JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- When the Jacksonville Jaguars look back on this season, they might point to two games against AFC South-rival Houston.
And two miscues by Texans running back Chris Brown.
David Garrard threw two touchdown passes, had his first turnover-free game in a month and the Jaguars stayed in the AFC wild-card hunt with a 23-18 victory over injury-depleted, turnover-prone Houston on Sunday.
It was Jacksonville's fifth straight win at home and the team's second series sweep against the Texans (5-7) in eight years.
This one will be remembered for Brown's gaffes.
Brown, who fumbled at the goal line with two minutes to play in the first meeting, threw an interception on a halfback pass midway through the fourth quarter Sunday that left the Texans and Jaguars (7-5) scratching their heads.
"That's something their coach and players are going to have to live with forever," Jaguars safety Reggie Nelson said.
"That was very interesting," Alexander said. "Chris Brown isn't exactly Matt Schaub throwing the ball. It was crazy because I just felt something wasn't right. It didn't look like he was trying to come downhill with the ball. Brack got that pressure on him. It was like, 'Don't blow the layup.' I've just got to catch the ball and come down with it. We got the turnover, and that was big."
It was huge, really.
The strangest part? The call came on first-and-goal at the 5, with the Texans trailing 23-12 and Schaub picking apart Jacksonville's secondary after returning from a shoulder injury.
"We had what we wanted, but obviously it didn't work out," said Houston coach Gary Kubiak, who signed off on the trick play. "It's a tough spot to put Chris in, so it just ends up being a bad call by me. A poor call."
Brown said the play worked just about every time in practice. He was trying to hit tight end Joel Dreesen in the back of the end zone, but the hit didn't allow him to get much on the throw.
"When you look back at it, maybe I shouldn't have thrown it at all," Brown said. "That was big. We had points. We could have at least walked away with a field goal and unfortunately turning the ball over like that really hurt us."
The Texans got the ball back and scored on Schaub's 1-yard pass to Andre Johnson with 4:01 remaining. The 2-point conversion failed when Brackenridge broke up a pass intended for Brown.
Jacksonville picked up three first downs on the ensuing kickoff -- Maurice Jones-Drew carried seven straight times for 38 yards -- and ran out the clock.
The Jaguars rebounded from last week's 20-3 loss at San Francisco and remained in position for a wild-card berth. They have home games against Miami (6-6) and Indianapolis (12-0) up next, and finish the season on the road against Cleveland (1-10) and New England (7-5).
"It feels good," Jaguars receiver Mike Sims-Walker said. "We're happy to be in a position to play in January. There's not many teams that have hope to be thinking about the playoffs right now. We control everything. We're in full control of whatever we want to do. It feels good, but we're not content."
The Texans have lost four in a row and appear out of the playoffs for the eighth time in as many years. They played without running back Steve Slaton (shoulder) and lost Schaub on their first offensive play. Schaub separated his left shoulder when he was sacked by Derrick Harvey.
He went to the locker room for X-rays and returned in the second quarter. By then, Rex Grossman had thrown an interception -- Houston threw three picks by three different passers -- and Houston trailed 17-0.
The Jaguars scored three times in the second quarter. Garrard hit Nate Hughes for a 35-yard touchdown, then connected with Ernest Wilford for a 4-yard score. Josh Scobee added his second of three field goals.
- Jacksonville also swept the season series in 2005.
- Johnson caught seven passes for 99 yards.
- Garrard was sacked four times.
- Texans LB Xavier Adibi (hamstring) and DT Shaun Cody (ankle) were injured for Houston.
- Jaguars DT John Henderson tweaked a nagging shoulder injury but X-rays were negative.
- Jaguars TEs caught six passes for 132 yards and a TD.