It can never be easy. But for the Houston Texans, easy doesn’t really figure into it.
For the first time since 2019, your Houston Texans are going back to the playoffs with a new attitude, a new offense, and a chip on their shoulders.
You knew this game was going to be a wild ride when, after the Indianapolis Colts drove for a field goal to go up 3-0.
Then the Texans offense took to the field and C.J. Stroud wasted no time with the first play of the game, a one-play (yes, one) 75-yard touchdown drive consisting of a deep pass from Stroud to budding superstar receiver Nico Collins.
The rest of the first half was a long back-and-forth with no more points scored until after the two minute warning, when fullback Andrew Beck collected Stroud’s second touchdown pass to go up 14-6 at the half (after another Indy FG).
The second half of the game proved to be far more difficult than any Texans fan wanted but, again, this was expected. Jonathan Taylor led the scoring for the Colts with a 49 yard touchdown run on broken coverage followed by a two point conversion to tie the game 14-14. The Texans would counter with a 51 yard field goal from Ka’imi Fairbairn; only for the Colts to match them with a 35 yard field goal of their own.
The Texans would finally break the game open for good by driving down the field on one of the weirdest drives I’ve seen in a long time. It was almost like Stroud was playing with the Colts defense like a yo-yo. The Texans would give up a dumb penalty to put the team in a deep hole, only to figure out a way to convert over and over again until the 73 yard drive ended with a Devin Singletary one yard touchdown run. The Texans would lead 23-17.
The Colts would threaten one last time until they ran an ill-conceived pass play and failed to convert the fourth down.
The Texans would give up a strategic safety to put the Texans up 23-19 and that’s how the game would end.
If this team has one Achilles heel (and they have more than one), it will be their high penalty rate and that will be something for them to address next season, whenever that ends.
But that’s a talk for another day. THE HOUSTON TEXANS ARE PLAYOFF BOUND!
The only question is what seed they get. We will get clarity on that tomorrow after two games end: The Jacksonville Jaguars/Whatever that other team calls themselves nowadays game and the Miami Dolphins/Buffalo Bills game on Sunday night.
How will that go? I don’t know, and right now I don’t care. THE TEXANS ARE IN THE PLAYOFFS!
And I’ll take that for now.
But for the sake of completeness, here are the potential playoff landing spots for the Texans:
Fourth seed (AFC South Champions) - Jaguars lose, Dolphins/Bills game irrelevant.
Sixth seed (AFC Wild Card) - Jaguars and Dolphins win
Seven seed (AFC Wild Card) - Jaguars and Bills win
Those are our options. So join me in having a nice relaxing day of football tomorrow to watch what the Texans’ playoff fate will be.
For now, though, let’s celebrate y’all!