A Not-So-Crisp Win Against the Texans, but Who Stood Out?
By Luke Sims
The Texans against the Jags is always a good rivalry. Whether it’s the Texans are wearing their “battle red” uniforms (very excited to see them when the Jags travel to Houston!) or the fact that the two teams have always been relatively evenly matched, either way I get excited when these two teams play. But I get more excited when the Jaguars win. This week we were treated to a very fun game that probably should have been put away earlier by Jacksonville, but, instead, turned into a mad dash for the finish line with the Jaguars coming away a nose ahead of the Texans. So, during this game, who was crisp? And who was soggy? Make the Jump to find out!
- Crispest of the Crispies: David Garrard. Did you see his poise on Sunday? Did you see how many hits he took but was manage to shake off? Did you see his completion percentage? It was 77 percent in case you didn’t know. He was phenomenal! I don’t care what people think about him, this man give the Jaguars the best chance to win week in and week out. Sure, “Bad David” is always a possibility, but the upside (such as this week) of David makes him well worth the investment. His play, despite a horrendous effort by the offensive line, allowed him to evade potential tacklers (only sacked twice despite the terrible line play), throw for 342 yards, two touchdowns, and force the opposing defense to back up out of the box.
- Just as Crispy: Mike Thomas. Alright, 50 yards of his 149 came on the final play of the game. But he was there when we needed him. Not only that, but his sure hands gave David someone to get the ball out to with ease (8 receptions) and forced the defense to plan around him. His added running threat (2 rushes, 18 yards) earned him further attention from the defense. When Mike plays the way he did this week (and all season), completely owning the number two receiver position, do the Jags really need a traditional threat in the first spot? So long as Mike Sims-Walker remains even remotely competent, the team can flow through Mike Thomas. He played so crisply, looking worthy of a pro bowl spot. This man is quickly becoming one of the primary men in this offense.
- 2nd Crispest: Maurice Jones-Drew. Pocket Hercules was flying on Sunday. While I didn’t feel like he made an impact (I don’t trust my emotions anyway), the numbers speak for themselves. 100 yards with two touchdowns, and 23 yards receiving. Yeah, I guarantee that the Texans defense felt that Jones-Drew was having an impact. It was good to the see the man run wild again and carve up a defense. Surprisingly, he has remained very silent this year. I quite like that the main force of the offense has become a kind of unsung hero. Flying under the radar is new for the Jaguars back, but I’m certain the lack of attention is highly beneficial. I’m glad he’s back in crisp form!
- 3rd Crispest: Jeremy Mincey. With the loss of Aaron Kampman, it is widely acknowledged that the Jaguars rushmen have become considerably less imposing. But of the rush that came anywhere near Matt Schaub this week, Jeremy Mincey played a part. He seemed to be the only defender even coming near Schaub and forcing him to move in the pocket. Mincey even managed to touch him on one play. While this is a terrible sign of how poor the pass rush was, Mincey played very hard and helped to lead the team. While accumulating five tackles on Sunday, Mincey was quietly improving throughout the game. I was impressed. He has gained a spot on this line for the rest of the season with his play. It was a very crisp effort in an otherwise soggy defense.
- Not So Crisp (Soggy): Don Carey. I have to admit that I hold a very favorable opinion of Don Carey. I think, that with a lot of work, he could be a very solid defensive back. That said, he played very poorly against the Texans. He accumulated all of one tackle before being pulled in favor of Sean Considine. He was caught out of position on multiple plays, including that massive gain by a wide open Andre Johnson. And he has yet to prove why he has a starting spot at safety. Sean Considine played far better than Don Carey and should be starting in his spot. The only good thing to be said about Don Carey’s play as of late is that he has a very large upside. He has shown, all too seldomly, that he can be a hard hitting, proper tackling, high awareness safety. But he doesn’t glimmer frequently enough to warrant playing most every down. Sean Considine, a far more reliable player, should be back there to protect deep. Don was far from crisp.
– Luke N. Sims