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Panthers 28, Texans 13: Postgame notes

Posted by Nick Scurfield on December 18, 2011 – 5:34 pm

Courtesy of the Texans’ communications staff, postgame notes from the team’s 28-13 loss to the Carolina Panthers at Reliant Stadium in Week 15:

THE TEXANS…
•         Set the franchise single-season sack record with the 38th of the year when NT Earl Mitchell tackled Carolina QB Cam Newton for no gain in the first quarter, breaking the previous mark of 37 set in 2005. The Texans entered the game with 36 sacks on the year.

•         Trailed at the end of the first quarter, at halftime and through three quarters for the second consecutive week and the third time this season in each instance. Houston fell to 1-2 in all three instances.

•         Were shut out in the first half for the first time this season.

•         Scored on their opening drive of the second half for the eighth time this season and for the second consecutive week when K Neil Rackers booted a 26-yard field goal.

•         Team captains were C Chris Myers on offense; ILB Brian Cushing, ILB DeMeco Ryans and DE Antonio Smith on defense; and K Neil Rackers representing the special teams.

•         The Texans won the toss and elected to receive.

•         Total paid attendance was 71,540, which was the third-largest crowd this season and third-largest in team history. The Houston Texans have sold out all 99 home games, including preseason and regular-season contests, in franchise history.

G THOMAS AUSTIN
•         Made his professional debut, taking the field with the kickoff return unit on the opening kickoff.

OLB CONNOR BARWIN
•         Sacked Carolina QB Cam Newton for a 10-yard loss on the Panthers’ opening drive, giving him 10.5 for the year. Barwin became the second Texan to notch double-digit sacks in a season, joining Mario Williams, who did so in 2007 and 2008.

G ANTOINE CALDWELL
•         Made his first start of the season at RG. He started seven games in 2010, including the last three games of the season.

ILB BRIAN CUSHING
•         Led the team with 12 tackles, including nine solos and one tackle for loss. It was the 10th game this season in which Cushing led the team or tied for the team lead in tackles.

TE OWEN DANIELS
•         Extended his streak of consecutive games played with a reception to 67 on a 17-yard reception in the third quarter.

FS QUINTIN DEMPS
•         Returned a fourth-quarter kickoff 50 yards. It was his longest kick return as a Texan and his longest since 11/23/08 when he had a 100-yard return for a touchdown at Baltimore as a Philadelphia Eagle.

RB ARIAN FOSTER
•         Surpassed the 1,000-yard mark for the second consecutive season on is seventh carry of the game, a gain of 18. The run gave him 1,010 yards on the year, making him the second player in team history to top 1,000 rushing yards in consecutive season along with Domanick Williams in 2003-04.

•         Became the fifth player in NFL history to surpass 1,000 rushing yards and 600 receiving yards in consecutive seasons. He topped 600 receiving yards on the year with his fifth catch of the day, a 22-yard gain in the fourth quarter, which gave him 601 yards on the season.

•         Went over 100 yards for the sixth time this season and the 14th time in his career. He topped the century mark on a 6-yard gain in the fourth quarter, his 13th rush of the game, and finished with 109 yards and a touchdown on 16 carries.

•         Scored his ninth rushing touchdown of the season and the 28th of his career when he dove into the end zone from 2 yards out. Foster has scored a rushing touchdown in eight of Houston’s last nine games.

WR BRYANT JOHNSON
•         Doubled his season reception total with a pair of catches on Houston’s second drive. He entered the game with two receptions for 22 yards on the year and caught two passes for 23 yards on that drive.

WR JACOBY JONES
•         Returned a third-quarter punt 42 yards. It was his fifth return of 40 or more yards this season.

WR JEFF MAEHL
•         Made his NFL debut after being signed off of the Texans’ practice squad on Wednesday. Maehl saw his first action on the punt return unit in the first quarter.

NT EARL MITCHELL
•         Registered his first sack of the season when he tackled Carolina QB Cam Newton for no gain in the first quarter. It was his second career sack.

K NEIL RACKERS
•         Scored seven points in the game to increase his season total to 115, tying Kris Brown’s 2007 point total for the third-most in franchise history.

FB LAWRENCE VICKERS
•         Caught his fourth pass of the game, a four-yarder in the third quarter, to set a career single-game high. Vickers’ previous high was three receptions on 11/4/07 vs. Seattle as a member of the Cleveland Browns.

DE J.J. WATT
•         Tied a career high with seven tackles, including five solos, one tackle for loss and one quarterback hit. He also made seven tackles in Week 12 at Jacksonville (11/27).

QB T.J. YATES
•         Completed his first eight pass attempts, gaining 60 yards on those throws. His ninth pass of the game was tipped at the line of scrimmage and fell incomplete.

•         Finished the game 19-of-30 for 212 yards with no touchdowns and two interceptions, giving him a passer rating of 56.5.


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