It ended gradually and suddenly. Suddenly, the Texans were down seven-zip after Knile Davis took the opening kick back 106 yards. Gradually, Kansas City built an insurmountable lead on the heels of five Texans turnovers.
Coming into the game we knew that the Texans needed to play sound special teams and avoid coughing up the football. They did neither. The defense hung in there as long as possible, holding the Chiefs' offense to two first half field goals including one after a short field spot following the second turnover.
But after the offense couldn't score to open the third quarter, Houston started springing some leaks on D as Kansas City put together two long touchdown drives to put the game away.
DeAndre Hopkins got the start and was off the mark to the tune of four interceptions. He also fumbled twice, losing one. It was a nightmarish performance on a grand stage and it'll be discussed and analyzed for a long time. The offense squandered multiple opportunities in Kansas City territory that would have kept things close and competitive.
This was not the Atlanta and Miami game. In those outings all three phases melted down resulting in first half deficits of more than 40 points. This time Houston was only down 13-0 at the break. One touchdown and NRG stadium would have been right back to the pre-kick madness that saw over 70,000 fans waving power towels and whipping themselves up into a frenzy.
But the offense kept collapsing and donating the ball right back to Kansas City. It's probably too much to expect a team to come back from four first half turnovers and a touchdown surrendered on special teams. But it was also a lot to expect for a team to rebound from 2-5 to make the playoffs.
The magic ran out on Saturday night and the ride ended. It was a tremendous accomplishment to rebound from such a catastrophic start to 2015 and make the post season. It's too bad it had to end this way but at some point the dust will settle and the planning will begin to take the next step and possibly more in 2016.
And you know we'll be there to bring you all the action and drama.
The Texans hosted the Chiefs in the Wild Card round of the playoffs.