Dec 1, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Texans running back Ben Tate (44) is congratulated by tackle Derek Newton (75) after scoring a touchdown during the second quarter against the New England Patriots at Reliant Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports
In a bit of a side note from Sunday’s 34-31 loss to the New England Patriots, the running game of the Houston Texans set a team record with four rushing touchdowns in a game.
The previous mark was three, as the team began playing in 2002. The last time the team had three rushing touchdowns in a game was in Detroit on Nov. 22, 2012 in a 34-31 overtime win against the Lions.
The four-touchdown mark was set by running back Ben Tate, who had three rushing scores, and quarterback Case Keenum, who had one.
Tate’s rushing scores went for eight yards, 20 yards and 10 yards in the first, second and fourth quarters, respectively.
Keenum rushed for a 5-yard score in the third quarter, then tying the team record. The 10-yard rushing touchdown by Tate in the fourth quarter set a new team mark.
Tate’s play on Sunday makes me wonder, and maybe you as well, if the Texans really need to consider keeping him on the roster next season and not letting him walk in free agency.
Tate was quoted by Brian T. Smith on the Ultimate Texans blog Monday, saying:
"“I believe I’m one of the best running backs in the NFL. I take pride in even playing while hurt and trying to put up big numbers. I just take pride and I have a lot of pride and I believe in myself – I always have.”"
Tate is 100-percent correct.
He’s proven he’s a quality NFL running back and will play injured, as he played most of this season with broken ribs … oh, and he scored three touchdowns with those same broken ribs.
It is just a suggestion, but letting Tate walk at the end of the year could be a huge mistake for the Texans, because he’s capable of these type of games if given some type of quality blocking. And he plays tough while injured.
Tate this season has 646 yards on 151 carries this season. Early in ’13, he shared carries with Arian Foster, who has since been placed on the IR list with a back injury.