Titans 28, Texans 22

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP)—Vince Young danced on the grass, tossing his cap to cheering fans as he made his final exit from the Tennessee Titans’ field.

David Carr spent most of the second half grabbing the neck of his jersey, angry at being benched for committing too many turnovers.

At least Young left some people in Houston happy: Young finally admitted he was glad to beat his hometown team after he ran for a touchdown and threw for another, and the Tennessee Titans won consecutive games for the first time since the end of the 2003 season by beating the Texans 28-22 Sunday.

“It means something to me, my family and all the fans back home in Houston, but at the same time, it meant the most here,” Young said with a smile. “The Tennessee Titans wanted to get another victory coming off the bye.”

The Titans had gone 39 games before putting together consecutive victories.

“It is certainly nice to get back-to-back wins now,” Titans coach Jeff Fisher said. “Of course, our goal now is to go out and get the next one.”

The Texans (2-5) lost their 11th straight road game, wasting backup quarterback Sage Rosenfels’ three TD passes in the final 17 minutes. His last pulled them within 28-22 with 1:54 left, and the Texans tried an onside kick.

But Bobby Wade jumped up and grabbed the ball, allowing the Titans (2-5) to run out the clock.

That left Houston coach Gary Kubiak unhappy and Carr apologizing for his performance.

“I preached to this football team the step we have to take as a football team, we have to be able to go on the road, protect the football and play solid football … We had too many bad things happen to us on the road,” Kubiak said.

Kubiak said Carr will start again next week at the New York Giants.

“I’m going to demand whoever plays that position protect the ball. That’s what I told David,” Kubiak said.

The Texans passed up Young, the hometown favorite, because they had Carr and used the top pick in the draft on defensive end Mario Williams. Carr had justified the choice so far, completing an NFL-high 70.3 percent of his passes.

But the Titans harassed Carr into his worst performance this season, sacking him four times and forcing him into three of Houston’s five turnovers. Kubiak pulled Carr midway through the third quarter and replaced him with Rosenfels.

“It wasn’t my best effort,” said Carr, who called his benching the hardest thing he’s had to deal with.

Houston came in having won two of its last three. The Texans outgained Tennessee 427-197 on offense and held the ball for more than 36 minutes. It wasn’t enough to overcome the mistakes.

On Rosenfels’ second play, his pass to league-leading receiver Andre Johnson’s hands to Titans cornerback Adam “Pacman” Jones for his first career interception, which he returned to the Houston 24.

Young found Wade three plays later for a 20-yard TD pass and a 21-3 lead. The No. 3 pick overall in the draft ran for 44 yards and was 7-of-15 for 87 yards passing.

Jones, cited Saturday for misdemeanor assault for allegedly spitting on a woman in a nightclub, also returned a punt 53 yards for a TD in the fourth quarter against a unit that had been the NFL’s stingiest on punt coverage.

Fisher said Jones still faces team punishment and may miss a game once the coach investigates further.

Tennessee defensive lineman Kyle Vanden Bosch, who sacked and stripped Carr of the ball just before halftime, said the Titans felt they had Carr rattled after Tony Brown picked up the ball and returned it 40 yards for a touchdown.

“We were back there in the backfield all day today,” Vanden Bosch said.

Notes

Titans defensive tackle Robaire Smith, released by Houston before the season, blocked an extra point and had a sack. … Titans safety Chris Hope intercepted a pass for the third time in four games. … The Titans now are 7-2 against the team that replaced the ex-Oilers in Houston. … The Texans have not won on the road since Dec. 26, 2004, when they won at Jacksonville. … Walli Lundy had 18 carries for a career-high 118 yards.

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Top Performers

 Top Performers
 Houston
S. Rosenfels S. Rosenfels QB
18-25, 186 yds
3 TDs, 1 INT
 Tennessee
V. Young V. Young QB
7-15, 87 yds
1 TD
4 Rush, 44 yds, 1 TD

Team Stat Leaders

Passing Yards
Rushing Yards
Receiving Yards

Scoreboard

Preseason