Brandon Weeden had only been in for one month, but it didn't take him long to figure out the mentality of Bill O'Brien's team.
"We just come to work each and every day," Weeden said. "I think it starts with the head coach. He instills that in us. You come in each and every day and just try to get better. Great leadership."
Weeden, claimed off waivers by Houston on Nov. 19, fit right in with his first two games as a Texans. After stepping in for T.J. Yates against Indianapolis, Weeden had his first start as a Texan on Sunday at Tennessee. He became the fourth Texans starting quarterback this season.
"He's a professional football player," head coach Bill O'Brien said. "He comes in every day to work from the day he got here. He puts in extra time. He's a really good passer of the football, he throws a really nice ball, he works extra with the receivers and the tight ends and the backs to get the timing down, and he did a nice job for us today."
The fourth-year quarterback erased all of the Dallas Cowboys offense from his mind and got to work on a new one. With a division title on the line, Weeden took over an offense and had himself a career day in the 34-6 win over the Titans. Weeden completed 15-of-24 passes for 200 yards, two touchdowns, no interception and a 116.7 passer rating, the highest passer rating he's recorded in a start. He also made Texans franchise history, becoming the first playerwith two passing touchdowns and one rushing touchdown in a game.
"Those guys run great routes and got some separations and just try to pile those on one after another," Weeden said. "We came out the first possession of the second half and ran the routes with six or seven yards of separation. From there, I think we just got comfortable. I've only been here for a month and so - get in a rhythm, get comfortable, start seeing things slowing things down. It starts with getting early and easy completions."
Weeden rushed for a seven-yard touchdown as the Texans took a 16-0 lead over the Titans. In his first start, Weeden orchestrated a six-play, 65-yard drive leading up to his first career rushing touchdown, a seven-yard score that gave Houston a 16-0 lead with 2:32 left in the second quarter. He also threw touchdown passes to Nate Washington and DeAndre Hopkins, who had a seven-catch, 117-yard performance.
With the win, the Texans improve to 8-7 on the season and head into Week 17 with a one-game lead atop the AFC South.
"We needed this one," Weeden said. "As a team, we needed this one. It feels good personally, (but) I'm more excited for this team."
The Texans will host Jacksonville on Sunday in the 2015 regular season finale.
Check out snapshots of the action from the Texans at Titans Week 16 matchup.