Rapid Reaction: Texans 35, Bengals 6

Posted by ESPN.com's Paul Kuharsky
The first three-game winning streak in Houston Texans history came in impressive fashion.

A week ago, critics talked of the team's inability to finish strong and the lack of a killer instinct in a win over a bad Detroit team.

The Texans showed a capacity for both against another bad team Sunday, ensuring the Cincinnati Bengals remained winless by turning a 14-6 halftime lead into a 35-6 romp.

Perhaps this will be regarded as a game that got the defense moving in the right direction? Houston didn't allow a pass longer than 14 yards and forced three turnovers. (Yes, they still have the 8-for-14 on third down defense to discuss.)

And the Texans showed off some depth -- with Andre Davis out with a finger injury, Jacoby Jones stepped in as the punt returner and gave his team a 7-0 lead on the fourth play from scrimmage, a 73-yard touchdown return. [An overdue correction: Jones has been the punt returner, he filled in for Davis on kickoffs. Apologies]

Houston was basically buried at 0-4 on Oct. 5, when it unraveled in the last five minutes and handed a game to the Colts.

Now at 3-4, the Texans are even with the Jacksonville Jaguars in the AFC South, though the Jags have the head-to-head advantage based on a 30-27 overtime win in Florida on Sept. 28.

If the Titans beat the Colts in Nashville Monday night to improve to 7-0, the Texans will line up the same way with 3-4 Indianapolis.