First Preseason Game: My take
I've been on vacation, so I am just watching the game now. I am giving my opinion here, but am trying to state things as unbiased as possible. So far I have watched the first half, and will be editing this post once i finish the second half. I didn't watch individual offensive line play, because if i rewound the tape any more than i already have, pretty sure my girlfriend would leave me lol. Here are my notes/observations from the first half. This will be a little lengthy, don't read if you don't want to. Arguments/disagreements are appreciated, just keep it civil.
It's not if Herzlich will win the number one spot, but when:
So far in the first half, Herzlich has been impressive to watch. In his first play on defense, he shot through the Jags line and stuffed a run straight up. He hit the guy full speed ahead, and stood him up. What was impressive was how he read the line, how athletic he was in shooting through the line, and the solid hit afterwards. He didn't just tackle him, he completely stopped him from moving. Throughout the rest of the half, he was great in communicating plays to the defense, and in reacting to what the team was doing. On play action, he would lean towards the line a little, but wouldn't get caught there. He made up his ground nicely. He looked solid in coverage, and seemed to have good technique and coverage ability. His understanding of the game seemed solid, and never looked confused or lost in coverage. His block shedding was uncanny. He played his gaps correctly, and when he knew he couldnt make a play, he would stick the blocker so the safety or another linebacker could make the play. If he knew he needed to make a play, he seemed to be able to shed blockers very well and put himself in a position to make a play. I thought Herz was going to take over after about week 4, but now it looks like he may start getting reps with the first team by the time the preseason is over.
The Defensive Duo To Get Excited About?:
No, not JPP and Tuck. Herzlich and Hill. They played excellent together. Anytime the ball was run their way, the two of them would play off of eachother and make the play. One would hit the gap, the other would make the tackle. I am very excited to see the two of them on the field together. Will Hill, as long as he stays healthy, will keep Deon Grant from coming back. Kid is a gamer, and will absolutely wreak havoc on offenses this year.
Special Teams Progression:
Special teams coverage seems to have gotten much much better, even from an improved season last year. The reason? It seems that we have so much depth at so many key positions (linebacker, safety, corners, wide receivers, running backs) that there is just so much speed to the special teams. The guys playing special teams are not scrubs fighting to make the team, but good players at their position, which deepens our coverage team.
Defensive Line: Deeper than we thought?:
WOW. i am impressed. Marvin Austin, Shaun Rodgers, Dwane (sp?) Hendricks, Adrian Tracy. that is depth. These guys all made plays. If these guys stay healthy, and with canty coming back by the beginning of the season or the first few weeks, i dont know how we are going to get all these guys on the field. Speaking of Austin...
We Now Have Seen Austins Potential:
Marvin Austin got some great pushes into the backfield on passing plays. Example, Tracy's strip/sack. He completely collapsed the pocket. But on other plays, he got dominated, even by a single blocker. Verdict? He CAN do it, just needs to be able to do it more consistently. I look forward to watching him next game.
Martellus Bennett: What do we do after this year?
Ok, I know this guy has been debated, and we finally saw him do well in one game, so i dont want to completely jump all over this guys jock. But let me say this: If he keeps up the intensity and the work ethic, I will be extremely worried that we will not be able to re-sign this guy. His strength and tenasity in the run game was excellent. He completely locked up his man in the run game. In a few routes he seemed to get lost, or just locked up. That is definitely a negative, but I think he needs to just get more reps to help this. At other times, his route running was great, and his hands looked good. He almost always got good positioning on the defenders. Also, one specific delayed route i saw was GREAT. He locked up the defender for about a second, and then THREW him on the ground and ran into the flat. That was very deceptive, and if he can keep that up an easy five yard gain every time.
On that play where he was held, the thing i liked the most was his route running, and his chemistry with Eli. He looked like Nicks on that route. And i dont care about the non-call, in a game he will either get the call or make the catch (given we have the normal refs back)
He did get burnt twice, but i am not OVERLY worried. If that keeps happening by week 4 of the preseason, then i will be worried.
Brown > Ware
Now let me say that they both looked good. I like that Ware showed us what he can do as a number 2 guy, and not just a 3rd down blocking back/shotgun draw back. But to me, Brown seemed to do more with less than Ware. Ware had some good runs, and looked good in the open space, but had some room to run. Brown got stacked up twice, and made something out of it. That impressed me more.
Where can Rivers play?
Keith Rivers impressed. He played the line well, and seemed to have good vision. Also, never gave up on plays, and looked extremely impressive. He looked good at WLB, but what will happen when Boley is healthy? I like Herz at the Mike, so i dont know what will happen. But this is a good problem to have
Reuben Randle is Smart
On his first reception, he started out with a nice option route, got off the line well, and then sunk into the zone and made a nice play. Very well done. On his touchdown, he showed great body positioning. He just needs to be able to translate that against a number 2 corner back, and we will be unstoppable in the red zone.
If David Wilson Gets a Hole, He's Gone
All he needs is a hole, and as long as he sees it, wow he will get a big gain every time it seems. In protection, he had a delayed route. He seemed to observe the defense well, know he was not needed in the backfield, and swung outside. Looked good.
That's it for now, i am sure i missed some things, and am about to watch the second half. I will edit this and add the second half notes, or any things that i forgot. Feedback is appreciated. Enjoy
Last edited by ELIte4MVP; 08-12-2012 at 11:00 AM.
Jerrell Jernigan didn't look that special to me,