*Watch head coach Gary Kubiak's Monday press conference live on Texans TV at 3:30 p.m. CT.
Matt Schaub finished with a career-best 154.9 quarterback rating, completing eleven of his fifteen pass attempts for 242 yards. Two of those completions were touchdowns, both of which were of the big-play variety as Schaub linked up with Jacoby Jones for an 80-yard strike on the first play from scrimmage, and with Arain Foster in the second quarter for a 78-yarder. After, Schaub explained how the play-action scoring toss to Jones came to be.
"We are coming out, looking underneath first, but we caught Tampa Bay off balance and Jones was able to get behind the defense and I just gave him a chance," Schaub said. "It wasn't a pretty throw, but I just tried to get it to him and let him run with it after."
It's the fifth time this season Schaub has finished a game with a passer rating above 100.
The Texans second possession ended with a 22-yard field goal by Neil Rackers. But the penultimate play of the drive was almost a turnover for Houston. On third-and-goal at the Buccaneers five-yard line, Schaub floated a pass over the middle that was initially ruled an interception. But head coach Gary Kubiak threw the challenge flag and the pass was ruled incomplete, because wide receiver Derrick Mason jostled Tampa Bay's Aqib Talib enough to make the ball squirt loose.
It's the second straight challenge Kubiak has won this season, and he's 2-3 overall on challenges in 2011.
Linebacker Brian Cushing continues his torrid 2011, as he finished with a team-high eight tackles, a sack and an interception. Teammate DeMeco Ryans was proud of Cushing's performance after, and Cushing himself was excited about getting the seventh win of 2011.
"It's fulfilling because it's the football we know we can play and something we're going to try to continue to do week in and week out," Cushing said. "Just play tough physical football, run the ball real well, and play great defense."
In eight of the ten games played this season, Cushing has led or tied for the team lead in tackles.
Don't forget about 'Dre
In the six starts without wide receiver Andre Johnson in the lineup, the Texans are 4-2. But even though he's worn a towel on his head instead of helmet over that span, Johnson's teammates haven't forgotten him and are eager for his return.
"It will be exciting to get him back in the huddle after missing some time," Schaub said. "Guys have really stepped up, and when we get him back, we're full strength—it will be full speed ahead. It will be a boost of energy in everybody if we get him back on the field."
Johnson said on Friday that he thinks he'll return to action in two Sundays when the Texans take on the Jaguars in Jacksonville.