HOUSTON — The Houston Texans survived a scare from the browsing Buffalo Charges by scoring 19 details in the fourth-quarter and holding on in overtime to secure a 22-19 additional time victory Saturday in the first AFC wild-card activity of the weekend.
Deshaun Watson led a few 2nd-half scoring drives to erase a double-digit deficit and then was at his finest in additional time, directing a 73-yard game-profitable drive capped by a 28-lawn Ka’imi Fairbairn area goal to help Houston advance to the divisional round.
“I advised the guys, I put a card in their lockers, ‘Let’s be wonderful nowadays,’ ” explained Watson, who concluded with 247 yards on 20-of-25 passing. “Someone experienced to be terrific. Why not me?”
Houston will experience both the Baltimore Ravens or the Kansas City Chiefs following weekend, pending the outcome of Saturday night’s sport amongst the New England Patriots and Tennessee Titans.
Below are 3 factors that stood out Saturday.
1. Expertise presents the edge — The Bills and quarterback Josh Allen opened the game in spectacular fashion. When they took a 16- guide in the 3rd quarter, it appeared as though the Charges would be punching their ticket for the divisional spherical. Having said that, the Texans held plugging alongside and eventually strike their stride. A Texans staff that dropped at house to Indianapolis in very last year’s wild-card spherical drew on that practical experience this time all over and had just sufficient to edge out a talented yet however producing Bills team.
two. Tale of two quarterbacks — Both Allen and Watson entered this game with a likelihood to make significant statements at this early phase of their younger professions as they sought their first playoff gain. Allen impressed for considerably of the game but then fell aside as his youth and inexperience confirmed. In the meantime, Watson overcame a slow commence to deliver the activity-profitable heroics his group wanted.
Allen largely has proven flashes in his 2nd time, but he has lacked regularity as a passer. Saturday, having said that, he did a much much better task of utilizing his legs to increase his passing activity. But Allen’s made highly-priced problems that prevented his crew from placing the activity absent. A fourth-quarter fumble, an intentional grounding phone on his team’s penultimate travel of the fourth quarter and a 19-garden sack he took on the ensuing fourth down all proved harming. Allen did placement the Bills for an extra time-forcing field purpose, and he did make a few of awesome throws in additional time. But he came up quick by a hair, ending with 264 yards on 24-of-46 passing.
In the meantime, Watson was flustered early and in the beginning unable to deliver the common wizardry his crew necessary. Quite a few instances, Watson found himself underneath force ahead of performs had a chance to unfold. Other instances, he held onto the ball far too extensive and took unwanted sacks (7 on the day). Not until halfway through the fourth quarter did Watson and best goal DeAndre Hopkins link on a downfield shot (41 yards). But in a testomony to his resilience, Watson willed his group back again into the match, directing two second-half landing drives, both of which he capped with two-position conversions. And then in additional time, he established up the determining industry goal on a second-and-6 play by slipping out of a pass rusher’s grasp and connecting with running again Taiwan Jones on a 34-lawn catch-and-operate.
HOW DID DESHAUN WATSON DO THIS?
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— Usa Right now NFL (@usatodaynfl) January five, 2020
Watson spoke in the course of the week about the speed of the recreation, and how he would be superior ready for it this 12 months many thanks to very last year’s experience, and he was. His poise was obvious, as was his refusal to permit early-video game struggles derail him. In the game’s biggest moments, Watson used unyielding resolve, the risk of his legs and his sense for the activity to manipulate the Bills defense for big difference-building plays. As a consequence, he and Houston emerged with their first playoff earn due to the fact 2016.
3. Defining defenses — For significantly of the video game, it was distinct that the Expenses protection is every thing that the Texans’ unit is not. Buffalo’s team is stout towards the run, intense in pursuit of the quarterback and has game-changers in the secondary. The Bills’ consistency by way of a few quarters helped simplicity pressure on the offense. Buffalo wilted late defensively, having said that, enabling the Texans to orchestrate two long drives and get the direct. And the unit unsuccessful to keep up in additional time.
Retaining the theme of their workforce, Houston’s defense also shook off early missteps to supply vital contributions to the victory. In the next half of the season, the Texans yielded an regular of 156.7 hurrying yards for every sport, and individuals struggles continued Saturday, as Buffalo racked up 172 yards on thirty carries. But as the match progressed and when Buffalo observed alone in additional passing predicaments, the Texans protection capitalized, pressuring Allen and forcing him into blunders.
Stick to Mike Jones on Twitter @ByMikeJones.