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Defensive end Mario Williams sacked Donovan McNabb three times and Johnson came back from a sprained ankle to make a spectacular catch for the tying touchdown with about two minutes left. Matt Schaub completed 38 of 52 passes for a franchise record 497 yards, Kevin Walter caught 11 passes for 144 yards and safety Bernard Pollard, acquired last season, blocked a field-goal attempt.

“We didn’t play well as a team, but we had about 4-5 guys just put the team on their shoulders and be exceptional,” Kubiak said.

This is the Texans’ ninth season, and their 19-10 win over Dallas in the franchise’s inaugural game still stands as one of the team’s most important victories. They’ve added two more significant wins this season.

“From looking at the film, golly, it was not one of our better football games,” Kubiak said. “But to still find a way to win, playing in a tough situation like that, that was impressive.”