HOUSTON—New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez may have wanted to fight his head coach, but it was the Houston Texans who delivered the decisive blow during the first Monday Night preseason football game.
The Texans rallied in the final minute of the game to prevail with a 20–16 win over New York at Reliant Stadium. Fourth string running back Chris Ogbonnaya, who ended up as Houston’s only healthy back, scored the go-ahead touchdown a 1-yard run with 1:56 remaining.
Then the Texans defense held on a night when new defensive coordinator Wade Phillips’ 3–4 scheme shined.
“It was exciting to find a way to win the game there at the end because we played really, really exceptionally on the defensive side of the ball throughout the game,” said Houston coach Gary Kubiak. “We had some struggles offensively, had some problems physically with some injuries that we’re trying to work through in the football game. But we have to step up and make plays at the end.”
There was a great deal of attention on the Texans defense, which had lacked aggressiveness last season. That issue certainly seemed to be solved Monday night as Wade’s scheme put the pressure and Sanchez and Co. all night.
Houston managed seven sacks on the night, which is just one short of its preseason total in four games last season.
“I didn’t expect that many sacks, because most of the stuff we ran was base defense, and we didn’t run any blitzes,” Wade said.
(Photo: AP Photo/David J. Phillip)