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Game Recap: Texans seal victory with defensive stand


1st Quarter

The Denver Broncos won the opening coin toss and elected to defer to the second half. The Houston Texans received the opening kickoff.The Texans started their first drive of the game at the 25 after the kickoff went for a touchback. Devin Singletary started the game with a one-yard rush, then on second down ran for another four yards to reach the 30. On 3rd-and-5, C.J. Stroud tried to run for the first down but fell a yard short and the Texans punted. It was fair caught at the Denver 18. Denver went for a deep shot on their first play but Russell Wilson's pass was broken up by Derek Stingley Jr. A second deep attempt was dropped by receiver Courtland Sutton. On 3rd-and-10, Wilson attempted to run for the first down but was brought down after a seven-yard gain before being tackled by Sheldon Rankins. The Broncos punted and had it partially blocked by Will Anderson Jr. The punt sailed only 22 yards and the Texans took over at the Denver 47.

Starting at the 47, Stroud hit Brevin Jordan for a 27-yard gain to get the ball down to the 20-yard line and into the redzone. On the next play, Stroud hit Andrew Beck out of the backfield for a five-yard gain. An offsides penalty moved the ball to the 11-yard-line, where Singletary ran for no gain and brought up a short 3rd-and-1. Stroud's pass intended for Beck fell incomplete, which brough Matt Ammendola out for a 29-yard field goal, which he made. The scoring drive went 36 yards in five plays and took 2:03 off the clock. The Texans took a 3-0 lead over Denver with 10:11 left in the first quarter.Broncos started on their own 25 and Javonte Williams took the first carry of the game for the Broncos five yards up to the 30 and on his next carry another two yards up to the 32. Facing a 3rd-and-3, Anderson pushed his way through a lineman and sacked Wilson for a loss of 11 yards and forced a punt. The Broncos punted it 57 yards and the Texans called for the fair catch at their own 22. Texans on their first play from the 22, Stroud stepped back and floated a perfect pass to Nico Collins for a 52-yard completion down to the 26 of the Broncos. Dameon Pierce garnered his first carry of the game with a two-yard run to the 24. On 2nd-and-8, Stroud hit Collins as he stepped out of bounds at the 18-yard line for a six-yard completion.

After a one-yard run by Dare Ogunbowale, on 4th-and-1, Stroud pushed forward to the 15 to set up a fresh set of downs. On first down, Pierce ran behind two blockers for a six-yard gain down to the nine and then rushed for another two yards down to the seven to bring up 3rd-and-2. Following an incomplete pass to Collins in the endzone, the Texans went for it on 4th-and-2, a personal foul was called against Alex Singleton shoved Stroud after the play was over. This set up 1st-and-Goal for the Texans at the three. After an incomplete pass, Pierce rushed in from three yards out. The scoring drive went 78 yards in 10 plays in 4:22. With the score, Houston extended its lead to 10-0 with 3:49 left in the first quarter.After the play was over, Texans rookie receiver Tank Dell stayed down. Dell was checked by team athletic training staff and eventually was carted off. The entire Texans team came over to Dell before he was carted off.The Broncos started the ensuing drive at their own 25. Wilson rolled out and hit Lil'Jordan Humphrey for a 12-yard gain out to the 37. On the next play, Marvin Mims Jr. took a handoff and gained eight yards up to the 45. A toss to Jaleel McLaughlin went no where as Desmond King II flew into the backfield and tripped him up for a loss of one yard. On 3rd-and-3, Wilson was tackled by Jerry Hughes and the Broncos were forced to punt.

The Texans started their next drive at their own 11-yard-line. Singletary ran for four yards up to the 15 and then an incomplete pass made it 3rd-and-5. Stroud bought some time in the pocket before unleashing one to Collins for a 59-yard completion to get the ball down to the Broncos 26-yard-line. That brought an end to the first quarter with the Texans leading 10-0. That catch pushed Collins to three receptions for 117 yards in the game.

The second quarter started with the Texans being called for an illegal block in the back, which pushed them back to the Denver 36 and facing a 1st-and-20. After a four-yard and 10-yard runs by SIngletary, it set up a 3rd-and-6 at the 22, which Stroud rushed for two yards on to bring it to 4th-and-4. Houston settled for the field goal and Ammendola came out and made a 38-yard-field-goal to make it 13-0 Texans with 12:54 left in the first half. It marked the second made field goal of the day by Ammendola. Trailing 13-0, Denver started its next drive at their own 25. Wilson scrambled for three yards and then Williams rushed for 16 and a first down.

After an incomplete pass and a five-yard run by Williams to set up a 3rd-and-5, Samaje Perine rushed for one yard, which forced the Broncos to punt. The punt pinned the Texans back at their own nine after a fair catch was called.After a one-yard loss on the first play of the drive, Stroud hit Jordan for a 24-yard pickup to the 32. The Texans were called for tripping on the next play, which backed them up to the 17 to set up 1st-and-25. Pierce bolted out to the left on the next play and picked up 22 of those yards before running for one more yard up to the 40 on the next to set up 3rd-and-2.

Stroud missed John Metchie III on the third down attempt, which forced the Texans to punt. The Broncos took over at their own 28 yard line.Denver started with a short run by Williams for two yards and then Wilson hit WIlliams for a 15-yard gain up to the 45 of Denver. On 1st-and-10, Wilson took off and gained 11 yards to bust into Texans territory. After a four-yard run by Williams, Wilson's pass for Sutton fell incomplete bringing up a 3rd-and-6. Wilson hitt Perine but he only gained five yards to set up a 4th-and-1, which Denver went for and Wilson converted with a three-yard run to the 32. Wilson hit tight end Adam Trautman for the first time for a six-yard gain to reach the 26 of Houston. This brought us to the two-minute warning.

Facing a 2nd-and-4, the Broncos tossed it to McLaughlin in the backfield and lowered his head to power forward for a six-yard gain and a first down at the Texans 20. Wilson hit Jerry Jeudy for the first time as he caught a pass on a screen and picked up six yards to the 14. On the next play, the Broncos tried a run with Williams but Jalen Pitre came flying into the backfield and tripped him up for a loss of two back to the 16 with 1:34 remaining in the half. On 3rd-and-6, Wilson was flushed out of the pocket and nearly sacked by Anderson and Jonathan Greenard before being able to throw it away. The Broncos settled for a field goal, which Will Lutz converted a 38-yard field goal to get Denver on the board with 1:24 left in the half. This capped a 13-play, 56-yard scoring drive that took 5:09 off the clock. This made the score 13-3, Texans lead.The Texans got the ball back with 1:24 left and started at their own 25. Singletary bolted through a hole in the right side of the line and picked up 14 to the 39 before being tackled. After a five-yard pass from Stroud to Collins, the rookie quarterback missed Metchie III downfield to set up 3rd-and-5, which they didn't convert as Stroud threw the pass out of bounds. The Texans punted with 14 seconds left.The Broncos started on their own 11 and took a knee to run out the clock to end the first half.

The Broncos started the second half with the ball after deferring to receive the ball at the beginning of the game. From their own 25, the Broncos went backwards as Anderson registered his second sack of the game, dropping Wilson for a loss of four. After a short pass from Wilson to McLaughlin for five yards, he was sacked again for a loss of seven yards this time by Greenard. Denver was forced to punt.The Texans started at their own 40 on the ensuing drive. After back-to-back runs by Pierce, which lost one yard back to the 39, it set up a 3rd-and-11, which Stroud lined it up and hit Collins for a 39-yard gain up to the 22 of the Broncos.

Following an illegal formation penalty, the Texans got three yards from Pierce and lost a yard on a sack of Stroud to bring up 3rd-and-13. Stroud completed a pass to Collins for a five-yard pickup. Facing fourth down, the Texans sent out Ammendola who nailed his third field goal of the game from 38 yards out. The field goal put the Texans up 16-3 with 8:51 left in the 3rd quarter.Broncos started the next drive at their own 25. A two-yard run by McLaughlin and then a five-yard pickup on a pass from Wilson to Williams set up 3rd-and-3.

Wilson hit Perine for no gain as he was stopped the moment he caught it and the Broncos were forced to punt again. The Texans called for the fair catch at their own 15.After an incomplete pass across the middle, and a run for no gain, on 3rd-and-10, Stroud went for Noah Brown down the sideline but he couldn't complete the catch, getting just one of his two feet down. The failed third down conversion forced another Texans punt.Taking over at their own 42, the Texans were called for a neutral zone infraction, which set up the Broncos 1st-and-5 at the 47. Williams took the ball across midfield for a gain of four to set up a 2nd-and-1. Fullback Michael Burton took the ball up the middle and to the 45 of Houston for a first down. Wilson stepped back and hit Sutton in the front corner of the endzone for a 45-yard score.

The extra point by Lutz was good, making it a 16-10 lead for the Texans with 4:47 left in the third quarter. The scoring drive for the Broncos went 58 yards in just three plays and took 1:20 off the clock.The Texans started their next drive at their own 21 after King returned it 23 yards. Stroud started the drive with a five-yard pass to tight end Eric Saubert. From the 26, Stroud hit Collins for a pickup of four yards to the 30. The completion put Collins at 170 yards for the game, which was a new career high. Facing a 3rd-and-1, Stroud plowed forward for the first down at the Broncos 32. After an incomplete pass and a sack of Stroud for a three-yard loss setting up 3rd-and-13. Stroud was sacked on the next play by Ja'Quan McMillian and lost the ball but the Texans recovered it. Houston would punt the ball back to the Broncos.On the first play from their own 20, Wilson's pass was tipped by Anderson Jr and intercepted by Derek Stingley Jr. It is the 3rd-straight game that Stingley has recorded an interception. He returned it to the 21.Houston took over at the 21 and the first play was Stroud passing it to Jordan for a pickup of eight yards. This brought an end to the third quarter with the Texans leading 16-10.

View the best photos from the Week 13 matchup between the Houston Texans and Denver Broncos.

The Texans started the fourth quarter leading 16-10 and with the ball at the Broncos eight-yard line. A short run by Pierce moved the ball to the three, from where Stroud hit Collins for a touchdown. The Texans went for the two-point conversion but failed to complete it as the Broncos intercepted the pass. Houston extended its lead to 22-10 with the score with 14:16 remaining in the game.The Broncos started their next drive at the 25 and picked up seven yards on a Wilson run but got 15 more yards after Jimmie Ward was flagged for unnecessary roughness which moved the ball up to the 47.

An eight-yard run by McLaughlin and three-yard scamper by Williams moved the Broncos to the Houston 42. Wilson reared back and hit Jeudy in stride as he was dragged down at the one for a 41-yard gain and set up 1st-and-Goal for Denver. The Broncos pushed it in the next play as Wilson dove forward for his second rushing score of the game. Lutz's extra point made it 22-17 with 12:04 remaining in the game.The Texans did not move the ball on their drive as Singletary rushed it for three yards on first down before Stroud was sacked for a 10-yard loss to set up a 3rd-and-17 from their own 18.

On third down, Stroud's pass for Collins fell short and the Texans were forced to punt. Denver took over on their own 32 after the punt. Williams rushed for four yards to bring it to 2nd-and-6 at the 36. On the next play, Wilson tried to hit Sutton deep and was intercepted by Stingley for the second time in the game.The Texans took over at their own 27. After a run for no gain, Stroud hit Metchie for a nine-yard gain to set up a 3rd-and-1. On the next play, Stroud rushed for two yards and the first down. He exited the game for two plays, which Davis Mills stepped in for. Mills hit Pierce for three yards before completing the next pass to Collins for a gain of 18 yards and the first down to the Denver 41. Stroud returned to the game. After Pierce was knocked back four yards and Stroud was sacked for a loss of nine yards, on 3rd-and-23, Stroud hit Ogunbowale for a gain of 14 yards. The Texans punted on fourth down and it went out of the endzone for a touchback.

Denver started on their own 20 and on the first play, Wilson hit Sutton in stride for a gain of 32 yards into Texans territory. From the 48, the Broncos completed a pass from Wilson to Mims before he was pushed out at the 43 for a gain of five yards. Williams ran on the next play for a gain of one, bringing up a 3rd-and-4. The Texans were flagged for defensive pass interference on the next play and set up the Broncos at the 31 with a set of new downs. Williams took the ball on the first play and picked up one yard, on 2nd-and-9, Wilson hit McLaughlin on a screen along the sideline and was pushed out of bounds by Pitre as he stepped out at the 29. On 3rd-and-8, Wilson was flushed out of the pocket and was brought down a yard short of the first down at the 21 yard line. This brought the game to the two-minute warning.

On 4th-and-1, Williams converted it just reaching the first down marker at the 21. Wilson on first down hit Williams at the 17 for a gain of four and set up 2nd-and-6. On the next play, Wilson hit Jeudy for a gain of four to set up 3rd-and-2 at the 13 with 35 seconds remaining. Wilson was flushed out of the pocket by Anderson on the next play and threw the ball out of bounds bringing up 4th-and-2 with 30 seconds remaining. Wilson kept the ball and ran up the middle to the eight yard line to set up 1st-and-Goal with 23 seconds left in the game.

Wilson's first attempt to the endzone was for Troutman but it sailed incomplete bringing up 2nd-and-Goal with 20 seconds left. On the next play, Wilson tried to hit Sutton in the back of the endzone but overthrew his intended receiver bringing it to 3rd-and-Goal with 16 seconds remaining. On the next play, Wilson threw the ball for the back of the end zone and Ward leaped in front and intercepted the ball in the endzone to seal the victory.C.J. Stroud came out and took a knee and the final ticks ran off the clock. The Texans defeat the Broncos 22-17 and claim their first win against Denver here at NRG Stadium since 2007. The Texans move to 7-5 on the 2023 season with the win.

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