Wednesday, December 1, 2010
How I See It: AFC South Stock Watch
By Paul Kuharsky
Odds of Titans getting a third-down stop: The Texans converted half of their 18 third downs, which led to nearly 40 minutes of possession against Tennessee on Sunday. In their last five games, the Titans have allowed conversions 55 percent of the time, an enormous number. Jeff Fisher’s teams are usually able to respond to a point of emphasis. The Titans are failing at that here in a big way.
The Jaguars’ ability to handle blitzes in big situations: Playing with two backup tackles in a tough road game against a quality front, the Jaguars fared pretty well. But as I documented here, in their last chance to beat the Giants they fell apart and got burned badly by a pass rush that included one or two defensive backs.
The Colts' offensive line shuffling: There is a long list of elements to what’s been wrong with the Colts’ offense in recent weeks. But there was no time for anything deep to develop for Peyton Manning who appears to be getting rid of the ball in record time and no matter who’s taking the carries they can’t run effectively. Kyle DeVan displaced Jamey Richard a while back and Jeff Linkenbach’s been ahead of Mike Pollak at right guard for three weeks. Those changes don’t seem to have improved things up front in the run or pass game.
CB Jason Allen lined up across from Randy Moss, and the wideout caught just three passes last Sunday.
Jason Allen, Texans cornerback: We won’t pretend that he was a magic solution for the secondary. But the Titans hardly went after the recent waiver claim, who played ahead of Kareem Jackson and lined up across from an underutilized and ineffective Randy Moss. That Allen played a lot in a shutout can give the secondary a feeling that things have changed.
The Jaguars' offense on third down: The Jaguars were 10 for 16 on third down against the Giants, a remarkable feat that could and probably should mean you win a game. They’ll look to build on that Sunday in Nashville against a defense that’s struggling terribly to get off the field on third down. (See the falling entry on the Titans’ above.)
The Titans' intention to get the ball to Moss: Why bring him in if you have no intention to use him at what he does best? Sure he’s going to draw double-teams. But if Minnesota and New England looked away from him based on the coverage, he wouldn’t have the best reception-per-touchdown number (6.2) in league history among players with at least 500 catches. If you throw a deep pick on third-and-long, it’s the same as a punt.