Houston Texans fall out of AFC Playoff Picture after Week 12 Loss to Jaguars

Jacksonville Jaguars v Houston Texans
Jacksonville Jaguars v Houston Texans / Cooper Neill/GettyImages

A last-second field goal was the Houston Texans' last desperation shot at a win on Sunday afternoon. DeMeco Ryans' unit fought hard throughout four quarters but was short in the final minutes. Matt Amendola's 58-yard attempt fell flat on Houston's last possession. His miss gave the Jacksonville Jaguars their eighth win of the season and pushed the Texans further from clinching a playoff berth.

How will the Houston Texans rejoin the AFC's top seven?

Houston Texans failed to establish a balanced offense vs. Jaguars

Consecutive team victories helped the Houston Texans stockpile momentum for their first test of the regular season. Efficient contributions from Devin Singletary kept Bobby Slowik's offense balanced and defenders on their toes. His 52 carries in the last tttwo weeks resulted in 262 rushing yards and two touchdowns. It's given Houston's offense an edge against weaker defensive units.

Inconsistencies on the ground prevented Houston from establishing an offensive presence Sunday afternoon. Their running backs struggled to find open lanes at the line of scrimmage. It resulted in an unproductive day. Singletary received six carries but could not move the ball downfield. He averaged three yards per attempt and earned 18 rushing yards. Dameon Pierce and Tank Dell did their best to jump-start Houston's rushing attack but failed to see success. C.J. Stroud finished the game as Houston's leading rusher (47) but his efforts were not enough for a win.

Houston Texans still have time to clinch seeding in the AFC Playoff Brackett

A lengthy NFL schedule will help the Texans make up ground in the AFC South. Upcoming match-ups against the Tennessee Titans (2) and Indianapolis Colts will impact Houston's post-season aspiration. After Week 12, DeMeco Ryans' unit will have a .500 winning percentage (3-3) against conference opponents. Houston is 1-2 in divisional rivalries and must win the remaining games to punch a ticket to the playoffs.

The odds of extending the season are higher for the Texans than many believe. They are a talented group with a lot to prove. Explosive offensive performances from C.J. Stroud are keeping Ryans' group above water. Houston's rookie gunslinger ties ninth in touchdown passes (18) and ranks eighth in offensive grading among quarterbacks. He's exceeding expectations and will lead the Texans through a crucial stretch of games.

There are plenty of takeaways from Sunday's duel between the AFC South's best franchises. Doug Pederson and the Jacksonville Jaguars are an explosive unit and are a threat against any team. A three-point loss gave DeMeco Ryans' squad realistic insight into where his group stands entering the last leg of the campaign. The Houston Texans must improve but will still become a post-season contender.

dark. Next. The playoff chase isn't over for the Houston Texans but it didn't get any easier. The playoff chase isn't over for the Houston Texans but it didn't get any easier