The Kansas City Chiefs dug themselves into a hole in the first half for a second straight, but this time a second-half rally did not materialize, and the Houston Texans prevailed in a 19-12 victory at NRG Stadium
The Chiefs, 1-1, fell behind the Texans, 2-0, 13-3 at halftime before climbing within a touchdown three times in the fourth quarter.
But the Texans did just enough to win, keeping Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith under duress most of the game, extending their lead late in the fourth quarter and delivering Kansas City its first loss after an 11-game regular season win streak.
Chiefs cornerback Marcus Peters figured into many of the game’s biggest highlights, both as the hero and the villain for the Chiefs.
Peters intercepted two Brock Osweiler passes and nearly picked off a third. But the Chiefs offense only converted the turnovers into three points.
On the other side, Peters found himself beaten for a 53-yard pass from Osweiler to Texans rookie receiver Will Fuller on the game’s first drive.
The teams then exchanged turnovers deep in Chiefs territory. On the first play of Houston’s second possession, officials flagged Peters for pass interference on a 27-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins.
Midway through the second quarter, Peters again picked up a penalty for taunting, helping setup the Texans for a field goal to extend their lead to 10-3.
Mistakes and turnovers proved costly to the Chiefs from beginning to end. The Chiefs lost three fumbles, leading to 10 points for the Texans. Kansas City also committed seven penalties for 67 yards.
Smith and the Chiefs offense never seemed to find its rhythm. The lone bright spot came from the running back duo of Spencer Ware and Charcandrick West, who combined for 118 yards rushing on 19 carries and adding 50 receiving yards.
The Chiefs finished with just 172 yards passing. Smith finished the day 20-of-37 passing after a disastrous first half performance with just 53 yards on 8-of-16 passing.