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Bironas’ Last Second FG Steals Win from Texans

 Houston Texans' N.D. Kalu (94) watches as the Tennessee Titans celebrate a game-winning field by Titans kicker Rob Bironas during the closing seconds of the fourth quarter of an NFL football game Sunday, Oct. 21, 2007 in Houston. Bironas set a new NFL record by kicking eight field goals in the Titans 38-36 win over the Texans.

 The Houston Texans followed up a horrible first half with a valiant 4th Quarter comeback on the arm of backup QB Sage Rosenfels.  The Texans’ surge included grabs by WRs Kevin Walter and Andre Davis, and TEs Owen Daniels and Jeb Putzier.   The final Texans drive led the Texans past the Titans 36-35 with 0:57 remaining on the clock.  Then, QB Kerry Collins, who started over Vince Young (quad), came in the game with a mission to take the Titans from their 20 yard line to Texans territory where Rob Bironas could connect a Field Goal to win the game.  The Titans did just that as Collins connected with WR Roydell Williams to set up a 29-yard Bironas FG to win the game.

In the first half, Matt Shaub went down with a left ankle sprain while the Texans looked confused on offense and the defense was on the field too long.  The team amounted more penalty yards than offensive yards, and their only TD was off a Collins fumble, recovered and returned by MLB Demeco Ryans. Shaub, who later returned in the game, was knocked down by the heavy DT Albert Haynesworth.  The hit drew a penalty for a helmet to helmet hit.  After both Shaub injuries, Rosenfels came in only to turn it over with an interception and then a fumble.  On the Titans’ side, Bironas scored most of their first half points except for a LenDale White TD.  White had 104 yards on 27 carries against the Texans.

The Titans played and managed the game well into the 3rd Quarter.  In the third quarter White had some rest as Titans RB Chris Henry amazed spectators with his flashy speed racking up 57 yards and a TD on 11 carries.  The Titans pounding was enough for most of the fans to leave Reliant Stadium before the 4th Quarter, but every Texans fan whose stuck with the team knows that they don’t give up.

In the Fourth, the Texans’ D, tired and beat, stood strong while the offense created plays with a suddenly refurbished run game and confident pass arsenal.  Ex-South Carolina CBs Dunta Robinson and Fred Bennett had great stops and pass deflections to let the Texans execute the Kubiak offense.  There were great catches by Walter and Davis, and a 4th Down conversion catch by TE Owen Daniels, who dropped 2 passes before the 1st Down converting catch.  The Texans looked hot to win the game with just minutes remaining after a perfect onside kick recovery by third string MLB Zach Diles.  Then the final Texans drive concluded with more excellent passes ending with a Putzier TD and Brown XP which put the Texans over the Titans for the first time in the game.  But it was not enough as the Titans offensive line held their ground for Collins to make the necessary passes to set up Bironas’ record breaking FG. He had 8 FGs, the most scored by a single player in one NFL game.

The Texans looked disappointed with the 38-36 loss to the Titans as they fell to last place in the AFC South.  But their unrelenting teamwork and drive to keep games close should keep the Texans hungry for a win next Sunday when they play at San Diego against Chargers RB LaDanian Tomlinson and LB Shawn Merriman.

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