HOUSTON – Frustrations have been mounting for weeks now for the Houston Texans. The fans have showed their displeasure ever since the team started their 8-game losing streak.
Sunday’s game against the Oakland Raiders may have been the tipping point.
Matt Schaub entered the game midway through the 3rd quarter and was greeted with a chorus of boos from the fans in attendance.
The players noticed the reception and they weren’t very happy with it, especially running back Ben Tate.
“These fans here in Houston are so up and down and so wishy-washy,” Tate said after the game. “Actually, you know, I’m just shocked because this organization has come a long way.”
He didn’t stop there.
“I don’t know, I just think if you’re a true fan you will stick with the team through the tough times and we’re going through a tough time right now,” Tate said. “Regardless of who was back there, fans are going to be fans I guess so it is what it is.”
Tate ended the game with 19 carries and 88 yards rushing.
The reaction did more to the team than just make them upset. Several players indicated that it actually affected how they operated on the field.
“It was very disappointing. It was disappointing because we had to go to our silent count at home because we couldn’t hear. It was disappointing because it was effecting how we had to play,” left guard Wade Smith said. “Besides that, we are all grown men and have thick skin. But the fact we had to adjust what we were doing to put us at a disadvantage like we were on the road that was a disappointing thing. But we are grown men. When there are accolades we don’t shy away from it, so when there is criticism we can’t shy away from that.”
The Texans host the Jacksonville Jaguars next week and the fans will be there waiting for them, hoping the team puts an end to this terrible stretch.
“They’re fans; I mean they have their opinion. It doesn’t matter what I say or what anybody in this locker room says. They choose to boo, they’re going to boo,” wide receiver Andre Johnson said. “I feel like it’s very unnecessary. They may not feel that way, and I can’t control what they do. At the same time I don’t really approve of it.”