AFC South: Josh Thomas
Bob McNair wants to see how Gary Kubiak handles this critical time, writes John McClain.
McNair backs Kubiak, says Mark Berman.
“They commit penalties at the worst time. They can't make a big play when it's needed the most. They have this false bravado that turns to falsetto when the pressure's on.” McClain says the Texans’ finish is crucial for Kubiak.
Dunta Robinson hasn’t played like a top-five corner, says Alan Burge. Robinson plays a prominent role in this play I detailed.
The revolving door continues for Josh Thomas, says Phillip B. Wilson.
Let’s appreciate what the Colts have done so far, says John Oehser.
Pierre Garcon is on the rise, says Deshawn Zombie.
Rashean Mathis won’t play against the Texans, says Jay Gray.
The Jaguars have one of the toughest remaining schedules for wild-card contenders, says Michael C. Wright.
A Q&A with Marcedes Lewis, from Wright.
All teams go through cycles, says Vic Ketchman.
Chris Chase says the Music City Miracle was the play of the decade. Thanks to the Music City Miracles blog for the link.
A look at Chris Johnson’s pace.
Merril Hoge’s opinion on Vince Young is evolving, says Jim Wyatt.
An improved defense has helped key the turnaround, says Terry McCormick.
Five things Wyatt knows about the Titans, including Kenny Britt being the best option at kick returner.
Young is AFC offensive player of the week, says McCormick.
Stampede Blue is not sold on Young, yet.
Joe Biddle is unimpressed with special teams.
Handicapping wild-card contenders including Jacksonville and Houston with Clark Judge.
Gary Kubiak defended his end-of-game strategy, said Eugene Wilson will miss time, said he’s sticking with Kris Brown and explained why he went with Chris Brown, from John McClain.
McClain tells Texans fans to be careful what they wish for.
Respectable is no longer good enough, says Richard Justice.
Brian Cushing denied tweeting complaints about the officiating in the Titans game, says McClain.
A replay of McClain’s chat.
By winning four consecutive games in the same season by a total margin of 10 points or fewer, the Colts have done something that’s never been done before, says Chappell.
Clint Session and Eric Foster have helped set the tone for the excellent defense, says Phillip B. Wilson.
Does Peyton Manning get too much respect from opposing coaches? John Oehser examines the question in two pieces: Part I and Part II.
Oehser reviews Polian on the radio. Peaking isn’t an issue; Anything that’s said or written is absolutely meaningless to the team; Joseph Addai is having a terrific year; Though what’s written or said about the team is absolutely meaningless, he was gratified that he didn’t see anything about the Colts being a finesse team after the win in Baltimore.
Yes, Manning has been this good before, says Deshawn Zombie.
The Colts waived Mike Hart and re-signed John Thomas, says Mike Chappell.
The Jaguars are about civic pride.
Can you feel the planets aligning for the Jaguars, asks Gene Frenette.
Rashean Mathis is out for San Francisco, meaning Tyron Brackenridge likely keeps a bigger role, says Vito Stellino.
A Q&A with Ernest Wilford from Michael C. Wright.
The Jaguars waived Adam Seward and signed Lamar Myles and James Wyche to their practice squad.
Why the Bills were able to slow the Jaguars’ run game, from Vic Ketchman.
The Jags’ identity and future are still unclear, says Gil Samson.
A late look: Richard Collier is at peace, says Jason Cole.
Vince Young ran like a rookie again, says Jim Wyatt.
A different Young is steering the Titans on a different course, says David Climer.
Young is rewarding Bud Adams’ faith, says Alex Marvez.
David Barron provides an explanation of the Young-Jerome Boger high five.
Jeff Fisher rated Nick Harper’s return as solid, say Gary Estwick and Jim Wyatt.
The Titans had little intention of returning a punt in Houston, says Terry McCormick. How ambitious.
The Colts just sent out a release packed with injury news. Here it is:
The Indianapolis Colts have signed veteran free agent defensive end Josh Thomas and have placed defensive back Marlin Jackson on injured reserve. Wide receiver Anthony Gonzalez underwent arthroscopic right knee surgery yesterday to clean out loose particles, and safety Bob Sanders visited with Dr. James Andrews yesterday to gather additional information on the left elbow injury he suffered last Sunday against San Francisco, the club announced today.
Jackson suffered the left knee injury during a non-contact drill early in Wednesday’s practice. He is out for the remainder of the season. Gonzalez suffered a recent setback in practice that led to yesterday’s procedure. A timetable for his return is not determined.
Thomas played 2004-08 with the club, starting 12 of 68 appearances. He totaled 172 tackles and six sacks. He had a brief stint with the club this past training camp.
Here are the roster moves just announced by the Colts:
RB Lance Ball
WR Sam Giguere
DT John Gill
DT Adrian Grady
RB Mike Hart
DE Marcus Howard
DB Dante Hughes
C Steve Justice
WR John Matthews
WR Brett McDermott
RB Walter Mendenhall
OG Tom Pestock
WR Taj Smith
LB Michael Tauiliili
DT Terrance Taylor
OT Jaimie Thomas
DE Josh Thomas
OT Michael Toudouze
DB Nick Graham
DB Travis Key
TE Jamie Petrowski
Does Not Count on Active Roster:
DT Ed Johnson (suspended Week 1)
Our NFC West ace Mike Sando has been keeping track of free-agent movement by division and put together this excellent chart, which doesn't factor in any deals that may have been completed Friday morning.
The most significant names by team, with asterisks denoting players still believed to be of interest by their current clubs:
A look at the members of the Colts who are heading toward unrestricted free agency, in rough order of importance and standing.
Running back Dominic Rhodes: Reunion was good, he's not going to be real expensive and Bill Polian has expressed confidence the team can re-sign him.
Punter Hunter Smith: Solid guy. They'd like back, but his future could depend on the market.
Linebacker Tyjuan Hagler: Didn't really break back into lineup after missing first six games on PUP. Would be nice to have, but he's the kind of guy they are good at replacing.
Defensive tackle Darrell Reid: Time on defense only came when they were thinned, but he was top special teams tackler.
Cornerback Keiwan Ratliff: Did some good work when called on, but he's only depth.
Safety Matt Giordano: Also quality secondary depth, but the fourth guy at his position at best.
Defensive end Josh Thomas: They'd like to upgrade, but he could be back late for a minimum deal if he's still out there.
INDIANAPOLIS -- Rapid Reaction is supposed to tell you what a game meant.
We knew going in this game was going to mean nothing.
It had no bearing on playoff positioning for the Titans or Colts.
As for carryover, we'll have to wait and see.
The Colts got three key offensive players to significant milestones before sitting them down: Peyton Manning eclipsed 4,000 passing yards for a record ninth time; Marvin Harrison moved into second place in all-time NFL receptions; Dallas Clark set a single-season receiving yardage mark for a Baltimore/Indianapolis tight end.
The Titans didn't have their top defenders on the field for much of that, but even the Colts backups were sharp.
And Tennessee mustered very little on offense, with Vince Young taking over early for Kerry Collins. Young was erratic in the first half, throwing behind receivers on several attempts. While he seemed to settle down after halftime, he rolled out once and was the only person at Lucas Oil Stadium who didn't know defensive lineman Marcus Howard was about to catch him and strip him of the ball.
Chris Simms got a late look, too.
The Colts now watch what amounts to the AFC West Championship Game Sunday night to learn if they'll play next weekend in San Diego or Denver.
The Titans will work on some basics and Jeff Fisher and his staff will likely hit on some points of emphasis in a practice week before a bye.
When they get back to work after that, they'll know if the fourth, fifth, or sixth seed will be coming to Nashville and what time they will be playing on Jan. 10 or 11.
INDIANAPOLIS -- You'll find the inactives from Titans-Colts at our league-wide link.
But here are the resulting lineup changes as a result of inactives we didn't know before this morning:
- William Hayes starts at right end for Dave Ball
- Josh Stamer starts at left linebacker for David Thornton
- Chris Carr starts at left cornerback for Nick Harper
- Leroy Harris starts at center for Kevin Mawae
- Brandon Jones starts at receiver for Justin Gage