Saturday, August 11, 2012

Preseason: Players to Watch (AFC South)

Houston Texans: QB Matt Schaub: For the first time since November of 2011, Matt Schaub will put on a helmet in tonight's game against the Carolina Panthers. Schaub suffered an injury to his right foot in a Week 10 game, and missed the remainder of the season. He was on track to throw for 3,966 yards with 24 touchdowns. Sadly, the Texans starting quarterback has two sides when it comes to his play quality. For example, in 2009, Schaub led the league in passing yards with 4,770, but, like I said before, did not have the start he would have liked in 2011. Worst of all, Schaub has difficulty staying healthy for all 16 games, with just two complete seasons under his belt. Hopefully, this upcoming preseason game will give us an idea on what type of Matt Schaub will show up to play in 2012.

Jake Locker (Jason Miller/Getty Images)
Indianapolis Colts: QB Andrew Luck: Who else would occupy this slot? Andrew Luck most likely will have the highest expectations of any rookie since Peyton Manning, and rightfully so. The Colts struggled enormously last season, and drafted the best prospect in the nation. Now, we will see if the first overall pick can live up to the hype, and lead the Colts back to the Super Bowl within his 10-15 year career. His first game Sunday night will be in front of a jam-packed stadium, which is strange considering it is a Colts-Rams game. Alongside fellow rookie Coby Fleener (a tight end out of Stanford), Luck will take the stage in an attempt to "woo" the audience.

Tennessee Titans: QB Jake Locker: It appears that at the moment, quarterback Matt Hasselbeck has the lead over youngster Jake Locker due to an increased number of snaps. Jake Locker will have to prove he is worthy of the starting job within the next four preseason games. A passer rating of 99.4% last season in only five games gives him the opportunity to win the starting job. What he needs is to amaze his coaches and managers, whereas veteran Matt Hasselbeck will have to play some of the worst football of his career.

Jacksonville Jaguars: CB Rashean Mathis: Similar to Leon Hall, Rashean Mathis is an ex-Pro Bowler who had recently suffered an injury (torn ACL). Mathis will be 32 by the time opening kickoff takes place on September 9th, old for any player in the National Football League. Jacksonville's most valuable corner back in franchise history was recently signed to a one year, $5 million contract, for he owns four of the organization's defensive records. All may change, however, now that he has suffered an injury, and the preseason shall do a good job of showing his condition. 

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