The word for this week is: vengeance.
Last month's debacle in Houston didn't just sting on the surface like a paper cut. No, it hurt like when you look up from the band saw and see a finger laying on the floor: it doesn't even matter if it's you finger, you feel that pain for just a second before your brain wraps itself around the idea that you can still draw a normal turkey.
After the game many of us agreed that this was harder to watch than the Patriots debacle last year, because at least that team wasn't a joke. This Texans team is a joke. They can't play defense, they can't seal a big game on offense, they can't get to the playoffs despite having the NFL's leading rusher, one of it's top 4-3 pass rushers, one of the best WR's of the past decade, and a QB generally perceived as solid.
You know what the Houston Texans are? They're soft. Always have been. Not sure if they always will be, but probably so. They aren't the strong, stout bulls/longhorns their logo shows; they play more like the docile grazers that get used for $0.99 hamburgers.
The last time these two teams met the Titans got embarrassed. Rusty Smith got shellacked, the defense couldn't stop hamster wheel and Cortland ended-up on the receiving end of an Andre Johnson meltdown.
This week, however, is about vengeance. Last week we saw this team wake-up a little bit out of sheer desperation, but this week you can expect to see a team playing pissed-off. The defense, Chris Johnson, the WRs and anyone else in the two-toned blue should be playing with a massive ship on their shoulder.
Or at least I hope to see that, because lord knows I'm still pissed about that game...
John Glennon details the issues that have combined to reduce a once excellent squad into the group that's on a 6-game losing streak for the second year in a row. I hope these aren't in order of significance, because the lack of takeaways should be the second thing on that list. The instability at the QB position is the first cause, but we were one good turnover away from winning against the Dolphins, Redskins and Colts. we pick up two of those games and this season isn't a total wash.
Jeff Fisher told the assembled media that Kenny Britt's VY tribute on his towel Thursday night was the single most important thing to happen since the franchise got to Nashville. The importance of it was not lost on Fisher, who said the gesture made him sit in his office alone at halftime and rethink the direction his life was taking both on, and off, the football field. Nah, just kidding, he said it was nothing. I can only wish the Titans were as resilient as Fisher makes them sound to the press.
PFF's comments on Tony Brown worry me, but their hammering of Kerry Collins puts into perspective his best game in years... which is to say it still wasn't very impressive.
The Titans are favored by a point over the Houston Hamburgers.
PFW passes along this note that's encouraging but should be taken with a grain of salt (not the first place it's been called out, but I prefer to spread the hits around):
• The day after the Titans' 30-28 loss to Indianapolis dropped Tennessee to 5-8, head coach Jeff Fisher noted, "There may be some younger players playing throughout the remaining three games. We'll see what happens."
If you have a Scout.com subscription, you can follow the blog of Titans LB and specials teams ace Tim Shaw.
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