NFL preseason roundup: Texans' Johnson, 49ers' defense shine

The Sports Xchange

Houston's Andre Johnson piled up seven receptions for 131 yards before sitting out the second half Sunday, but New Orleans wide receiver Andy Tanner caught touchdown passes in the third and fourth quarters, leading the visiting Saints to a 31-23 win over the Texans at Reliant Stadium.

Johnson made just one catch in the preseason before he and Matt Schaub formed an impressive partnership Sunday. Schaub completed 15 of 26 passes for 213 yards during his one half of action.

Saints quarterback Drew Brees saw more limited duty, playing just three series. He finished 4-for-6 for 104 yards. His last play was a short pass that running back Pierre Thomas turned into a 51-yard touchdown.

Tanner, who has been part of the Saints' practice squad for several years but has no regular-season experience, made three catches for 33 yards.

Texans running back Ben Tate gained 74 yards on 11 yards, including a 1-yard touchdown.

49ers 34, Vikings 14

Defense and special teams helped San Francisco cruise to a win over visiting Minnesota at Candlestick Park.

The 49ers limited the Vikings to 214 total yards, and San Francisco's Lavelle Hawkins returned an interception 105 yards for a second-quarter touchdown.

Hawkins, who played the past five seasons with the Tennessee Titans, might not have enhanced his standing with the San Francisco coaching staff, however. He was flagged for two unsportsmanlike-conduct penalties on his touchdown, one for taunting a Viking, the other for taking off his helmet.

Hawkins received a third unsportsmanlike-conduct penalty in the fourth quarter after making a 22-yard reception.

San Francisco quarterback Colt McCoy won the right to serve as Colin Kaepernick's backup, coach John Harbaugh announced after the game. McCoy completed 11 of 15 passes for 109 yards but threw an interception. As for McCoy's competition, B.J. Daniels went 2-for-3 for 30 yards, and Seneca Wallace found the target on both of his attempts for 27 yards.

Earlier in the day, NFL Network reported that the 49ers were trying to trade McCoy.

Vikings quarterback Christian Ponder threw two short TD passes and one interception, going 17-for-23 for 116 yards.