HOUSTON (AP) — It looks like the Houston Texans' defense will be just fine without Brian Cushing.
The Texans scuffled a week ago in their first game without the star linebacker, but bounced back Sunday with a dominant defensive performance in a 43-13 win over the Baltimore Ravens.
Matt Schaub threw for two touchdowns, Arian Foster ran for two more and the defense had a score and added a safety to help Houston bounce back from a 42-24 loss to Green Bay last week.
"When you lose (Cushing) and all of the sudden you come in last week, it's human nature to say: 'OK, how are we going to be?' coach Gary Kubiak said. "We walked out here and didn't feel good about it last week. What we found out today, we can still play great defense and expect to do that the rest of the year."
Defensive coordinator Wade Phillips said the team needed a game like this to forget about last week.
"We wanted to come out and make a statement," Phillips said. "I thought it was a great game for us."
The win leaves the Texans (6-1) with the best record in the AFC entering their bye week.
"I think a lot of people were just seeing how we would respond after what happened last week," Andre Johnson said. "I think we responded well."
Baltimore's Terrell Suggs, an outside linebacker who was selected last season's defensive player of the year, played for the first time since surgery in May to repair a torn right Achilles tendon. But the defense wasn't the same without star middle linebacker Ray Lewis and top cornerback Lardarius Webb, who were placed on the injured reserve during the week.
The Ravens gave up their most points since a 44-20 loss to Indianapolis in 2007, and Houston's 43 points were the most in franchise history.
"We can't come here and make mistakes like we made and expect to be in the game," safety Ed Reed said.
But the problems weren't limited to the defense as the Ravens (5-2) lost to Houston for the first time in seven meetings. Joe Flacco was 21 of 43 for 147 yards with two interceptions, and Ray Rice was held to a season-low 42 yards rushing.
"I'm not sure what to say about that other than they got after us and they beat us," Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. "They played excellent, we did not."
The Ravens led 3-0 in the first quarter after a 51-yard field goal by rookie Justin Tucker. It was his third of more than 50 yards this season, which is the most in a season in team history. He made it four with a 54-yard field goal in the fourth quarter.
Houston's offense couldn't do anything early. It was OK though as the defense got the Texans on the board. Connor Barwin took down Flacco in the end zone for his first sack of the season and a safety to make it 3-2 in the first quarter.