It was a busy day for the Texans defense, who forced three turnovers and sacked Zach Mettenberger seven times in the 20-6 win over Tennessee.
Houston held the Titans to just two field goals on the day. Kicker Ryan Succop kicked a 35-yarder on Tennessee's first offensive series. The Titans wouldn't score again until the third quarter, when he added a 44-yard field goal.
J.J. Watt had 2.5 sacks, including one that led to a fumble. Whitney Mercilus had a career-high 3.5 sacks. The Texans tied a franchise single-game record with 7 sacks, something they hadn't done since Nov. 27, 2011 against Jacksonville. Kevin Johnson picked up the first interception of his NFL career in the fourth quarter.
Brian Hoyer was 23-of-35 for 235 yards, two touchdowns, and had a passer rating of 103.9. He became the first quarterback in team history to throw two or more touchdowns in five consecutive games. DeAndre Hopkins had eight catches for 94 yards and a touchdown.
Hopkins scored in the second quarter on a 21-yard catch to give the Texans an early 7-3 lead with 14:04 left in the second quarter. On the ensuing kickoff, safety Kurtis Drummond forced a fumble, recovered by Eddie Pleasant. Houston regained possession and added a 38-yard field goal to gain a 10-3 lead heading into halftime.
Nate Washington scored against his former team on a 42-yard touchdown catch in the third quarter. Hoyer led the team on a six-play, 80-yard drive that took just 2:16 off the clock.
Watt's strip sack on Mettenberger resulted in fumble recovery by Jared Crick. Four plays later, Nick Novak's 24-yard field goal gave the Texans a 20-6 lead with 12:37 left in the game.
Jadeveon Clowney started but left in the first half with a back injury. Left tackle Duane Brown did not play in the second half due to a concussion. Derek Newton took over for Brown while Chris Clark filled in at right tackle.
With the win, the Texans improve to 3-5 on the season heading into their Week 9 bye. Houston will return in primetime action in Week 10 when the head to Cincinnati to face the Bengals on Monday Night Football.