- WHEN: Sunday, Dec. 22, noon CST.
- WHERE: Reliant Stadium; Houston.
- TV: CBS.
- SERIES RECORD: Tied, 2-2.
- JOHN FOX'S RECORD: 0-3.
- PEYTON MANNING'S RECORD: 16-3.
- SERIES STREAK: Houston has won two of the last three.
- LAST TIME IN DENVER: Texans 31, Broncos 25; Sept. 23, 2012. A furious fourth-quarter rally wasn't enough to overcome a 31-6 mid-game run by the Texans as the Broncos fell to 1-2. After four Matt Schaub touchdown passes put the Texans comfortably in front,
Peyton Manningcapped two fourth-quarter drives with touchdown passes to Brandon Stokley and Joel Dreessen, and was a third-down-stop away from having a chance at a third. But when Schaub found Andre Johnson for a 12-yard completion on third-and-7 with 2:45 left, the Texans were able to drain all but the last 20 seconds from the clock, allowing them to escape. Also dooming the Broncos were 2.5 sacks by Houston's J.J. Watt and six dropped passes by Denver receivers.
- LAST TIME IN HOUSTON: Texans 31, Broncos 13; Dec. 13, 2007. The Broncos' streak of five consecutive winning seasons ended with a desultory defeat in their first -- and until this year, only -- regular-season game at Reliant Stadium. Houston took a 7-0 lead on the first possession and never trailed, but didn't finish off the Broncos until back-to-back touchdown fourth-quarter touchdown drives. The defeat came just four days after the Broncos had turned in their most complete performance of the season in a 41-7 rout of the Chiefs. "We put one week together and look like a freaking Super Bowl team and all of a sudden we're right back to the bottom," said an exasperated
Champ Baileyafter the loss, the Broncos' third in four weeks.
NOTING THE GAME:
- Including games played against the Oilers, the Broncos are 4-15 all-time in Houston, a tally that includes a 13-7 wild-card loss at the Astrodome on Dec. 23, 1979. Denver has lost three straight in Houston and hasn't won a game there since a 26-14 triumph on Oct. 9, 1983.
- In Manning's 19 games against the Texans, he has a 44-to-8 touchdown-to-interception ratio. His career quarterback rating against them is 108.5. He is 7-2 at Reliant Stadium -- 2-0 with its roof open and 5-2 with it closed.
- In three of the four games in the series, the winning team has scored exactly 31 points.
- The Broncos have never had the same starter at quarterback against Houston. They started Jake Plummer in 2004, Jay Cutler three years later, Tim Tebow in 2010 and Manning last year. Assuming Manning remains healthy, that streak will end.