Jacksonville 37 Tennessee 17
As the season continues one wonders how long will it be before Kerry Collins gets benched in favor of Vince Young? The fans and media alike will start the arguments across the football land. The Titans however are in a bind much deeper as they stick by the quarterback that led them to the best record in the league last year at 13-3. Now they find themselves in a hole called 0-4 with games against Indianapolis and then at New England. So 0-6 is more the reality at this time because this team does not look like one that can get up enough to beat their next two opponents. The offense was a repeat of weeks past. They cannot count on the run because Chris Johnson seems to get a big run or next to nothing. Collins is under more pressure than normal and his passer rating is getting lower than the average high temperature in the fall. The secondary is getting worse by the week and now with the injury to Nick Harper Tennessee will have to turn to rookies to get it done. Jags quarterback David Garrard torched them as he went 27-37 for 323 yards with three touchdown and no picks. He had time to throw and room to get the ball to his receivers. Mike Sims-Walker used his speed and skills to burn the Titans for 91 yards on seven catches good for two touchdowns. It was 30-3 five minutes into the third quarter and the game was essentially over. Johnson got 83 yards on 16 carries but could not become a factor in a game he could not win by himself. One of the few bright spots continues to be rookie receiver Kenny Britt as he had seven catches for 105 yards and after four games is the team’s leading receiver with 17 grabs. He also got his first NFL touchdown and turned a short pass into a 42-yard gain in the fourth quarter. Collins finished 29-48 for 284 yards, one touchdown passing, one rushing and two interceptions. He continues to struggle with his receiving corps. They have not found that timing from last year mainly due to new faces on the field. In the meantime Young continues to wait on the bench for his turn. The followers will call for his reinstatement to the starting job and say that now is the time to inject the offense with a spark. An argument was made that said that the Titans wouldn’t be turning the ball over to a rookie. They would be giving the ball back to the player they picked third in the draft a few years ago. They would be asking him to earn his rightful place back if he can. It’s not like he would be replacing a star. He would be replacing a 15-year veteran that is on the last legs of his NFL career. If things go bad against Indy next week why not give your huge investment a chance to see if he still has it? Do it soon before it’s too late and he is lost for good.
Indianapolis 34 Seattle 17
This one was over by the end of the first half as Peyton Manning threw for two touchdowns and the Colts had a 21-3 lead. Then to put a stamp on it they scored 13 points more in the second half to increase the lead to 34-3. Manning was a terrific going 31-41 for 353 yards and has his team at 4-0. He has a new set of receivers to go with Reggie Wayne and he doesn’t miss a beat. He continued his rise in the record books as he tied Fran Tarkenton for number three with his 342nd touchdown pass. He joined Dan Marino as the only quarterbacks to throw at least 55 touchdown passes to two different receivers. Next week they go to Tennessee looking to put the dagger into a dismal season for the Titans. Indy’s run defense was solid, as Seattle backs had no place to go. They sacked Seneca Wallace five times and hurried him plenty more. With the defense playing well and Manning at the helm the Colts look ready to play in January and it’s only October.
Houston 29 Oakland 6
The story here was how would JaMarcus Russell do against this Texan defense and it turned out bad. They shut him down and held him to 128 yards on 12-33 passing. They held the Raider running game to 45 yards and the offense had a good day. Steve Slaton had a touchdown run of 32 yards and also caught an 18-yarder for another score; Jacoby Jones returned a kickoff 95 yards for another touchdown, as Houston outclassed the Raiders. Matt Schaub started quickly and then tapered off finishing 11-22 for 224 yard and one touchdown. The offense put up 329 yards but had to punt seven times to stall drives. Now Houston has a chance to go 3-2 next week if they can pull one out in Arizona in a game they should feel good about.