The Tennessee Titans and Houston Texans have been mouthing off following their Week 4 game in the 2012-13 NFL season on September 30, 2012. The Texans won 38-14. Each team has accused one another of "Dirty play."
There also hasn't been much respect between the trench players. Texans defensive end J.J. Watt had three tackles for losses (TFL) and two sacks. Through four games, Watt leads the NFL with 7.5 sacks. Despite blocking him, Titans offensive guard Leroy Harris wasn't impressed. Harris reportedly made the following comment:
"(Watt) is not anything special. He's just persistent at what he does. And if you use bad technique, he'll exploit. I locked him down most the game, except those two plays (sacks)."
Translation: Harris surrendered two sacks to a player who he considers as "Not anything special." Harris might want to improve his technique before he faces a special player. Will that mean three sacks? Four?
What does Titans head coach Mike Munchak think about Harris' performance? He agreed. Munchak reportedly had the following praise for his right guard:
"He did well. He got beat for (two sacks). (Watt) got around him. Overall, I thought he played well. But again, we (gave up) four sacks and three of them were guys getting beat one-on-one, which we don't have happen very often."
I hope Munchak is just trying to protect Harris by not throwing him under the bus. I can't believe that's also what is said behind closed doors. When an offensive lineman allows two sacks, that's not "He did well." There are offensive linemen who surrender that many sacks through the course of a 16-game season, much less one game.
I understand that those sacks accounted for only two of 60 offensive plays. The problem is that an offensive lineman who surrenders a sack is the equivalent of a quarterback who throws an interception. These are enormous errors that mustn't happen. Did Matt Hasselbeck have a good game? If we ignore his two interceptions, then I suppose "He did well."
It doesn't work like that. Being an offensive lineman is a dirty, yet thankless job. However, the success of any offense starts in its trench play. Munchak can't accept two sacks from any of his offensive linemen. Not unless he holds different players to different standards. Had every starting offensive lineman played like Harris, then 10 sacks are allowed. I doubt Munchak would say "They did well."
What's funny is that Harris looks much worse after his comments. If Watt is nothing special, then why did he get two sacks? Let's not forget that 3-4 defensive ends are typically "Space eaters" for the outside linebackers. Just give credit where credit is due. Otherwise, don't speak.
The Titans' defense has six sacks total. Watt has 7.5 himself. It goes without saying that I'd love to have four "Not anything specials" on the Titans' defensive line (or the Packers, for that matter).
Joshua Huffman graduated from Middle Tennessee State University as a marketing major in 2009. He's been a Middle Tennessee resident from 1986-88 and 2001-present. He lived in the Upper Peninsula and Northern Wisconsin from 1988-01 and for approximately eight months in 2009-10 as he completed a 20-game volunteer position with the USHL's Green Bay Gamblers. His favorite sports organizations include the Green Bay Packers, Chicago Cubs, Nashville Predators and Tennessee Titans. He can be found on Twitter HERE.
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