Rapid Reaction: Texans 37, Buccaneers 9
November, 13, 2011
By Paul Kuharsky | ESPN.com
TAMPA, Fla. -- Thoughts on the Texans' 37-9 win against the Buccaneers at Raymond James Stadium:
What it means: The Texans jumped to a 7-3 mark as they arrive at their bye, looking more and more like a team that should be ranked with the favorites in the AFC. They maintained a two-win lead over the Titans in the AFC South (plus a head-to-head win). Houston has outscored opponents 132-42 during a four-game win streak.
What I liked: It was a complete effort by the Texans, who threw it well, ran it well, rushed well and covered well. The Bucs have been good on some Sundays, but the Texans made their hosts look well below average in every facet. Arian Foster had 186 totals yards with a rushing and a receiving touchdown.
High heat: The Bucs have offered quarterback Josh Freeman some solid pass protection this season, allowing only 11 sacks. The Texans effectively brought waves after Freeman, who couldn’t get in any sort of rhythm, at least in part because of the effective pass rush that produced four sacks. Josh Johnson replaced Freeman with 5:38 remaining in the game and the Texans promptly pried a fumble away from the Bucs and recovered it.
Backup time: Quarterback Matt Leinart got into the game late for Houston, relieving Matt Schaub. No. 3 running back Derrick Ward was getting carries well before that.
What’s next: The Texans get their week off before a Nov. 27 game at Jacksonville. They beat Jacksonville 24-14 in Houston on Oct. 30. The Texans should have receiver Andre Johnson (hamstring) back for that one.