5 takeaways from the texans 41-29 upset of the chargers

    Houston: The Houston Texans received a late Christmas present Sunday in the form of a 41-29 Week 16 victory over the Los Angeles Chargers at NRG Stadium.

    As a result, the Texans recorded back-to-back wins for the first time this season, as rookie quarterback Davis Mills took home his second career win by completing 21 of 27 passing attempts for 254 yards and two touchdowns.

    Reading: 5 takeaways from the texans 41-29 upset of the chargers

    Playing postseason spoilers, the Texans pulled off one of the most significant upsets of the season in the league after the Chargers were favored by -8.5 points before the game.

    Here are five takeaways that give Houston its first winning streak since Weeks 12 and 13 of 2020.

    1. Texans finally found their groove in the running game

    (ap photo/justin rex)

    It didn’t matter if the Texans were playing against the fourth-worst run defense in the league or not, but Houston had its best running game of the season in a win against the Chargers. The Texans entered Sunday’s game averaging a league-low 77.4 rushing yards, but finished with 190 rushing.

    rex burkhead set the tone for the texans running game by scoring a 25-yard rushing touchdown to put the texans ahead 7-3 during their opening drive. At the time, Burkhead’s touchdown was Houston’s longest run of the season, as he finished the game with a career-best 149 yards on 22 carries.

    The Texans’ success in the race didn’t rest entirely on Burkhead’s shoulders. Royce Freeman made his contributions felt by recording a season-high 34 yards on 12 attempts. if not for a holding penalty, freeman would have scored the texans’ first touchdown of the game instead of burkhead.

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    2. for the third game in a row, another great game for davis mills

    (photo by carmen mandado/getty images)

    rookie quarterback davis mills is beginning to find consistency in his game as a starting quarterback in the nfl. For the third straight game, Mills put on a clinic during the first half by completing 11 of his first 13 passes for 131 yards. He threw his first touchdown of the game connecting with wide receiver Chris Conley for 41 yards, which resulted in a career high.

    With brandin cooks out due to covid, mills did an adequate job of distributing the ball targeting eight different receivers in the win. Mills’ game didn’t slow down in the second half, as the Stanford prodigy kept up his aggressiveness after the halftime break, marking another continued growth for the rookie quarterback.

    3. Texans defending their territory

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    Led by pro bowl quarterback justin herbert, the chargers did a solid job moving the chains against the texans defense, but couldn’t capitalize on touchdowns.

    every time the chargers made their way into texans territory, the houston defense prevailed by limiting the angels to three field goals. For a team that entered NRG Stadium averaging 27.1 points per game, the Houston defense limited the Chargers to one touchdown, before giving up two late in the fourth quarter after the Texans had complete control of the game.

    4. jonathan owens seizes his chance against the chargers

    (photo by carmen mandado/getty images)

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    due to injuries and covid, garret wallow seized his opportunity a week ago when the texans defeated the jacksonville jaguars 30-16. A week later, safety Jonathan Owens took the opportunity of him under the same circumstances as Wallowing.

    owens played an essential role in the Texans’ defensive success against the Chargers by recording his first career interception and recovering a fumble.

    After three seasons back and forth between Houston practice and the active roster, Owens’ performance against the Chargers could be evidence enough to cement a spot on the Texans’ 53-man roster in 2022.


    5. overcoming covid

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    Even for a team that has nothing to play for in these last three games, the Texans had a tremendous time trying to overcome the number of vital players out due to covid-19. Before the Week 16 game against the Chargers, the Texans had 25 players on the COVID-19 reserve list and 10 were starters.

    The Texans activated 16 players between the reserves and the practice roster to have enough bodies against the Chargers. While playing with a boatload of backup players, the Texans held their own against the Chargers by displaying a tremendous amount of heart and effort throughout the game.


    See also: 5 takeaways from 49ers loss to the titans


    See also: 5 takeaways from 49ers loss to the titans

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