I went back and watched the first half of the game to see what I could gather from it. The first time you watch a game you miss some little things and aren’t willing to spend 10 minutes in slow motion trying to see what went right and wrong.
Of the first half penalties, I went back and looked closer at them. Which were legit, which were borderline, which were clear?
Cooper Carlisle, holding, 10 yards – Unclear, it happened very low and on the interior. Whatever he did it didn’t change the outcome of the play.
Stanford Routt, defensive holding, 10 yards – He was holding, but many of these aren’t going to be called in a game.
Seth Wand, false start, 5 yards – It was actually not Seth Wand, but Cooper Carlisle. Seth Wand had just checked in. Bad call, he never moved.
Tyvon Branch, holding, 10 yards (special teams) – Couldn’t see it well, but looked like he rode him out of the play and then held the guy trying to chase from behind. He kinda layed on him. Borderline, but still a fair penalty, no need to hold him after you take him out of the play.
William Joseph, encroachment, 5 yards – Clear cut, good call
Paul McQuistan, holding, 10 yards- Clear cut good call
Michael Huff, pass interference, 5 yards – Borderline, but I think he did have his left hand on the receivers jersey as he knocked the ball away. Not always going to be called, but by definition it was a PI.
Not as bad as it seemed. The Cowboys had some borderline calls go against them as well. Refs were flag happy.
Upon further review Morrison wasn’t as bad as I thought. The defensive line on that series was getting pushed back 5 or more yards back into the backfield. That would make it difficult on any linebacker. He was in the face of Romo on an incomplete pass to Asomugha’s side on the first series. That was a blitz and he wasn’t touched.
Ricky Brown’s sack got us all excited, but he missed at least two tackles and one on T. Choice that resulted in a large gain.
Routt also didn’t look as bad as previously. It wasn’t good, but the sideline pass was thrown perfectly. There was zero rush and he had Whitten one-on-one for the TD. There was too many pass defenders covering the middle and Routt got isolated. The holding penalty wasn’t good, but overall not as bad as before. Huff and Routt are still going to make this team because the other guys that are part of the backup secondary would make things scary.
First glance on McFadden and Michael Bush were good. McFadden missed a blitz pickup, because he filled the wrong gap or because the Chris Morris was taken out of his. Bush can’t be taken down by a single linebacker often. McFadden has a great burst when he gets a hole, better than most guys in the league I’d say.
Michael Huff’s INT was a great play and it seems like the team is really pulling for him. He played well. Eugene wasn’t bad, but he was better at shoving guys out of bounds than tackling.
The Raiders over pursued numerous occasions on defense. Filling gaps is one thing, not biting on play fakes is another lesson they haven’t learned.
Slade Norris looked even better than I thought. On one tackle he shed the block of the LG well and the RB had no where to go but straight at him, which means not only did he shed the blocker, but he was in position. I like this kid.
I’d say there was a lot to like and a lot to dislike. My biggest concern is the defensive line. On the second series they were being pushed around. Linebackers were faked out also, but the line got little to no push. It doesn’t seem like we are going to be able to get pressure without blitzing. So the blitzing might be here to stay.