Sunday, September 25, 2011
Rapid Reaction: Saints 40, Texans 33
By Paul Kuharsky
NEW ORLEANS -- Thoughts on the Texans’ loss to the Saints at the Superdome.
What it means: The Texans reverted to their old ways, failing to put away an opponent when they were playing well enough to do just that. They gave the Saints life and watched an offense even better than theirs take advantage of the opportunity. They’ll say it was just one failure against one very good team at one very tough venue, but it’s hard not to take it as symbolic. At 2-1, Houston’s got the same record as Tennessee atop the AFC South.
Fast, fast, fast: The Texans nearly matched the Saints’ furious pace but ultimately could not keep up. They gave up the lead three times in the second half and could only take it back twice. A Matt Schaub interception helped turn the tide. He took a sack on third-and-15 at the very end as well.
If there is a silver lining: I think the Saints are going to win their second Super Bowl in three seasons. If they are one of the NFC’s best teams, ultimately there will be no shame in having lost to them at their building. But it’s still going to sting to the Texans as one that got away.
Too much: Neil Rackers saw far too much action, booting four field goals. If the Texans were more effective with their scoring chances, they’d have put the game out of range.
Injury concern: He returned to action, but a second-half right leg injury to Mario Williams could be a concern going forward. He flexed the knee over and over on the sideline before he returned to action.
What’s next: The Texans host Pittsburgh at Reliant Stadium and get to see for themselves if the Steelers are aging. They’ll get a measuring stick on the Steelers tonight when they play the Colts.