Sunday, September 20, 2009

Pass Defense Continues to Suck; Titans 0-2

The Titans have now lost 2 games by a combined total of 6 points.

They have allowed 678 passing yards in two games. And yet again, the other team makes the play that saves their bacon: Andre Johnson's one-handed circus catch TD. I guess the bright side is that the Titans have allowed 104 rushing yards total in two games, but I'd be willing to cash some of that in for a few more plays in the secondary.

The Titans cannot win close games. And what the hell is Kerry Collins doing holding the ball with one hand near the end of regulation? Veteran? Hell I'll take Vince Young if the Titans are going to lose this way.

Also, logic fails the NFL rules as the Titans suffer a ridiculous, nonsense returner interference penalty in the game, where Texans returner Jacoby Jones calls a fair catch, is unable to actually catch the ball, hitting off his hands, and the Titans are penalized for recovering it in the air. The rule is like this, and tell me if this sounds like a matter of semantics (important part in bold):

  1. The member of the receiving team must raise one arm a full length above his head and wave it from side to side while kick is in flight. (Failure to give proper sign: receivers’ ball five yards behind spot of signal.) Note: It is legal for the receiver to shield his eyes from the sun by raising one hand no higher than the helmet.
  2. No opponent may interfere with the fair catcher, the ball, or his path to the ball. Penalty: 15 yards from spot of foul and fair catch is awarded.
  3. A player who signals for a fair catch is not required to catch the ball. However, if a player signals for a fair catch, he may not block or initiate contact with any player on the kicking team until the ball touches a player. Penalty: snap 15 yards.
  4. If ball hits ground or is touched by member of kicking team in flight, fair catch signal is off and all rules for a kicked ball apply.
  5. Any undue advance by a fair catch receiver is delay of game. No specific distance is specified for undue advance as ball is dead at spot of catch. If player comes to a reasonable stop, no penalty. For penalty, five yards.
  6. If time expires while ball is in play and a fair catch is awarded, receiving team may choose to extend the period with one fair catch kick down. However, placekicker may not use tee.
Nowhere in the rule does it state: coverage team must wait for the ball to hit the ground, or can't catch it in midair after the ball has hit off the returner. In fact, by strict measures, the fair catch signal should have been "off" when the ball glanced off Jones' hands. Rule 2 is a bit interesting in this case, but the Titans sat there and waited for Jones to catch the ball and did not interfere with him until the bumble.

Also, the TD Jones caught should not have been a TD just by virtue of his knee hitting at the 1 yard line. We might have been delaying the inevitable here, but you still have a chance.

The turning point of this game was where the Titans had a 21-7 lead, then a defensive meltdown allowed Andre Johnson to go untouched through the defense and get an easy wide open pass. This would have been forgivable had Kerry Collins not thrown an interception right after that and allowed the Texans great field position to get the tying score.

What is it with backups that they can't enter a game in a crucial situation? So Craig Hentrich gets hurt and can't hold the ball on a Bironas field goal? So the Titans go for it on 4th and 6, because no one on the team can hold the ball for our kicker should he need to try a 50-yarder? Seriously. Do any other teams ever get into these situations? I'm going out on a limb and say, "No." Not even the Bengals probably have to think about stuff like this.

Jason Jones got high fives after getting kicked out of the game for throwing punches at the Texans after a run play. Way to go, Jason! Way to get kicked out! Way not to be professional! I would think maybe Jeff Fisher will handle this behind closed doors, but I would have liked to have seen him grab Jones' face mask and admonished his sideline for cheerleading this crap.

Titans are 0-2 guys. You ready for some football? Next up, 2-0 Jets.



At 9/21/2009 07:18:00 PM, Blogger Kennelworthy said...

Amen on Jason Jones getting high fives--not to mention the standing ovation from the fans. I know the fans just saw him protecting his teammate. I saw a bit of thuggery. Not going to help.

Could not believe the pass defense. Didn't this team send three of four to the Pro Bowl last year from the secondary? Was Haynesworth really that big of a factor to the total defensive effort? I hope not. But I'm not in love with what I've seen.

And I would be mad at Collins too, if I wasn't sort of blinded by the awesomeness of Chris Johnson, who is--without a doubt--awesome.

At 9/21/2009 09:25:00 PM, Blogger Mike said...

I think we should run the Wildcat.


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