Saints
Texans
10 - 23 Final
  for this game

Johnson's return sparks Texans over Saints

Nov 18, 2007 - 11:22 PM By Ted Dunnam PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

HOUSTON (Ticker) - Andre Johnson caught a 73-yard touchdown pass in his return to Houston's lineup, helping lead the Houston Texans to a 23-10 victory over the New Orleans Saints on Sunday.

Johnson, who has been out of the lineup since the second week of the season with a knee injury, caught six passes for 120 yards, going over 100 yards receiving for the third time this season and 16th time in his career.

The Texans sealed the win with Kris Brown's 53-yard field goal with 58 seconds left in the third quarter, giving Houston a 20-10 lead. Brown tacked on a 23-yarder to make it 23-10 with 1:57 left.

Quarterback Matt Schaub also returned from injury and finished 21-of-33 for 293 yards and two touchdowns as the Texans (5-5) won their second straight game.

"Andre brings a lot of excitment and lifts the level of play out there for us," Schaub said. "On the touchdown play, we said let's do it now because we got the safety to bite the play before."

Johnson wasn't overly surprised to be so wide open.

"Both safeties bit on the run fake and it was there for me," Johnson said. "It was just great to be out on the field again. Our timing was a little off, but it's not all going to happen in one week."

New Orleans scored the game's first points on Olindo Mare's 52-yard field goal with 12:09 left in the first quarter following fumble recovery by Scott Fujita.

The Texans answered just three plays later when Schaub connected with a wide-open Johnson on a 73-yard touchdown reception at 10:44 of the opening period for a 7-3 lead.

After Saints defensive lineman Will Smith recovered a fumble by Texans running back Adimchinobi Echmandu at the Houston 43-yard line, New Orleans went ahead, 10-7, on Drew Brees' 6-yard touchdown pass to Devery Henderson at 4:39 of the second quarter.

Brees completed 32-of-48 passes for 275 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions.

That Saints' lead was short-lived as Houston answered with a six-play, 70-yard drive, culminating in Schaub's 10-yard touchdown pass to tight end Joel Dreessen for a 14-10 lead.

Brown kicked 36-yard field goal with eight seconds left in the half for a 17-10 cushion.

The Saints committed two first-half turnovers that negated probable scores.

Those mistakes didn't escape Saints head coach Sean Payton.

"You're not going to win a lot of games when you fumble the ball on the 1-yard line, have a dropped ball interception in the red zone, and another deflected interception," Payton said. "If we don't get that corrected - regardless of the effort and all the other things you might do well throughout the game - those things are going to bring you down."

New Orleans running back Reggie Bush rushed for just 34 yards on 15 attempts, losing two fumbles.

"To be honest with you, he had some missed assignments today," Payton said of Bush. "I thought he had a couple of drops and the fumble (at the 1-yard line). It wasn't good enough. He needs to play better and we'll look at the tape."

Bush thought he was down before the ball came loose.

"I thought it was a bad call," Bush said. "I haven't seen the tape yet, but I honestly felt like it was way after the play, and they pulled it out when I was getting up.

"We had opportunities to make plays and, for one reason or another, we had mental errors that really hurt us. All that added up ... that's why we lost today. I don't think we're out of it yet, but we have to win out."

Houston defensive end Mario Williams, who had six tackles and one sack, downplayed any showdown he might have had with Bush.

"We were playing the Saints, not one person," Williams said. "When Drew is hot, he's hot. We had to stop the run first and put pressure on their passing game. For me, it's all about having repetitions and being comfortable out there. Then it shows on the field. We played hard and fast today."

Brees knows much of the Saints' ongoing woes are self-inflicted.

"To walk away with just 10 points is ridiculous," Brees said. "In the second half our defense played great and gave us lots of opportunities.

"We just didn't capitalize on any of them. It was very disappointing."

Texans coach Gary Kubiak said he was just happy to have a healthy Johnson available for the stretch run.

"Just his presence on the field is unbelievable," Kubiak said. "It was important and very hard for us as coaches, to not only have him but to make sure we played him for about 35 or 40 plays.

"He's the heart and soul of this franchise, not just the team. He's fought the good fight for a long, long time so it was good to see him play well today."








  • NFL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    NEW ORLEANS 3 7 0 0 10
    HOUSTON 7 10 0 6 23 FINAL
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: NOR - FG, OLINDO MARE 52 YD, 2:51. Drive: 4
    plays, 4 yards in 1:20. Key plays:
    Fujita recovery of Daniels fumble
    at Houston 38. NEW ORLEANS 3-0
    HST - TD, ANDRE JOHNSON 73 YD PASS FROM MATT
    S

    Nov 18 4:06 PM


  • NFL
    FG HST
    KRIS BROWN 23 YD
    NEW ORLEANS 10
    HOUSTON 23 1:57 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Saints vs. TexansNov 18 4:00 PM


  • NFL
    FG HST
    KRIS BROWN 53 YD
    NEW ORLEANS 10
    HOUSTON 20 12:22 LEFT, 4TH QTR

    Saints vs. TexansNov 18 3:36 PM


  • NFL
    END, 3RD QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    NEW ORLEANS 3 7 0 10
    HOUSTON 7 10 0 17 END, 3RD QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: NOR - FG, OLINDO MARE 52 YD, 2:51. Drive: 4
    plays, 4 yards in 1:20. Key plays:
    Fujita recovery of Daniels fumble
    at Houston 38. NEW ORLEANS 3-0
    HST - TD, ANDRE JOHNSON 73 YD PASS FROM

    Nov 18 3:25 PM


  • NFL
    NEW ORLEANS 10
    HOUSTON 17 0:00 LEFT, 2ND QTR
    NOR BALL ON NOR 43 YD LINE
    1ST AND 10

    Nov 18 2:36 PM


  • NFL
    FG HST
    KRIS BROWN 36 YD
    NEW ORLEANS 10
    HOUSTON 17 0:08 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Saints vs. TexansNov 18 2:34 PM


  • NFL
    TD HST
    JOEL DREESSEN 10 YD PASS FROM MATT SCHAUB
    (KRIS BROWN KICK)
    NEW ORLEANS 10
    HOUSTON 14 2:10 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Saints vs. TexansNov 18 2:18 PM


  • NFL
    TD NOR
    DEVERY HENDERSON 6 YD PASS FROM DREW BREES
    (OLINDO MARE KICK)
    NEW ORLEANS 10
    HOUSTON 7 4:39 LEFT, 2ND QTR

    Saints vs. TexansNov 18 2:10 PM


  • NFL
    END, 1ST QTR 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    NEW ORLEANS 3 3
    HOUSTON 7 7 END, 1ST QTR
    SCORING SUMMARY
    1ST QUARTER: NOR - FG, OLINDO MARE 52 YD, 2:51. Drive: 4
    plays, 4 yards in 1:20. Key plays:
    Fujita recovery of Daniels fumble
    at Houston 38. NEW ORLEANS 3-0
    HST - TD, ANDRE JOHNSON 73 YD PASS FROM

    Nov 18 1:46 PM


  • NFL
    TD HST
    ANDRE JOHNSON 73 YD PASS FROM MATT SCHAUB
    (KRIS BROWN KICK)
    NEW ORLEANS 3
    HOUSTON 7 10:44 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Saints vs. TexansNov 18 1:21 PM


  • NFL
    FG NOR
    OLINDO MARE 52 YD
    NEW ORLEANS 3
    HOUSTON 0 12:09 LEFT, 1ST QTR

    Saints vs. TexansNov 18 1:14 PM
  • 5
    roots
    bbj9302 Added 5 roots

    Saints vs. TexansSep 23 11:59 PM