There was a lot to digest in this preseason game and although it was a loss, more positive than negative come from the last second defeat.
As I stressed in the podcast, our depth could be an issue all year long. Evidence of that was our defense getting abused in the second half.
Negatives before Positives:
-Oneal Fumbled – I wouldn’t think he will see many regular season carries, but it would have been nice to know he could at least hold onto the ball if we did give it to him. He did make some huge blocks, perhaps he should stick to that and let Griffith do the other things FBs can do.
-Backup Secondary Burned, and Burned again – Too much cushion, bad instincts and then they don’t even lay the hammer, pray for secondary health.
– Higgins Punt Return was plain stupid, that is the kind of thing that gets the job taken from you. First, don;t field it, second if you do don’t run sideways, and third, and most importantly HOLD ONTO THE BALL! Horrible.
– Penalties again plagued us, and they were legit penalties as well. Special Teams as a whole were not very good on returns or in coverage. There is a lot of work to be done.
-The line did a pretty good job in protection and a good job in the running game, except Mario Henderson, This guy smells of like bust to me. Revolving door, poor poor poor. Wade also didn’t look as strong as Grove, but that could have been Haynesworth factor.
-Russell looked poised, calm, and accurate. He was smart and showed a natural playmaking ability. I think we couldn’t have wished for better from him.
-Zach Miller is really a very good TE, blocking, passing, etc he does it all, and hte TD grab was fantastic
-The WRs started to get going a little minus Javon Walker, he was poor. I don’t like the way Javon is producing, he has two more weeks to get his act together.
-The defense looked solid and VY couldn’t pass. He can’t pass even if our defense was bad, but still a solid effort. We also did pretty well against the run, it was good to see Ricky Brown fly around, it appears he is solidifying that starting job.
Don’t get too upset about the loss, preseason means very little except for progress. I don’t think we took any steps backwards except maybe special teams. The team is gelling and the national media is starting to take notice. McFadden and Bush together may be like getting two first round RBs in the same year that can’t hurt.
Russell made some people eat their words tonight…and you have to love that, right?
Overall a solid effort. I think the sloppiness with the ball and mental mistakes are what Kiffin is going to be most displeased with. I think he will be pleased with how the first and second team executed for the most part.