-- The Houston Texans were far from great, and they were barely good enough to get their first win.
But they got it -- an ugly, 19-16 affair over the struggling Cleveland Browns. All that mattered Sunday was this: The Texans are winless no more.
Houston didn't find the end zone after its first possession, but managed to break a seven-game losing streak with its kicking and special teams.
Kris Brown hit a 40-yard field goal, his fourth of the day, with 2 minutes 45 seconds remaining to give Houston (1-6) the come-from-behind win. The kick was set up by a 63-yard kickoff return by rookie Jerome Mathis. "It's kind of nice to get that 'W,' " QB David Carr said, "even though that was one of the ugliest games I've ever played in."
Houston's losing streak had spanned from a 22-14 loss to Cleveland in last season's finale. The loss was the third straight for the Browns (2-5).
Mathis, who had an 89-yard touchdown on a kickoff return last week, continued to give the Texans excellent field position. He averaged 35.4 yards on five returns against the Browns.
"Jerome has really been giving us a spark," Texans Coach Dom Capers said. "When you are fighting through what we are fighting through, you are looking to try to make plays any way you can."
Houston's defense got two second-half fumbles that Brown converted into two field goals to erase a 13-10 halftime deficit and put the Texans up 16-13 early in the fourth. But Brown was wide right on a 38-yarder on Houston's next possession and Cleveland place kicker Phil Dawson tied the game at 16 with a 37-yard field goal.
Brown was thankful he got a chance to redeem himself. He dedicated the win to the family of a 9-year-old boy he had befriended named Nicholas Florio who died of a brain tumor this weekend.
"For us to be able to give this family and this little boy the game we gave them today, even though he's not here, I knew he was with us," Brown said.
Carr rebounded from a 48-yard passing performance last week to throw for 138 yards and a touchdown. He was sacked twice on Sunday -- the fewest times he's been put on the turf this season.