First of all, this town jumps ship quick! Man, it is like we just lost our first six games on this site. Yet, we only lost the third "preseason" game by a field goal in overtime.
Secondly, I have watched the first three quarters of the Bills-Jags preseason affair three times so far so I have at least a little bit of credibility. What I saw was a start that was gut wrenchingly bad. The first time I watched it I was cussing like a sailor. Yet, when I looked back on a play by play analysis there are a ton of positives and reasons for the early struggles.
Opening possession -
Jennings is stuffed - Kyle Williams > Will Rackley right now. Rackley actually played pretty well against Williams but Williams dominated a few plays
David makes a sharp throw to Thomas for a first down. Looks like the passing game of last year. Quick throws. Nothing sexy but it works.
Greg Jones called for holding. Drive stalls. As they normally do when holding gets called. Williams eats up the play.
1st and 20 -Strong pass to Thomas. Short pass, Whimper gets killed.
2nd 12 - ball batted at line.
3rd- ball tipped at line.
Jennings leaves with a knee sprain. (This is huge)!
Owens, Bolen become main ball carriers, leaves our offense one dimensional. Which it won't be in the regular season.
Punt muffed and recovered by the Jags - could have changed how this game felt. Bad snapped caused Lutrus to leave early. That is a big momentum shift.
1st Defensive possession- Ok I am going to quit a play by play but more a list of things I noticed.
Lane does a great job on a stretch play. Two plays where Fitzpatrick throws perfect passes targeting Rasheen.
Jackson breaks Potroast tackle. Potroast is held like crazy.
Cox has good play - but a penalty. And then its third a mid distance and Aaron Morgan jumps offside. Now its third and mid distance.
Fitzpatrick throws a perfect pass to Jackson. No inside pressure. If Alualu, Mincey, Kampman, Session was in the game this play would have looked much different.
Goal line stand was a thing of beauty. The Jags are not a top 10 defense. They had one of the worst defenses last year. We are better, I promise you are defense is better than that of last year.
2nd Offensive Possession- The one bad throw that David missed Hill.Hill drops a perfect pass.
We all saw it.
Ok. I am bored of writing this so I bet you are bored of reading this... but it is preseason. I still think we have a good team. The Bills had a good first quarter the Jags didn't didn't that happens in football. The Jags came back with poise and played much better. It was 17 - 10 at the half when the first teams left, with Fitzpatrick playing out of his mind. We also didn't have our top 3 running backs in a run first offense and our top 3 pass rushers. Our secondary is not much different from last years so I don't expect drastic improvement unless we have a better pass rush.
Austin Lane - Is a try hard Derrick Harvey. Looks good in camp, stout against the run, just lacks significant pass rush ability. I would never give up on Lane though, just his work ethic, physicality, humor, and beard make him hard to give up on.
Potroast- Looked good.
Douzable- not Alualu
D'A Smith - Showed some quickness- nothing special yet.
Matt Roth - Simalar to Lane. Physical, just not a significant pass rush threat.
D-Line -Needs Alualu and Mincey/Kampman to be productive.
Daryl Smith -hasn't flashed much this preseason.
Poz- helps run D out a lot. He is a much better than Morrison has some cover abilty.
Boz- has BACKUP witten on his face
Linebackers - need to be a strength of the team.
Cox - Looks good
Sheen- looks ok. Had a rough game.
Coleman- better than middleton. needs to gel.
Dawan - I am so disappointed with what I have seen of Dawan so far. He has overrun many plays, has been late on some throws. Had one good play.
Greene - is a mini hammer.
I was watching as much of Prosinki as I could. I didn't get an evaluation at all.
Secondary is still a weakness. Cox is pretty good. Sheen needs to step it up. TE's still will be the bane of our defensive existence.
Jennings - danced - then hurt his knee
Bolen - not a running back. good ST. That is why he sticks around
Owens - same.
OH. The pass protection was usually messed up by the RBS in the first team offense.
We have MJD, Karim, and Jennings as our RBS and they are good.
Monroe- Was much better.
Rackley - played well yet kyle williams is one hell of a player to block. He was only blocking with one hand too...
Meester - a pro
Uche - we need better play out of Uche -
Whimper - struggled. didn't cut block on slants.
O-line played better - needs to get better every week.
Thomas - same as last year
Hill - after the drop played well. Has a knack of hearing footsteps and short arming catchs. NOT A GOOD SIGN.
Shorts - didn't play much with the ones- Dillard got more reps... Shorts had one really bad drop, it was a bubble screen with maybe 10 yard of daylight in front of him. Fast enough to beat the safety deep. just lost sight of the ball. good sign.
Dillard - does to much simalar to shorts thomas to stand out.
UDFA's- No body did anything to stand out either. 4th wr is wide open. Kinda miss MSW right now...
Mar. Lewis - Probowl TE.
On to the QBS! AHH!
David - I think his struggles are being overblown. He looked like David to me. The QB that makes you want to rip your hair out for sucking so hard on a drive. Missing open guys, holding the ball forever. Then on the next drive makes a top 10 play. I want David to start till the bye week. after 8 regular season games it is time to evaluate David vs. Blaine. Blaine looks good but sure ain't ready yet.
Blaine Gabba Gabba Gabbert - To start with the good, he looks like a pro qb. Just is a pretty arm. Got his first qb. The bad -He wants to leave the pocket to early. Has overthrown balls in each of the first preseason games. Threw an ugly ugly interception.
Go Jags - I still believe in this team, you should too!