Texans report: Andre Johnson blows away critics, foes

HOUSTON—Texans receiver Andre Johnson, 31, had read and listened to accusations that he'd lost a step or two, that hamstring and groin injuries last season and in training camp this year had taken a toll on a player who had been considered one of the two best at his position.

Over the last five games, Johnson has answered his critics with a terrific stretch.

In the Texans’ 4-1 run that has elevated their record to 9-1, Johnson has 43 catches for 589 yards and one touchdown. That’s an average of 8.6 catches and 117.8 yards. Johnson was at his record-setting best in Sunday’s 43-37 overtime victory over Jacksonville. He established career highs with 14 catches for 273 yards. The touchdown came in overtime. He caught a quick screen pass from quarterback Matt Schaub near the right sideline and picked up two blocks before sprinting 48 yards down the right sideline for the winning touchdown.

The victory allowed the Texans to remain tied with the Atlanta Falcons for the best record in the NFL entering Thursday’s game at Detroit.

Johnson, in fact, may have lost a step, but he’s strong, smart and knowledgeable about every trick of the trade. He continues to run routes all over the field. He’s fearless over the middle. The offensive coaches move him around. He can be found lining up wide or in the slot. He can start in the backfield and go in motion. He also switches into the backfield and runs his route from that point.

If Johnson continues his outstanding performance over the last six games, he’ll finish with 111 receptions for 1,558 yards.

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