With the game tied at 19 in overtime, Texans’ quarterback Deshaun Watson escaped a sack attempt by two Bills to toss a short pass to Taiwan Jones who ran to the Buffalo 10 yard line, setting up a Ka’imi Fairbairn game-winning field goal Saturday afternoon at NRG Stadium.
The Texans trailed 13-0 with six minutes to go in the third quarter, when JJ Watt sacked Bills’ quarterback Josh Allen on third down, forcing the Bills to kick a field goal to increase their lead to 16-0. The sack energized the crowd and the Texans’ offense as they marched 75 yards down the field and scored a touchdown on a Watson 20-yard run. Watson also ran in the two-point conversion to cut the lead to 16-8 with 1:33 to go in the third quarter.
“It felt incredible to be out there with the guys. That’s why you take the risk. That’s why you put in the work and do the rehab. You do it all for those moments, to try to be the spark. It was a helluva feeling,” Watt said.
On the next Bills’ series, Whitney Mercilus sacked Allen, causing a fumble that Jacob Martin recovered at the 50 yard line. Fairbairn then kicked a 41-yard field goal to make the score 16-11.
On their next possession, Watson hit Hopkins with a 48-yard pass to the Buffalo 28 yard line. Carlos Hyde then caught a 5-yard touchdown pass from Watson to give the Texans their first lead. Hopkins caught a pass from Watson for the two-point conversion and the Texans led 19-16.
The Texans got the ball back with 1:35 to go in the game, but the Bills stopped them on fourth down and one at the Buffalo 30 yard line and took over with 1:16 to go in the game.
The Bills moved the ball to the Houston 29 yard line and Stephen Hauschka kicked a 47-yard field goal with 0:05 to go in the game to send it into overtime.
On their second overtime possession, the Texans had the ball at the Buffalo 44 yard line when Watson faded back to pass and two Bills enveloped him, but he somehow escaped and tossed a pass to third string running back Taiwan Jones who ran down to the Bills 10 yard line. Fairbairn then came on and kicked the game winning field goal.
“(Watson’s spin move) was unbelievable. You are never out of a game when you have Deshaun Watson at quarterback. The guy is incredible. No one makes that play. He is just unbelievable,” Watt said.
Watson completed 20 of 25 passes for 247 yards and one touchdown, and he rushed 14 times for 55 yards and a touchdown.
“We just needed a spark. JJ made a heck of a play to give us that spark. (On the spin move) I just kind of braced myself and spun out of that sack. I knew I was going to break that tackle. I wasn’t going down,” Watson said.
“Watson has a huge heart. He has been winning his whole life, and he knows how to win. There’s not too much more you can say about him,” Texans Head Coach Bill O’Brien said.
Bernardrick McKinney had 10 tackles for the Texans and Watt had one tackle and a sack.
Buffalo quarterback Josh Allen completed 24 of 46 passes for 264 yards. He also rushed nine times for 92 yards.
University of Houston alumni Ed Oliver assisted on four tackles for the Bills.
“Obviously it was a hard-fought game. We had opportunities to win the game, but we didn’t get the job done. They made more plays than we did. Congratulations to them,” Buffalo Head Coach Sean McDermott said.
The Texans will play at either Baltimore or Kansas City next week in the divisional playoff round.
11:41 Bills: Josh Allen 16-yard touchdown pass from John Brown. Steven Hauschka kick.
Drive: 6 plays, 75 yards, 3:19.
Key Play: Allen 42-yard run to Houston 20-yardline.
Bills 7, Texans 0
10:47 Bills: Hauschka 40-yard field goal.
Drive: 11 plays, 69 yards, 4:45.
Bills 10, Texans 0
0:04 Bills: Hauschka 40-yard field goal.
Drive: 14 plays, 74 yards, 5:36.
Key Play: Bills started on their 4 yard line and drove to the Texans 21 yard line as they ran out the first half clock.
Bills 13, Texans 0
6:02 Bills: Hauschka 38-yard field goal.
Drive: 8 plays, 18 yards, 3:51.
Key Play: Bills recovered a DeAndre Hopkins fumble on the Houston 38 yard line.
Bills 16, Texans 0
1:33 Texans: DeShaun Watson 20-yard run. 2-point conversion: Watson run.
Drive 9 plays, 75 yards, 4:29.
Key Play: JJ Watt sacked Josh Allen on Houston 20 yard line to hold the Bills to a field goal on the previous Bills series.
Bills 16, Texans 8
10:55 Texans: Ka’imi Fairbairn 41-yard field goal.
Drive: 6 plays, 27 yards, 3:16.
Key Play: Whitney Mercilus sacked Josh Allen causing a fumble recovered by Jacob Martin at the 50 yard line.
Bills 16, Texans 11
4:37 Texans: Carlos Hyde 5-yard touchdown pass from Watson. 2-point conversion: DeAndre Hopkins pass from Watson.
Drive: 8 plays, 74 yards, 4:52.
Key Play: Watson throws 48-yard pass to Hopkins to the Buffalo 28 yard line.
Texans 19, Bills 16
0:05 Bills: Hauschka 47-yard field goal.
Drive: 11 plays, 41 yards, 1:11.
Key Play: The Bills stop the Texans on fourth down and one at the Buffalo 31 yard line.
Texans 19, Bills 19
3:23 Texans: Fairbairn 28-yard field goal.
Drive: 9 plays, 73 yards, 5:42.
Key Play: Watson escapes a sack to throw a 34-yard pass to Taiwan Jones giving the Texans the ball on the Buffalo 10 yard line.
Texans 22, Bills 19