First-half thoughts from Colts-Texans

HOUSTON -- Halftime observations from Reliant Stadium, where it’s Texans 13, Colts 10:

  • The Texans have played way more two-tight end and two-back, and sometimes both, than I ever would have expected. It’s helped against Dwight Freeney and Robert Mathis, who’ve been their usually active selves. But it’s limited potential for big plays, and I always feel like the Texans are better served to try to put up a big number, especially when they are in control early. Here they have just a three-point lead.

  • Cornerback Justin Tryon is the Colts’ primary nickelback with Jacob Lacey (concussion) scratched. He seems to be comfortable despite being a late addition to the roster in a cut-day trade.

  • That ugly leg injury to Connor Barwin sure looked like the season-ending type. If so, it’s terrible luck for him and a blow to the Texans’ plans. He was a third-down end that factored big into their rush plans.

  • I thought the personal foul call against Glover Quin for hitting Reggie Wayne with his helmet was harsh. It was the sort of bang-bang play where he’s being physical and doesn’t know what position Wayne’s body will end up in.

  • Charlie Johnson hasn’t gotten nearly as much help as I expected. The Colts have not played much two-tight. Dallas Clark has chipped on Mario Williams some. Johnson’s been alone plenty, however. Peyton Manning’s been hit, but is getting rid of the ball in a hurry, as you’d expect.

  • Pierre Garcon, who had two bad drops, and Anthony Gonzalez, appear to be platooning. They’ve switched off about every two series.

  • Punch lines were flowing before the first half of the first game was over. Bob Sanders left the game with an elbow injury and the Colts said his return is questionable.