Monday, October 31, 2011

Not much to add

(courtesy Tampa Bay Times,

Never been so happy for a prediction to be wrong.
Last week, my keys to the game were:
  • Must be able to run the ball (we lose if we don't go over 125 yards)
  • Stay ahead of the sticks and keep them behind them (win the 1st down battle on both sides of the ball)
  • Do not give away any points (no missed FG's, no turnovers that result in points, and no special team TD's given)
  • Red-Zone offense
  • Coaching
So my 3rd point obviously wasn't a must. It's mind-blowing how we statistically dominated that game and were still one play away from losing. At this point, I'm so happy for any win that I'll take it but in no way do I think we are "on the right track" or "back" (defense being the exception).

We really had 12 more first downs, over 100 yards more offense, 10 less penalties, won the turnover battle, and held the ball 15 minutes longer than they did, and WON BY 4. Since every other blogger and all analyst will break down how poor our special teams are, I won't. I'll only say that in all my years following the Dawgs, nothing has ever been more frustrating and confusing than watching this special teams group as a whole. How is it possible to keep getting worse.

I don't want to nitpick but hey, that's what blogs are for. We all can't be half glass full fans. Aaron has not taken the big step forward this year that I really thought he would. Yes, maybe his receivers aren't great or maybe the o-line isn't blocking great but he's still making bad decisions and missing guys. The 2 fourth down TD throws were put it in the area and our guys made 2 great catches but neither one was a great throw. And like Rev said, I like the calls to go for it but we only do because our kicker has turned from Blair Walsh to Brenda Walsh. CMR has to make a change, this completely reminds me of Andy Bailey and Brandon Coutu about 6 years ago. Bailey came back from a pretty good year and then got the yips, CMR made the tough decision to sit him and it worked out great. He HAS to make that change. We still have 4 games and he's already missed 10 FGs. The fact is that we settle for FGs a lot, so we simply have to make anything inside 40 at worst.

Outside of the 4th and 19 breakdown for the TD, the defense was terrific again. Not sure what Rambo was doing on that play, there was no reason to take a step toward Brantley, he wasn't going to run for 19 yards. But make no mistake, our defense is our daddy this year. I'll take giving up only one offensive TD every game we play.

I'll just leave the rest of my negative thoughts inside my head and finish on the defensive positive note.


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