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Texans defeat Jaguars 24-21, lead AFC South

The Texans earned their first road win of the 2016 season, defeating the Jaguars 24-21 on Sunday. 

Houston scored two touchdowns in the first quarter, including one on defense. Brock Osweiler threw two touchdown passes in the win, finding tight ends Ryan Griffin and Stephen Anderson. Osweiler completed 14-of-27 for 99 yards, two touchdowns, no interceptions, and added 23 rushing yards. DeAndre Hopkins led all Texans receivers with five catches for 48 yards.

Houston's offense collectively ran for 181 yards, led by Lamar Miller, who had 15 carries for 83 yards, including a long of 45. Akeem Hunt, who moved up from the practice squad this week, contribued 52 yards on eight attempts.

The Texans defense forced two turnovers and scored its first touchdown of the season on a pick-six by Kareem Jackson. Whitney Mercilus had a fumble recovery while Benardrick McKinney had a team-high seven tackles and also added two tackles for loss.  Jaguars quarterback Blake Bortles completed 32-of-49 for 265 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception. John Simon and rookie D.J. Reader each had a sack on Bortles.

Houston took an early 7-0 lead as Jackson intercepted Bortles and returned it 43 yards for a score on the Jaguars opening offensive series. Bortles responded with a five-yard touchdown pass to Julius Thomas on the Jaguars next drive. 

The Texans regained their lead on their next possession. Miller's 45-yard run to the goal line set up Osweiler's one-yard touchdown pass to Griffin. It capped off a 10-play, 75-yard drive that lasted 4:55. Houston took a 14-7 lead with 0:19 remaining in the first quarter.

The Texans led 14-10 at halftime.

After Reader's sack for a loss of eight yards and a tackle for loss by Eddie Pleasant, the Texans defense forced a three-and-out with 4:29 left in the third quarter. Tyler Ervin returned the ensuing punt 57 yards to give Houston possession at the Jacksonville seven-yard line. One play later, Osweiler threw his second touchdown of the day to Anderson. The Texans took a 21-10 lead.

Both teams added field goals in the fourth quarter. Novak, having previously missed from 49 and 50 yards, was successful from 51 yards on this third kick of the day. The Texans extended the lead to 24-13 with 8:32 left in the game. 

After a defensive pass interference call moved the ball 41 yards, Bortles orchestrated a scoring drive late in the fourth quarter. Bortles threw a 14-yard touchdown pass to Allen Robinson on a 14-yard touchdown to cap off an 8-play, 92-yard drive. Robinson also scored the ensuing two-point conversion with 2:17 left in the fourth quarter but the comeback would fall short.

With the win, Houston improves to 6-3 and extends its winning streak over AFC South teams to eight consecutive games. The Texans next travel to Mexico City to face the Oakland Raiders on Monday Night Football in Week 11. 

The Texans faced the Jaguars at EverBank Field in Week 10.

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