AFC South: Laurent Robinson

Links: Laurent Robinson looking for a team

July, 17, 2013
7/17/13
12:48
PM ET
Houston Texans

Gregg Rosenthal of NFL.com sat down with Texans GM Rick Smith on Wednesday for an interview that included an update on safety Ed Reed.

Stephanie Stradley of the Houston Chronicle takes a detailed look at the Texans' third-and-long running plays last season.

CBSSports.com columnist Pete Prisco ranks the NFL head coaches, and Houston's Gary Kubiak is the highest-rated AFC South coach, coming in at No. 16.

The team's website, doing a series featuring interviews with Texans position coaches to get their thoughts on the projected starters, continues with tight ends coach Brian Pariani discussing starter Owen Daniels.

Indianapolis Colts

Kevin Bowen continues the team website's series profiling the burning questions at each position with a look at running back and receiver.

Jacksonville Jaguars

It has been four months since the Jaguars released him and eight months since he suffered the last of four concussions in 2012, but free-agent receiver Laurent Robinson says he is symptom free and ready to give the NFL one more shot, writes Tom Pelissero of USA Today sports.

As training camp nears, the Florida Times-Union’s Ryan O’Halloran breaks down the Jaguars’ depth at every position. Up next is linebacker, where depth could be an issue.

Tennessee Titans

John Glennon of The Tennessean analyzes the Titans' running backs entering training camp.

Titans running back Chris Johnson will appear as a guest judge on next week’s episode of Spike TV’s reality-competition series “Ink Master,” writes Glennon. The episode premieres Tuesday. Johnson, who got his first tattoo in seventh grade, will join series host Dave Navarro (Jane’s Addiction) and renowned tattoo artists Chris Nunez (“Miami Ink”) and Oliver Peck (Elm Street Tattoo) as a judge for the episode entitled “Thrills For Grills.”
In early March, I outlined a five-category plan for offseason moves for each team in the AFC South.

I considered finances, continuity, turnover, additions and the draft.

Today we’ll look back to see how my plan and the team’s offseason lined up and how they didn’t.

Next up are the Jaguars. Here’s the original post.

What I got right:

Turnover: "Allow the rest of the free-agent class to hit the market and wish it well. If a player like defensive tackle Terrance Knighton or fullback Greg Jones doesn’t find what he wants out there and remains available later, consider an offer down the road."

Knighton is in Denver. Jones is in Houston.

Draft: “The No. 2 spot is a toughie, because clear choices at the top of this draft have not emerged. There is defensive line talent, however, and the pass rush is a longstanding issue the new regime is inheriting. That first pick needs to be able to rush the passer or be a long-term fixture on the offensive line. Needs are so wide-ranging, there are few spots the Jaguars need to avoid. Although I'm not happy with the quarterback situation, I would not feel I had to have another one unless I saw a real value in the second or third round.”

In Luke Joeckel they got the long-term fixture on the offensive line, and they did steer clear of drafting a quarterback.

What I got wrong:

Finances: “The Jaguars have about $24 million in salary-cap room, so they don’t have a huge issue. But they are carrying several contracts that are too hefty. Laurent Robinson is overpaid, but they are a year into his deal and unlikely to bail. Tight end Marcedes Lewis and guard Uche Nwaneri are too costly, both due base salaries of more than $4 million this season. Linebacker Paul Posluszny ($6.5 million base), Dawan Landry ($5.4 million) and cornerback Aaron Ross ($3.75 million) are also costly. I’d make no money moves until my coaches have time with the team on the field for a thorough assessment and see some of the alternatives brought in.”

They didn’t wait to make money moves, parting ways with Robinson, Landry and Ross in short order.

Continuity: "Re-sign outside linebacker Daryl Smith. He’s been a very solid player for the franchise, and because he was hurt for 14 games last season, his price is going to be discounted. Re-sign cornerback Derek Cox, ideally to an incentive-laden deal tied to his availability. Hope he’ll give you a chance to match if someone else gives him a better offer. He’s a great player but it’s hard to invest in a guy who misses so much time."

They had zero interest in Smith, who wound up in Baltimore. Cox might have been of interest, but the Chargers got him with a four-year, $20 million deal with $10.5 million guaranteed.

Additions: "I’d shop more aggressively than I expect the Jaguars will, based on how they’ve spoken about free agency, but I will try to stick to their parameters here. Seattle defensive tackle Alan Branch was a key piece of the defense Gus Bradley ran for the Seahawks, and new coaches typically like bringing in a guy or two who know how they will operate. I want to make at least one statement signing that addresses a big area of concern. If Sebastian Vollmer’s back checks out, he’d be my guy. He’s a top right tackle who’s been part of a successful franchise in New England. From there, I’d pursue a few more affordable types: one of two cornerbacks, Greg Toler from Arizona or Bradley Fletcher of St. Louis, and a defensive end who’s still young and has some versatility, William Hayes, also of St. Louis."

I don’t believe they showed even a degree of interest in any of the five players I listed. I can say it was hard to predict what Dave Caldwell was going to do as a first-time GM, but this is what I would have done, not necessarily what I expected they would do.
A review of the best member of the 2012 Jacksonville Jaguars who’s still unsigned:

Daryl Smith, linebacker

Smith was a durable player for is first eight years with the Jacksonville Jaguars, playing in all but four of the team’s 128 regular-season games.

But a groin injury cost him the first 14 games of the 2012 season, required surgery and landed him on injured-reserve with the possibility of a recall. He did return to start the final two games of the 2012 season, but the layoff severely hurt his attractiveness as a free agent.

He’s 31, and I feel certain he can still make a significant contribution to a team. But older guys might be less valued than ever. He’s not as old as John Abraham, Dwight Freeney or Charles Woodson, but he’s suffering a similar fate so far.

I don’t expect the Jaguars will circle back to him, as they are going young and by the time the team around Smith is ready to contend he’d be close to the end.

It seems odd, however, that there has been minimal or no interest in him elsewhere.

He’s been somewhat well-known for being underrated, and appears to be paying a price for it now. Though someone could surely have him at a minimal price and he’d bring minimal risk.

Others still unsigned include: Wide receiver Laurent Robinson (cut), cornerback Rashean Mathis (cut), and running back Jalen Parmele.
Fans of teams who’ve signed big free agents in the first day of the new league year are largely overjoyed at the news.

Laurent Robinson is just a year removed from his big day and offers a cautionary tale.

Let’s remember it’s completely possible that today’s big signing is, in just one year, a salary-cap burden who not only solves no problems, but creates some.

The Jaguars cut Robinson, avoiding a $2 million bonus that was about to come due.

That’s new general manager David Caldwell cleaning up more of the mess left behind by his predecessor, Gene Smith. Smith gave Robinson, coming off his one big season, a five-year, $32.5 million contract that guaranteed him $14 million

(It’s a good time to revisit this piece by Bill Barnwell of Grantland, who crushingly picked apart Smith’s failures, including that Robinson contract.)

Even if Robinson didn’t suffer four concussions and play in only seven games, it was a contract that was way too big.

Now, Robinson is a free agent again. The Jaguars said at the combine he’d been medically cleared. Ryan O’Halloran of the Florida Times-Union says Robinson passed a physical. But Mark Long of the Associated Press reports Robinson “disagrees with [the] team's assessment that he's healthy, says he felt lightheaded during workout yesterday.”

Today, as we recall Robinson’s failed year with the Jaguars, we should remember how quickly the excitement of a big signing can dissipate.

As for the Jaguars, they are now really two receivers deep with Justin Blackmon and Cecil Shorts. I thought they should have tendered Jordan Shipley but they didn't like him enough to do so.
David Caldwell inherited some contracts with the Jacksonville Jaguars that don’t match up with value and production.

While his team has plenty of cap room, the team’s new general manager isn’t automatically going to pay out for overpriced people.

Adam Schefter reports strong safety Dawan Landry will be released today.

Landry had a $6.7 million cap charge and was scheduled for a $5.4 million base salary this season. He was signed for three more years under a five-year, $27.5 million deal negotiated by former GM Gene Smith in 2011.

He played 16 games in each of his two seasons with Jacksonville collecting three interceptions, but didn’t qualify as a dynamic playmaker who warranted the salary.

An undrafted rookie, Antwon Blake, finished last season as Landry’s backup.

It’s not clear if the Jaguars think Blake or someone on the roster can start or if strong safety now qualifies as another need in Caldwell and Gus Bradley’s rebuild.

The bigger question right now is whether the move with Landry signals that more moves are coming.

Other too-expensive guys include linebacker Paul Posluszny, receiver Laurent Robinson, tight end Marcedes Lewis, guard Uche Nwaneri and cornerback Aaron Ross. I'd keep Posluszny and Nwaneri for sure. They may be overpaid, but they are among the team's best players right now.

There are not backups behind those guys who qualify yet as capable fill-ins. And one run through mid-range free agency and a draft can't fill all the Jaguars' needs, let alone the holes created with further moves.

But as Caldwell assesses his roster, making moves to get costs in line with production won't be a bad thing.
My plan for the Jacksonville Jaguars as we approach the start of the 2013 NFL calendar year:

Finances: The Jaguars have about $24 million in salary-cap room, so they don’t have a huge issue. But they are carrying several contracts that are too hefty. Laurent Robinson is overpaid, but they are a year into his deal and unlikely to bail. Tight end Marcedes Lewis and guard Uche Nwaneri are too costly, both due base salaries of more than $4 million this season. Linebacker Paul Posluszny ($6.5 million base), Dawan Landry ($5.4 million) and cornerback Aaron Ross ($3.75 million) are also costly. I’d make no money moves until my coaches have time with the team on the field for a thorough assessment and see some of the alternatives brought in.

Continuity: Re-sign outside linebacker Daryl Smith. He’s been a very solid player for the franchise, and because he was hurt for 14 games last season, his price is going to be discounted. Re-sign cornerback Derek Cox, ideally to an incentive-laden deal tied to his availability. Hope he’ll give you a chance to match if someone else gives him a better offer. He’s a great player but it’s hard to invest in a guy who misses so much time.

Turnover: Allow the rest of the free-agent class to hit the market and wish it well. If a player like defensive tackle Terrance Knighton or fullback Greg Jones doesn’t find what he wants out there and remains available later, consider an offer down the road.

Additions: I’d shop more aggressively than I expect the Jaguars will, based on how they’ve spoken about free agency, but I will try to stick to their parameters here. Seattle defensive tackle Alan Branch was a key piece of the defense Gus Bradley ran for the Seahawks, and new coaches typically like bringing in a guy or two who know how they will operate. I want to make at least one statement signing that addresses a big area of concern. If Sebastian Vollmer’s back checks out, he’d be my guy. He’s a top right tackle who’s been part of a successful franchise in New England. From there, I’d pursue a few more affordable types: one of two cornerbacks, Greg Toler from Arizona or Bradley Fletcher of St. Louis, and a defensive end who’s still young and has some versatility, William Hayes, also of St. Louis.

Draft: The No. 2 spot is a toughie, because clear choices at the top of this draft have not emerged. There is defensive line talent, however, and the pass rush is a longstanding issue the new regime is inheriting. That first pick needs to be able to rush the passer or be a long-term fixture on the offensive line. Needs are so wide-ranging, there are few spots the Jaguars need to avoid. Although I'm not happy with the quarterback situation, I would not feel I had to have another one unless I saw a real value in the second or third round.
A combine rewind on what we heard from the Jacksonville Jaguars in Indianapolis…

A hybrid defensive front will limit opponents’ run options: Coach Gus Bradley says the Jaguars defense will be unpredictable. “What we've seen in the run game, some offenses might say, 'Here's our run game attack for a 4-3 team and here's our run-game attack for a 3-4 team,'” Bradley said. “When they see us do both, the run game shrinks down a little bit and the philosophy behind it defensively is it pares it down and easier for us and the style of runs we'll see.”

The relationship between Bradley and Caldwell is already strong: Caldwell is kind of low key while Bradley is a ball of energy. It seems like a nice yin-and-yang combination. Asked about why he didn’t wait on his friend Greg Roman, the 49ers offensive coordinator, to become available, general manager David Caldwell said “Gus really knocked my doors off.” Said Bradley: “One of the most important things is to develop a relationship with the GM. We spend a lot of time watching tape together and talking through philosophy and what we're looking for in our scheme both offensive and defensively.”

Laurent Robinson has been cleared: The wide receiver who went to Jacksonville for a big free agent contract last year, then played in only seven games because of three concussions. There are no team activities for him to participate in now, but were there any he’d be good to go, Caldwell said. That’s an encouraging development. But do the Jaguars need to worry that one big shot will knock him out? With Justin Blackmon, Cecil Shorts and Robinson, the Jaguars have a nice three-pack of receivers. But they should be at least four deep. Exclusive rights free agent Jordan Shipley could be a key guy.

Trade bait may be the second-rounder, not the first: The Jaguars have the first pick of the second round, 33rd overall. Since there is a day between the first and second round, that pick could be very popular. A team in need of a quarterback could look to vault up to the top of the second day to ensure it gets its guy. “I think there’s going to be a lot of interest,” Caldwell said. “There will be a very good player for us to select, too. We feel very good about having that.”

Derek Cox’s injury history makes things complicated: He is a quality cover corner for the Jaguars, but he heads for free agency with a major record of getting hurt. He’s missed 17 of 48 games the last three years, and it’s hard to pay big dollars to a player who’s missed a third of the team’s games over that stretch. “The most important ability is availability,” Caldwell said. "Regardless of size, speed, athleticism, play-making ability, if they’re not available on game day, then I think it’s difficult to pay them for that.”
INDIANAPOLIS -- New Jaguars general manager David Caldwell has repeatedly spoken well of the roster he inherited even though it collectively managed a 2-14 record in 2012.

But the man who hired him, Shad Khan, has spoken of expectations or a view of the team that were delusional under the previous regime.

As Caldwell spoke at the NFL scouting combine today, I was curious whether he could square that seeming contradiction for me.

He did.

“I think the delusional part came with the amount of money that they spent in free agency last year and thinking they were one or two pieces away,” Caldwell said. “And then to come right back and manage only a 2-14 season.

“So for us, there is a good core of players here that we feel good about. We have our work cut out for us, and we’re going to have a very young team coming into this season. It’s going to be built through the draft and through college free agents.”

That spending Caldwell referred to was headlined by receiver Laurent Robinson, whose $6.3 million cap figure this year is the fourth-highest on the team, and also included a deal that has ineffective cornerback Aaron Ross scheduled to count $4.083 million.

Cap room is not an issue, so money will not dictate any cuts.

“There are no changes coming that will be financial,” Caldwell said. “The changes that will be coming will be based on performance.”

Robinson signed a five-year, $32.5 million deal with $13.8 million guaranteed. It was a monster contract for a guy who played for three teams in his first five years and had only one big season.

Then he got sidetracked by multiple concussions, playing in only seven games and catching just 24 passes. An NFL Network report on Feb. 1 said Robinson was still dealing with lingering effects of the hits to the head.

Apparently he's made great progress.

“My understanding is he’s been cleared to participate, so he’s full-go right now,” Caldwell said. “It’s something we’re going to monitor very closely with all of our players.”

For a team in need at a lot of spots, if Robinson is healthy, the Jaguars might actually be pretty good at receiver with Justin Blackmon and Cecil Shorts, who both emerged late last season, and Robinson.

“That’s a good trio of receivers right there, and they all bring a unique skill set for us, which will make it difficult for defenses,” Caldwell said.

Eight in the Box: Biggest cap casualty

February, 22, 2013
2/22/13
11:30
AM ET
NFC Eight in the Box: East | West | North | South AFC: East | West | North | South

Welcome to Eight in the Box, a new NFL Nation feature that will appear each Friday during the offseason. This week’s topic: Who will be each team’s biggest salary-cap casualty this offseason?

Houston Texans: The one team in the division that could need some cap relief is the Texans, who currently have $5.768 million in space. But if they re-sign safety Glover Quin, outside linebacker Connor Barwin and fullback James Casey as they’d like to, that space will disappear quickly and they’ll need to find an avenue to gain room. I understand that the general public undervalues a lot of what Kevin Walter does. But a $4.5 million cap number and a scheduled base salary of $3.5 million is simply too much for what he does. A dynamic receiver is still on the Texans' list of needs, which seems to make Walter expendable.

Indianapolis Colts: The Colts don’t need to cut anyone. General manager Ryan Grigson has $43.427 million in cap room. So don’t expect anyone to be released. (Outside linebacker Dwight Freeney was not a cap casualty -- he was a pending free agent who was informed he wouldn’t be offered a new deal.) But are there players who are scheduled to make too much? Sure. Center Samson Satele is due $2.7 million in base salary, and his play in his first year as the team’s center wasn’t $2.22 million better than A.Q. Shipley's in 2012. I doubt it will be in 2013. Parting ways with Satele would save only $1.734 million.

Jacksonville Jaguars: The Jaguars are in solid cap shape -- they have $23.807 million in space. But they have plenty of players with big deals that the old regime gave them. New general manager Dave Caldwell may be unwilling to pay out some of those contracts. Receiver Laurent Robinson is still dealing with concussion-related issues and although he’s due $2.6 million in base salary, he has the club’s fourth-highest cap number in 2013 at $6.3 million. Cutting him, though, would actually cost the team $100,000 more against the cap in 2013 than keeping him, because his remaining prorated bonus would result in an accelerated $6.4 million hit.

Tennessee Titans: GM Ruston Webster said at the combine Thursday that Tennessee won’t be cutting anyone as the new league year starts, but that once the team adds upgrades in free agency and in the draft, such moves may occur. Webster and coach Mike Munchak are talking about the need to rebuild the interior offensive line. So the top candidates to be cut down the road have to be guard Steve Hutchinson (due a $4.75 million base, he would cost $3 million in dead money cap hit) and guard/center Eugene Amano (due a $3.935 million base, but they’d save only about $1 million by cutting him).

Look back: Assistants to watch

February, 12, 2013
2/12/13
3:21
PM ET
Continuing a periodic look back at stuff we wrote before the 2012 season to see how on target we were and how things panned out.

In July, we looked at an assistant to watch on each of our four teams.

Here’s what we said then and what we think now.

Houston Texans

Then: “While [Gary] Kubiak and offensive coordinator Rick Dennison will be heavily involved in the offense, a new [quarterback] coach [Karl Dorrell] is certain to have a bearing on [Matt] Schaub’s performance. And Schaub’s performance may be as important of a story as there is in the AFC South this season.”

Now: I don’t think Dorrell did a bad job, but he certainly didn’t help stop a late-season slide for Schaub, who finally got into some big games and didn’t perform particularly well in them. All three coaches didn’t do well enough to get Schaub to play up to the moment.

Indianapolis Colts

Then: “Can [offensive line coach Harold] Goodwin help the new group jell and have it provide quality protection for Andrew Luck and some push for a group of unproven running backs?”

Now: The line was not good, but Goodwin did not have a lot to work with. Given the patchwork nature of the group and some injuries that forced lineup shifts, I’d say Goodwin did good work. Bruce Arians certainly thought so, as he took him to Arizona to be his offensive coordinator. Goodwin’s been replaced by Joe Gilbert, who served as Goodwin’s assistant last year.

Jacksonville Jaguars

Then: “[Receivers coach Jerry] Sullivan and those receivers are all reliant on improvement from quarterback Blaine Gabbert. But they are all reasons the team expects that improvement, too.”

Now: Laurent Robinson did little before he was sidetracked by concussions and Justin Blackmon took a long time to get going. But ultimately Sullivan, a good get by Mike Mularkey as he put together his staff, did good work with Blackmon and Cecil Shorts and he was held over by new coach Gus Bradley.

Tennessee Titans

Then: “An improved pass rush is a must if the Titans' defense is going to improve. [Pass rush coach Keith] Millard will be right in the middle of what happens, or what doesn’t, in that department.”

Now: The Titans jumped from 28 sacks in 2011 to 39 in 2012 with non-defensive linemen contributing 13.5. Young linebackers Akeem Ayers and Zach Brown certainly got better as rushers later in the year, a good sign regarding Millard’s influence.

Did teams get their money's worth?

February, 5, 2013
2/05/13
8:43
AM ET
Did they get their money’s worth?

It’s a great question now that the NFL season is completely over. Which teams in the league did the best job getting the most value out of their dollars spent?

While the salary cap isn’t nearly as constrictive as it once was, it still serves the purpose of leveling the playing field. The teams that fare the best will typically be the most prudent with the cap, right? Rather than pay a guy at his peak value -- like the previous Jaguars regime did with free-agent receiver Laurent Robinson last year, one could argue -- a team will ideally secure him long-term as cheaply as possible before he approaches his ceiling.

The Guardian recently produced this fantastic graphic that shows us how a team’s cap expenditures for the just completed season were divided up.

To the right is a chart of the AFC South, with ranks in offense and defense based on yardage side-by-side with ranks in those categories based on the percentage of their cap dollars spent.

What leaps out?

Well, the Colts had the league’s 10th most productive offense despite spending the least money in the league on offensive players. Pretty good.

The Titans and Jaguars hit that in reverse. While they spent an awful lot on offense, they ranked very poorly in it.

And it can be argued that that difference does a lot to explain the difference in the Colts 11-5 playoff season and the 6-10 and 2-14 seasons of the Titans and Jaguars, respectively.

We shouldn’t connect the dots without allowing for circumstances.

The Jaguars took a huge hit to their plan for their offense when Robinson missed most of the season because of concussion issues. Would they have gotten closer to their $4.7 million worth out of him based on what we saw when he did play? It seems unlikely. But it would be a lot fairer to call him a poor investment if he’d played in more than seven games.

The Titans lose center Eugene Amano to an arm injury during training camp. Earlier in his contract it became clear to many of us that he was overpaid. But whether he would have played anything like a $5.25 million lineman or not in 2012 isn’t a factor in here. The team took that cap hit for him despite the fact he didn’t play a snap for it.

This is a remarkable graphic to fiddle around with. I suspect we’ll revisit it.

RTC: Barwin's unique view of Detroit

November, 22, 2012
11/22/12
9:10
AM ET
Happy Thanksgiving!

We're reading the coverage in Detroit...

Houston Texans

Starting in fourth grade, seeking a bigger challenge in youth basketball, Connor Barwin left suburban Hazel Park to play on a team in a racially segregated Detroit metro area, writes Tania Ganguli. “Barwin says no team or coach he played for before or since affected his personality and his athletic ability more than the years he spent playing basketball in that blighted neighborhood.” It also had a profound impact on how he sees the world.

John McClain’s preview of the Texans Thanksgiving Day game against the Lions at Ford Field.

Indianapolis Colts

Bruce Arians keeps sending the league tape of what he thinks are illegal hits to Andrew Luck’s head and is asking what’s going to be done, says Mike Chappell of the Indianapolis Star.

Cory Redding, Vontae Davis and Coby Fleener could all play Sunday against the Bills, says Phil Richards of the Indy Star.

Jacksonville Jaguars

No matter what Chad Henne does, the Jaguars can’t give up on Blaine Gabbert, says Gene Frenette of the Florida Times-Union.

Laurent Robinson suffered his fourth concussion since training camp in the loss at Houston and has been placed on injured-reserve, says Ryan O’Halloran of the Times-Union.

Tennessee Titans

Lavelle Hawkins is making a big difference in his little brother’s life, says Jim Wyatt of The Tennessean.

With Maurice Jones-Drew out injured, the Titans are bracing for a different kind of attack from the Jaguars, says John Glennon of The Tennessean.
The Jaguars have a non-threatening offense.

It was bad before Maurice Jones-Drew went down with a foot injury in an Oct. 23 loss at Oakland, and it’s been bad since.

ESPN Stats & Info says Jacksonville ranks dead last in plays per drive (5.9), yards per drive (22.2) and three-and-outs (35). Only the Cardinals are averaging fewer yards per play than Jacksonville.

The team’s receivers have dropped 26 passes this season. That’s 8.6 percent of their total targets, worst in the NFL. Cecil Shorts leads the team with five drops, and Laurent Robinson and Justin Blackmon have four apiece.

The Texans' quality defense won't provide an easy setting for the Jaguars to break out of any of those offensive funks Sunday at Reliant Stadium.

I thought Jacksonville receiver coach Jerry Sullivan would have a more positive effect on the group. And Shorts has gotten a lot better. The drops are on players, not coaches, but they all have to work to solve an issue that’s contributed to overall ineffectiveness.

“It’s just a tough year for us right now,” the injured Jones-Drew told Fox Sports Radio, via SportsRadioInterviews.com. “I think there’s a lot of things that have been in place, a lot of key players have gotten injured throughout the year and we just have to battle through some things. Hopefully we can get it back straight and get it back on a winning trend.”

Jones-Drew said he’s making progress toward getting back. He hurt his foot in the Jaguars’ loss at Oakland on Oct. 21 and has missed three games since.

“[It’s] definitely not going to be the year but with a foot injury you don’t want to mess around with it and come back at 70 or 80 percent,” he said. “It’s just one of those things that’s going to take a little bit of time but it’s doing much better. Hopefully I will be back in a couple of weeks.”

Blogger Blitz: A Twitter question

November, 13, 2012
11/13/12
5:16
PM ET


Paul Kuharsky answers a question about newcomers who've surpassed expectations and others who've disappointed around the AFC South in this week's Blogger Blitz.

Wrap-up: Colts 27, Jaguars 10

November, 9, 2012
11/09/12
12:03
AM ET
Thoughts following the Colts' 27-10 victory over the Jaguars in Jacksonville, Fla., on Thursday night:

What it means: The Colts are 6-3. If the Texans lose at Chicago on Sunday, Indianapolis would be just one game out of first place in the AFC South, though Houston would have the better division and conference records for potential tiebreakers. The Jaguars, meanwhile, are 1-8 and haven’t won since Sept. 23.

What I liked, Colts: They got another excellent game from Andrew Luck, who showed a national TV audience the poise, command, pocket presence, ability to handle pressure, arm and running ability Colts fans have been seeing all season. He ran for two more touchdowns and now has five rushing TDs on the year, a franchise record for a quarterback. The backup cornerbacks held up well, with Darius Butler pulling in a pick-six from Blaine Gabbert and another interception of a Chad Henne throw after it was tipped multiple times at the line. He also recovered a fumble. Interim coach Bruce Arians gave the team off until Monday but told players they'd have to play a lot better to win their next game, at New England.

What I didn’t like, Jaguars: I’m not one to point to officiating as an excuse very often and I don’t think the Jaguars were going to win on this night. But nothing went the Jaguars' way in the first half. Laurent Robinson lost a fumble right as he went down, according to the judgment of a challenge, a call I agreed with but that could have gone the other way. Worse, Luck’s second rushing touchdown appeared to come with him bobbling the ball and not getting to the goal line. In another bad break, the Jaguars were going to go for a fourth-and-4 from the Colts’ 17 until Gabbert was called for a false start. But it looked a lot more like offsides by the Colts.

Margins: It was the Colts’ first win this season by a margin larger than six points. It was the Jaguars’ fifth home loss of the season, all by at least 17 points. They've been outscored 153-44 in Jacksonville.

Super-costly: Terrance Knighton was judged properly to have roughed Luck, a gigantic penalty that undid an Aaron Ross interception. Instead of the Jaguars getting the ball, they added yardage to what became an Indy touchdown drive. And Robinson lost a fumble trying to gain extra yards, the result of a strip by Moise Fokou, which Butler recovered.

Emotion: Jaguars coach Mike Mularkey threw his call sheet (and his headset went with it) in disgust over the debated Luck TD sneak. A scoring play, it was automatically reviewed but he hadn’t gotten an indication it stood up to replay -- which maybe it should not have. It’s as hot as I’ve seen him as Jaguars coach.

Injury concern: Gabbert left the game after re-injuring his left, non-throwing shoulder. Henne finished up.

What’s next: The Colts are at New England on Nov. 18, a Sunday afternoon game. The Jaguars are at Houston earlier that afternoon.

SPONSORED HEADLINES

Insider