Ok I watched the game last night, but wanted to go in and watch every single play and pay attention especially to O-line and D-line work. It's harder to see receivers and secondary because the camera doesn't really show them until the ball goes that way.
I have commentary of every play up until a few minutes before halftime. I love the NFL.com preseason package. I mean it's $20 but you really get to watch the game the way you want to see it.
Let's get to it....
1st play: Oline looks good. Monroe and Meester are beasts, throw their guys back and just sit there.
2nd play: Jennings rush for 5 yards. Greg Jones bulldozes a LB back around 6 yards.
3rd play: pass to Jason hill, a bullet in a very tight window. No one within 5 feet of Gabbert. Hill looks good, pass is low and in place only Hill can get it.
4th: Rashad Jennings rush to right side. . Zach Miller gets one good block and then gets just enough on second block to spring Jennings to the outside. Better than last year but still not great.
5th: Rashad Jennings rushes straight up the middle for 17. Uche gets about 6 yards down field. Whimper stones his guy too. Monroe looks solid and Meester man handles his guy.
6th: Gabbert incomplete to Thomas, thrown behind him. Pats send 6 Oline does a good job no one misses his assignment. All the oline looks good, Gallarda the TE does a good job as well blocking, better than Miller for sure. Monroe in particular looks good. Rackley got powered backwards a few feet but still keeps his guy in position.
7th: Jennings run to left side for 6-7. Things I noticed from this one. Monroe pushes his guy back around 5 yards. Meester busts through the middle and makes a block 3 yards down field. Greg Jones is STILL the best blocking FB in the game, he clears holes plain and simple. Rackley does a great job of sealing his guy in side to make the hole for Jennings. Uche and Whimper look good on the other side.
8th: First down pass to zach miller. Ok again Greg Jones buys time for Gabbert to make a completion. He stones a guy just at the feet of Gabbert giving him time to make the completion. Gabbert moves a few feet to his left and makes the throw, good adjustment. Of course Gallarda lets him come in without giving him a little chip to slow him down on his way to his route. The rest of the O-line stones the defenders, no one gave ground.
9th: Gabbert gets sacked. Miller misses the block, if he gets that block Jennings is all alone on the left side and would get at least 5-10 yards. C'mon Miller block PLEASE! Of course with Lewis in there, it wouldn't have been missed.
10th: Deji Karim goes for 3-4 yards. Now this one is slightly on Monroe, but probably more on Karim. Monroe kind of bumps his guy outside, and then starts going up field. Karim is supposed to follow him, but he gets nervous and dances around trying to make the outside guy miss, and so loses momentum. If Karim would just have followed Monroe, the rest of the protection looks solid.
11th: 3rd and 14. Gabbert overshoots target. Monroe whiffs on this one. Gabbert gets hammered right after he lets go of the ball. Uche and Meester look good. Miller misses block again on right side(notice a trend here?).
Kickoff- Brock Bolen awesome hit causes cartwheel. What's not to love about this guy?
Patriots first drive:
Hernandez fumble, David Jones does great lowers helmet on ball jarring it loose recovered by Landry. Lane at LE and Mincey at RE. Lane gets bumped out and slowed but he's on way to QB. Mincey gets bumped off feet but still keeps charging on his end as well. Alualu gets stoned and Collins pulls double coverage.
Karim up middle for 3-4. Monroe bulldozes one guy out of the way, then comes and manhandles another guy. Rackley again looks really good, lets his guy in to create the hole. Miller actually throws a great block that gets Karim another 1-2 yards. That's the way you throw a block Miller.
Gabbert misses to Karim. Looks like they weren't on the same page. I'm not sure who screwed that one up. I think it was a little Karim, and a little Gabbert throwing it early. Protection looks good. Monroe, Rackley, Meester, Uche and Whimper no issues I see.
3rd and 7- Mike Thomas drops a perfect ball. Protection is a little weak. Monroe pushes his guy out and then has to come back and make him miss again. Whimper needs help from Jones on the right side. Monroe has to put a little more mustard on his guy.
Kickoff- Brock Bolen again on the special teams tackle.
Run to the left for 5. Alualu just throws his guy to the turf on his way in. The whole right side gets pushed back 2-3 yards, DA Smith rips the ball out but he recovers. Two forced fumbles in a row. Nice. Alualu isn't far behind even though he came from left side.
Linebacker blitz. Daryl Smith finally gets through, and crushes QB. Lane gets double teamed for a bit but gets biggest push back to QB of all the line. Rashean gets beat luckily pass was high.
Run play to the right for 3. Lane gets deep in backfield very quickly but pitch was already gone. Rashean misses the solo tackle, just totally misses on Woodhead right around the line of scrimmage. He was all alone. Alualu shows great speed and persistence and just crushes Woodhead for the tackle.
Punt return- Scotty Mcghee looks good, gets some positive yardage, although penalty pushes back.
Ugly play loss of 3-4. They pull Uche to the left, and his guy just comes charging in untouched and makes the play. Doesn't matter they weren't going anywhere. It looked to me like Monroe missed his guy too unless that was Uche's assignment after the pull. Hard to say. Jones and Uche get tangled up with RE in back field.
Gabbert to Dillard for 10. Good protection. Plenty of time. Good throw with right velocity, thrown before he even makes his break. Nice!
3rd and 6- Sack. Guy Whimper lets his guy get too close, forcing Gabbert up in the pocket, where a Uche's guy comes in and cleans up. Monroe lets his guy go too, and he's not far behind. If Whimper could have bought just another half second or two there were multiple guys just about to come open.
Matt Turk's first punt goes for around 30ish. Miss you Podlesh.
Pats 3rd Drive
Pass for 4 yards. Mincey gets push around right side, and Alualu is a beast up the middle. I mean he crushes Hoyer right after he gets rid of it. Good coverage as well.
Run to left for 3-4 yards. Alualu looks really good, he's within inches of stopping this one for a loss.
Woodhead to left for another 2-3 yards. Alualu again pushes his guy back 3-4 yards. Mincey gets blown back and allows the run in his spot.
Aaron Hernandez 21 yards through the middle. I noticed no Alualu. Lane actually puts some moves on his guy he should get there in next second. Mincey gets stoned. Poz misses his guy, he chips a guy out and then doesn't see Hernandez come in.
Run to the right for 6. Bowen almost trips him up in the backfield. Poz makes the tackle.
Run in middle for 2. Landry comes in and makes a good tackle, really wraps his guy up.
Pass to Hernandez for around 15-16. Lane gets double teamed and still gets all the way back to QB. Poz causes fumble. If Landry doesn't try to scoop it up, and just falls on it, it would have gone our way.
Run play for 1 yard and touchdown. I don't think it was a touchdown but it's preseason so who cares?
Kickoff- Deji takes it six yards back and only gets back to 10. I guess I don't worry about that one too much, it's preseason. Just try to get some yards.
Throw to Zach Miller for 8. Protection was really solid. No one whiffed. The throw was to the tiniest of windows, and he makes it. Miller leans his body on some LB's and gets another yard or two. Monroe just manhandles his guy 3-4 yards away from QB.
Run to the left, nothing there. Just a wall of blue. Loss of 1-2.
Incomplete to Underwood. Oline picks up blitz and gives plenty of time. I just think Gabbert was off target on this one. Underwood was open but it was behind him and high instead of leading him.
Horrible punt. I mean like Turk says. WOW!
Pass to Hernandez for 17. Poz was all over him in coverage but misses interception/tackkle. Leger Douzable and Mincey crush Hoyer right as he throws it. Lane gets pushed way outside.
Incomplete pass in endzone. There's a school of mines sighting. Marc Schiechl gets pretty good push back to QB. Pocket was collapsing as he gets rid of throw. Good coverage in the back.
run up middle for 3. Cutrera makes the tackle.
TD throw to price. Aaron Morgan and Mincey both almost get there. Isn't that the tale of last year, almost is kind of irrelevant. Morgan makes a nice spin move though. Just an amazing catch what can you do? DA Smith gets double teamed and still pushes them back. .
Deji Karim makes a fantastic run back, 84 yards! For those of you saying he's interchangeable with Harris, replay this 3-4 times.
Deji Karim for a 7 yard run. Brock Bolen just manhandles people while helping create the hole. Karim looks fast and elusive. Between MJD, Jennings and Karim, woot!
Montell Owens for 3 yard loss. Nothing there really.
Montell Owns for another 3 yard loss. This one is on Guy Whimper, Fletcher just blows past him.
Kickoff- Tiquan Underwood with the stop???
Run up middle for a few yards. Cutrera with a stop. D-line(including Mincey) getting blown back now.
Huge pass for slater. Wheatley is there, but just doesn't make a play on the ball. I don't think he ever saw it. Mincey gets best push to QB, while Ray doesn't get too much push.
Run play for a few yards. Ray gets in backfield and could cause a 3-4 yd loss but whiffs.
Penalty- No push at all from D-line.
3rd down. Aaron Morgan gets pushed around like a child against a Spartan. Mincey gets double-teamed. Hoyer has ALL day to throw. Bosworth makes a great play to smack the ball away. Very nice.
Karim gets another 25 yard runback from 6-8 yards back in endzone. I have a feeling they told him to just run everything you get your hands on. He looks fast and decisive.
Sack. this was a coverage sack, there was nothing downfield. Pats got a lot of push back and just bodies coming through. Uche lets his guy through.
Karim for a couple. Monroe manhandles his guy yet again.
Gabbert to Hill for 16 right at sticks. Monroe, Rackley look VERY good. Whimper loses his guy. I think the most solid player on offensive line is Meester I haven't seen him make a mistake yet. Spitz is in center right now. Rackley looks very good as well. I would be HIGHLY surprised if he doesn't start every game this year.
Pats penalty gives us another set of downs.
Karim for a loss of a couple. Spitz misses his guy. Fletcher on NE seems to be quite good, very penetrating, tired of hearing his name already(oh yeah and seeing Brady and ochocinco on sideline).
Gabbert to Miller incomplete. It was a little low. Monroe let his guy pressure Gabbert I don't think he could really completely step into the throw.
Gabbert to Osgood for a first down. This was a nice play for Spitz he correctly points out the blitzing LB to Gabbert. Good protection all around. Good throw and catch by Osgood. Gabbert throws a beautiful throw. He throws it on a rope.
Deji for 10 yards looking very elusive. I like this kid. He makes 4 guys miss. Gotta love that.
Gabbert to Deji for 5. Great protection again. No one anywhere near Gabbert.
There are 5 minutes left in the 2nd half but I have to go to work.
Here are my notes from what I've seen.
1. Gabbert looks good. Like REALLY good. I get that he's a rookie, and right now I'd probably prefer to have Garrard in there in a real game. But he looks poised. He's making plays that I just don't know that Garrard would make. He needs time to get there though. His footwork looks a little rough when he gets rushed. He needs time to get on the same page with his receivers. His passes generally look good. A little high sometimes but that's to be expected with his nerves. I would be pretty surprised if Garrard starts the whole year, and I'm a Garrard fan. Just saying. If there had been a full off season I think he would be starting. Of course he was also the victim of some pretty bad drops as well.
2. Rackley looks very good too. He'll start this year, I have no doubt. He played very solid.
3. Monroe looks like he did last year. He's completely dominant in about 80% of his plays, and then whiffs on 20%. If he can make that 90-10 I'd be happy there. I mean when he makes his play he just manhandles his guy.
4. Britton- We have to get Britton back in good shape. He will be essential for this team to play well.
5. Meester- Meester looks amazing for his age. I have to say he's the most solid player on the offensive line.
6. Running backs. they all look good. Jennings looks solid, Karim is playing great. I can't complain about anyone.
7. Hill- we don't have to worry about him. He played very well tonight.
8. Zach Miller still needs work as far as blocking. He just misses far too often. But he looks good catching the ball.
9. Full backs. Both Greg Jones and Bolen look really good. Greg Jones will be instrumental in getting 2k yards from our running backs this year.
10. Alualu looks like the real deal. I mean he is all over the place. He's fast, he's aggressive, he goes after the ball. He just creates havoc.
11. Still no legitimate sack threat. They are always half a second too late. Although if just one guy starts to shine, and Kampmann bounces back. I think we will be fine. I like the idea of Alualu, Knighton, Kampmann and ??. I thought Lane showed some promise however even if he didn't quite get there. You have to keep in mind with Kampmann and Knighton still out what this line is going to look like. This line is going to cause trouble for people. Imagine trying to block Alualu, Knighton, and Kampmann with one guy. That just isn't going to happen. This D-line will be something to be feared.
12. I didn't see much from DA Smith. He doesn't seem to be back yet.
13. Daryl Smith really should be going to the probowl every year. I mean he is always just so solid.
14. Our overall defense looks MUCH better. They are covering better. I can't wait to see what it looks like when they have more than a week together.
15. Punting was atrocious.
16. The score wasn't really indicative of how ready this team was. I don't think we're superbowl bound but I think we have a legitimate shot at playoffs this year. And before this I really thought we would be lucky to win 6 looking at our schedule. Congrats Gene Smith.
Hope you enjoyed this. I have to head back to work before my staff riots on me.