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PRUETT COLUMN: Charles returns to Houston to face Texans

Next Sunday is a big day in Houston if you are a fan of the Port Arthur Memorial Titans.
Jamaal Charles and the Kansas City Chiefs face off against the Houston Texans in the opening weekend of the NFL season. Waiting for Charles will be the NFL’s best defensive player in end J.J. Watt.
Former News sports editor Bob West made the trip to KC for the opening game last year to watch Charles and was highly disappointed his man Andy Reid only handed the ball to the Memorial great six times against Tennessee. If it happens this upcoming Sunday in Houston, Reid can expect a halftime visit from Mr. West himself.
This is the third time Charles will face off against Houston. The first came in 2010 and Charles ran for 93 yards on 16 carries and had 24 receiving yards on four receptions in a 35-31 Texans win. In 2013, Charles rushed for 86 yards on 21 carries with a touchdown as KC won 17-16. …
This week’s winner of the Nederland dance contest is. … Connor Perkins over Tavian Mayfield. Perkins’ first move when the contest was mentioned was somewhere between a wobbly deer walking for the first time and how Frankenstein walks. Still, the moves were impressive and he is this week’s winner. …
Congratulations to the Spartans of Houston Scarborough, who ended a 59-game losing streak Friday night with an 18-14 win over KIPP Sunnyside. Forget the fact Sunnyside is a private school for a moment and celebrate this for what it is, a great moment for a group of young men who showed up to practice and games just like everyone else.
Scarborough famously last year reached the playoffs with a 0-10 record and fell 64-0 to West Orange-Stark in the first round. The losing streak dated back to 2009. Coach Ajani Sanders recently said in an article the Trojans would win this season and he was right. The Mustangs will likely still meet the Trojans in the playoffs this year since WO-S is expected to win its district and Scarborough is predicted to come in last. …
How about some baseball prop bets this week? Sportsbettingdime.com has put out some odds on teams winning divisions, leagues and World Series along with players taking home some hardware. Houston has the third best odds to win the AL at 6 to 1. Toronto is the favorite to win the AL at 7-4 and also the top bet to win the World Series at 9-2. The Astros are 12-1 favorites to win it all. Houston is 2-9 odds-on-favorites to hold on and win the AL West.
Dallas Keuchel is second in the list to win the AL Cy Young award at 13-5, behind Oakland’s Sonny Gray. Houston shortstop Carlos Correa is the favorite to win the AL Rookie of the Year with 9-4 odds. …
There is high praise out of Denver for Wade Phillips, coming from both offensive and defensive Broncos players. Receiver Brandon Marshall told the local CBS station the preseason has been a “blast” and the team now has a great defensive coordinator. Linebacker Von Miller said: “I think it is just a representation of what type of coach we’ve got, first off. And our defensive coordinator, it’s easy to go to work when you’ve got a guy like that. It’s all about football, it’s all about being great, it’s easy to stay in the moment. It’s easy to go to work for a guy like Wade Phillips.” Once again Phillips is proving to be one of the best, if not the best, defensive coach in the NFL. …
Fans of Seattle Seahawks safety Earl Thomas should be real excited about the news handed down this week from coach Pete Carroll. Carroll announced Thomas is ready to go in the team’s season opener at St. Louis. Thomas was injured in last January’s NFC Championship win over the Green Bay Packers. He will not play in the Seahawks final preseason game, yet Carroll said Thomas looks fast and ready to go. Thomas has yet to miss a game in his five-year career. …
ESPN, big on making lists, put out another one this week and it was to have 70 voters rank the top 100 players in the league. Houston Texans defensive end Watt was voted No. 1 with a ranking of 98.87 and Green Bay quarterback Aaron Rodgers was a close second at 98.34. These two players are so far ahead of everyone else, No. 3 was New England QB Tom Brady with a ranking of 95.14. The top Dallas Cowboys player on the list was receiver Dez Bryant, who was tied for sixth with Detroit Lions WR Calvin Johnson. Thomas placed at No. 15 and the biggest compliment to the West Orange-Stark graduate is the fact the next safety on the list, teammate Kam Chancellor, was a full 21 spots below at No. 36.
Charles checked in at No. 30 and Tony Romo was right behind him at No. 31. Charles had a ranking of 88.14 and Romo was at 88.07…
Enjoy the week folks and thank you for picking up The Port Arthur News this week.
Gabriel Pruett can be reached at gabe.pruett@panews.com.

About Gabriel Pruett

Gabriel Pruett has worked with both the Port Arthur News and Orange Leader since 2000. A majority of the time has been spent covering all aspects of Southeast Texas high school sports. Pruett's claim to fame is...being able to write his own biographical information for this website.

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