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Rapid Reaction: Raiders 27, Texans 16

12/21/2008

Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky

Houston Chronicle columnist Jerome Solomon gets props Sunday.

He wrote Friday that he thought the Texans were overly relaxed and overly confident about their trip to Oakland, primed for a fall. They had a chance to win an eighth game for the second year in a row and set themselves up for their first winning season with a victory in their finale against Chicago. Instead they turned Solomon into a prophet.

Whether over-relaxation and overconfidence were the issues is up for debate -- I did not see much of the game and can't judge it. But the streaking Texans laid a major egg and set up something beside a winning season: A miserable plane flight home and a week of regret.

They allowed Raiders quarterback JaMarcus Russell to have the best day of his two-year career -- completing 18 of 25 passes for 236 yards and two touchdowns, with a 128.1 passer rating.

They allowed someone named Chaz Schilens to catch a touchdown pass.

They also made a star out of Johnnie Lee Higgins, who got to dance in the end zone twice -- following a 29-yard touchdown catch and an 80-yard punt return that extended Oakland's lead to 27-13.

From what I saw, the rush was insufficient and the coverage was too loose -- problems the Texans need to address this offseason no matter what record they finish with.