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Chris Johnson's career day wasted by Titans defense

The adage that football is always won in the trenches took a beating int Houston’s 34-31 upset win over the Titans.

The Texans rushed 29 times, for a 2.9 yards-per-carry average.

They couldn’t stop the run either, giving up 284 yards from scrimmage and three touchdowns to Chris Johnson, including a 91-yard rushing score.

Johnson’s insane day also included nine catches and 87 yards, including a 69-yard gainer.

Aside from Adrian Peterson, there hasn’t been a more exciting running back to enter the league in the last five years.  The kid can take any play the distance, and the Titans did a great job blocking for him.  (He had three scores over 55 yards.)

Which makes this loss all the more frustrating.

The Texans showed a team-wise toughness usually unseen in the Gary Kubiak era, bouncing back from a Week One shellacking to the Jets and an early 21-7 deficit to the Titans.  Not surprisingly, they did it through the air.

Matt Schaub threw for 357 yards and four touchdowns, two to the incomparable Andre Johnson.  (And let’s stop comparing Titans cornerback Cortland Finnegan to Darrelle Revis.  Look at the difference in Johnson’s performance the last two weeks.)

The Titans offense moved the ball plenty, but Houston held Tennessee scoreless in the fourth quarter.  Kerry Collins fumbled a ball without getting hit as Tennessee was driving for the possible tying score.

Tennessee has now lost two games after going 13-3 a season ago.  Their pass defense was shredded for a second straight week and they lost another game they “should” have won; the Texans hadn’t won in Nashville since 2004. 

These Texans aren’t predictable, but this win is a sign they may hang around in the AFC South race longer than usual.

And the Titans loss is a reminder that last year doesn’t mean anything.  No matter how special Chris Johnson is.

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10 Responses to “Chris Johnson's career day wasted by Titans defense”
  1. Black Douglas says: Sep 20, 2009 7:25 PM

    Now if only they could get something out of “career wasted” Chris Henry, they may be on to something.

  2. vslyke says: Sep 20, 2009 7:46 PM

    Gregg, both of Andre’s TDs came against Nick Harper, not Finnegan. You could at least check your facts before you rip a guy. Rip the DC (Cecil) for putting an aging vet who’s not really a man cover guy on Andre Freaking Johnson if anyone.

  3. clint_taurus says: Sep 20, 2009 7:46 PM

    actually the Titans have lost 3 games since going 13-3, counting the playoff loss to the Ravens…all losses were by 3 points and were games the team “should” have won (your words, not mine)…
    the inability to finish games is becoming a disturbing trend…

  4. JackThibideaux says: Sep 20, 2009 7:59 PM

    Care to explain to me how that Jacoby Jones TD was ANY DIFFERENT than the Louis Murphy non-TD?
    Apart from the fact that one guy wears silver and black?

  5. steeler-hater says: Sep 20, 2009 8:27 PM

    Tennessee has got to face the improving Jets next week on the road.
    An 0-3 start is a real possibility for them. Not good. Not good at all.
    Next week is must win for the Titans.
    They have to start defending the pass better… even if it means giving up more rushing yards to the opponents.
    Their pass defense has given up over 300 yards to a couple of very overrated QBs. It’s not like the 2 QBs were Brady & Manning.
    This is not good at all…

  6. rockotica says: Sep 20, 2009 8:30 PM

    jsut saw this as a teaser headline on nbc for the game 2nite, complete w PFT logo and Costas mention. florio loves $$$$$unday night football.

  7. steeler-hater says: Sep 20, 2009 8:31 PM

    The pass defense this year is terrible so far.
    They have given up over 300 yards passing to a couple of very overrated QBs.
    It’s not like they were facing Brady & Manning in these games.
    This is not good… not good at all.

  8. VonClausewitz says: Sep 20, 2009 9:12 PM

    Strong start weak finish. Clint’s right, it’s three games in a row like this. They need to climb over the proverbial mental barrier that’s preventing them from winning. They’re at the door they just gotta go thru it.

  9. titansfan615 says: Sep 20, 2009 9:31 PM

    First off to whoever wrote this, the majority of Andre’s yards were against Nick Harper so you are completely wrong about that.
    Secondly, everyone says we can’t close out games. I believe if Vince was our quarterback we could. We have showed the world that we have receivers that can catch, two running backs that can run and tight ends that are mis match problems, but we settle with having just an aging pocket passer who when needs to scramble fumbles it and loses the game. When our team is put in obvious passing situations, Vince is way more deadly than just a pocket passer no matter how inaccurate he may be, just cause defenses will have to keep thinking in the back of their minds, Vince could run this for a first down. Kerry has two INT’s and a fumble with 4 touchdowns. What is he doing special to keep his job?

  10. Sleet says: Sep 21, 2009 9:34 AM

    Florio,
    Cable predicated that if Murphy’s non-TD catch (according to you and the Refs) were to happen 20 times this year, it is a TD 19 times. Why? Three reasons:
    1. It normally wouldn’t get challenged by coaches (outside of 2 minutes).
    2. If challenged, it would be called a catch by most humans (rather than a ref technically applying the letter of the rule).
    3. Murphy’s a Raider.
    Well, so far, Cable’s spot on. Murphy had two feet down, then his but hit, and then the ball hit the ground and wiggled. It was said that Murphy was going to the ground and didn’t maintain possession through the play.
    Please explain why the Texans got 6 on this play. http://www.nfl.com/videos/nfl-game-h…s-34-Titans-31
    Yea, I thought so, no good explanation. The WR’s body hits the ground, and the ball comes out. The WR didn’t keep possession through the play, but it was called 6.
    Cable 1, Florio 0.

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