Houston finally broke the Indy curse and won their first ever game in Lucas Oil Stadium as a Franchise
To get the contest started, the Colts deferred and chose to kick off to T.J Yates and the offense.
They were forced into an early 3rd and 6 play from their own 47 yard line. They ended up gaining 5 and a half yards to come up just short. Bill O’Brien drew up a sweep to rookie Akeem Hunt for a 21 yard gain on 4th and short. It’s nice to see some speed in the backfield for the Texans.
T.J. Yates then threw an interception in the red zone on what looked like a miscommunication between he and Hopkins. DeAndre was going deeper than the 10 yard curl route it seemed Yates was throwing.
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The defense came out on the field and gave up 2 quick first downs. They seemed to not grasp that the entire Colt’s game plan was runs with Frank Gore and quick 3 step drop passes. Everything they did was quick, trying to neutralize the pass rush.
Watching Andre Hal morph into a great safety after transitioning from corner has been a spectacle. He continually makes good breaks on the ball and plays the “center fielder” roll very well for Houston. He broke up a shot down field by playing the ball perfectly, and nearly picked if off.
After forcing a 3rd and 11, they left the seam wide open to tight end Colby Fleener and allowed a first down gain of 12 yards.
The next set of plays though, they held and forced a punt on Indianapolis’ first drive.
Alfred Blue came out with two straight carries and gained enough for a quick first down. Then T.J. Yates showed his wheels a bit on an 8 yard scamper.
Alfred Blue was driving for yardage on first down and was stripped of the football for the second Texan turnover on their second possession of the game. They gave Indy prime field position on the 45 yard line going in to score.
The defense got gashed by a screen call and the Colts drove inside the 25 yard line with ease.
The Texans gave up a touchdown to Donte Moncrief, and it was on a quick release pass that the defense still didn’t seem to grasp at the start of the second quarter. Indy took a 7-0 lead with 14:50 remaining in the first half.
The Texans came out and did absolutely nothing on their next drive, running for 1 yard on first and second down and getting sacked on third down. They were forced to punt after 3 and out.
The Houston offense could not get out of their own way, committing penalties and turning the ball over throughout the first half. The offensive line also struggled for the second straight week in pass protection. It resulted in a punt and then the special teams had a breakdown, letting the Colts start their 3rd straight drive inside Houston territory.
Fortunately, the Texan defense held and forced Indianapolis into a field goal attempt. It was good, and the Colts took a 10-0 lead with 6:12 to go in the second quarter.
Alfred Blue took his first carry 41 yards and into Colt’s territory and gave the offense a spark.
It really didn’t equate to much though, as they then were forced into a quick 3rd and 9 situation. T.J. Yates threw an incompletion on the next play. They attempted a 57 yard field goal, and it was nowhere close. The defense was then again handed a short field position to defend.
They were able to do just that by sacking Hasselbeck on 3rd down to force a punt.
Houston was able to get Hopkins involved as they got a big first down gain of 20 yards to Nuk on a deep in route. They followed it up with another big completion downfield to Ryan Griffin.
T.J Yates scrambled for about 20 yards, but as he went to the ground he tweaked his knee and was forced to leave the game. It was a double whammy because the gain was neutralized by a holding penalty. Brandon Weeden was forced to come in for Houston, and all hope was lost…or so I thought.
He completed his first four passes and got the offense going down into the red zone. They ran out of time, but were able to get a field goal down at the 3 yard line. The Texans trailed the Colts 10-3 at halftime.
The Colts received the second half kickoff, and were stopped on 3rd and short to force a punt after gaining a couple first downs. They then killed themselves yet again and got a running into the kicker penalty, giving Indy an automatic first down. The pressure was again put on the defense to come up with another stop.
They did just that, forcing a quick 3 and out following the penalty and got the ball back to the offense.
The offense went nowhere with Brandon Weeden at the helm, and he was sacked on 3rd and 10. They were forced to punt the ball away.
The defense turned up the heat in the second half, and didn’t allow anything from Indianapolis’ offense.
The Texans were gifted great field position at the 32 going in due to a great return on a punt from the Colt’s own end zone.
They were able to get a first down, but then went backwards on yet another penalty. The holding call took them back from the 20 to the 30 yard line, on the cusp on field goal range for Novak.
They overcame the first penalty and gained yardage for a first down on 3rd and 15, only to be called for another holding penalty negating all positive yardage, and forcing them to settle for a 47 yard field goal.
The Texans trailed 10-6 with 2:42 to go in the 3rd quarter.
The Houston defense came out and put the clamp down for the third consecutive drive forcing another punt from the Colts.
The Texans went for it on 4th and 1 from the Colt’s 47 yard line and got it by literally the nose of the football. They continued the drive down into scoring position in the 4th quarter.
The Colts were pegged with a pass interference call on the 22 yard line and set the Texans up in prime position to add points. Jaelen Strong became the Colt killer, scoring his 3rd touchdown in the two matchups this season.
The Texans took a 13-10 lead with 10:36 to go in the 4th quarter.
The defensive unit once again was tasked with making a crucial stop to hold the lead intact. They did just that and forced a punt.
The Houston offense took over possession with 6:46 to go in the contest. They were able to get a first down and extend the drive to churn more time off of the clock, but were only able to get it down to 3:18 remaining.
Houston’s defense made a clutch play and forced a fumble on Indy’s next drive and returned it all the way down to the 22 yard line.
They ran 3 straight plays to get the clock to 2 minutes, but were held to a field goal. The Texans took a 16-10 lead with 1:56 to play.
The first play of the next Indianapolis drive was picked off by Houston for a game sealing turnover.
They won 16-10, and took over sole possession of the AFC South. If they can win 1 of their next 2 matchups, they can clinch the division and ride the wave into the playoffs.