Running Game Will Be Major Focus When Texans Travel To Indy

The Texans haven't allowed a 100-yard rusher in the last 22 regular season games

Brandon Scott
October 18, 2019 - 4:06 pm

HOUSTON (SportsRadio 610) -- Running the ball and stopping the run are expected to be a big part of the Texans road matchup against the AFC South rival Indianapolis Colts. 

The Texans defense ranks eighth in the league in rushing yards allowed per game and are tied with two other teams for the third-fewest rushing touchdowns allowed this season.

Those other two teams?

Division foes Tennessee Titans and the Colts. 

All three have surrendered just three rushing touchdowns apiece. 

The Texans haven't allowed a 100-yard rusher in the last 22 regular season games.

But Colts running back Marlon Mack is one of the top rushers in the game, averaging 4.7 yards per carry and 94 yards on the ground.

Only Panthers back Christian McCaffrey carries the ball more than Mack, who averages 20.2 rushing attempts per contest.

Meanwhile, the Texans have an impressive running game of their own, led by newcomers Carlos Hyde and Duke Johnson II.

Hyde has 426 rushing yards and three touchdowns on 99 carries. Johnson has 239 yards on 37 carries.

Quarterback Deshaun Watson is also a threat in the running game.

Head coach Bill O'Brien said he anticipates a physical game on both sides of the ball.

"I think that when you look at the Colts and the way that they are built relative to the running game with their offensive line and the backs that they have with (Marlon) Mack and (Nyheim) Hines, they have an ability to run the football. ...

"I think the most important stat in the end is going to come down to penalties and it's going to come down to turnovers and being able to take care of the ball, zero penalties on special teams and trying to play a clean game," O'Brien said. "I think the team that plays the cleanest game is going to have the best chance to win."