This is hardly the way the Texans wanted to start the new year. But let's be clear – we're still in the current season, the 2022 campaign. And it ends next week with an opportunity to defeat the all-time Texans villains – the Colts.
Sunday, the new AFC South leaders delivered a message that their recent success is no fluke as the Texans nine-game win streak against Jacksonville came to a screeching halt.
It's not that the Jaguars were totally efficient. They began their scoring day with a 45-yard drive after the Texans turned it over on downs. After that, Houston hung in there on D, forcing a couple of punts.
The big problem was that the Texans offense couldn't get beyond their 38-yard line for the next three possessions. In the second quarter, the Jags started a one-play drive from their 38. Travis Etienne ran 62 yards for the second score of the game but there was plenty of time to do something about it.
Moments later, Davis Mills got strip-sacked and Tyson Campbell scooped and scored his way for a three-touchdown Jacksonville lead. The rout was on.
There were some bright spots. Jalen Pitre got his fifth pick of the year, this time off C.J. Beathard. Desmond King intercepted Lawrence, only the second one that Lawrence has thrown since Week 9. But the Texans offense couldn't do anything with the takeaways.
The end result was a loss with the largest margin of defeat of the season, against a team the Texans beat earlier in the year.
One game remains before a crucial offseason. The Texans have only beaten the Colts nine times in franchise history and only three times in 20 tries in Indy. The squad would love to somehow end a difficult season on a high note.
Browse photos from the Texans-Jaguars Week 17 matchup.