So, I promised myself I wouldn’t yell at all during the Titans game yesterday. After all, I’ve been sick the last week or so, and Saturday at rehearsal my voice was horrendous. Only a vow of silence for a week could repair things.
Going into the game I thought, “What could there possibly be to yell about? The Titans will let down after their great comeback win against the Giants – they’re still a young team.” When they carted PacMan off the field in the first half, I mentally made a checkmark beide the “game over” box.
I’ll know better next time. Vince Young, PacMan, Travis Henry, and Ahmard Hall literally willed the team to victory. I include the latter because he is an absolute difference maker on the field; right now he’s my favorite Titan. He is Lorenzo Neal with service medals. A 27 year old rookie who eats linebackers for breakfast.
Anyway, once we intercept Manning late in the first half and drive to score a touchdown, I gave up all pretense of saving my voice, and yelled for all it was worth. And the Titans kept giving me things to yell about. Reynaldo Hill and Lamont Thompson – the two weakest links on the defense – are playing WAY above their heads right now. I still hope they are replaced next year, but you have to hand it to Jim Swartz for designing a scheme that hides their weaknesses.
Peyton Manning hates 3-4 defenses. Most of his losses have been against them. The Titans run a 4-3, and you can’t just change the scheme overnight. What the Titans did yesterday wasn’t a 3-4, but a “3-4-like substance”. Most of the game, it looked like the entire Colts offensive line lined up with no one to block. Manning had no idea who was going to pressure, and who was going to cover. This reminded me of the “8 defensive backs” scheme Gregg WIlliams designed in 1999 against the Rams. Brilliant.
When the final drive stalled and Fisher sent out the kick team, I told Zaphod, “Is he crazy? They have Peyton Manning and one time out!” When we called a time out and sent out the punt team, forcing Dungy to use his last time out, then sent out the kick team, I said “We’re going to win!” I didn’t think Baronas would make the kick (it was a 60 yarder for crying out loud!), but big MO was on our side, and I guessed we’d win in OT.
Well, the kick was good, and the place went nuts. I screamed so hard I literally lost my voice. Nobody wanted to leave. THAT was one of the most fun games I’ve EVER attended.
Now, I resume my vow of silence until the meat-up Saturday.