Texans' Winning Response to Blowout Loss to Ravens Makes Them Sneaky Contenders in the AFC

HOUSTON, TEXAS - NOVEMBER 21: Quarterback Deshaun Watson #4 of the Houston Texans delivers a pass over the defense of the Indianapolis Colts during the game at NRG Stadium on November 21, 2019 in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
Indianapolis Colts v Houston Texans | Bob Levey/Getty Images

The Houston Texans were all but written off this past Sunday when they were dominated 41-7 to the Lamar Jackson-led Baltimore Ravens. As a result, the team had to figure out how to have a short memory, with the Indianapolis Colts coming to town on Thursday Night Football with first place in the AFC South on the line.

A loss would have meant a 6-5 record. Instead, Houston went onto win 20-17, and in the process, proved that they're sneaky AFC contenders this year.

After getting torched by the Ravens just a few days ago, the Texans defense did their homework against a productive Indy offense. Houston forced quarterback Jacoby Brissett to throw short to intermediate passes for the majority of the game. With TY Hilton clearly not 100%, throwing downfield was not an option for the Colts, and it hindered them throughout the game.

Now, we get to the offense, which is officially back to full health.

Prior to the game, the Texans got Will Fuller back from injury, and he proved to be an immediate difference-maker for quarterback Deshaun Watson. Fuller was targeted 11 times in the game, where he hauled in seven receptions for 140 yards.

When Fuller gets going, the main beneficiary was DeAndre Hopkins. The man called Nuk caught six of eight targets for 94 yards and two touchdowns. Perhaps the best example of what kind of night this was manifested in the first half, as Hopkins stood wide open in the end zone and caught his first score of the night.

More importantly, Watson showed he can bounce back from a poor performance instead of faltering. On the night, the former Clemson Tiger completed 19-of-30 pass attempts for 298 yards, two touchdowns, and one interception.

The Houston Texans proved they're a resilient bunch, and if they repeat this showing throughout the season, they truly can be in the conversation of AFC contenders once the playoffs roll around.