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Houston Texans

Rapid Reaction: Heartbreaker at home as Texans fall 25-22 to Patriots

The Houston Texans fell, 25-22, to New England at NRG Stadium.

The Patriots engineered a late comeback and scored 16 unanswered points in the second half.

"Momentum was slipping but we still felt like we could win the game," RB David Johnson said. "We were up most of the game. We still had a chance, I felt like we always had a chance to come out and win and our defense was doing a hell of a job, getting turnovers, doing everything they can to keep us on the field. I mean, we had the ball, the time of possession was more on our side. And when the clock strikes zero, we were losing."

The Texans, who led by two scores in the third quarter, never trailed until the final 15 seconds of the game. QB Davis Mills had his best performance yet, completing 21-of-29 passes for 311 yards, three touchdowns, no interceptions and a 141.6 passer rating. Elevated from the practice squad on Saturday, WR Chris Moore finished with a team-high five catches on five targets for 109 yards and a touchdown. On offense, the Texans gained 360 yards (293 passing, 67 rushing). They converted 6-of-14 on third down (42.9 percent) and were successful on all three fourth down tries.

"Davis played well," Head Coach David Culley said. "The thing Davis did today, Davis protected the football. He was very good in the pocket. He ran our offense very well. He knew going into the game that the most important thing for him to do was to be able to protect the football and he did that today."

DB Lonnie Johnson recorded an interception for the second week in a row. LB Christian Kirksey had a team-high 12 tackles (six solo) and a pass defensed. Jonathan Greenard had two tackles for loss, one quarterback hit and a sack in the loss while the Texans defense combined for four quarterback hits. Patriots QB Mac Jones completed 23-of-30 passes for 231 yards, with one touchdown, one interception and a 95.3 passer rating.

The Texans took an early lead after an 18-play, 79-yard opening drive that drained 10:06 off the clock. Mills threw an 11-yard touchdown pass to TE Antony Auclair to give the Texans a 6-0 advantage after the missed extra-point attempt.

Patriots responded with scoring drive of their own. After a direct snap, RB Damien Harris found the end zone on a one-yard touchdown run. K Nick Folk also missed the extra point and the two teams were tied, 6-6.

With 12:56 left in the second quarter, Moore hauled in a pass from Mills for a 67-yard touchdown. The Texans took a 12-6 lead after the three-play drive, 75-yard drive and another missed extra point.

"I thought we had a good game plan going in," Mills said. "They kind of put people on islands out there playing a lot of man-to-man coverage. We were able to take advantage of that."

Harris nearly scored a second touchdown for the Patriots, but DB Terrance Mitchell forced the ball out at the one-yard line. After review, the touchdown was overturned and ruled a touchback.

On the next drive, Mills successfully converted two fourth downs on passes to Moore and WR Chris Conley. K Ka'imi Fairbairn kicked a 33-yard field goal to cap off the drive.

After a 52-yard field goal by the Patriots, the Texans headed into halftime with a 15-9 lead.

The Patriots received the ball to start the second half, but the drive ended abruptly when Johnson intercepted Jones at the New England 44-yard line. Two plays later, Mills threw a 37-yard touchdown pass to Conley on a flea-flicker play. The Texans had their biggest lead of the day, up 22-9 over the Patriots with 13:31 left in the third quarter.

However, New England would go on to score on its final four possessions of the game.

"Man, after we capitalized on the flea flicker, I felt like after that, on both sides of the ball, we just didn't make the plays we were making the first three quarters in the game," DB Justin Reid said. "And for us to go forward and be the team that we want to be, we gotta start capitalizing in the fourth quarter and start playing our best ball in the fourth quarter in order to finish opponents off. And not let events like today happen."

Houston's defense held the Patriots to two more field goals in the third quarter, from 52 and 32 yards, respectively. The first kick came on a short field after a blocked Texans' punt gave the Patriots possession at the Houston 36-yard line.

After a missed 56-yard field goal by Fairbairn, the Patriots took over at their own 46-yard line. Jones connected with TE Hunter Henry for his first touchdown pass of the day. New England tied the game 22-22 with 9:31 left in the game.

After a three-and-out by Houston, Jones led a 15-play, 84-yard drive that lasted seven minutes in the fourth quarter. Folk ended the drive with a 21-yard field goal to give the Patriots a 25-22 lead, their first lead of the game.

The Texans offense received the ball with 15 seconds remaining and no timeouts and were unable to score on their final possession.

With the loss, the Texans fall to 1-4 on the season and will next travel to Indianapolis to face the Colts in Week 6.

The Texans will host the Los Angeles Rams in Week 8. Sunday's kickoff is set for noon CT. Click here for tickets.

Check out the best photos of the Houston Texans Week 5 matchup with the New England Patriots.

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