Wednesday, November 19, 2008

No Goats

I realize that maybe it sounded like I was making a goat of Daunte for last week's loss. That really wasn't the whole point I was trying to make. It was really that he is unprepared to be starting, and the Lions passed up an opportunity to let Stanton get some starting time while Dan O was injured and Daunte was learning, and yet still be able to pull him back into a backup role with the minimum of fuss after Dan O is better, or Daunte was up to speed.

Also, the overall idea yesterday was that the Veterans are making mistakes versus stepping up to help in crunch time, which is in my opinion what has sunk this team in its close losses more than almost any other factor.

okay - so what did I like?

I liked the look of the Oline, overall, as far as the running game was concerned. The holes weren't gaping like the ones Carolina was making, but they were there and K. Smith made the most of them, and his opportunity to get the bulk of the load.

Actually, I really didn't see McCollum as an upgrade to Raiola at center. There seemed to be mroe confusion on passing downs, and he wasn't pulling quite as well as Dom does, and while he did decent in run blocking, I think Dom was better out in space on what could be longer runs. Still, it was nice to have a competent backup center. I really think what made McCollum look better, along with the rest of the line, is that the Lions got arguably the best game out of the starting pair of G it has gotten all season.

I disagree that the gameplan was good -- initially, it seemed to be working. But as usual, when it came to in-game adjustments the Lions panicked, misadjusted, and were inconsistent. Had they stuck to the origninal game plan, I fully believe we'd be talking about their first win. Teh gameplan? Keep running Smith!! Had they continued that into the 4th quarter, especially around the time of that fateful interception, then Carolina would have had to bring up an extra guy, leaving CJ or Mac open (or CJ single-covered, which is often the same thing).

Other good things were that the Defense did a decent job stopping the Panthers -- especially early. However, the LB were beyond awful. Nece and Lenon were always sliding so far to the SS run that when the Panthers did a designed cutback to the weakside, the RB was into the secondary as the LB hadn't filled the right fits.

And tackling!!! Note to Travis Fisher: Tackling is where you hit someone and wrap them up with your arms and body, bringing them to the ground. NOT bumping into them and then wondering why they didn't just stop!

Bullocks and Pearson had their work cut-out for them with the gaping holes the RB ahd to wrok with coming into teh secondary, but I saw at least 3 great open-field tackles by Pearson, and 2 or 3 by Bullocks. Many will look at the one he missed leading to the TD (Pearson), but had him and Bullocks not been hitting and tackling beyond well ind the secondary, things would have been MUCH worse. I'm talking 2 200-yard rushers worse.

Coverage wasn't too bad in the passing game, although I'm going to finally go with ChiefGer and say I don't want to see Fisher anywhere on the field unless absolutely necessary -- especially after Keith Smith is healthy.

I have some more thoughts, that I will try to put into coherent bunches/groupings for tomorrow.

Go Lions!!


RIP said...

One thing this season has reinforced is that film work and in game adjustments are critical to being successful during the season. Also loyalty to players do not work if they are not big or talented enough.
I just don't understand that if you are beaten week after week with the left off tackle run, that there are not adjustments made. Become unpredictable with run bliztes to that side.
Sims and Nece both over pursue to the middle. Is it thought that way?
Do they not trust the man in the middle, or is the line not holding thier gaps. Can you expect a Lion's tackle to be doubled and not require support. Will Lenon ever dive into a play before the offensive blockers already locked onto a block.
Hasn't Tampa Bay's defense improved since they lost thier LB coach? When is Marenelli going to stop handing out jobs to who are loyal to him. Players such as C. Smith, D. Smith, Kelly, Darby, and Nece. I am also going to add Sims in with these guys for he too is bad at over pursuing. It appaers he is a free lance LB who is not held acountable for his position. I am not in the locker room or practices, so this is only a perception that I got.
The film and personnel who play on the team shows what is hapeening. Less talented, loyalty, little accountability, and poor in game adjustments on the defense have put the Leo's defense last in the NFL for the last 2 years.

millersco said...

Yes poor Travis. Its painful sometimes to watch plays come his way. He's not quite quick enough, and doesn't wrap up very well as you said. Every other CB must be in the dog house or injured. Let Ramzee play more and get experience, at least he can tackle.

I'm no football guru, just like to watch, but boy when our DL lines up, we already have huge gaps before the snap - I realize thats by design, but noone ever seems to fill the gaps after the snap. Yes our LB's don't get the job done - and seem to be getting worse. The last 3 or so games, Sims performance has really dropped off, don't know if that means he is injured, starting to give up, or just waiting for others to fill the gaps they are supposed to.

CHIEFGER139 said...

everytime i see him in the game I say oh no not again. Makes you wonder if all the other teams see it too and jump on the occasion.