Week 13 Game Recap: Houston Texans 15, Baltimore Ravens 16
What you need to know
After squandering a late ten point lead last week, the Texans managed to lose a fourth quarter lead twice in this game, and once again found themselves on the disappointing end of a game they think they should have won. David Carr was very disappointing after breaking out for a great game last week. He was constantly harassed by the Ravens' pass rush, and had his lone interception of the game returned for a touchdown.
Running back Domanick Davis was spectacular, and finished with a season high rushing total of 155 yards. He ran hard throughout the game, and broke several tackles. He had a handful of double digit runs, including a long of 29. A combination of Davis' superb output and decent field position allowed the Texans to score five field goals over the course of the game. Unfortunately, the game might have ended differently had one of these scoring drives ended in a touchdown.
The defense was solid throughout, only allowing one long scoring drive to the Ravens until late in the game, when the pass defense went porous. Kyle Boller led the Ravens down field on excellent down field passing, and Matt Stover's 38 yard field goal gave the Texans their eleventh loss of the season.
Despite having a sub par outing throughout most of the game, Baltimore quarterback Kyle Boller led his team on a last minute scoring drive to win the game. With both the running and passing game ineffective, the Ravensí defense became the most important factor in the victory, returning an interception for a score and holding all five of Houston's scoring drives to field goals.
Boller managed two solid drives in the game, the first ending when he ran in a score, and the later ended in a Matt Stover field goal to win the game. Jamal Lewis ran the ball poorly, and backup Chester Taylor saw a majority of the rushing touches as a result. Wide receiver Mark Clayton had his best performance yet of his rookie campaign, gaining 70 yards on seven receptions.
The defense allowed Domanick Davis to explode for 155 yards, his best of the season. Despite the high yardage total, they kept him and the rest of the Texans out of the end zone. The pass rush was intense, and sacked Houston quarterback David Carr five times. Adalius Thomas' 20 yard interception for a touchdown was the first of three lead-changes in the fourth quarter. Though outplayed for most of the game, a combination of big plays by the defense and a successful late-game drive by Kyle Boller allowed the Ravens to eek out a home victory against the NFL's worst team.
What you ought to know
|QB David Carr, Pass: 17 - 37 - 165 - 0 TD / 1 INT, Rush: 3 - 8 - 0|
Carr had a difficult time finding any sort of success against the Ravens' defense. He completed less than half of his passes, while throwing for less than ten yards per completion. He threw no touchdowns and one interception. He faced constant pressure from the Baltimore pass rush, and fell victim to five sacks, three at the hands of Terrell Suggs. In the middle of the fourth quarter, Carr dropped back to pass and threw a ball that was tipped by a Baltimore defensive lineman. Adalius Thomas caught tipped pass and returned it 20 yards for a touchdown. He did manage to lead his team on five scoring drives, but all resulted in field goals.
Davis had an excellent day rushing the football, turning in his best performance of the season. He was a constant bright spot for the hapless Texans' offense. Among his 29 carries (also a season high) were five carries of ten or more yards, including big gains of 19 and 29 yards. Despite his excellent yardage total, he didn't manage to fin the end zone. He took over the punt return duties in the second half, after regular returner Jerome Mathis has some fumbling issues. Davis muffed a punt as well, but it was quickly recovered by a fellow teammate.
Wells was used sparingly to spell Davis. He didn't produce much on the ground, but did add a few catches.
Gaffney was targeted frequently, although almost solely for short gains.
Johnson was Carr's favorite target, and saw several down field looks. His four catches ranged between 15 and 29 yards. He looked to hurt himself on a down field catch late in the game. He was seen running on the sidelines afterward, though.
Armstrong had a 17 yard catch in the third quarter that converted a third and 16.
Bradford had zero catches.
Rivers was targeted three times, turning one into a ten yard reception.
Brown has an excellent day, making field goals of 39, 26, 22, 29, and 39 yards. He had no misses and no PAT attempts.
Given the low-scoring nature of the game, and the Ravensí propensity to run the ball, the Texans did a solid job of stopping the run. Jamal Lewis was a non-factor, managing only 17 yards and losing a fumble. Second stinger Chester Taylor, considered questionable before the game, turned in a decent performance with 40 yards on limited carries, although he too lost a fumble to the Texans' defense. All told, the Houston unit allowed less than 75 total rushing yards while forcing two lost fumbles; a very solid job.
The Houston pass defense kept Kyle Boller in check throughout much of the game, but allowed him to get hot late, when it hurt them the most. Boller barely managed to complete 50 percent of his passes, and finished with less than 200 yards and no touchdowns. But late in the game, with time running out on the Ravens and the Texans up by one point, Boller was allowed to go four of seven for 77 yards, putting his team in place to win on a Matt Stover field goal. The Texans' pass defense sacked Boller four times, but didn't make any interceptions.
|QB Kyle Boller, Pass: 17 - 33 - 198 - 0 TD / 0 INT, Rush: 3 - 11 - 1|
Boller has a characteristically unspectacular day. He didn't lead his team to any touchdown scoring drives, although he came up big late, making way for a come from behind Baltimore victory. He targeted rookie receiver Mark Clayton heavily and also threw several passes to his more standard favorites: Derrick Mason and Todd Heap. He ran in a score early in the second quarter. His late fourth quarter performance, going four of seven for 77 yards (two of these incompletions were spikes to stop the clock) to lead his team to victory, gave Boller a small sliver of glory in an otherwise dreadful season. He threw no interceptions, and didn't lose either of his two fumbles.
Taylor saw more carries than starter Jamal Lewis, and he did much more with them. Although his 11 carry, 40 yard performance wasn't anything spectacular, it was much more effective than Lewis.
|RB Jamal Lewis, Rush: 8 - 17 - 0, Rec: 3 - 23 - 0 (3 targets)|
Lewis started the day inauspiciously, losing a fumble on the Ravens' first possession of the game. He was mostly a liability to his team, earning only 17 yards on eight rushing carries. He contributed well through the air, but his ineffectiveness on the ground caused him to be supplanted by Chester Taylor.
|WR Mark Clayton, Rush: 1 - 5 - 0, Rec: 7 - 86 - 0 (10 targets)|
Clayton was Boller's favorite target in the game. His seven catch, 70 yard day was the best in his young career. He gained five yards on an end around run.
Mason had a below average receiving day, including a couple of dropped passes.
Hymes had no catches in the game.
Heap had a high per catch average, and had a clutch catch on the Ravens' winning drive.
Stover made both his 38 yard field goal attempt and his only PAT.
Once again the Ravens' defense missed their team leader, middle linebacker Ray Lewis. They allowed Domanick Davis to explode for 155 yards, his highest total of the season. On the bright side, they kept him, and the entire Texans' offense, out of the end zone.
David Carr was held in check by the Ravens' secondary, thanks in large part to an aggressive pass rush that found their target frequently. They sacked Carr five times, including a career high from standout pass rusher Terrell Suggs. A mid fourth quarter Carr pass was tipped, intercepted, and returned for a 20 yard touchdown by linebacker Adalius Thomas. Carr didn't hit 200 yards passing, and he completed less than 50 percent of his passes.