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(Sunday, December 16th)
Final Score: Houston 29, Indianapolis 17
Houston, TX (Sports Network) - Matt Schaub threw a touchdown pass to Andre Johnson, Arian Foster gained 165 yards on 27 carries and the Houston Texans shook off a humbling beatdown at New England with a division-clinching 29-17 win over the Indianapolis Colts at Reliant Stadium.
Schaub ended with 261 yards on 23-of-31 efficiency for the Texans (12-2), who rebounded from Monday night's 42-14 loss to capture their second straight AFC South title.
Johnson made 11 catches for 151 yards.
Houston moved the ball, amassing 417 yards, but scored only one offensive touchdown. Shayne Graham kicked five field goals in Houston's third consecutive win at home against the Colts.
"I liked the way we got back to what we are as a football team today, protecting the ball, running the ball, playing solid defense," said Texans coach Gary Kubiak.
Indianapolis rookie Andrew Luck had two touchdown passes, but the Houston native was held to 186 yards on a season-low 13 completions in 27 attempts.
"They did a great job defensively of never letting us establish a rhythm or get in a rhythm," Luck said.
The Colts (9-5) had won seven of their last eight games. However, the seven victories had come against teams that entered Week 15 with a combined 29-62 record. The one loss in that span came against New England in similar fashion to Sunday's setback, a 59-24 blowout on Nov. 18.
Graham, who missed wide left from 50 yards on the final play of the first half, made a 27-yarder to give Houston a 23-10 advantage with 7:33 remaining in the third quarter.
Luck answered right back, however, directing an 80-yard drive that ended with his 8-yard TD pass to Dwayne Allen.
The Colts then went three-and-out and were forced to punt from their end zone. Houston took over the Indianapolis 39 after a 12-yard return by Keshawn Martin and a 15-yard penalty on Colts interim coach Bruce Arians.
Graham sealed the win with field goals of 46 and 33 yards in the fourth.
The Texans led 10-0 after producing points on each of their first two drives.
Schaub threw a 52-yard pass to Johnson on the second play of the game, and the downfield strike set up a 29-yard Graham field goal.
The Houston quarterback then converted a pair of third downs with completions before connecting with Johnson for a 3-yard touchdown on 3rd-and-goal.
Indianapolis threatened early in the second quarter after pinning the Texans deep in their own territory and forcing them to go three-and-out.
Donnie Jones punted the ball out of bounds at his own 38, giving the Colts great field position. But they came away empty handed when running back Mewelde Moore, who was signed earlier in the week, fumbled at the one after being hit by J.J. Watt. Tim Dobbins recovered for Houston, which went three- and-out again.
A 15-yard punt return by T.Y. Hilton coupled with a holding penalty on the kicking team enabled Indianapolis to begin the ensuing drive at the Houston 34. Consecutive runs by Vick Ballard advanced the ball to the 5-yard line
Luck then hit Reggie Wayne in the back of the end zone on third down, but offsetting penalties negated the touchdown. Forced to repeat the down, Luck's pass fell incomplete, and Adam Vinatieri kicked a 26-yard field goal.
A roughing the passer penalty on Moise Fokou kept the next Houston drive alive. It was a costly personal foul because Schaub had thrown an incomplete pass on third down. On the next play, Schaub connected with DeVier Posey in traffic for a 36-yard catch and a penalty for hitting a defenseless receiver was tacked on.
Graham eventually drilled a 35-yarder to put the Texans up 13-3.
Houston then extended its lead further thanks to its special teams. Bryan Braman blocked Pat McAfee's punt and returned it eight yards for a touchdown with 1:46 remaining in the second, but the Colts responded with a quick strike before halftime as Luck hooked up with a wide open Hilton for a 61-yard score.
Foster reached 1,200 rushing yards for the third consecutive season ... Johnson surpassed 11,000 receiving yards for his career ... The Texans matched a franchise mark for home wins in a season with six ... Watt recorded 10 tackles and three sacks ... Ballard carried the ball 18 times for 105 yards.
12/16 18:25:16 ET