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Texans could be forced to make playoff push with T.J. Yates again

Akiem Hicks, T.J. Yates

AP

By rule, someone has to win the AFC South.

And it seems oddly appropriate that there’s a chance that division will be decided in a duel between T.J. Yates and Charlie Whitehurst.

Those two stalwarts finished yesterday’s respective losses for the 6-7 Texans and Colts, after Brian Hoyer and Matt Hasselbeck were knocked from the games after taking so many brutal hits. Hoyer was getting checked for a concussion when he left late, and Hasselbeck was announced as having another rib injury.

“We’ll see what happens with Brian,” Yates said, via Dale Robertson of the Houston Chronicle. “I’ll just prepare like I do every week. I haven’t had a chance to see him yet, so I don’t know what’s going on. But it looked like he really hit the ground hard. . . .

I guess we’ll see, come Wednesday, if I get more reps than usual.”

Hoyer’s already missed one game this year because of a concussion. Asked if Hoyer had suffered another one, Texans coach Bill O’Brien said: “I don’t know that yet. I’m not sure. It looked that way.”

The Colts could get Andrew Luck back this week, but no one seems sure of his status as he returns from a lacerated kidney. Hasselbeck played well for a stretch in relief, but has started looking more like a 40-year-old who doesn’t recover as quickly from the shots you’re going to take if you’re behind the Colts line.

As for Yates, he’s led the Texans to the playoffs before, having stepped in for an injured Matt Schaub in 2011. So anything is possible. In fact, in the AFC South, we should just expect chaos.