Houston 21, Jacksonville 19

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., Oct. 27 (UPI) -- Kris Brown kicked a 45-yard field goal with 2:11 left in the fourth quarter Sunday to give the Houston Texans the first road victory in franchise history, a 21-19 triumph over the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Houston (2-5) got into position for the winning field goal with some trickery on a punt return. Rookie Jabar Gaffney fielded the punt and lateraled to Aaron Glenn, who ran 47 yards to the Jacksonville 33.


"One of the things Jabar has is a very good arm," Texans Coach Dom Capers said. "He threw a touchdown pass last week. We were struggling a little bit as far as getting anything going and we thought we needed something to kind of give us a jump start.

"You know when you get the ball in Aaron's hands, Aaron's an explosive guy."


The Houston offense struggled to move the ball, leaving Brown with the long attempt.

"For some reason, I knew that this game was going to come down to a field goal," Brown said. "I didn't know how I knew, but I had this feeling inside."

The Texans' inability to move the ball before Brown's field goal left more than two minutes on the clock and gave the Jaguars (3-4) a chance to win the game with a touchdown or a field goal of their own.

Mark Brunell's desperation pass to the end zone on the last play of the game fell short to send the Jaguars to their third straight defeat.

"It felt when I threw it that I didn't get enough on it," Brunell said. "You have to land the ball right on the goal line. That's the idea, tip it up and hopefully have the opportunity to get it."

Jacksonville got as close as the Houston 45, but Brunell was sacked on back-to-back plays. Since the Jaguars had no timeouts remaining, the clock continued to run after the sacks and Jacksonville could not get into range to attempt a winning field goal.

The Jaguars, who cut kicker Hayden Epstein after a 17-10 loss to the Baltimore Ravens last week, continued to struggle with their kicking game. Tim Seder connected on only one of his three field goal attempts, missing from 50 and 35 yards.


"Two missed field goals," Jaguars coach Tom Coughlin said. "I'm going to look at it tomorrow like I always do, try to assess what is there. I certainly wasn't impressed by the kickoffs."

Houston also had some problems on special teams. Brown missed a 45-yard field goal and Chad Stanley had a punt blocked out of the end zone for a safety. The Texans also allowed Jaguars punt returner Bobby Shaw to get 17.3 yards per runback, including a 47-yarder.

"We had our struggles tonight on special teams," Capers said. "But fortunately they made the play all right when we need a play. And that's what you have to do. These (games) always come down to three or four plays, and the team that makes them is the team that comes out on top."

Jacksonville looked good in the second quarter, putting together a seven-play, 74-yard drive that culminated in Brunell's 25-yard touchdown pass to Jimmy Smith.

Smith beat defensive back Marco Coleman by faking a cut to the inside, then breaking outside, where he was able to run untouched down the left sideline. Smith caught four balls for 80 yards, but Brunell could not find him often enough on a day when he went 16 of 34 for 202 yards.


"I was real frustrated," Brunell said. "I wasn't as sharp as I needed to be. I had some opportunities that we didn't take advantage of. I have to be more accurate."

Houston won despite compiling only 240 yards of total offense and converting just three of 11 third-down opportunities.

Gaffney, who went to high school in Jacksonville before attending the University of Florida, accounted for 60 yards of that offense with his three catches. He also caught a critical two-point conversion after tight end Billy Miller's touchdown with 11:28 to go in the fourth quarter to give Houston an 18-12 lead.

The Jaguars came back to take the lead with a seven-play, 70-yard touchdown drive that was helped along by a 15-yard roughing penalty against former Jacksonville defensive tackle Gary Walker.

Houston snapped a five-game losing streak. The Texans had not won since opening their existence with a victory over the Dallas Cowboys.

"It's been a long time since that Cowboys game," quarterback David Carr said. "It feels good just to get a win. The last couple of weeks we played good enough to win but the difference tonight was that we actually went out and did it."


The Jaguars, meanwhile, lost their third straight game after a surprising 3-1 start to the season.

"We have to find a way to come fighting back," Coughlin said. "It doesn't get easy. You want to have a win in the division to go on the road with a win, and it didn't happen. Where do we go from here? You get back to work."

The Jaguars will have plenty to work on after allowing a season-high five sacks and losing at home for the first time since Sept. 8.

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