Titans narrowly hold off Texans' rally with Bironas' record 8th FG

HOUSTON (AP) -- With Vince Young on the sidelines, the Tennessee Titans couldn't finish drives. With the day Rob Bironas had, it
didn't matter.

Bironas kicked an NFL-record eight field goals, including the
game-winner as time expired, to lead the Titans to a 38-36 win over
the Houston Texans on Sunday.

Backup Kerry Collins led the offense while Young missed playing
in his hometown because of a strained quadriceps. Collins didn't
make many mistakes, but the offense couldn't capitalize in the red
zone, ushering Bironas into the record book.

The record-setting kick foiled a spirited comeback by the Texans
(3-4), who scored 29 points in the fourth quarter, capped by a
53-yard touchdown pass from Sage Rosenfels to Andre' Davis to take
a 36-35 lead with 57 seconds to play.

The Titans (4-2) faced a third-and-10 at their 37 when Collins
found Roydell Williams on a 46-yard pass that set up the winning

Bironas said he didn't realize he was closing in on the mark.

"I knew we'd hit quite a few, but I try not to count," Bironas
said. "I try not to know the distances when I go out there, so I'm
always concentrating on making the same kick. I've never really
counted. I'll remember this one, though."

Bironas' last two field goals were from 29 yards and he
connected from 52, 43, 25, 21, 30 and 28 yards to break the
previous record of seven field goals held by Billy Cundiff, Chris
Boniol, Rich Karlis and Jim Bakken.

He doubled his field goal total for the season Sunday after
kicking eight field goals in the five previous games combined. When
someone pointed out that he had five field goals by halftime, he
found it strange.

"I was like: 'I've almost kicked as many as we've kicked the
whole season,'" he said. "I'll take them when we need them."

Bironas also kicked two extra points and set the NFL record for
most points by a kicker with 26. Cundiff's 23 points on Sept. 15,
2003, was the previous high.

Young was active, but didn't play and Collins got his first win
as a starter in Tennessee after losing the first three games of
last season. Coach Jeff Fisher said Young could have played if
Collins had been injured, but that he wasn't at "full speed."

"I wasn't going to play at all because I didn't have any
preparation or practicing," Young said. "I really feel like I
need to practice to play. I can't just go out there and go off just
off talent. That's not the type of guy I am."

Houston's offense stalled throughout the first three quarters
before the furious rally began with a 7-yard touchdown catch by
David Anderson early in the fourth quarter. Before that 70-yard
drive, the Texans had managed just 34 yards of offense. A two-point
conversion by Davis made it 32-15.

Texans coach Gary Kubiak blamed the offensive woes on himself.

"I'm just very disappointed in this guy you're looking at right
here," Kubiak said. "For us to go out there and play offensively
that way for that long, there's no excuse. That's my job."

Houston starter Matt Schaub missed big chunks of the first half
and the entire second half with ankle and hip injuries. Kubiak said
Schaub would have an MRI on his hip but that X-rays on his ankle
were negative.

Rosenfels accounted for four of Houston's six turnovers by
throwing three interceptions and losing a fumble in Schaub's place.

"If we just convert on a couple of those turnovers that we got,
deep in their territory and got touchdowns instead of field goals,
we wouldn't have been in the situation we were in at the end,"
Collins said. "That's obviously going to be a point of emphasis
for us and one we need to keep working on."

The Texans cut the lead to 32-22 on a 6-yard touchdown reception
by Kevin Walter with about eight minutes left. The Texans forced a
punt, but Anderson fumbled it and Tennessee recovered, putting a
damper on Houston's comeback hopes.

Bironas seventh field goal made it 35-22 with 3:47 remaining.

But Jeb Putzier's 7-yard touchdown catch with less than two
minutes remaining cut the lead to 35-29. The Texans recovered their
first onside kick attempt but had to re-kick after an illegal
formation penalty.

They recovered the second one, too, to set up Davis' touchdown.

Rosenfels four touchdown passes in the fourth quarter tied an
NFL record. He finished 22-for-35 for 290 yards.

Chris Henry and LenDale White scored Tennessee's only touchdowns
and White finished with 27 carries for 104 yards.

DeMeco Ryans sacked Collins, causing a fumble which he returned
26 yards for a touchdown that gave Houston a 7-3 lead in the first

The Texans managed 24 yards and two first downs in the first
half, with the second one coming on a penalty. Jacoby Jones fumbled
early in the first quarter and Rosenfels threw an interception and
lost a fumble before halftime.

Rosenfels replaced Schaub midway through the first half after he
injured his ankle on a sack. He threw the interception to Nick Harper on his first play.

Schaub returned in the second quarter, but was knocked out of
the game just before halftime by a helmet-to-helmet hit by Albert Haynesworth. Rosenfels fumbled on the next play to set up a 28-yard
field goal by Bironas, his fifth of the half.

Haynesworth said he didn't think it was a helmet-to-helmet hit
and said it would have been better if Schaub would have stayed in.

"Well, heck, I mean we probably would have won this game 35-7
if he stayed in," Haynesworth said. "It was good to knock him out
I guess, but he's going to come back and I don't think there'll be
any kind of quarterback controversy because they pay that guy a lot
of money."

Game notes
The Texans had just 39 yards rushing. ... Titans fullback
Ahmard Hall has a broken arm and will have surgery, Fisher said.


ESPN Fan Shop Powered By

  • Antigua Men's Tennessee Titans Pique Xtra-Lite Navy PoloPrice: $39.99 Shop

  • Nike Men's Home Game Jersey Houston Texans Arian Foster #23Shop

NFL News