince Young, getting a we-told-you-so opportunity when the vast majority of the football world was certain they were wrong.

You’re invited to do better than I’ve done here.

If you vote Other, give us your suggestion in the comments area below.