AFC South Review: Week 4

By Joanne Kong

Twitter: @kongfu4u  AFC South

We can all agree that the AFC South hasn’t been a particularly competitive division.  There is no one team that stands out.  There is no one team that analysts would agree currently is likely to make and win the Super Bowl.  Entering into week 4 of the season, Andrew Luck is out and is day-to-day.  The best quarterback in the division might be the rookie, Marcus Mariota.  The Jacksonville Jaguars have the best defense against the running game in the division.  And, the Texans are a prime example that one individual cannot make-up a winning team.

With that said, the AFC South closes another week with some highs and a lot of lows.

Indianapolis Colts (2-2) & Jacksonville Jaguars (1-3)

Indianapolis ColtsJacksonville Jaguars

Jacksonville Jaguars (13) @ Indianapolis Colts (16)

13-13 into overtime:  If I said the game was so bad it was exciting would you believe me?  Maybe not the entire game, but overtime.  Rookie kicker Jason Myers missed a 53 yard field goal twice (only the 2nd time counted), taking the game into overtime.  What could have brought the Jaguars into 1st place in the division, ended in disappointment.  But, it’s not from a lack of effort.

1Battle of the mediocre quarterbacks.

With Andrew Luck out in week 4, Matt Hasselbeck took the field against the Jaguars.  Hasselbeck — a 40 year old quarterback who hadn’t started since November of 2012.

Jaguars quarterback, Blake Bortles, had over 200 yards and 2 TDs in the past two weeks.  It wasn’t overly optimistic to think the Jaguars would leave Lucus Oil Stadium with a win, breaking the Colts 14 game divisional winning streak.  But they didn’t.

Matt Hasselbeck - Getty Images

Matt Hasselbeck – Getty Images

Hasselbeck finished the game with a 63.7 QBR completing 30 of 47 passes for 282 yards and 1 passing TD to tight end Coby Fleener – who had the most receiving yards (83) – taking 3 sacks in the process.  Blake Bortles loves to throw the ball whether he has a target or not, but that wasn’t the reason the Jaguars lost.  Bortles had a QBR of 73.2 with completing 28 of 50 passes for 298 yards and 1 TD to Allen Hurns – 11 of 15 targets for 116 yards – taking 1 sack along the way.

2There were mistakes made from both sides, but not necessarily from the quarterbacks.

The Colts running back, Frank Gore, fumbled the ball inside the five yard line for a second time in the fourth quarter, rushing for only 53 yards.  The Colts rookie running back, Josh Robinson, also faced some problems in week 4.  He had 3 carries for 2 yards and 1 fumble, which ended in a Jaguars TD.

Kicker Jason Myers missed 2 field goals, one with seconds left in the fourth quarter for the win and the second in the overtime for the win.  As you can guess, both lead to the Jaguars defeat.

3The team with the better kicker won the game.

Veteran kicker Adam Vinatieri became the first NFL player to score over 1000 (1004) points with 2 teams.  He made his 479th field goal to win against the Jaguars, and is currently the 4th all-time kicker for field goals made (previously was tied with John Carney).  Vinatieri is now the Colts all-time leading scorer.

Houston Texans (1-3)

Houston Texans

Houston Texans (21) @ Atlanta Falcons (48)

1Are the Texans REALLY that BAD?

Doing lawn work would have been better time spent than watching this game.  My inexplicable love for the team has lead me astray week after week, believing with blind faith that the Texans would win.  Ryan Mallet was benched late in the third quarter and replaced with Brian Hoyer.  Although the Texans had no chance of winning the game, he was able to score 21 points, rescuing the Texans from a shut-out.  It wasn’t as bad as the Jacksonville Jaguars loss to the New England Patriots (17-51) in week 3, but it sure was close.  To add insult to injury, on the last play, Cecil Shorts III fumbled, which was picked up by defensive player Nate Stupor and returned for a TD.

It’s unfortunate to say but Mallet looked better on the bench than on the field this week.  Guess who’ll be starting week 4?  Not, Mallett.

Brian Hoyer - USA Today Sports Photo

Brian Hoyer – USA Today Sports Photo

2The Texans defense?

J.J. Watt might be one of the most notable defensive players, but the Texans defense was unable to stop the Falcons from scoring 5 TDs in 3 quarters of the game.  Julio Jones was held to only 4 receptions for 38 yards, but it didn’t seem to make much of a difference.  The Texans defense were unable to contain running back Devonta Freeman, who had 68 rushing yards, 3 TDs and 81 receiving yards, and Leonard Hankerson, who had 6 receptions for 103 yards and a TD.

Can it be that the 4-0 Falcons are just that good?

The frustration was evident in the Texans defense as they saw the Falcons rock the scoreboard, something the Texans offense was unable to do until late in the third quarter.

The Texans aren’t the only defense that has started the season in disappointment.   But Texans fans will be eagerly waiting to see what adjustments are made for the rest of the season.

3Fantasy Impact – Just because the team stinks doesn’t mean the players do.

Those that were excited to hear that Arian Foster would start were probably cursing after the first quarter.  Foster was a non-factor in the game rushing for only 25 yards.  (Wah-Wah).  DeAndre Hopkins caught 9 of 22 targets for 157 yards, most of which were gained after Hoyer took the field – thank-you Hoyer.  Although Hopkins didn’t score a TD, he didn’t disappoint fantasy owners.  Did anyone play Cecil Shorts III?  It’s doubtful.  Shorts is only 9% owned in Yahoo leagues, but has 149 total receiving yards in the first 3 weeks of the season.  Too bad, Shorts was the second favorite receiver targeted with 6 of 10 targets for 87 yards and a TD.  Shorts seems to be finding his role with the Texans.  It’s just a matter of whether there will be someone to throw him the ball.

The Houston defense is 83% owned and 67% started in Yahoo leagues.  Those that started the defense were better off keeping the slot empty, as they put up negative numbers.  Perhaps something to think about in week 5.

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