The Titans lose 13 to 12 in Houston. The Texans obviously studied the tape on the Titans-Jets game: Spread the ball around with medium-length passes, throw the deep ball when we’re in man coverage, and use the running game to take some pressure off the qb. On defense, it still looks like challenging Kerry Collins is the best way to beat the Titans.
So… Tennessee fails to clinch home-field advantage throughout the playoffs, with two tough-looking games remaining. Hopefully this is not a game Titans fans look back on as a missed opportunity.
- First of all, give the Texans some credit. Andre Johnson had a career day with 11 receptions for 207 yards, including some spectacular catches. Houston held on to ball for 36 minutes, converted some big third downs, and mostly bottled up our running attack. They have now won 4 games in a row, and after starting off the season 0-4 they have battled back to 7-7.
- Tennessee was flat offensively and undisciplined defensively. With the playoffs right around the corner, our passing offense yet again looks shoddy. Collins finished 15-33 with 188 yards and an int, for a passer rating of 50.2. As always, there were some drops and bad routes, but Kerry’s game was probably worse than his stats indicated. Half his yards came on three passes. The biggest WTF!? moment for him had to be his inexplicable decision to tuck-and-run on 3rd and 12 with 6 minutes left in the game. Really Kerry? Really?!?
- Cortland Finnegan’s back-to-back penalties were plenty dumb and destructive in a game we lose by one point, but it’s on some level understandable- he’s plays an intense, on the edge, style of play. He’ll mature eventually, and learn to hone that intensity, but right now we have to take the good with the bad. Much more concerning was the multiple occasions our run defense failed to finish the play. With three or four defenders on him, how is Steve Slaton still gaining yards? The fact that this happened repeatedly would suggest one team was trying harder than the other. And you don’t win a Super Bowl by half-assing it.
- With two minutes remaining in the game, 4th and 3 on the Texans 32, Jeff Fisher and Mike Heimerdinger opt to throw the ball downfield. Collins overthrows Justin McCareins (who always has at least a 19% chance of making a play), Texans get ball back, run out the clock, ballgame. After the game, Fisher said the kick was into the wind, and not in the range of Rob Bironas. Rob was 4 out of 4 on the day, and had already made a 51 yarder.
- As of press time, the only word on Albert Haynesworth is that he looks to have injured his MCL. After lying down on the field for a couple of minutes, he hobbled off the field (with help) in the 4th quarter. On tv it looked awful- his leg was twisted up and got rolled on real good. Tests tomorrow. Needless to say, this may have huge impact on the team. Say your prayers for Big Al.