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Texans want first win at Indy


Kicker Kris Brown was mobbed by his teammates after his last-second field goal gave Houston its first-ever win over Indianapolis last season.

It's been a season of firsts for the Texans, so maybe there's hope for a first-ever victory over the defending Super Bowl champion Indianapolis Colts this weekend at the RCA Dome.

The Texans got their first victory ever last season over the Colts in Reliant Stadium. The pieces have been falling together lately. The Texans were actually a part of the playoff talk until a week ago. They're 7-7 going into Sunday's game at Indianapolis.

So it's not too much dreaming to think the Texans can leap another hurdle in their goal to becoming a contender.

"I think beating the Colts on the road would be a big boost for this year," guard Chester Pitts said. "Absolutely, because we've never done it.

"Obviously, last year, the first time we beat them, that was really big. We beat them here. But this is our chance to beat them up there for the first time in six years, so it's time for it to happen.

"We're obviously overdue. So it's just what we have to do. We have to find a way to get it done."

The Texans take a 1-10 series record into the RCA Dome, where they are 0-5. Houston got its first series victory over the Colts in last year's 27-24 victory.

The Texans rallied for 14 fourth quarter points earlier this year, but the Colts still won, 30-24.

{QUOTE}Now the Texans have a chance to get a divisional win to help push their progress toward next season.

"We have a ton to play for, and obviously everyone knows we're out of the playoffs, but we've never beaten Indy at Indy," quarterback Sage Rosenfels said. "They're the world champions, they've won our division, we can get our eighth win. Those are all meaningful things for our team to try to go out and try to win this game."

Cracking the Indianapolis barrier is the Texans' next step as a franchise.

"We're in a position we've never been in before," wide receiver Andre Johnson said. "We don't plan on losing these two games (Colts and Jaguars). We're going to go out and try to win both of them. Like I said, we've never been in this situation before, and it could be the first time we ever have a winning season. So I feel like we still have a lot to play for.

"We're trying to take steps to getting to where we want to be in the future, and one of those steps would be winning the game in Indy for the first time, so we're going to go out and try to do that."

The Texans know if they can win in their division, they can be competitive in the playoffs.

"I think everyone is in agreement that this is the best division in football," Rosenfels said. "There's nothing you can do about that; they're not going to change the divisions. We're fine with that. We've got to find ways to beat the other three teams in our division, which are all three very good football teams. We've got to find a way to beat those teams year in and year out."

The RCA Dome hasn't been kind to the Texans. They've lost there by an average of 34-16. Getting that elusive eighth victory would be sweeter coming in a place the Texans have never won.

"We talk about it all the time," coach Gary Kubiak said. "We talked after the game (Denver) that we are 60 minutes away and another good football game away from reaching a point that this organization has never been to, and that's what we've got to play for.

"It's going to be extremely difficult. We play two of the best teams in football the next two weeks. If we're going to do it, it's going to happen the right way. I think that makes it even more important."

Despite a sag (five losses in six games) after winning their first two games of the season, Kubiak can't fault the team's work ethic.

"Everybody is paying an extremely hard price around here for us to move forward," Kubiak said. "We've got a lot more that we expect out of ourselves. We want to finish this thing the right way this year and move on to the future. We don't want to go back anymore. We want to keep moving forward."

Kubiak thinks the Colts are getting ready for another big playoff run.

"I think this team is flying under the radar going into these playoffs," Kubiak said. "They are the World Champs. What (Colts head coach) Tony (Dungy) has done with the problems they have and the injuries they've had and to be 12-2 and continuing to win – they're going to be healthy before the playoffs.

"They're doing this without (defensive end) Dwight Freeney, who is one of the best players in the game. We're playing a great football team; their whole football team scares me."

Still, Kubiak likes the atmosphere going into Indianapolis and trying to get that eighth victory.

"In all honesty, I would think a lot of people would think we have a better chance of having it next week (against Jacksonville) rather than this week," Kubiak said. "I guarantee our football team feels good about the way we're playing, and it would mean a tremendous amount to our football team to go there and find a way to get this game."

EDITOR'S NOTE: *Michael A. Lutz worked for The Associated Press for 38 years covering news and sports in

Houston covering the Oilers, Astros, Texans and other college and pro sports.*

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