Brian Wilmer
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December 12 - Tanking in Texas

We’ve all been there.  There are some things in your life that are just not easy to
say, and the only way to get the point across is just to say what’s on your mind.

This is one of those things.

The Texans are tanking games on purpose.

There, I said it.

Sure, they are putting the right spin on it.  They are saying in the media how these
losses take so much out of them, acting angry if someone dares question their
motives, and insisting that they are professionals who would never do such a thing.

Actions speak louder than words, however.

This is the same club that blew a
ten point (is that even possible?) lead to the Rams in the final thirty
seconds before losing in overtime.  They allowed the Ravens (and, more importantly, Kyle Boller) to
throw all over them late in the game to give them another “heartbreaking defeat”.

And then, yesterday, the
most egregious offense.

The Texans appeared to show some signs of fight as they faked a field goal with Kris Brown, who
rushed for a first down.  Shortly after that play, the Texan offense again sputtered.  Brown then
launched a field goal attempt directly into the armpits of about five Titan defenders.

There was no way to tell at this point whether or not Brown had been injured as a result of his jaunt,
but he appeared to get nothing behind his field goal attempt, and it was swatted in Shaq-like fashion.

The Titans marched 70 yards down the field in 3:37 with the Texan defense offering virtually no
resistance, and Rob Bironas knocked home a chipshot field goal from 21 yards to give the Titans a
13-10 lead.  

Even with that, it
still wasn’t over.  

The Texans took the ensuing kickoff to the Titan 27 after a flip from Todd Washington to Jerome
Mathis, and a face mask penalty from Tennessee’s Reynaldo Hill took the ball to the 14.  This set up
a 31-yard attempt from Brown to try to tie the game.

What happened next was surreal.

Brown lined up for the kick, appeared to take another half-stab at the ball,
and pulled it about 10 yards wide left.  He did not collapse to the ground
with emotion, as though he were upset with what had just happened.  He
simply and matter-of-factly jogged off the field without so much as
hanging his head.

The kick, in fact, was so badly missed that it led Titans Radio’s Mike Keith
and Frank Wycheck to opine that the kick had been blocked until told
otherwise in the post-game statistics.

The Titans emerged as the lesser of two evils.  The Texans emerged with more questions of tanking
games.

One has  to feel for Domanick Davis.  He rushes for 139 yards, gains another 50 receiving, and the
first thing he hears coming off the field is more Reggie Bush talk.  

One also has to wonder why the Texans are doing this.  The best player likely to be on the board is
the one they least need.  Do something smart – for once – and package the pick to the highest bidder
and build your line.  I’m sure David Carr would thank you for not having to endure another 60-plus
sack season.

When Texans’ owner Bob McNair was asked about losing on purpose, he scowled and said, “That’s
ridiculous.”

Something is ridiculous in Houston, Bob.

Maybe someday they’ll enact an NFL draft lottery to make sure nothing “ridiculous” like this ever
happens again.
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