As has been the case with the rest of the trash the Texans have seen this season, the Texans did what they were supposed to do and beat a less talented team starting a rookie quarterback. While the Jaguars did hold a 13-10 halftime lead, the Texans dominated them after halftime, shutting them out and cruising to their seventh win of the season, 27-13.
Houston improves to 4-0 against rookie signal callers, having beaten Derek Carr and the Raiders, along with Zach Mettenberger and the Titans twice. Each of those four teams, also spots a league-worst 2-11 record. The combined scores of those four games is 132-64. Barring injury, they’ll see Blake Bortles one more time in the season finale in Houston.
This was the biggest struggle of the four lopsided wins and needed one special effort play to put this one to bed and they got it from their best offensive player – Arian Foster.
Foster did what he seems to always do, find yards where they don’t seem to be. He ripped off a 51-yard run early in the game that led to the Texans first points. But it was his miracle one-yard run from the one-yard line for the final score of the game that was undoubtedly his most important tote.
Houston had the ball at the one-yard line with a first and goal, holding a 17-13 lead with a minute left in the third quarter. They started with Foster losing a yard on first down run up the middle, then gaining the yard back on second down with a run to the left.
They let time run out on the third quarter before their third down snap, so they had a lot of extra time to make their play call and discuss what to do on fourth down if they didn’t score on third down. They went with a sweep to the left for quarterback Ryan Fitzpatrick on third down. He’d scored on a similar play to the right in the first half from four yards out. This time, however, with again no push from the offensive line, Fitzpatrick was again stopped short. That left the Texans with three runs for zero yards and a fourth and goal from the one.
On came Randy Bullock for the incredibly short field goal attempt, but with a about 15 seconds on the play clock, the Texans called timeout for more discussion. Fitzpatrick, Foster, head coach Bill O’Brien and quarterback coach George Godsey put their heads together and sent the offensive back on the field to go for the score on fourth down.
They brought defensive end J.J. Watt back onto the field, he had been in on second down as a tight end in motion as a decoy. Fullback Jay Prosch was lined up in front of Foster and they had tight ends Ryan Griffin and C.J. Fiedorowicz on the field as well. Every payer was bunched up along the front and all nine in front of Foster, other than Fitzpatrick were set to block for him on what would be a fourth down run.
Not surprisingly, the Texans formation brought all 11 Jaguars into the box.
The handoff went to Foster and he followed Prosch to his right.
Right tackle Derek Newton got pushed back two yards and right tackle Brandon Brooks was stoned, then pushed back slightly be Sen’Derrick Marks. Prosch was able to guide the linebacker out of the play, but with the Texans offensive line again unable to get any push, this play looked doomed.
Not a single Texan has pushed into the endzone when Foster was first touched and he wasn’t even to the two-yard line.
But none of the Jaguars was able to get a good hit or grab of Foster and simply back-pedaled, reversed course and with no backside contained, he scampered around the left side rather easily.
After the game, O’Brien said Foster told him he was going to score, just give it to him. So he did. And he did. And that essentially ended the game.