The Colts took over to begin the second half and elected to attempt a 47-yard field goal on fourth and one, but Vanderjagt's kick sailed wide right to keep the score at 13-0.
"Third down is just something that we want to be better at," Colts head coach Tony Dungy said after the game. "We had a missed field goal, we had a couple of shots for touchdown passes, we didn't quite get the job done."
After a halftime re-charging, the Texans offense was able to put some points on the board when they traveled 56 yards on 12 plays where Brown kicked a 24-yard field goal, putting the score at 13-3. Brown's kick marked his 34th consecutive scoring game.
Stanley punted to begin the fourth quarter and the Colts began at the Houston 39. As Manning led the team closer to the end zone, the Texans defense heightened their pressure and came up with a turnover when defensive lineman Gary Walker recovered Marvin Harrison's fumbled reception on the Houston 13.
On their next possession, Indianapolis covered 69 yards on the gridiron, including a 43-yard Manning to Reggie Wayne touchdown pass, capped off by a Vanderjagt kick to put the Colts ahead 20-3.
"It was a play-action pass and our technique wasn't as good as it needed to be," Capers said. "When you're playing against a quarterback like Peyton Manning, you have to play with good technique or he'll make you pay for it."
With just under three minutes remaining in the game, Houston took over but not for long. Colts defensive lineman Brad Scioli took Carr down to the turf, knocking the ball loose where it was recovered by linebacker Marcus Washington. The turnover resulted in a 37-yard Vanderjagt field goal to seal the Colts 23-3 win.
Though Manning passed for 251 yards, the Texans led in the ground game with 126 yards compared to the Colts 88. Running back Jonathan Wells had his best game so far with 14 carries for 93 yards.
"There are signs that we are getting better as a team," Carr said. "The running game was better. That was something we emphasized. Our plan was to run the football and take our shots down the field but they didn't let us do that."
Texans running back James Allen sprained his shoulder while defensive end Jerry Deloach sprained his knee. Wide receiver and return man Jermaine Lewis left the game with a right shoulder sprain.