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Camp news around the AFC South

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Jacksonville Jaguars camp:

Our resident Jags fan, absurdpolitik, has some very good observations after seeing the Jags in camp.

Matt Jones is fast, that's understood.  What held him back last year was that he couldn't run 4.3 time when he's having to think about the route he is running.  This is understandable, when you're used to throwing the route rather than running it.  Well, from what I've seen and heard this year, this problem is fading faster than Matt on a...fade route...

Matt Jones is showing a lot of improvement.  The rest of the field is crowded.

If Jones establishes himself as a good WR, that will go a long way for the Jags.

Houston Texans camp:

If you ever want to read up on what's going on with the Houston Texans, I strongly recommend HoustonProFootball.com. The writers there do an outstanding job writing about their team. In fact, their coverage for a dismissal team that won 2 games last year trumps the Indianapolis Star's coverage of the Colts.

I especially liked reading their coverage of new Texans assistant head coach Mike Sherman. Sherman was the GM and head coach for the Packers for many years until he was fired last season. Now, he's second only to head coach Gary Kubiak, and he's in charge of fixing Houston's putrid o-line:

Sherman isn't the passive type when it comes to working with his players, in particular his tackles Seth Wand and the two rookies, Charles Spencer and Eric Winston. The reclamation of Wand won't be an easy one. As evidenced this morning, the tackles are still learning, but I find Sherman's presence with them after every snap reassuring, opposed to, ummm say... that of the grim reaper of a the last two seasons, [former offensive line coach]Joe Pendry.

Sherman also wasn't a wallflower when it came time to discipline the previously unassailable Chester Pitts for blowing an assignment. "GOSH DANGIT!!" Yes, he yelled just that, just before subbing Fred Weary into the first team for Pitts. To his credit, Pitts knew he screwed up and seemed to be upset with himself, not Sherman. Five or six plays later, Pitts returned to the first unit and looked like he could block an ox.

If there is one team that scares Colts fans, it isn't the Patriots, the Steelers, or the Ravens. It's the Texans. The Colts have flat out dominated Houston. I don't think a single game between them has been close. The Colts have never lost to the Texans, but you get the feeling that with this new change of the guard in Houston, that will change soon. I think the Texans are a sleeper team in the AFC South.

In other news regarding the Texans, running backs Dom Davis is having knee problems. This is not good. When healthy, Davis is a very good running back and the Texans are going to need him if they want to establish a run-oriented, ball control offense similar to Denver's last season.

Tennessee Titans camp:

The Flaming Thumbtacs were dealt a serious blow the first day of camp when DT Rien Long was lost for the season with an achilles injury. Long is a solid player, and I hate to see injuries like this right when camp starts.

Positve news for the Titans might involve their troubled secondary:

The two rookies who earned starting cornerback positions last year, Pacman Jones and Reynaldo Hill, both look much improved so far. Both have gained weight and muscle mass without losing any noticeable speed, which will help them in both coverage and run support. They're playing tighter coverage and are around the balls thrown their way. Pacman and WR David Givens have been having some real good competition. Pacman also seems to have matured and become more of a team player.
I'm a little skeptical of this, mainly because I see no worth in Adam "Pacman" Jones. He has acted like a complete turd from day one, and the Colts have targeted this guy each and every time he lines up on the field. Colts receivers, especially Marvin Harrison, have schooled this dork and yet he has still gone out of his way to disrespect them. If he is indeed more of a "team player," then I'm happy for him. He still can't cover to save his life, and since his position is that of cornerback, that doesn't bode well for the Titans secondary.