Case Keenum and the Texans had so much stacked against them coming into Sunday's game with the Titans, and the obstacles only piled on in the early going.
And that's just the way he likes it.
"I'm bult for this," the veteran quarterback said with a smile, just moments after he engineered a game-winning field goal drive in overtime.
Houston triumphed, 19-16, with a Ka'imi Fairbairn 54-yard field goal as time expired in the extra period. But before all that, Keenum and company overcame hurdle, after hurdle, after hurdle en route to the victory.
Starter C.J. Stroud's concussion opened the door for Keenum to start. But the quarterback was without 1,000-yard receiver Nico Collins, who's injured calf kept him from suiting up at Nashville. Further, the Texans offensive line was without starting right tackle George Fant for the first time all season, as he was inactive due to injury.
The defense was without starters in defensive end Will Anderson, Jr. and linebacker Blake Cashman, and the Titans held a 13-0 advantage just over a minute into the second quarter.
"Case did a really nice job today," Head Coach DeMeco Ryans said. "He was very efficient, keeping us moving, and no play bigger than the play there at the end. Seeing him scramble around to find 'Motor for the big explosive pass, to put us in field goal range, it shows Case is just a true professional."
Keenum, who completed 23-of-36 passes for 229 yards, saved his longest of the day for overtime. He found running back Devin 'Motor' Singletary for a 41-yard pickup. It moved the Texans from their own 20-yard line to the Titans' 39, and four plays later, Fairbairn's field goal sent Houston back home with a win.
Singletary would finish the day with 121 rushing yards, and 49 receiving yards. He lit up when asked about Keenum and the big gain in overtime.
"That's my guy," Singletary said. "Case is money. We were both in our zone, making plays. Got off what we call an 'off-track' play, and we work it a lot. We were able to put it on display today."
Early on, however, things were rocky for Keenum and the Texans. Their first two possessions yielded a combined 25 yards, and resulted in punts. Then, he was intercepted in the second quarter on the Texans end of the field. Despite throwing a pick-6, Keenum said nobody on the sideline was downtrodden or panicking.
"Nobody blinked," Keenum said. "I came off and had everybody on the back slapping me on the back saying 'It's alright. We'll go do it.' And we did. It was great."
Following the interception return for a score, the Texans steadily went to work. With a dominating defensive effort, Keenum guided the Texans offense on three field goal drives and a fourth quarter touchdown drive in regulation. Then, on the second and final possession of overtime, he moved the Texans offense ultimately to the Tennessee 36-yard line. From there, Faribairn's kick sailed straight and true, and Houston had it's eighth victory of 2023.
"I've been in a lot of situations," Keenum said. "I've been in a lot of systems. I've been in a lot of different games. But God's made me who I am, for this. I'm just trying to be ready, when my number's called. It's like I've said before: 'You don't get ready. You stay ready."
Whether or not he starts again next week at NRG Stadium versus the Browns, you can bet Keenum will be ready.