The Indianapolis Colts took over first place in the AFC South by beating the Houston Texans 30-23 on Sunday at Indianapolis.
The Colts lead the division with a 4-2 record with the Texans in second place with a 4-3 record.
Coming off a big win over Kansas City last week, the Texans came out flat and never played up to their level of play of the last few weeks. They could only score two touchdowns on five trips into the red zone, while the Colts were 4-4 in the red zone, and the Texans hurt themselves with 10 penalties and two interceptions. The last interception came with 37 seconds to go in the game and the Texans driving for a tying touchdown. With the ball at the Houston 48-yardline, Deshaun Watson’s pass to Keke Coutee was bobbled by Coutee and Darius Leonard intercepted it for the Colts.
The Colts’ Zach Pascal and T.Y. Hilton, a major nemesis of the Texans over the years, both scored first half touchdowns as the Colts took a 14-9 halftime lead. The Texans could only score three field goals on three trips to the red zone.
In the third quarter, the Colts took the kickoff and drove 74-yards for a touchdown as Eric Ebron caught a 4-yard pass from Jacoby Brissett for a 21-9 lead. The score seemed to wake up the Texans as they needed only 1:46 to go 75-yards for a touchdown. Coutee ran into the endzone from 4-yards out to make the score 21-16, and Texans’ fans were beginning to sense another comeback win. The Texans’ defense, however, could not stop the Colts as they went on a 75-yard drive and went up 28-16 on Pascal’s second touchdown of the game.
“We need to look at the film and make some adjustments. We can’t just give away first downs, like we did today,” Texans’ defensive end J.J. Watt said.
A 4-yard touchdown pass from Watson to Hopkins cut the lead to 28-23 with 6:43 to go in the game, but the Texans had run out of comebacks, and the Colts prevailed 30-23, adding a safety when Texans punter Bryan Anger stepped out of the endzone.
For the game, Watson completed 23 of 34 passes for 308 yards and one touchdown.
“The Colts played a disciplined defense. Give them credit, they played well. I’m not frustrated, it’s a long season, and we need to stay positive and motivated. It’s the NFL. You never know what is going to happen,” Watson said.
Hopkins had 10 receptions for 106 yards and a touchdown.
The Colts’ quarterback Jacoby Brissett completed 26 of 39 passes for 326 yards and four touchdowns. Hilton had six receptions for 74 yards and a touchdown, and Pascal had six receptions for 106 yards.
“We knew they (Texans) would be playing man to man coverage, and we just executed. The offensive line did a good job of giving Jacoby (Brissett) time and the receivers just executed. It was a good win. We just play each game and try to go 1-0. The win is a good feeling,” Colts’ receiver Zach Pascal said.
The Texans will play the Oakland Raiders on Sunday at NRG Stadium.
5:08 Colts: Zach Pascal 11-yard touchdown pass from Jacoby Brissett. Adam Vinatieri kick.
Drive: 12 plays, 94 yards, 4:59.
Colts 7, Texans 0
9:05 Texans: Ka’imi Fairbairn 47-yard field goal.
Drive: 7 plays, 16 yards, 4:05.
Colts 7, Texans 3
6:30 Texans: Fairbairn 31-yard field goal.
Drive: 4 plays, -9 yards, 1:02.
Colts 7, Texans 6
1:52 Colts: T.Y. Hilton 2-yard touchdown pass from Brissett. Vinatieri kick.
Drive: 9 plays, 75 yards, 4:36.
Colts 14, Texans 6
0:27 Texans: Fairbairn 26-yard field goal.
Drive: 8 plays, 67 yards, 1:26.
Colts 14, Texans 9
10:34 Colts: Eric Ebron 4-yard touchdown pass from Brissett. Vinatieri kick.
Drive: 8 plays, 74 yards, 4:31.
Colts 21, Texans 9
8:48 Texans: Keke Coutee 4-yard touchdown run. Fairbairn kick.
Drive: 5 plays, 75 yards, 1:46.
Colts 21, Texans 16
1:22 Colts: Pascal 3-yard touchdown pass from Bissett. Vinatieri kick.
Drive: 12 plays, 75 yards, 7:29.
Colts 28, Texans 16
6:43 Texans: DeAndre Hopkins 4-yard touchdown pass from Deshaun Watson. Fairbairn kick.
Drive: 6 plays, 79 yards, 2:03.
Colts 28, Texans 23
2:44 Colts: Texans punter Bryan Anger steps out of the endzone for a safety.
Colts 30, Texans 23