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10 interceptions: Brian Cushing's knockout

Week two of our interception countdown begins much like Week 1 did: with a nod to defense.

We examined five interceptions last week: Johnathan Joseph's interception against the New England Patriots, the first pass of the season, Case Keenum's first interception, T.J. Yates' pick six and Matt Schaub's first interception.

Today we look at a very meaningful one for a lot of different reasons.

5. Cushing's knockout.

This interception came with a thundering sigh of relief for several reasons.

When inside linebacker Brian Cushing picked off Chargers quarterback Phillip Rivers and returned the interception for a touchdown, he was back.

He was back from a trying offseason spent recovering from a torn anterior cruciate ligament. It was a return he never questioned, and that interception offered the tangible reward for his work.

The Texans had fallen behind in that Week 1 game. Being the late game in the season-opening Monday-night double-header, many viewers left what appeared to be a blowout Texans loss at halftime. But after trailing 21-7 at the half, Houston made a furious rally. They scored 17 unanswered fourth-quarter points, sealing the win with Cushing's pick. He held onto the ball even after the game.

It was a triumphant moment for the emotional leader of the Texans defense. Unfortunately for him and the Texans, the moment didn't foreshadow the season.