Originally posted on Fox Sports Houston  |  Last updated 12/7/11
HOUSTON -- Enough time had elapsed for Texans strong safety Glover Quin to shower and dress following Sunday's win over the Falcons, yet he appeared to have ample adrenaline still coursing through his veins. His eyes were aflame and little beads of sweat dotted his forehead. Quin recounted the victory. He lauded the Texans' continued resilience through adversity and touted their impressive defensive might. The narrative of their season has been defined by catastrophe and cohesion, so much so that when Quin mentioned the Texans' six-game winning streak, he did so without expressing full confidence in its length. Even now, with the Texans riding the longest winning streak in franchise history, the focus has shifted elsewhere. The Texans (9-3) have managed distractions all season, overcoming a series of debilitating injuries to their Pro Bowl players. On Wednesday, as they initiated preparations for their meeting at Cincinnati (7-5) on Sunday, the conversation turned to the potential of clinching the AFC South title and corresponding playoff berth, which would be the franchise's first. "That's not my first priority," Texans fullback Lawrence Vickers said. "My first priority is just being 1-0 at the end of the week. I've got to keep it basic, keep it simple. I don't want to get too excited about this or too excited about that. I like being under the radar. I like being, as some people have said, people not really watching or paying attention to us. "I kind of like that. I kind of like being in that light, which is a really dim light, and just keep working and progressing and at the end of the day, we're going to lift our head up and hopefully we're at the end of the tunnel to where it's all good on the other side." Should the Texans defeat the Bengals and the Titans (7-5) lose at home to the Saints (9-3), the Texans would wrap up the division even with games remaining against the winless Colts and Titans, who visit Reliant Stadium on Jan. 1. The Texans wouldn't be on the cusp of franchise history without their winning streak, even though that streak seems to be lost in the Texans' fierce fight for survival against roster attrition. For those acutely aware of the history of professional football in this city, such a run of success is worthy of exultation. The Texans have twice won four consecutive games in a season, doing so first in 2008 en route to their second successive 8-8 finish, and again the following season when the franchise posted its first-ever winning record at 9-7. Before the Titans placed roots in Tennessee, they were the Oilers and played next door to Reliant Stadium in the Astrodome. In 1993, the Oilers lost four of five games to open the season before reeling off 11 consecutive wins. That magical run came to a bitter conclusion in the divisional round of the playoffs, halted by Joe Montana and the Chiefs. That was the last Oilers team accurately called winners. Four years later they were the Tennessee Oilers in Memphis, later destined for Nashville. Eighteen years is a mighty long wait for postseason football. Reliant Stadium was as loud as it's ever been last Sunday, and that energy continues to pulsate throughout the city. Being on the brink of something special has invigorated a fan base starving for success. "Absolutely," Texans running back Arian Foster said when asked if the vibe was palpable. "Everywhere you go there's the buzz going around the city. Houston has wanted a winning team here for a long time. We're glad that we can finally provide that little spark, but we've got to go finish." Thus far the Texans have been impervious to distraction. They've played without Foster and Mario Williams and Andre Johnson and Matt Schaub, yet have maintained the focus required to keep plugging along. After stringing together six consecutive victories the Texans can see the light at the end of the tunnel. For a franchise that has never achieved anything comparatively gratifying, pushing one step further is paramount. While no one specifically broached winning seven in a row, what was left unsaid is on the minds of everyone in pursuit of the goal. "We know what's at stake," Texans defensive tackle Shaun Cody said. "You don't change the way you play, I don't think. You play every game as hard as you can and let the chips fall where they may. I think that's what this team's been doing. We've been going out there and trying to secure a win every week, going 1-0, so we're going to keep that rolling." Said Texans coach Gary Kubiak. "The only thing I know is every time you talk about a scenario, that scenario includes us winning, so let's worry about winning the next game. Our guys know that." Follow me on Twitter at moisekapenda
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