Texans' top plays: Billy Miller's touchdown
July, 9, 2014
By Tania Ganguli | ESPN.com
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This is one of three nominations for the most memorable play in Houston Texans history. On Monday, we featured J.J. Watt's pick-six against the Cincinnati Bengals, which helped propel the franchise to its first playoff win. On Tuesday we featured a downer -- the Rosencopter. Please vote for your choice as the Texans' most memorable play.
Score: Texans 19, Cowboys 10
Date: Sept. 8, 2002. Site: Reliant Stadium
Few franchises have a fan base that can still remember watching the organization's most important firsts. For the Texans, several came in this play.
Dallas Cowboys, an instate rival they rarely face. A fan in the stands had a sign that said "1-15 is OK, just win this one."
Expectations and hopes were high for the success of No. 1 overall pick David Carr, the quarterback expected to guide them for many years to come. With the help of a solid kickoff return and a hefty penalty against the Cowboys, the Texans began the first drive in franchise history at the Cowboys' 21.
Carr threw the first pass attempt in franchise history, but it fell incomplete. James Allen rushed for 2 yards on the first carry in franchise history. Then Carr completed his first pass -- a 19-yard touchdown to Billy Miller. The Texans beat the Cowboys for the first win in franchise history.
In choosing this play, some suggested to me that while this was a very big game, the most important play came much later. Seth Payne sacked Cowboys quarterback Quincy Carter in the fourth quarter for a safety. That play didn't literally end the game, but it sealed the teams' fate.
It was a tough call, but ultimately I went with the touchdown pass because of its unprecedented nature. The first time something happens, it leaves a mark for better or worse.