We've been through a lot of these...

We've been through a lot of these. These days when you feel like you got sucker-punched by Mike Tyson in his prime.

Out of the 44 games played at Reliant Stadium, 23 have come down to the wire. Some have been exhilarating victories. Others have been excruciating losses.

Like Sunday.

I can't put it in perspective yet. Is it worse than Vince Young's overtime run? Probably not. But it's up there.

It was a strange day in that you were so upset at the offense failing to move the ball at all for most of the game. You were upset that Kerry Collins, who was 0-2 as a starter at Reliant (with Oakland and the Giants) was making all sorts of plays. You were upset that Matt Schaub was used as a piñata while the Texans got to Collins just once. No one said it was going to be easy with Vince Young sitting out the game, but 32-7? That could not happen.

But it did.

You were upset that the offense looked so stuck for the better part of three quarters. They made the '02 Texans look like the 1999 Rams.

Then Sage Rosenfels went to work and started an unforgettable comeback. He threw four touchdown passes. The last one a 53-yard heave to André Davis that sent whatever fans that were left into a frenzy.

After that, Kerry Collins threw the Titans into field goal range and the rest was history. Here's wondering if the bulk of the fans had stayed, the noise on the final defensive series would have made any difference. We'll never know.

The emotional roller coaster was exhausting. On the air we felt like we just took a spin in the Space Shuttle simulator. You have to give the team credit for not giving up. They clawed and scratched and turned it over a stunning six times, yet still led with 57 seconds to go. They almost pulled off an NFL miracle. Now they have to pull themselves together to play back-to-back games on the West Coast before getting a much-needed bye.

There are more questions than answers for the time being. The defense would be a whole lot more effective if the offense could sustain drives earlier in the ball game. But everyone has to look in the mirror right now and search for a solution.

Those wonderful wins over Carolina and Kansas City now seem like a long time ago. They must recapture that magic. Matt Schaub is banged up and Andre Johnson still isn't ready. The running game is awol and the special teams' explosiveness has been muted. Somehow they must snap out of this.

CLICKHERETO SEND AN E-MAIL TO VANDERMEER

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