Browns will face the Texans in Wild Card game
The matchup is set.
The Browns will face the Texans for the Wild Card round of the playoffs.
The Texans beat the Colts Saturday night, 23-19, and clinched a playoff berth. Then, with the Jaguars 28-20 loss to the Titans on Sunday, the Texans claimed the AFC South division title.
Rookie QB C.J. Stroud completed 20-of-26 passes for 264 yards and two touchdowns in Houston's playoff-clinching win. On their first offensive drive of the game, Stroud threw a 75-yard touchdown pass to WR Nico Collins in the first quarter to take an early lead. Then the Texans re-established their lead late in the fourth quarter on a 3-yard run from RB Devin Singletary for the touchdown, giving the Texans a 23-17 lead. While the Colts scored a safety with one second left in the game, they were not able to convert their last offensive possession, and the Texans secured the 23-19 win.
The Browns, who hold the AFC's No. 5 seed, recently faced the fourth-seeded Texans when they traveled to Houston in Week 16 and beat the Texans 36-22. It was a critical road win for the Browns to showcase how they can be as dominant on the road as they were at home during the regular season.
Their Wild Card game will be on the road, so the Browns will have to rely on that recent experience of facing the Texans in Houston. The difference this time around will be with Stroud at the helm of the offense. When the Browns faced the Texans, Stroud was in concussion protocol and did not play. Stroud returned for Week 17 and led the Texans to their playoff berth in Week 18.
The Browns are returning to the playoffs for the first time since 2020, when they won the Wild Card game against the Steelers and then lost in the divisional round to the Chiefs.
The game time between the Browns and Texans will be announced later Sunday night.