David Johnson and Brandin Cooks each had big days, but it ultimately meant very little to them because of the loss.
Cincinnati defeated Houston, 37-31, on Sunday at NRG Stadium. But Johnson erupted for 128 yards on just 12 carries, while Cooks caught seven passes for 141 yards. It was Johnson's best performance as a Texan, and for Cooks, it pushed him to within 16 yards of the 1,000 mark on the season. That meant very little to the veteran duo in the aftermath of another heartbreaking loss.
When Cooks was asked about it after the game, the receiver said he "didn't know that", and went on to describe why the individual accomplishment paled in comparison to the team's result.
"When you're in a type of game like that, and the season like we're in, all you want to do is just get a win, and put good film out there," Cooks said. "Unfortunately we came up short."
Cooks caught a 25-yard touchdown with 1:54 remaining in the second quarter, and also had a 26-yard reception and a 50-yard catch in the first half.
Johnson found the end zone twice in the second half, as he ran in for a 4-yard score early in the third quarter, and caught a 2-yarder later in the third. On the day, he touched the ball 15 times for 139 yards and two touchdowns. Having such success individually made the loss all the more "frustrating", according to Johnson.
"No matter how well I did, you always want the win," Johnson said. "As much yards as I had, and what I did successful, we didn't end up with the win. So it's tough."
On separate drives in the third quarter, Johnson rumbled for gains of 48 and 38 yards. Each possession resulted in a Texans touchdown.
"David did an excellent job of running with the football," interim head coach Romeo Crennel said. "He does a good job of catching the football. He runs with effort and picks up extra yards. We're impressed with that and we like that."
Quarterback Deshaun Watson, who was disappointed after the loss, liked what he saw from Johnson.
"David did a good job of finding the holes and trusting it and making one guy miss and then just taking it from there," Watson said. "He did a good job of finding those correct holes and running the ball. It was very good to see."
Houston will host the Titans in the season finale next Sunday at Noon CT inside NRG Stadium.