Falcons Vs. Texans: Houston Wins, 17-10, But Loses Andre Johnson To Injury

The Atlanta Falcons and Houston Texans clash in a battle of two teams still fighting to win their respective divisions.

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NFL Scores Week 13: Falcons Vs. Texans, Fourth Down Haunts Atlanta Once Again

Two red zone 4th-and-1's in the fourth quarter were the difference in a sloppy, turnover-filled game between the Atlanta Falcons and Houston Texans, as Houston pulled out a 17-10 victory.

After Andre Johnson injured his previously healthy hamstring going for a bomb from rookie Houston QB T.J. Yates, the Texans marched down the field on a 19-play, 85-yard drive that took over 10:00 off the clock and gave them the go-ahead touchdown.

The key play of the drive was a 4th-and-1 conversion at the Atlanta 10-yard line by Houston RB Arian Foster

Foster and Ben Tate had a huge day on the ground against the NFL's second-rated rush defense, combining for 152 yards and 1 TD on 42 carries, despite the Falcons repeatedly stacking the box in an attempt to make Yates, the Texans third-string QB, beat them through the air.

Yates had a solid game in his first career start, completing 12-25 passes for 188 yards and 1 TD while using his athleticism to buy time in the pocket.

The only mistake he made, a pick-six in the fourth quarter, was called back because of a penalty on Atlanta in the secondary.

The penalty was one of a series of costly mental errors that the now 7-5 Falcons will rue if they miss the playoffs. Matt Ryan threw two interceptions in the first quarter, while Atlanta had another defensive touchdown called back after both teams assumed a Yates fumble was actually an incompletion and began wandering on to the field.

But the costliest mistake of all was on yet another 4th-and-1 late in the game, as Ryan completed a pass to TE Tony Gonzalez for a first down only to have it taken back because of a delay of game penalty. The Falcons came up short on 4th-and-6 with less than 3:00 left and then again on a last-second heave into the end-zone by Ryan.

Houston is now 9-3 with a commanding two-game lead in the AFC North, but any celebration was subdued by Johnson's latest hamstring injury, as he had just returned after missing six games with an injury in his other hamstring.

For the latest news and notes on the Texans, check out Battle Red Blog, and for more analysis on the Falcons, head on over to The Falcoholic.

SB Nation has you covered for the rest of Week 13's NFL action, too: check out all the Week 13 NFL news and scores and Week 13 fantasy stats in our dedicated StoryStreams, and head to SB Nation's NFL hub any time for even more on the league.

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Andre Johnson Injury: Texans WR Injures Other Hamstring, Hobbles Off Field

In his first game back after missing seven weeks with a right hamstring injury, Andre Johnson has been the majority of the Houston Texans' passing offense, catching 4 balls for 97 yards and setting up Houston's only touchdown.

But as he was attempting to cut up the field on a T.J. Yates deep pass, Johnson came up lame, this time injuring his left hamstring:

He had his head in his hands as he left the field before being taken back to the locker room by the Texans' training staff.

If Yates is going to win his first career NFL start, it appears he'll have to do it without his main weapon in the passing game.

The Texans ground game has remained strong, with Arian Foster and Ben Tate combining for 126 yards on 32 carries despite the Falcons attempting to stack the box and test Houston's rookie QB.

Besides Johnson, none of the Texans other WR's have a catch today.

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Brian Cushing Injury: Texans LB Leaves With A Knee Injury, Appears OK

The hits just keep on coming for the Houston Texans, as ILB Brian Cushing has been taken to the training room with an apparent knee injury.

As he attempted to make a tackle on Tony Gonzalez late in the second half, Cushing slid awkwardly on the turf at Reliant Stadium. While trying to regain balance on his left knee, his right knee buckled, and Cushing instantly fell to the ground.

He needed help from the Texans training staff to get off the field, who were looking at his right knee cap on the sideline before taking him into the training room.

Houston's top-ranked defense has played well in the first half, holding Atlanta to 3 points and and only 123 yards while picking off Falcons QB Matt Ryan twice. 

Cushing, who has had 76 tackles, 3 sacks and 2 INT's this season, is the latest Texans player to go down with an injury for the seemingly snake-bitten franchise.

However, it appears Houston has dodged a bullet, as Cushing is back on the field in the second half.

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VIDEO: Andre Johnson Grabs A 50-Yard Bomb, Sets Up T.J. Yates' First Career TD

Houston Texans WR Andre Johnson looks fully recovered from a hamstring injury that has kept him out most of the season, making a great grab on a 50-yard bomb from rookie QB T.J. Yates:

The play set up a 3-yard TD pass from Yates to TE Joel Dreessen, as Houston fans serenaded the UNC rookie with chants of "Yates".

Yates has played well in his first career NFL start, completing 10-17 passes for 154 yards, 1 TD and zero INT's.

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Falcons Vs. Texans: Atlanta Fumble Return TD Called Back On Bizarre Play

Houston Texans rookie QB T.J. Yates made his first career NFL turnover count in one of the most bizarre plays you'll ever see. 

As he was rolling out of the pocket on a third down deep in Atlanta territory, he was hit by a Falcons lineman as he threw, and the football rolled about ten years forward as everyone on both teams assumed it was an incompletion.

But a smart Atlanta defensive back, realizing that the play hadn't been blown dead, picked up the ball and returned it over 80 yards for a TD.

Unfortunately, neither the Texans nor the the Falcons were as observant, as players and coaches from both teams were coming on the field for what they assumed would be a Houston field goal attempt.

The referees flagged both teams, issuing off-setting penalties and giving Atlanta possession of the ball where the fumble was recovered.

It's been a sloppy game all-around, with three turnovers already, including two Matt Ryan interceptions.

Check out Battle Red Blog for the latest on the Texans and The Falcoholic for more on the Falcons.

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Falcons Vs. Texans: TV Schedule, Game Time Announcers And More

The Atlanta Falcons and Houston Texans clash in a battle of two teams still fighting to win their respective divisions.

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NFL Picks And Predictions Week 13: Falcons Vs. Texans

The Atlanta Falcons are set to take on the Houston Texans who will be rolling with rookie quarterback T.J. Yates at quarterback. Who do the experts think will win?

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NFL Odds And Lines Week 13: Falcons Vs. Texans

The Houston Texans will look to keep their division-leading status on the line against the Atlanta Falcons when they turn to their third quarterback of the season, T.J. Yates.

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