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Titans fall to Texans in 34-31 shootout

Despite a number of big plays by Chris Johnson and a 21-7 first-half lead, the Tennessee Titans were upset at home by the equally-as-explosive Houston Texans 34-31.

The loss was sealed when Kerry Collins forced a Kerry Collins fumble as the pigskin was knocked loose by the QB’s own body. The unfortunate mishap fittingly ended a contest that outside of the offensive fireworks, will be remembered for the Titans’ inability to stop the high-octane Matt Schaub/Andre Johnson-led Houston Texan passing attack.

With the loss, the Titans fall to 0-2, not exactly the type of start we were expecting from Jeff Fisher’s troops. 

My thoughts on today’s disappointing Tennessee Titan loss are after the jump. 

What the hell’s going on out here?

This memorable phrase uttered by the legendary Vince Lombardi is a perfect way to sum up the lackluster efforts of the Titans’ passing defense against the Texans.

Matt Schaub sitting comfortably in the pocket while lofting bombs to Texan wide receivers running wide-open downfield was a recurring theme today. The Titans failed to sack Schaub once and the Houston signal-caller, who was once the whipping-boy a.k.a. pinata of the Titan defense, magically transformed into a feared nemesis as a result of his 357 yard/ 4TD effort.

Whether it’s fair or not, it’s only a matter of time before the blame gets aimed in the direction of new defensive coordinator Chuck Cecil. On too many occasions, his blitzes failed to work and as a unit, his troops were an undisciplined bunch who continued to fall for way too many play-fakes.

The only positive from today’s putrid defensive performance, you ask? Little Dynamo Steve Slaton, who had previously ran for at least 100 yards in his first two meetings against Tennessee, was held to only 34 yards on 17 carries.

Of course, considering the Lombardi aspirations of this football team, moral victories will ring hollow in the Titan lockeroom this week.

Every Coaches Dream

The artist known as Every Coaches Dream, Chris Johnson, will be every defensive coordinator’s nightmare if he continues to perform the way he played today. CJ was a force catching and running the football, combining for a total of 284 yards and a whopping three touchdowns.

Barring injury, I see no sophomore jinx in sight for the Titans’ explosive second-year running back

Nate the Great

As I mentioned in an article last week, I was highly anticipating a game’s worth of action from free agent signee Nate Washington. Nate didn’t disappoint, catching 4 balls for 36 yards and a touchdown. The TD reception was a nice over-the-shoulder grab on a Kerry Collins endzone toss. 

We should all expect continued production from Nate as the season goes on.

Some final random thoughts

-With Craig Hentrich’s calf-injury, don’t be shocked if preseason-star A.J. Trapasso is signed away from Tampa’s practice squad.
-Outside of one muffed punt, Ryan Mouton didn’t look too bad out there returning punts. He’s no Chris Carr, but he’s an upgrade over Cortland Finnegan.

-Never thought I’d see this defense give up six plays of over 20 yards or more. 

-Can’t blame stud offensive tackle Michael Roos for giving up a sack to “Super Mario” Williams. The Texans have themselves one heck of a defensive lineman for years to come.

-Speaking of studs, Andre Johnson continues to emerge as one of the game’s top receivers. Unfortunately, he’s had some of his best performances against the Titans as of late.

-Liked what I saw from Alge Crumpler. Despite his offensive guard type stature, he looked light on his feet with a couple of nifty moves to escape Texan defenders today.

-Guess we’ll have to wait another week for Jared Cook to make his long-awaited impact.

-The crowd sure did respond negatively to the Jason McCourty fumble recovery that was nullified. I wasn’t at the game, but even watching on television, you could hear the fans vividly voice their disapproval of that call by the refs.

Your turn, guys. What are your thoughts regarding the Titans’ heartbreaking defeat at the hands of the Texans today?