5 sneaky threats for the Panthers to worry about at the Texans

(Gregory Shamus-USA TODAY Sports) Phillip Lindsay
(Gregory Shamus-USA TODAY Sports) Phillip Lindsay /
1 of 6
Carolina Panthers
(Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports) Stantley Thomas-Oliver III /

10. 8.20 PM ET. 2-0. Thursday, September 23. 1-1. Panthers -8.0. 87. NFL Network

Which sneaky Houston Texans players should the Carolina Panthers keep an eye on this Thursday night at NRG Stadium?

So far, the Carolina Panthers have cruised through their first two games of the 2021 season.

They took down rookie quarterback Zack Wilson and the New York Jets 19-14 in the season opener before easily handling the New Orleans Saints 26-7 this past Sunday.

Nevertheless, the Panthers have a quick turnaround when they travel to Houston to take on the Texans on Thursday Night Football. With a win, Carolina will have their first 3-0 start since 2015, where the team wound up going to the Super Bowl.

Fortunately for Carolina, the Texans will be without their starting quarterback, Tyrod Taylor, who was placed on injured reserve this week after suffering a hamstring injury against the Cleveland Browns.

So, without Taylor and Deshaun Watson, Houston will be led by 2021 third-round pick Davis Mills. He played quite a bit in the preseason but looked like a rookie against a real Browns defense in relief of the veteran in the second half.

Outside of the quarterback position, Houston has a plethora of talent at other positions on both offense and defense and shouldn’t be brushed over. As a team, they average 121 rushing yards and have forced five turnovers, the second-most in the league so far this season.

Regardless of the talent that’s missing from earlier this season, there’s still plenty of threats to worry about and on a short week, anything can happen.

With that in mind, here are five sneaky threats to keep an eye on when the Panthers take on the Texans.