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Falcons start fast in back-and-forth first half against Texans

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The Falcons have been outscored 71-20 in the first half of their first four games this season, but they nearly matched their first-half point total on Sunday against the Texans.


Atlanta's offense gained 202 yards, including 149 through the air, in the first half en route to building a 17-16 lead. The Falcons committed just one penalty prior to halftime, and they converted 63 percent of their third-down opportunities. Defensively, Atlanta allowed 227 yards in the first half and gave up a pair of touchdown to Will Fuller. The Falcons forced two fumbles in the first half but did not recover either of them.

After forcing a three-and-out on the Texans' first possession, the Falcons put together a six-play, 66-yard drive that resulted in the first touchdown of the game and an early 7-0 lead courtesy of a 14-yard pass from Matt Ryan to Mohamed Sanu.

The Falcons added to their lead on their third offensive series. Following a touchdown drive by the Texans that tied the game at seven, Atlanta drove 57 yards in 10 plays to tack on a 35-yard field goal by Matt Bryant.

In the aftermath of their two scoring drives, the Falcons hit a bit of a lull. The Texans took a 16-10 lead after Will Fuller's second touchdown catch of the game and a 50-yard field goal by Kaimi Fairbairn. But Atlanta came back to end the first half in much the same way they started it.

Beginning at their own 18-yard line with 3:57 remaining in the second quarter, the Falcons put together an 11-play 82-yard drive that ended in a 9-yard touchdown pass to Devonta Freeman. The touchdown, which occurred with 0:22 left in the first half, didn't leave the Texans with time to mount a response.

Sunday marks the first time the Falcons have held a halftime lead since their 24-20 victory against the Philadelphia Eagles in Week 2.

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