On a rainy day in Nashville, the Texans took the ball away five times on the way to a 22-13 victory over the rival Titans, snapping an eight game losing streak as they head into a three-game home stand.
The conditions were sloppy but Houston played clean and generated just enough offense to pull out the win. The first road touchdown in over two months was scored by Tyrod Taylor, who went airborne into the endzone to break the seal on an out-of-town scoring drought that existed since week two at Cleveland.
Tennessee was determined to run the ball and got to over 100 yards on the ground but Houston kept forcing turnovers or coming up with key stops to keep the Titans in check. Adrian Peterson never got going and former Texans D'Onta Foreman and Dontrelle Hilliard produced some gains yet the Houston defense never lost control of the game.
Taylor shook off his performance of two weeks ago to bounce back with two rushing TDs. The passing game wasn't exactly the greatest show on turf but there were enough plays to keep things moving in the right direction. Houston was more than doubled up in total yardage but that didn't matter because of the Titan turnovers.
Tennessee is undermanned but no one can say the Texans are the picture of health as they have three of five starters out on the offensive line and they were without their leading tackler and top pass rusher.
It was a huge effort on a day in which Tennessee was looking to flex its muscles as the current top seed in the conference. Instead, it was the Texans defenders doing a lot of flexing for the cameras in the endzone after getting five takeaways including four interceptions.
Next up is the New York Jets. They lost to Miami on Sunday with Joe Flacco at quarterback. Rookie Zach Wilson continues to recover from a knee injury and will be the focus of a lot of attention at practice this week as he nears a return.
The home stand also features Indianapolis and Seattle. The Texans are going for their first winning streak since they won two in a row at this time last season.
It's not the type of season anyone envisioned but the victory was utterly necessary as a reward for the hard work being done to improve play and navigate through a tough year.
Now we get to see Taylor at home for the first time since opening day. The Texans still need to get much better moving the ball. But in a league that makes winning so difficult every week, the Texans struck hard and earned a victory against a division rival that put their AFC South record at 2-1.
The Texans will play their next three contests at NRG Stadium. See the Texans at NRG Stadium November 28 as they host the New York Jets in Week 12. Kickoff is set for noon CT. Click here for tickets.