Houston only became a team in 2002, the year the Bucs won the Super Bowl — as such, the teams have only played each other in the regular season five times. But while there isn’t as much history, it’s still there, with a few different connections to be made and some more recent history to comb through between the two teams.
Here are five things to know about the Bucs’ impending matchup with the Texans:
The Bucs have never won a football game in Houston
And that doesn’t just refer to the Texans — the city of Houston.
Tampa Bay has lost to the Houston Texans in Houston twice, but it’s also lost to the Houston Oilers four times, making the Bucs 0-6 all-time in the city. Recent history against the Texans overall hasn’t been great for Tampa Bay, as it’s 1-4 against Houston all time and has lost those last four matchups.
CJ Stroud will be the first of three rookies the Bucs play in a row
Starting in Week 9, the Bucs are running the rookie quarterback gauntlet. They’ll play Texans rookie C.J. Stroud on Sunday, Titans rookie Will Levis in Week 10 and then Carolina Panthers rookie Bryce Young in Week 11. Stroud has been the most impressive of the bunch (though Levis has only played one game), so Tampa Bay will look to have a good defensive performance against him to set the tone.
37 players have played for both the Bucs and the Texans
The Bucs and the Texans don’t have as immersive of a crossover as some other teams, given that the Texans only became a team in 2002. That being said, 37 players have played for both teams, and eight are currently on active rosters. The Bucs will reunite with guard Shaq Mason, wideout Tyler Johnson, cornerback M.J. Stewart and running back Dare Ogunbowlae when they head to Houston to play the Texans.
The Bucs aren't set to play the Texans again until 2027
…with a small caveat.
The Bucs won’t play the AFC South again on their schedule until 2027, when they’ll play the Texans with the rest of the division. However, the Bucs will play a common AFC South opponent in 2025 based on Tampa Bay’s division standing in 2024 — should that be the same as Houston’s standing in 2024, the two teams would meet again in 2025.
Tampa Bay does well against rookie quarterbacks under Todd Bowles
Bucs HC Todd Bowles has done well against rookie quarterbacks, going 7-4 against them since he arrived in Tampa Bay. That’s a big improvement from where Tampa Bay before his arrival, when the Bucs went 3-11 against rookie QBs from 2011-18.