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NFL Game Summary - Houston at San Diego



(Monday, September 9th)

Final Score: Houston 31, San Diego 28

San Diego, CA (Sports Network) - The scene was all too familiar for the San Diego Chargers.

The Houston Texans rallied from a 21-point deficit with huge defensive stops in the second half, and Randy Bullock booted a 41-yard field goal as time expired to stun the Chargers, 31-28, on Monday at Qualcomm Stadium.

After falling behind 28-7 early in the third quarter, the Texans (1-0) defense didn't allow another first down, and Brian Cushing made his return to the field a memorable one with an interception return that tied the game.

Matt Schaub guided the offense to two scores in the second half, throwing for three touchdowns with an interception for the game while amassing 346 yards through the air on 34-of-45 efficiency.

Owen Daniels had two touchdowns among his five receptions for 67 yards and running back Arian Foster rushed for 57 on 18 carries.

Phillip Rivers tossed four touchdown passes for San Diego (0-1), but couldn't move the offense down the stretch in a game that ended up resembling the Chargers loss to the Denver Broncos last season, when they blew a 24-0 first half lead.

The Chargers had looked overly impressive in their new offensive scheme implemented by first-year head coach Mike McCoy in the first half, and seemed in cruise control after Eddie Royal hauled in his second touchdown of the game on the first drive of the third quarter.

However, from there it was a completely different game.

The Texans defense, which couldn't stop the passing game in the first half, suddenly became airtight over the final 25 minutes of play. After Rivers' last TD pass, he completed just one of his last nine throws.

Houston matched San Diego's opening score with one of its own, answering with a 70-yard drive that saw Schaub complete 6-of-7 throws, including a 7- yard TD toss to Garrett Graham to make it a two-score game.

They were on the move again late in the period, with rookie DeAndre Hopkins hauling in a 30-yard grab just before the end of the quarter. Houston originally settled for a 37-yard field goal, but the Chargers were flagged for an unnecessary roughness penalty on the attempt, giving the Texans a first down. On the next play, Schaub fired a 9-yard strike to Daniels for a touchdown, bringing the Texans within 28-21.

Texans linebacker Cushing, who had been having a quiet night in his return to the field from ACL surgery, suddenly found a way make an impact. With Rivers throwing short to the outside, Cushing dove full extension to intercept the pass. He then sprung to his feet and rumbled 18 yards to the end zone to tie the score at 28-28 with 9:30 left to play in the game.

Forcing another three-and-out, the Texans defense got the ball back in the hands of their quarterback with 3:53 to play. Andre Johnson, who had a monster 12-catch, 146-yard performance, snagged three passes on the team's final drive, which set up Bullock's game-winner as time expired.

The Chargers' new regime got off to an excellent start, forcing a turnover on the game's first play to fuel early momentum in a first half that saw the hosts build a 21-7 lead by the break.

Jarret Johnson swatted at Schaub's first throw and it deflected into the hands of defensive tackle Cam Thomas. Rivers wasted no time off the interception, leading Ryan Mathews down the right sideline on a 14-yard strike that gave the Chargers a 7-0 lead 15 seconds into the game.

The Texans drew even with 3:11 left in the first, with Daniels concluding a 10-play series with his second catch of the drive, a 1-yard reception in the back of the end zone.

However, Houston's vaunted defense struggled to slow down the Chargers' offense in the second. Brice McCain was flagged for a 21-yard pass interference on Royal, who would score one play later on a 6-yard toss from Rivers.

The Texans' ensuing drive stalled on the San Diego 27, as Foster ran into a brick wall on 4th-and-1 for no gain. Johnson then had a long touchdown reception called off on Houston's next touch, with replay showing the receiver being downed by contact 27 yards into his 67-yard sprint. Bullock then went on to miss a 51-yard field goal later in the drive.

San Diego took over, and with less than two minutes remaining in the half, marched down the field to score a touchdown, highlighted by great plays from Antonio Gates and Vincent Brown.

Gates made a one-handed catch on a crossing pattern he would take 34 yards down to the Texans' 5-yard line. On third down, Brown made a short reception and headed for the corner of the end zone. At first, it looked as if his outstretched arm fell just short of the pylon, but a review showed he got a piece of it and the Chargers snagged a 21-7 lead before the break.

Game Notes

The Texans picked up their first win in the all-time series with San Diego, which had won the first four matchups ... Houston safety Ed Reed sat out while continuing to recover from offseason hip surgery ... It was Johnson's 19th career game with at least 10 catches.

09/10 02:22:36 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
2nd
CAR 2
TOR 0
 
1st
DUKE 18
UCONN 13
 
1st
CHI 11
NYK 10
 
8:30pm Tonight
HOU
NOP
10:00pm Tonight
SAC
MIL
10:30pm Tonight
GSW
OKC
Final
RICE 72
STTHOMASTX 61
 
2nd
UVA 57
CLST 42
 
2nd
LIU 60
FIU 53
 
2nd
STET 58
GSOUT 61
 
2nd
QUIN 69
LEH 50
 
2nd
SFLA 48
SHU 63
 
2nd
RICH 46
SALA 46
 
2nd
CAN 39
USB 34
 
2nd
DEL 51
TEMPL 69
 
2nd
WCU 43
WRST 47
 
2nd
VERM 47
YALE 50
 
2nd
SDKST 30
IDST 25
 
Half
RIDE 29
MRGST 27
 
Half
LATU 42
NICST 28
 
1st
CHAR 15
APP 20
 
1st
MISS 16
CCAR 28
 
1st
DUKE 18
UCONN 13
 
1st
BRAD 27
EUREK 12
 
1st
PEAY 28
OAKC 9
 
1st
JST 12
SMISS 6
 
8:30pm Tonight
SD
MNTST
 
9:00pm Tonight
UAB
LSU
9:05pm Tonight
EVAN
OHIO
 
10:00pm Tonight
CSFU
CSDH
 
10:00pm Tonight
ORST
DEP
10:00pm Tonight
PAC
NEV
10:00pm Tonight
USF
PORST
 
10:00pm Tonight
IDAHO
WALLA
 
10:05pm Tonight
UTST
CALST
 
2nd
PIT 0
COL 0
 
2nd
PHI 1
FLA 1
 
2nd
CAR 2
TOR 0
 
2nd
CLB 2
WAS 2
 
1st
MON 0
ANA 1
 
10:30pm Tonight
SJS
EDM
10:30pm Tonight
LOS
STL
1st
JAC 0
TEN 0