Game Recap: Indianapolis Colts vs. Houston Texans

It’s coming together. The Indianapolis Colts need to have some sort of difficulty to overcome to play good football. This time it wasn’t only Andrew Lucks’ injury. But backup quarterback, Matt Hasselbeck was violently ill as well. The rallying call brought the team together to take down the Houston Texans 27-20.


They play at their best when the cards are stacked against them. And when they’ve got something to fight for. This game made an NFL record 16 straight division wins. It also marked Andre Johnson’s return to Houston. The team appeared to set him up for the big plays. Johnson made them. He caught two touchdowns, the first of the season. He looked like all the reason’s GM Ryan Grigson picked him up in the first place.

Johnson looked good, and the big story of the late-night, Thursday game – Matt Hasselbeck looked good. All the old guys turned out in full force to prove their worth: Hasselbeck, Gore, Johnson, and Vinatieri,. The Colts are the oldest in the NFL, but that doesn’t mean a thing to the guys playing out on the field. The kicker Adam Vinatieri, like the QB, is over 40 years old. That doesn’t mean he can’t get the job done. And do it well. Hasselbeck threw no interceptions. The Colts had no turnovers. Even though the Colts defense allowed 444 yards, Houston couldn’t convert.

It was mostly a game of penalties. Whether the refs are calling more penalties on purpose or not, the big drives by Houston were stopped by mistakes on their part or costly penalties. 13 penalties to be precise. Those kept the Colts drives going. Those stopped Houston from a good 7 – 10 points. It brings up questions about the Texans. If they can’t beat a beat-up team, with a sick backup QB, who according to Pagano had IVs and blankets draped over him two days before, and they can’t make good use of their star J.J. Watt, then what good are they?

Houston switched out QBs during the game. Head Coach, Bill O’Brien seemed unable to commit to Ryan Mallett. He was in. Then he was replaced with Brian Hoyer. Leaving a very angry looking QB on the sidelines. On the plus side for the Texans, Jadeveon Clowney played the run well. And the Colts had no answer for the go-to-man, DeAndre Hopkins. And a hail Mary pass connected in the touchdown with one second left in the first half to embarrass the Colts and breathe life in the Texans offense.

Finally, though, that touted Colts diverse offensive showed up. Frank Gore ran well. Johnson caught well. Mike Adams has two interceptions. Pep Hamilton called a good game. Pagano had a good game. J.J. Watt was pretty quiet. David Parry fought well against the blocks. The center blocks looked good. T.Y. Hilton had a couple clutch catches. All in all. Not too bad. Finally.

So what’s it going to take to see the Colts at their best with Andrew Luck throwing? Another major catastrophe that can be mended by a stirring Coach Chuck Pagano speech? Whatever it is, here’s hoping the magic, and the Luck, holds out. The Colts play the New England Patriots next. Their big rivals; the team they always seem to fall apart against. Maybe if the Colts keep Matt Hasselbeck on it’ll be the old, tough, scrappy guys against the shiny, undefeated away team. Maybe Luck will keep up Hasselbeck’s two week, no-interception record. Maybe the Indianapolis fans will finally see a victory against a the Pats.

Any way the coin toss falls, you’re going to want to be at that game. We’ve got Colts tickets. And we’re partying before hand with a VIP Tailgate. Because the Colts still have a chance at the win.

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