HOUSTON (Ticker) --
made the most of a rare second chance in overtime.
Vinatieri, who earlier in the extra period experienced his first blocked field goal since 1998, hit a 28-yarder with 41 seconds left to give the
New England Patriots
their seventh straight win, a 23-20 victory over the
"Adam has been as good a player as we could possibly ask for in that situation," Patriots coach Bill Belichick said. "I don't think there was much he could have done on the one that was blocked. I felt like once we got the protection straightened out, we could count on Adam and he made it."
It was the Patriots' NFL record eighth straight overtime victory, and gave them their best start in franchise history at 9-2.
New England's winning drive was kept alive when safety
's interception of a
pass was nullified by a holding call against Houston cornerback
The Texans (4-7) got the ball to start overtime, but
was intercepted by linebacker
, putting the Patriots in field goal range.
, who blocked a punt in the fourth quarter, briefly saved Houston when he blocked Vinatieri's 37-yard attempt.
"We just went out there and tried to give the offense another chance," said Patriots safety
With 5:58 left, Houston got the ball at the New England 35 after a punt, but lost five yards to fall out of field goal range and was forced to punt, setting up the Patriots' winning drive.
"Had we been able to make the plays and come out on top, I think it would have been a major step in the right direction," Houston coach Dom Capers said. "We have a group down there in that locker room that has great intentions, great attitude, great work ethic."
New England tied the game with 41 seconds left in the fourth quarter on a four-yard pass from Brady to tight end
on 4th-and-1. It was Brady's second touchdown pass of the game. He completed 29-of-47 passes for 368 yards with a pair of interceptions.
"Tom has always been great at the end of games," Belichick said. "The touchdown pass to Graham was a big-time throw under pressure."
Banks threw for only 93 yards on 10-of-25 passing with two touchdowns and an interception. The Texans mustered only 11 first downs and 169 yards of total offense, scoring 14 of their points off turnovers.