The stage was set for Matt Schaub to make a storybook return to the quarterback job in Houston, but there continue to be no happy endings for the Texans this season.
Schaub led the Texans to a pair of field goals and drove them to the two-yard line in the final two minutes before the drive ran out of gas. Charles Woodson stopped Ben Tate short on second down, Tate lost a yard on third and a false start on guard Brandon Brooks meant Schaub’s pass on fourth down fell incomplete from seven yards away. That made the Raiders 28-23 winners in Houston.
Schaub was 12-of-25 for 155 yards after replacing Case Keenum, who was yanked after going three and out on the first three possessions of the second half. The move to Schaub led to better ball movement in spurts, but Keenum was able to reach the same level of inconsistency and defensive breakdowns were the biggest reason that the Raiders pushed into the lead in the third quarter.
That was when Rashad Jennings ran 80 yards for a touchdown and Matt McGloin completed three passes for 82 yards for another one to erase a 17-14 Houston halftime lead. McGloin was 18-of-32 for 197 yards and rarely looked like anything but the first-time starter that he was, but he did throw three touchdowns and gave the Raiders some plays in the passing game that they weren’t making with Terrelle Pryor going through tough times throwing the ball in recent weeks.
The condition of Pryor’s knee will likely play a role in any decisions the Raiders make about their quarterback going forward, but McGloin may have made a case for some consideration in any circumstance. Houston’s situation is a bit murkier, especially since eight straight losses and the possibility of losing a job have a way of making coaches do strange things.