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View Full Version : Chargers Preseason Game 2: Studs and Duds



Puddleglum
08-22-2011, 01:45 PM
After having 2 days of combined practices with the Cowboys, the Chargers faced off against them on Sunday Night Football. So what else is there to do but award the studs and call out the duds. (in no particular order)

STUDS:

- Vincent Jackson:

I'm one of the first people that will tell you that the WR is one of the most overrated positions in the game. I'd also tell you that if VJ is traded to a team desperate enough to pay him top dollar he would disappear (Think Moss to the Raiders, or Housh to the Seahawks, or the current example of Rice to the Seahawks). However sometimes the guy makes playing the position look so easy (http://www.nfl.com/videos/auto/09000d5d821a18eb/Jackson-29-yard-catch), that I think I could be wrong on this one.

- Brandyn Dombrowski:

McNeil was out so his back up was playing LT. Considering he did well against Ware (the top OLB in the league in my opinion) it was a great test for him. He wasn't perfect but he showed that he can do it.

- Donald Butler:

Playing as a coverage ILB has to be one of the harder defensive positions and this kid is doing a fair job of it. Don't get me wrong his missed his rookie year due to injury and has his training wheels on out there but he's been around the ball and with a season of experience this kid would have been able to deflect the ball that Romo threw for a TD (http://www.nfl.com/videos/auto/09000d5d821a1c60/Witten-TD-catch) (Butler is 56). He shows that he's getting there, and that's a great thing because the Chargers are gambling on him big time as a starter.

- Antonio Garay and Cam Thomas:

Garay is our starting NT and Thomas is a 2nd year player. I was impressed with both of these gentlemen as they will be compared to Jamal Williams, and they certainly didn't shame themselves out there in that game. What made Jamal great is that he was able to eat blocks and still somehow manage to stick that arm out there to take a RB down. I saw this from both of these players out there and I couldn't be happier. Cam Thomas was certainly applying pressure (to be fair he was playing against 2nd stringers and he is a rotational guy at NT.) and seems to have a good working relationship with Vaughn Martin and even Liuget. Considering that they are the future, it's a beautiful thing.

- Corey Liuget, Vaughn Martin:

Two young DE's making themselves known on the field, I was very impressed with their athleticism especially considering they're big boys. Both of them were in the backfield and making plays. Liuget had a good game but San Diego is still haunted by the memory of another 1st round pick who looked superb in the preseason, but now dwells in infamy (which is apparently Vancouver, Canada) so don't blame us for not getting very excited. If I had to hand out a gold star to only one player in the game it would have been Martin who looks like he's coming into his own.

- Young Corners:

This is in very much the same vein as Donald Butler. Shareece Wright and Marcus Gilchrist certainly weren't perfect out there but they always seemed to be tackling their man the second he caught that pass, give them some time to develop and they'll be in tune enough to be able to deflect it and perhaps even collect an interception.

*Honorable Mention*

- Darryl Gamble:

With Shaun Phillips, Antwan Barnes and Travis Laboi out for whatever reasons it was basically just Gamble and English at OLB. He got to play against the first team and was eaten by Tyrone Smith on one play but was creating pressure, and even seemed to drop into coverage a great deal. He didn't look terrible out there and showed some potential. He's got a real shot at making the team.

- Jordan Todman:

He looks like he could have what it takes to make it, I would however like to see him with the 1st team more.

Duds:

- The Running Game:

I still think it left town with Marty. Tolbert and Mathews looked pretty pedestrian out there aside from Mathews' big play. This isn't just on the RB's and O-line, it's on the coaches as well.

- Larry English:

He has the physical tools but at this point, I think it's sheer lack of experience that hold him back more than anything else.

- Red Zone Issues:

Know how you beat the Chargers? Let them fly down the field to the red zone and hold them to 3. That's how the Steelers always beat us. To be fair, this is a symptom of the running game.

- Injuries?:

Some big names missed the game for medical reasons:

Shaun Phillips
Marcus McNeil
Antonio Gates
Kory Sperry
Travis Laboi
Antwan Barnes

*Dishonorable Mention*

- Antoine Cason:

Missed some tackles, but he gets a pass because his hand is currently in club form and probably just didn't want to injure/aggrivate it further.


So what's your take?

baphamet
08-22-2011, 11:09 PM
the defense against the run concerns me the most. tolbert fumbling the ball in the red zone again concerns me as well.

i am not as concerned about the running game as you ,however. i think it will be decent enough and we will be able to pound it in as long as we don't fumble.

we did have a red zone TD to go along with that FG. teams like to blitz us in the red zone, we need to learn how to deal with it better.

other than that i am happy with what i have seen so far.

jcdavey
08-22-2011, 11:27 PM
dombrowski looked bad a couple times, but he was playing ware, and ware is great

run D looked bad but not all the starters were in there so, we'll see what happens when it's for real

Puddleglum
08-23-2011, 11:01 AM
the defense against the run concerns me the most. tolbert fumbling the ball in the red zone again concerns me as well.

The run defense comment is kind of to be expected. It's still a 3-4 and IMO innately weaker against the run. It relies on LB'ers, and we just don't have them at this point in time. They will tighten up with time but to be fair to the Chargers, Dallas does have a run game.


i am not as concerned about the running game as you ,however. i think it will be decent enough and we will be able to pound it in as long as we don't fumble.

I'd like to clarify, it's not that I hate our running game, it can and does work I just feel like we use it incorrectly. I still get flashbacks to years ago when we forced carries to LT and I see echoes of it today. To this day LT is excellent with ball security, I will give him that.


we did have a red zone TD to go along with that FG. teams like to blitz us in the red zone, we need to learn how to deal with it better.

That's why I was glad we played the Cowboys and Rivers even mentioned it in the game. They were blitzing like mad. It makes for good practice.


other than that i am happy with what i have seen so far.

You know what I've been happy with? Our 2nd stringers, they haven't emberassed themselves out there.

baphamet
08-23-2011, 02:27 PM
IMO a great run stuffing NT is the key to stopping the run in a 3-4. i miss the days of jwall dominating opposing teams and their running game. :sad:

Chargerbomb
08-23-2011, 09:54 PM
When Felix Jones was gashing the Chargers run defense, the culprits were Luis Castillo, Cam Thomas, Darryl Gamble and Larry English.

Castillo because he was consistently driven back and out of the way.

Thomas because he had zero lateral mobility. He is strong, but slow and he just doesn't penetrate the offensive line like Garay.

Gamble and English because they lost contain multiple times on cutbacks and counters.


On the bright side, Vaughn Martin looked outstanding, as did Vincent Jackson.

Corey Liuget looked good against the pass but out of place against the run.

Randy McMichael made plays in the passing game; he shouldn't be blocking, especially not DeMarcus Ware.