Published January 13, 2015
Houston, TX (SportsNetwork.com) - Three of Sam Bradford's 12 completions went for touchdowns and the Rams defense stood tall as St. Louis upset the Houston Texans, 38-13, from Reliant Stadium.
Bradford connected on 12-of-16 for 117 yards and three scores to three different receivers. Brian Quick, Lance Kendricks and Cory Harkey all found the end zone on their only catch while Zac Stacy ran for 79 yards in his second career start.
"I'm proud of our guys," said Rams head coach Jeff Fisher. "They worked hard all week, had fun. Everybody contributed."
St. Louis (3-3) has won back-to-back games on the heels of a three-game losing skid while Houston (2-4) has dropped four straight after starting the season 2-0. The Texans have been outscored 72-16 over the past two weeks.
Matt Schaub, who threw a pick-six in four straight games entering Sunday, protected the ball but failed to ignite Houston's offense. Schaub completed 15-of-21 passes for 186 yards before exiting late in the third quarter with a right ankle injury.
T.J. Yates took over under center and tossed a pair of red-zone interceptions, perhaps ending any conversation of a quarterback controversy in Houston as long as Schaub is healthy.
"I think there has been a lot of talk about our quarterback the last few weeks," said Houston coach Gary Kubiak. "This is a team game and we have a lot of issues to get fixed: coaching and playing."
Arian Foster was the lone bright spot offensively, rushing for 141 yards on 20 carries and catching four passes for 57 yards.
"It doesn't matter how many good things we do right now because we do just so many poor things," said Kubiak. "We got our butt kicked as a football team."
St. Louis scored first midway through the opening period when Bradford rolled out to his right and found a wide open Harkey, whose fourth career reception went for a 2-yard touchdown. A 40-yard pass interference call on 2nd-and-10 from the St. Louis 35 put the Rams in Houston territory earlier on the drive.
The Rams capitalized on DeAndre Hopkins' fumble with a 42-yard field goal from Greg Zuerlein to take a 10-0 edge early in the second quarter.
Foster broke off runs of 23 and 22 yards on a run-heavy second quarter drive for Houston, but the Texans stalled in the red zone and had to settle for a 20-yard Randy Bullock field goal.
Bradford marched the Rams offense right back down the field in 10 plays and found Kendricks for a short touchdown. Brian Cushing's personal foul for hitting Bradford late cost his team 15 yards, and Stacy ripped an 18-yard rush to the Houston 8 on the next play.
Bullock kicked another field goal late in the first half, and the Texans trailed 17-6 at intermission. Houston was penalized seven times for 95 yards in the half.
St. Louis kept its foot on the pedal, coming out of the tunnels with two touchdowns in the opening minutes. A 34-yard pitch-and-catch with Jared Cook on the opening drive put the Rams inside the Texans 10, and a quick slant to Quick two plays later went for a score.
Rodney McLeod jarred the ball loose from return man Keshawn Martin on the ensuing kick-off. Daren Bates grabbed the football and ran it back 11 yards for another touchdown.
Yates had an opportunity to put some points on the board late in the third, but on 4th-and-3 from the Rams 6, Alec Ogletree stepped in front of Garrett Graham for an easy interception and steamrolled 98 yards untouched for a defensive score.
Ben Tate needed seven touches from inside the Rams 20, but finally took it in from a yard out with 3:25 left in the game for the Texans' lone touchdown.
Foster became the fourth undrafted player in NFL history to surpass 5,000 rushing yards. He accomplished the feat in 57 games, quickest in league history among undrafted players ... Yates went 12-for-17 for 98 yards and two picks ... The Texans picked up 27 first downs compared to 15 for St. Louis. Houston also went 2-for-3 on fourth down ... Houston did not have a penalty in the second half ... Michael Brockers had two of the Rams' five sacks. Houston did not record a sack.