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Post-Game Breakdown: Tonight We Gonna Party Like It's 2004

At the outset of this brutality, allow me to wish a very happy holiday season to all of you from the proprietor(s) of BRB.  This is my/our first December here, so here's to a healthy 2008 to all of my/our very patient readers, who have put up with my in(s)ane ramblings (though nothing I've written has been anywhere near as crazy as the mash notes Scott has written to one Charley Casserly).

Now that we've plowed through the yuletide pleasantries, let's get down to business.  Your Houston Texans laid an egg the size of Williams Tower yesterday afternoon in Indianapolis that was reminiscent of the kaleidoscope of horrors that was the 2004 2-14 season.  Not to take anything away from the Colts--they are a damn fine football team, and I am hoping against hope that they beat those motherf*&^#ing Patriots in a few weeks.  But there is no excuse for the kind of game our Texans played yesterday.  Zero.  The Texans ain't that bad, and the Colts ain't 23 points better than they are (see, e.g., the September effort).  To paraphrase William Parcells, however, you are what the score says you are.  And right now, your Houston Texans are more than three (3) touchdowns worse than the defending champions.  Disheartening, to be sure.  Let's take a look at what we saw on the eve of Christmas Eve:

  1.  Who didn't feel like you were watching a freaking worldbeater after the first offensive drive (offense simply marched down the field before Sage fired a TD pass to K-Dub) and the subsequent defensive stop (holding Peyton Manning to a FG AT HOME on the first possession)?  Only to see said worldbeater collapse like your childhood dream of being an astronaut/police officer/fireman soon thereafter?  God, I hate football.  Well, mostly I hate how freaking good Peyton Manning is and how prone we are to melt down, but you get my drift.  
  2.  Remember how I was running my mouth that there isn't another TE that I'd rather have than Owen Daniels?  I think I'd rather have Dallas Clark.  And not just because of the TD catches and absurd end-around possibilities--it's because Clark seems to have better hands.
  3.  I appreciate Andre Johnson taking up for Sage Rosenfels as a way to deflect attention from the atrocity of Sage's three (3) picks.  But I don't buy it.  Sage looked out of sorts after that first drive, and no amount of WR accountability is going to make me think Sage played anything but a horrid game.  For all of the talk about Sage legitimately challenging for The Schaub's spot under center, Sage probably played himself out of any real debate about the position or his worth for awhile.  I ask you this:  If you're a GM whose team is simply a "game manager" QB away from contending for the playoffs or the Super Bowl, aren't you markedly less interested in Rosenfels than you might have been before Sunday's game?  I would be.
  4.  Although he had to step up in the pocket a bit, the offensive line once again did a great job keeping their QB's jersey clean.  Somewhere, David Carr just broke a nail.
  5.  I'm just not sure what to think of Darius Walker.  He hits the middle with an obvious burst, but he doesn't look fast enough to actually turn the corner when he goes wide.  His ability to perform the former makes him infinitely more valuable than the No. 2 Pick in the 2006 NFL Draft, but it doesn't make me think he's the answer at RB.
  6.  Dear Ron Dayne:  I miss you.  Get well soon.  XOXO, Tim.
  7.  P.S.  Jesus--what's happening to me?
  8.  Kubes is beginning to sound like he's ready to buy what Apostrophe Davis is selling.  Allow me to offer my packing services, Mr. Glass.
  9.  The announcers said that Bryan Pittman's snap on Kris Brown's FG attempt was high.  If so, that's two (2), Pittman.  If not (and replay didn't make the snap look all that bad), get it together, Pro Bowl alternate.
  10.  Matt Turk's productive day makes me fear for Mr. Hyde when Jacksonville comes to town.
  11.  No more pressure, Jacoby.  We're done mentioning you until you show a glimpse of your preseason production.
  12.  The defensive highlights were few and far between.  Part of that is due to the witch that is Peyton Manning, but part of it was also due to terrible play.  Let's be brief...
  13.  Guess who did what he was drafted to do?  That's right--the guy who's single-handedly showing that Mel Kiper and the rest of the draftniks are as clueless as the rest of us.  What's more, he was the only Texan to consistently stake his claim in the Indy backfield all day.  On this most holy day, I thank the Almighty for Super Mario.
  14.  DeMeco Ryans isn't right, and his stats show it.  Yet I'd rather have him at 50% than 95% of NFL linebackers at 100%.
  15.  The nine (9) tackles aside, I didn't think that Morlon Greenwood looked as sharp as he has all season.
  16.  Earl Cochran deserves to split time, if not start, at DE opposite Mario on Sunday.  The guy always seems to be around the ball, which is more than I can say about Anthony Weaver in 95% of the games this season.
  17.  Von Hutchins continues to be a liability.  Why the staff kept him on Reggie Wayne so long, I have no idea.  Speaking of...
  18.  Fred Bennett continues to show that the Texans got themselves a steal in the fourth round of the 2007 draft.  Make no mistake--he got torched a time or three.  But if you want to boil his upside down to a single play, look no further than his play on 3rd down on the first drive of the game.  He made an astoundingly great play to reach around and knock the ball away, which forced the Colts to kick the only FG they'd attempt all day.  Bennett is going to continue to take his knocks, but the rookie looks awfully good.
  19.  I saved the worst for (almost) last.  Travis Johnson.  I've been on record as anti-TJ since the day he was drafted; as this site only began in Febuary 2007, you'll have to trust me on this.  Despite my misgivings, I'll begrudgingly admit that he's played far better this year than any prior year of his Texans tour, which is to say he's sucked less this year than any other year.  But Travis Johnson has never been a good Houston Texan.  He's always been a disappointment, particularly considering he's a FORMER FIRST-ROUND DRAFT PICK.  But he's never been as disappointing, as a player or a human being, as he was yesterday in the RCA Dome.  I'll agree that the first personal foul call was dicey, though it shows a lack of intelligence on Travis' part to get within shouting distance of the NFL's Golden Boy after the whistle blew and Super Mario was already getting up.  But the second unsportsmanlike conduct infraction?  Inexcusable and totally classless.  
  20.  Allow me to formally welcome MDC to the "Get Travis Johnson The Hell Out Of Town" Bandwagon.  Your presence is long overdue.  We meet every Thursday night, and it's BYOB.
  21.  There were some coaching decisions that made me scratch my head, but I'm giving the staff a mulligan for two (2) reasons.  First, it's the holidays.  Second, they've been lights out the previous two (2) weeks, so they deserve a break.
  22.  Fake Game Balls:  Offense--Darius Walker.  Defense--Mario Williams.  Special Teams--Apostrophe Davis.
Let's finish strong on Sunday with the Jags.  The most successful season in franchise history is still within reach.  Until then, a happy and healthy holiday season to all.