After the final pre-season game I have two pages of notes that I am going to cram into one blog, as well as some other thoughts and notes that I am very excited to talk about. I will however, try to keep it more brief since my wife is yelling at me that my blogs are too long.
The defense did what it was supposed to do to an offense without any of their starters, they shut the Colts down. The Bengals defense did what they didn't do on Saturday, they pressured the quarterback and they were flying around to the ball. It was great to see at least five guys around the quarterback at all times and at least two deep backs near where the ball ended up once thrown.
Defensive game balls.
You won't see it in the stats, but Robert Gathers looked great. He was pushing around the tackles and he was getting penetration. It did not translate to any sacks, but he is looking better and better as the pre-season marched along.
Corey Lynch. I officially have a man crush on him and hope that he makes the cut. He ball hawks and I saw him blitz and get to the quarterback. This kid is like a better version of Kevin Kaesviharn.
Kyries Hebert. This is a guy like Rashad Jeanty who came out of the CFL and desperately wants to prove he belongs, he is hungry and he is showing it. I think the toughest cuts will come out of the secondary and I hope this guy makes it through as well.
Jason Shirley. The fifth round pick out of Fresno State has look impressive. He is a giant of a man and does what they wanted Sam Adams to do......take up space. That and since he is younger he can actually get some penetration.
Offensive game balls.
Ryan Fitzpatrick. They guy was great, he makes me feel much better about our backup quarterback position than Doug Johnson did last year.
Bengals receivers. Without the dynamic duo, Glenn Holt, Antonio Chapman, Chris Henry, Jerome Simpson and even Mario Urrutia the rookie out of Louisville had a pretty clean, good game.
Dede Dorsey. Every time I watch this guy I get excited, but then I have to remember that I am seeing him rush against second and third stringers. I would love to see what he could do on the first team a few times.
Offensive line. As much as I have bad mouthed them this pre-season I will give them props for doing a decent job Thursday night. They were not great and they were not playing against the Colts best, but they did worlds better than last Saturday.
Special teams looked like crap. I take that back, the kick coverage looked like crap and Deltha O"Neal looked like crap returning punts. Antonio Chapman looked great returning punts and isn't that why we got him in the first place? Leon Hall saved the opening kick off from going to the house and later in the game Leon Hall was not there to stop it from actually happening. Just wait till we see some of the premier return guys in the league. Jeff Rowe looked like a turd sandwich again and the sad part is that they are going to keep him over Jordan Palmer. I will still contend that Jeff Rowe was a waste of a fifth round pick last year when we had other NEEDS and he is no better than a college free agent that we could have picked up after the draft. And this is not as much of a concern as it is an observation. Rudi was dressed and did not play. i will have more on him later, but was the reason he was healthy and did not play was because they did not want to risk him getting hurt to trade him?
I can not begin to tell you all about how excited I am that Adam "Pac-man" Jones has been re-instated to play in the NFL. Why you ask? For one simple reason October 5th at 4:15. That is when the Bengals will play the Dallas Cowboys. Incidentally it is also the first game that Chris Henry will be allowed to play for the Bengals! You have the potential for Pac-man to be covering Chris Henry!! Are you kidding me?! We might see a guy get shivved or shot on the field! Who knows what kind of fireworks will go down when these two repeat convicts clash, all I know is that this has potential to be the game of the year, not because of playoff spots, but because of on the field incidents between those two. I am marking my calender and not answering my phone the entire game, I will be glued to my seat in eager anticipation!
My neighbor Mo will normally text me 3 minutes into the game "God they suck." I did not hear from him until halfway through the second quarter and it was just to get an update, no disparaging words! That tells me that it was actually a pretty good night. I tend to judge Bengals games on the Mo meter. The more calls and texts I get from him during a game the more horrible the Bengals are doing. Grand total after the game, one call and about three texts, and one doesn't count because it was about UC football, so a pretty good night!
Trade Rudi. Yeah I said it. All I read about from Geoff Hobson is how if we don't have Rudi then we don't have a bell cow to pound the ball up the gut, to carry the load. I love Geoff Hobson, but I respectfully disagree with him here. Rudi is an old school runner in a world that is dominated by quick backs. Backs like Ladianian Tomlinson, Adrian Peterson, Steven Jackson, Barry Sanders. Rudi is the essence of three yards and a could of dust and I think that in today's game you need faster, quicker, a guy that can cut to the outside. I also think that the trend of running back by committee is a good idea and I think that if we use it here correctly then we do not need Rudi. Provided Chris Perry can stay healthy and Kenny Watson why can't they split carries? Throw in James Johnson and Dede Dorsey and you have four viable backs that are quick and can rotate as needed. Granted James Johnson is more than likely practice squad bound, but I still think that there is plenty to work with, with perry, Watson, and Dorsey. I say trade Rudi and get a proven receiver or a draft pick, but don't settle for anything less than a fourth rounder.
Jerome Simpson is still raw, but is showing signs of being a good receiver. He will go out and make a great catch and then on the next play drop a screen pass thrown right to him. He is young, trying to adjust and I think he is lacking in concentration. We will see in three years how far he has come.
Here are my votes for who should be cut.
Ahmed Brooks. This guy is the Brandon Larson of the Bengals. All the coaches talked about after MIKE BROWN drafted this guy in the supplemental draft was how much of a physical freak this guy was and how great he was in limited time in college. Limited due to off the filed incidents amazingly enough. But all I have seen from this guy is a clinic in how to miss and not tackle guys. His first year he was too dumb to learn the playbook and get into correct position his second year he was hurt and this year has been an embarrassment in how to play football. Give me Bobby Boucher over this guy.
Deltha O'Neal. never have I seen a guy care less and play with less passion than Deltha. David Jones plays harder and wants it more.
HeranaDaze Jones. Great special teamer, but I can't put him above Herbert or Lynch at this point.
Dan Howell. I know getting rid of a linebacker after last years debacle is iffy especially two, but cuts have to be made and this guy showed me nothing, not even on special teams.
Provided Jeremi Johnson can stay under 5000 pounds, Dan Coats becomes expendable. Reggie Kelly and Ben Utecht are in and I liked what I saw from Nate Lawrie and you know they will keep Matt Sherry.
Quote of the night.
"We didn't see Rudi because Jeremi (Johnson) ate him!"
That was Mo commenting on why Rudi never made it into the game!