Indianapolis Colts (8-0, 1st)
Last week: Def. Houston 20-17 at home
We thought: The spread may have been a bit high, but losing at home to the Texans seemed out of the question. Peyton Manning wouldn't let that happen.
They are: Worried about the lack of a running game or impressed that they seem to be able to pull out any kind of win? Maybe a bit of both, but slanted towards the latter. Once went a whole season in Madden (Vinny T and the Jets) without running once, so pass-heavy teams can win titles. Excited for Sunday night, particularly if Manning doesn't get skittish.
Houston Texans (5-4, 2nd)
Last week: Lost to Indianapolis 20-17 on the road
We thought: While pundits wondered if the Texans had closed the gap between themselves and the Colts, we were mainly concerned if Ryan Moats would emerge as the definitive back for the Texans, and how regretful not bidding high enough on him would prove.
They are: We still don't know if Moats or Steve Slaton will be the featured guy moving forward, and most likely it'll change week-to-week. Fantasy owners will be furious about this. Anyway, as a Jets fan, glad they caught the Texans early on before they got on a little roll. An off week and three divisional games (Titans and Colts at home, Jags on the road) kick off a very managable schedule. We'll hold off on the P-word for now.
Jacksonville Jaguars (4-4, 3rd)
Last week: Def. Kansas City 24-21 at home
We thought: If you're calling the plays for the Jags, how could you possibly defend giving Mo-Jo his first carry of the game in the 2nd quarter? And after an 80-yard run on that first carry, how could you possibly defend giving him only 8 more touches the rest of the game? Answer: you can't.
They are: The only thing more lifeless than the Jacksonville crowd (45,546) was anyone after the game who bet on the Jags and saw a 17-point lead with 2:32 remaining turn into a Chiefs cover.
Tennessee Titans (2-6, 4th)
Last week: Def. San Francisco 34-17 on the road
We thought: They got some life after finally getting a win and the hope of a VY resurgence. Other than that, 5-11 or 6-10 seemed likely.
They are: Going on the road and beating a Niners team that couldn't afford to lose tells us that a) the Titans aren't all that bad, and b) Jeff Fisher is still a good coach. Whether he would have benched Kerry Collins without a nudge from the owner might not matter now. Can't just show up to beat the Titans now.