Tuesday, November 24, 2009
How I See It: AFC South Stock Watch
By Paul Kuharsky
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1. Kris Brown, Texans kicker: For the second time in the Texans’ last two games, Brown had a chance to force overtime with a field goal within his range and failed.
Monday night at the end of the Titans-Texans game his 49-yarder was wide left from the start. Earlier he missed a 49-yarder wide right. Houston’s counts on Brown to make those. Does Gary Kubiak lose some faith and play differently in the build up to late-game chances?
2. Houston’s rushing offense: For some reason, the Texans thought a power back would have a better chance against the Titans than the shiftier Steve Slaton. Perhaps the fumble concerns linger.
But Brown only got 3.3 yards per carry on 11 touches, while Slaton was nearly a yard better on only five carries. In all, 17 carries and 57 yards are not enough to balance out the offense.
3. Nick Harper, Titans cornerback: Jeff Fisher won’t allow a veteran starter to lose his job as the result of an injury. But Rod Hood had played awfully well after settling in as Harper’s fill-in.
Despite interceptions in three consecutive games for Hood, Fisher went back to Harper Monday night. Andre Johnson promptly ran by him and beat him for a 12-yard touchdown on a fade route.
1. Gary Brackett, Colts linebacker: He’s been blitzing more this season, but his big play in Baltimore came when he faked as if he’d pursue Joe Flacco, then dropped into coverage.
Flacco didn’t see him as he aimed a short pass over the middle for Ray Rice, and Brackett hauled in a clutch interception.
2. Rob Bironas, Titans kicker: While Brown missed two great opportunities in a tight game, Bironas scored big at Reliant Stadium.
He nailed a 50-yard field goal in the third quarter and with 47 seconds left in the game his 53-yarder provided the Titans with the winning margin.
3. Mike Sims-Walker, Jaguars wide receiver: He’s stayed healthy and established himself as the reliable No.1 receiver Jacksonville expected he could be.
While Terrell Owens had the flashier performance in the Bills-Jaguars game, it was Sims-Walker who caught the winning touchdown.