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Texans suffer 31-24 defeat to Jaguars


Wide receiver Jacoby Jones scored the Texans' first touchdown of the game.

The Texans were in familiar territory Sunday battling an AFC South rival in a back-and-forth contest.

Coach Gary Kubiak even told the players at halftime, when the Texans led 21-17, that they were in the same game as a week ago at Tennessee.

The difference today, though, was that the Texans committed the critical fourth quarter mistake instead of their opponent.

With 2:10 left in the Texans' 31-24 loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars, running back Chris Brown rushed off the right tackle on the one-yard line before fumbling into the end zone. The Jaguars recovered the ball and maintained possession once officials upheld the fumble ruling on the field.

"It's a tough situation knowing that I went out there to do the best I possibly can and I let all my teammates, coaches and the organization down," Brown said of his fumble, which would have evened the score. "I knew it was going to be a close call, but it's all on me and next time I won't give it a chance to be a fumble."

Prior to Brown's fumble, wide receiver Kevin Walter was penalized on a controversial pass interference call that negated tight end Joel Dreessen's touchdown catch.

The Texans' defense was one down away from giving the offense a final scoring opportunity, but defensive end Mario Williams was flagged for a horse collar tackle on running back Maurice Jones-Drew, which effectively ended the contest.

Jones-Drew was the third running back in a row to surpass the 100-yard rushing mark against the Texans. He finished with 119 yards and three touchdowns, including a 61-yarder in the second quarter.

{QUOTE}The loss was a huge letdown after the Texans' emotional win against the Titans.

"In this league, it doesn't matter what's going on (during the week); what matters is how you play on Sunday," Kubiak said. "If you're not doing your job, you're not going to win. There's not such thing as, 'We're OK this week.'"

Linebacker DeMeco Ryans spoke afterward with a sense of urgency.

"We can't expect to give up 31 points and win the game," he said. "We just can't do it. It's unacceptable. We have to find a way to get better on defense. We've got to make plays."

Coming off his four touchdown passes at Tennessee, quarterback Matt Schaub had a productive day against the Jaguars aside from an interception on the opening drive. He completed 26-of-35 attempts for 300 yards with three touchdowns.

In his regular season debut, wide receiver Kevin Walter had a game-high seven catches for 96 yards and a touchdown.

Trailing 3-0 in the first quarter after Josh Scobee's 52-yard field goal, Schaub connected with wide receiver Jacoby Jones on an 18-yard touchdown that helped make the score 7-3.

Jacksonville regained the lead on Garrard's two-yard touchdown run. Prior to the play, Kubiak challenged a 15-yard touchdown catch by Ernest Wilford, who stepped out of bounds prior to crossing the goal line.

With 5:33 left before halftime, Schaub found Walter open for a nine-yard touchdown, which was followed less than a minute later by Jones-Drew's 61-yard score.

The rapid fire offense continued on the ensuing possession, when Schaub connected with Slaton, Johnson and Daniels for 41 yards. On fourth-and-one at the 16-yard line, Schaub tossed left to Walter, who sprinted for a first down at the five-yard line. On third-and-goal, Schaub found Daniels open in the end zone to help make the score 21-17, Texans, at halftime.

To begin the second half, the Jaguars marched 83 yards on 10 plays. The Jaguars took a 24-21 lead on Jones-Drew's one-yard touchdown run.

Kubiak thought that drive set the tone for the second half.

"It was a bad start from the get-go and, to me, they dominated," Kubiak said. "They really took control of the game offensively in the third and throughout half of the fourth quarter."

The Texans evened the score thanks to Brown's 27-yard field goal, but the Jaguars answered with a touchdown drive courtesy of Jones-Drew's eight-yard run, which gave the visitors a 31-24 lead early in the fourth quarter.

While the Jaguars carried all the momentum following consecutive punts by Matt Turk in the fourth quarter, cornerback Dunta Robinson revitalized the crowd by forcing a fumble on wide receiver Mike Sims-Walker. Linebacker Zac Diles recovered the fumble at the Houston 49.

Schaub marched the offense down to the one-yard line before Brown's fumble squashed the Texans' comeback hopes.

Injuries: Linebacker Chaun Thompson left the game in the fourth quarter with a left knee injury. He did not return.

Wide receiver André Davis (concussion) and cornerback Jacques Reeves (fibula) did not dress for the Texans. Other inactives include cornerback Antwaun Molden, safety Bernard Pollard, center Antoine Caldwell, tight end Anthony Hill and defensive tackle Frank Okam.

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