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NFL Game Summary - Indianapolis at Houston



(Sunday, September 11th)

Final Score: Houston 34, Indianapolis 7

Houston, TX (Sports Network) - There appears to be a clear changing of the guard in the AFC South.

Without an injured Peyton Manning, the perennial division champion Colts were simply dreadful and the playoff-starved Houston Texans looked like true contenders in a 34-7 rout to open the season at Reliant Stadium.

Matt Schaub threw for 220 yards with one touchdown and two interceptions for the Texans (1-0), who dominated without injured running back Arian Foster. The NFL's leading rusher from a year ago sat out because of a hamstring issue, but was clearly not missed as Houston turned two Indianapolis turnovers into a pair of first-quarter touchdowns and built a 34-0 halftime lead en route to their second straight season-opening win over the Colts.

Ben Tate ran for 116 yards and a touchdown for Houston, while Derrick Ward started in Foster's place and added 39 yards on 11 carries with a score.

The Texans were considered a playoff contender last year and opened with a 34-24 win over Indianapolis on the way to a 4-2 start. They lost eight of 10 to finish at 6-10 and now enter their 10th year of existence with pressure on head coach Gary Kubiak to earn that elusive first postseason berth.

Indianapolis bounced back from that loss to open last season and went on to capture the AFC South crown for the seventh time in eight years. Of course Manning was there to quickly help right the ship. That won't be the case anytime soon this year, as Manning is sidelined indefinitely and could miss the entire season after undergoing his second neck procedure of the year earlier this week.

Kerry Collins, lured out of a brief retirement in late August because of Manning's neck problems, was not nearly a capable replacement. He completed 16-of-31 passes for 197 yards with a touchdown for the Colts (0-1), who have lost consecutive season openers for the first time since 1997 and '98. The Colts were 3-13 in '97 and selected Manning with the first pick in the '98 draft, then also went 3-13 in the superstar quarterback's rookie season.

Manning went on to start 227 consecutive games, including playoffs, before sitting out Sunday.

Collins got his first chance behind center in good field position at his own 40 after Schaub had a pass tipped and picked off by Melvin Bullitt. The Colts barely crossed midfield before punting it away and it was all Houston from there.

"It's a long season. We played a good football team today, and we didn't help ourselves," Collins said. "We have a lot of work to do."

Schaub directed a 13-play, 73-yard march that ended in a 25-yard Neil Rackers field goal and the Texans followed by converting two fumbles into touchdowns.

Collins had the ball knocked out of his hand on the first play after the ensuing kickoff and Houston took over at the Indianapolis 12. Three plays later, Ward banged into the end zone from a yard away for a 10-0 lead.

The next Indianapolis possession also lasted all of one play, as Collins never got the exchange from center Jeff Saturday and Houston recovered at the Colts' 18. Again it took just three plays, and Tate scored from the two for a 17-0 cushion with 1:41 left in the first quarter.

Houston then drove 89 yards on 10 plays with its next possession and increased the advantage to 24 early in the second quarter when Andre Johnson caught a tipped pass in the end zone for a four-yard score. Rackers added 29-yard field goal before Jacoby Jones put the exclamation point on the decisive half with a 79-yard punt return for a touchdown.

The Texans outgained the Colts, 259-72, during the opening 30 minutes and had 19 first downs to Indy's five.

"That's the best half we've probably played as a team. It was explosive in every area," Texans head coach Gary Kubiak said. "It was a great group effort."

Houston didn't do anything offensively in the second half, although a promising drive early in the fourth quarter ended inside the Indianapolis 10 with a Gary Brackett interception.

Adam Vinatieri missed a 37-yard field goal try on the ensuing Colts possession and Tate followed with a fumble to give Indianapolis the ball once again. This time, Collins took advantage with a six-yard TD strike to Reggie Wayne, who made a one-handed catch in the back of the end zone.

Wayne finished with seven catches for 106 yards in defeat.

Game Notes

Collins surpassed Joe Montana (40,551) for 10th place in all-time passing yards. He now has 40,638 career yards...Joseph Addai led the Colts with 39 rushing yards...The Texans outrushed the Colts, 167-64...Johnson finished with seven catches for 95 yards...Houston held the ball for nearly 37 minutes.

09/11 20:30:29 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
UVA 27
UNC 28
Final
NCCU 42
SAVST 14
 
1:00pm Today
CAR
SEA
Final
SFG 11
KAN 4
8:07pm Tonight
SFG
KAN
 
Final
WISC 52
MD 7
Final
SMU 10
MEM 48
Final
ILL 28
MINN 24
Final
RICE 41
UNT 21
Final
NEB 42
RUTG 24
Final
KST 23
TEX 0
Final
ARK 45
UAB 17
Final
UVA 27
UNC 28
Final
EMICH 17
NILL 28
Final
NAVY 41
SJST 31
Final
BST 35
AKR 21
Final
GASTATE 31
GASO 69
Final
TOL 42
UMASS 35
Final
WMICH 42
OHIO 21
Final
COL 37
UCLA 40
Final
UMO 10
KSU 3
Final
WAKE 17
BC 23
Final
BUF 14
CMICH 20
Final
MARS 35
FATL 16
Final
PITT 28
GT 56
Final
SMISS 20
LATU 31
Final
MSU 35
MICH 11
Final
KENT 31
MSST 45
Final
STAN 38
ORST 14
Final
TCU 82
TTU 27
Final
OKST 10
WVU 34
Final
WKENT 66
ODU 51
Final
UTST 34
UNLV 20
Final
MIZZ 24
VANDY 14
Final
UCF 34
TEMPL 14
Final
WASU 37
ARZ 59
Final
CLEM 16
SYR 6
Final
LAMON 18
TXST 22
Final
TXSANANTO 0
UTEP 34
Final
COLST 45
WYO 31
Final
LSU 10
MISS 7
Final
TENN 20
ALA 34
Final
AUB 42
SCAR 35
Final
PSU 24
OSU 31
Final
UTAH 24
USC 21
Final
WASH 10
ARST 24
Final
HAW 18
NEV 26
 
Final
SJS 1
BUF 2
Final
TOR 1
BOS 4
Final
NYI 7
DAL 5
Final
PHI 4
DET 2
Final
OTT 2
NJD 3
Final
MON 3
NYR 1
Final
STL 3
CHI 2
Final
NAS 0
PIT 3
Final
MIN 7
TAM 2
Final
ARI 2
FLA 1
Final
CAL 1
WAS 3
3:00pm Today
WIN
COL
 
4:00pm Today
LOS
CLB
 
7:00pm Tonight
CHI
OTT
 
8:00pm Tonight
ANA
SJS
 
9:30pm Tonight
VAN
WAS
 
9:30am Today
ATL
DET
1:00pm Today
CIN
BAL
1:00pm Today
NYJ
BUF
1:00pm Today
NEP
CHI
1:00pm Today
TEN
HOU
1:00pm Today
JAC
MIA
1:00pm Today
TAM
MIN
1:00pm Today
CAR
SEA
1:00pm Today
KAN
STL
4:05pm Today
ARI
PHI
4:25pm Today
PIT
IND
4:25pm Today
CLE
OAK
8:30pm Tonight
NOS
GBP
Final
NCCU 42
SAVST 14