There weren't many happy people leaving NRG Stadium on Sunday afternoon, although there was a smattering of Vikings fans that enjoyed the heck out of a 31-23 win over the Texans. Seeing as though it's the Texans that I work for and love, the outcome didn't make for a happy day, to say the least. Here are my Harris Hits from Sunday's matchup.
The one true bright spot on the day was receiver Will Fuller V finding the end zone for the second time in consecutive weeks. I loved that wrinkle off of the RPO action down the field that got Fuller V open in the end zone. Either way, Fuller V finished with six catches for 108 yards and a touchdown. Rookie defensive back Jeff Gladney had plenty of issues with Fuller V throughout the day, especially on Will's longest catch of the day, a 43-yarder in the third quarter.
Fuller V made one heck of an effort on the throw from Watson on the last Texans offensive play of the game. I was in my moat with a great view and saw that he essentially tipped the ball to himself and it looked as if he had controlled the ball to the ground. New York saw it differently and the touchdown was overruled, sadly.
Now, it shouldn't have come down to one shot, fourth and goal from the five yard line, but it did. When David Johnson took the first down run to within inches, I started thinking about what I'd call on the two point conversion. I thought the touchdown was a fait accompli, honestly, from inches away. Unfortunately, it wasn't meant to be on this day.
The other Texan that strung together some impact plays was Whitney Mercilus. Whit came up with his first two sacks on the season and some impressive rushes throughout the day on Vikings quarterback Kirk Cousins. He had three quarterback hits and two TFL to go with those two sacks.
I really like the ascension of defensive lineman P.J. Hall who is creating as much chaos as he can on the inside. He finished with a sack and a TFL and he'd tell you that he missed a couple of big plays as well.
The Texans did finish with nine hits on Cousins, but Cousins got his revenge, so to speak, by keeping his offense on the field for 36+ minutes of time of possession.
The thing that stands out to me about the Vikings was that in a time of severe need, the stars stepped up and made the difference. Cousins was Cousins, finally, without the backbreaking turnovers. It was the first game all season without an interception. Pro Bowl receiver Adam Thielen had eight catches for 114 yards and a touchdown. Pro Bowl running back Dalvin Cook finished with 130 hard earned rushing yards and two rushing touchdowns. And, rookie receiver Justin Jefferson was brilliant for the second consecutive week with four catches for 103 yards. The Vikings needed the stars to shine on a week when its building was closed for two days and then had to travel to Houston.
If there's any good news for the Texans offense, it's that it punted just once from the second quarter on. The Texans scored on every drive after the first quarter except for that one three and out in the fourth quarter and the final drive that came up inches short.
The problem, though, was the field goal attempts outnumbered the touchdowns. Replace just one field goal with a touchdown and the end of this game may have played out extremely differently. Alas, it didn't and the Texans are still seeking win number one on the season.
Losing tight end Jordan Akins was a massive blow for this offense. That's all I have to say about that.
In all honesty, there's not much more I want to write about this one on Sunday. Here's to a better overall performance against Jacksonville in week five. Looking forward to getting a win in the worst way. See ya then, everyone.
Check out some photos from the Houston Texans and Minnesota Vikings matchup in Week 4.