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Texans, Colts are different teams in Week 14

The turning point in the Texans 2018 season came in Week 4 against the Indianapolis Colts.

With a 37-34 overtime win, Houston finally broke it's three-game losing streak (nine total counting back to 2017). That victory at Lucas Oil Stadium jump started something bigger, a quiet confidence in the locker room and a camaraderie strengthening with each hard-fought win.

“Being at the highs of high and being up 28-10 or 28-14 and letting them come back and being down in overtime,” Deshaun Watson said. “Pulling through the adversity, it kind of just slingshotted us to where we’re at now so that was one game where we went through all types of phases, situations that kind of put us through this nine-game win streak. It was the start of everything.”

Watson rode a bus to Jacksonville for a chest injury that precluded him from flying. Still, the Texans won. They faced former quarterbacks Brock Osweiler and Case Keenum in back-to-back weeks and won. They lost Will Fuller V to a torn ACL and traded for Demaryius Thomas mid-season. Safety Andre Hal returned from his battle with cancer and recorded an interception. J.J. Watt quietly put together a campaign with the most sacks in the AFC and second in the NFL (11.5).

Meanwhile, the Colts went on to win five consecutive games, a streak only snapped on Sunday when they fell 6-0 to the Jacksonville Jaguars. Andrew Luck, who threw for 464 yards, four touchdowns and zero interceptions in his Week Four loss to Houston, looks more and more like the pre-shoulder injury version of himself.

“He’s a great player," J.J. Watt said. "He’s always been a great player. Obviously, you can see him getting stronger week by week as you would expect coming off of what he’s come off of and being able to build off of it and grow. He’s a great player. He’s smart, he’s tough, he can run, he can throw. He’s a great competitor, so it’s always a good challenge to play against him and I always look forward to it. It’s always a great battle.”

On Sunday, the Texans and Colts will face each for the second time this season. Both teams are still fighting for a playoff berth. With a 9-3 record, Houston could clinch the division with a Tennessee loss and a win on Sunday. Despite winning nine games in a row, the Texans are preparing for a different Colts team than the one they defeated in Week 4. .

“That was a long time ago,” head coach Bill O’Brien said. “I think it was in September. We’ve come a long way since then. The Colts have come a long way since then and this is a game that will be very challenging. Like I said, that was over two months ago so it’s all about this game on Sunday.”

The (9-3) Texans will face the (6-6) Indianapolis Colts at NRG Stadium. Kickoff is set for Sunday at 12 noon CT on CBS and SportsRadio 610.

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