Defensive breakdowns ruining Texans' season

HOUSTON (AP) - Texans safety Bernard Pollard is the first to admit it - Houston's defense has been making stupid mistakes all season, particularly toward the end of games.

The offense has done its part to make this a successful season, ranking seventh overall. Arian Foster leads the league in rushing and Andre Johnson ranks fourth in yards receiving.

But the defense has repeatedly given up big pass plays in the fourth quarter, and pushed the Texans to the brink of another discouraging season.

Houston (5-7) plays Baltimore (8-4) on Monday night, and virtually needs to win its last four games to have any chance at earning the franchise's first postseason berth.

Houston's defense ranks 29th overall (388.8 yards per game) and last against the pass (287.4 yards per game).

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