Houston Texans: Top 10 greatest games in franchise history

J.J. Watt and Andre Johnson of the Houston Texans (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
J.J. Watt and Andre Johnson of the Houston Texans (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /
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Houston Texans
Former Houston Texans tight end Billy Miller (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) /

Texans’ Greatest Games: #5 – 1

#5 2010 Week 6 Texans vs. Chiefs

We’re still getting over the loss of the Chiefs in the playoffs, but I got two wins against the Super Bowl champs to make us feel a little bit better. This game was an epic contest as Houston faced the Chiefs. Early on, Kansas City built a 21-7 lead with 8:19 to go in the third quarter. While the Texans would cut the deficit to 21-14, the Chiefs would grab a 24-14 lead after three quarters.

Although Houston would then trail 31-21, which would include a loss to Demeco Ryans for the season, they never backed down. A one-yard scamper by Foster with 3:34 to play was followed by a defensive stop for the Texans. After a questionable pass interference call on the Chiefs moved the Texans to Kansas City territory, it would take a brilliant throw from Schaub to find an open #80 to give Houston a 35-31 comeback win.

The win put Houston at 4-2 on the season. They would lose eight of their next 10 games to finish at 6-10 and a date with pick number 11, which turned out to be a big one.

#4 2012 Week 11 Texans vs. Jaguars – W 43-37 (OT)

The 2012 Texans were rolling. They had a strong offense and a dominant defense. Well, against the Jaguars in 2012, it was a great offense that was a great defense. Matt Schaub would have the game of his life with 527 passing yards and five touchdown passes. This would tie him for second all-time in passing yards in a game with Hall-of-Famer Warren Moon and he would only be 27 yards short of Norm Van Brocklin.

Also having a great game was Andre Johnson, who recorded a career-high 273 receiving yards on 14 catches. In a game that saw Houston trail 34-20, the Texans rallied back to tie the game. They had a chance to win it in regulation only for Shayne Graham to miss his kick. The game went into overtime where both teams had possession and would kick game-tying field goals. The Texans then took over and soon, at Jacksonville’s 48, it was game over.

#3 2002 Week 1 Texans vs. Cowboys – W 19-10

On this night, the Texans made history by being the second expansion team to win their debut game. Even better was that they defeated the Dallas Cowboys 19-10 in exciting fashion. First-ever draft pick David Carr stunned Dallas by connecting with tight end Billy Miller on the opening drive for the franchise’s first-ever touchdown.

What followed would be a tight defensive battle that would feature Aaron Glenn recording an interception and Seth Payne and Jamie Sharper leading with six and eight tackles respectively. In the fourth quarter, the Texans and Cowboys were tied at 10 until Corey Bradford got open from 65 yards and the go-ahead touchdown. After a few defensive stands, the Cowboys got the ball inside their own territory down by seven. In the end, Payne and Gary Walker got to Cowboys quarterback Quincy Carter for a safety and a game-sealing 19-10 upset.

#2 2010 Week 14 Texans @ Bengals – W 20-19

In Denver, it was John Elway guiding the Broncos 98-yards against the Browns in the AFC title game. In San Francisco, it was Joe Montana leading a 90-plus yard drive against the Bengals in Super Bowl 23. In Pittsburgh, it was Ben Roethlisberger twenty-years later than led the Steelers to a game-winning drive over Arizona. In Houston, it was third strong quarterback TJ Yates leading the Texans to the playoffs with his drive against the Bengals.

In just his second start following the season-ending injuries to the Matts of Schaub and Leinart, the rookie from North Carolina found himself down 16-3 without wide receiver Andre Johnson, who was battling an injury of his own. The Texans cut the lead to six on a touchdown pass to Joel Dreessen. Then, a field goal made the score 19-13 as the Texans trailed with five minutes to go.

After forcing a punt, Houston got the ball at their own 20-yard line. They needed 80-yards to win the game. It wasn’t pretty, but for one drive, Yates went from himself to being a quarterback named either Joe, Tom, or Peyton.

With the win and a Titans’ loss, the Texans were in the playoffs. Yates would throw for 300 yards on 26 completions while both Owen Daniels (seven receptions, 100 yards) and Kevin Walter (six receptions, 76 yards) took over as #80’s replacements for this game.

#1 2019 AFC Wild Card Texans vs. Bills – W 22-19 (OT)

Obviously, if NFL’s Greatest Games decided to have a Texans’ game on here, this would as close as it could get. It, while the Buffalo Bills gave Houston nightmares with their epic comeback win back in 1992, the Texans somewhat repaid the favor in the AFC Wild Card Game.

Down 13-0 in the third quarter, the Texans would swing the momentum their way on a sack by JJ Watt. A field goal gave the Bills a 16-0 lead before Deshaun Watson willed his way to the end zone to cut the lead in half. After a Texans field goal made it 16-11 in the fourth, Carlos Hyde would catch the go-ahead touchdown from Watson and the Texans led 19-16.

Yet, in perhaps a foreshadowing of things to come in the future, Bill O’Brien elected to seal the win on fourth down at Buffalo’s 30 instead of trying for a field goal. That didn’t end well and the Bills marched down the field to tie the game.

After both teams failed to score on their first possession, the Texans took over and were able to convert a 3rd and 18. Then, came the play of Watson’s career so far.

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All it would take was a Ka’imi Fairbairn field goal to send the Texans to the next round where they sort of did themselves in against the Chiefs.


This wasn’t an easy list to make because the Texans had clutch games in the regular season and they only had playoff stints that had yet to be memorable. Eventually, the Texans will find themselves playing in a game that will be so memorable and epic that it will lead to a big win and a trip to the Super Bowl. Or that epic game will take place in the Super Bowl and #4 leads Houston to a comeback win on a game-winning drive.

Yes, 2019 had a disappointing loss, but the future, even if foggy with a top target at wide receiver, seems to be heading in the right direction. We can only hope and wait for the Texans to get back on the field and make some noise to threaten the AFC’s elite. Until then, all we got our just memories of these games and hope for a great future with success and Houston titles.