We showed up ready to play. The game is fun when your guys work their way into displaying their talents on center stage. We have our share of good players. Many were back home---hometown heroes from back in the day. Rice fought gamely but this was a mismatch. Here are the grades:
We didn't execute the assignments we were assigned---across the board. Football players are supposed to make plays regardless of degree of difficulty. Since we gave up 45 points and over 500 yards it's obvious our troopers didn't produce many positive results in that game plan. We scored 38 with 500 yards---you should (must) win these games. We weren't out talented. We were outcoached plain and simple.
The most impressive aspect of our offensive effort was the intensity the majority of our troopers displayed from start to finish---every play and two deep. We definitely had speed bumps along the way but we overcame mistakes with dedicated effort and skill. We had several displays of player improvement along with quality play from some that weren't as proven or experienced. We should be able to build on this first game and correct the major concerns this week.
Fun game to watch. We made too many mistakes and missed too many tackles but we stuck a bunch of busy into their operation. We turned several "big play" potentials into minimal gains with tremendous hustle---because we all wanted to. That was a very talented offense last night---those two guys ran hard.
The chips were on the line in Arlington this time. We had some rise to the occasion. We had some that allowed the magnitude of the game affect their performance. We still scored 27 points but fell far short of the time of possession domination we needed to influence the game as a positive in our direction. We shot ourselves with penalties to kill drives. We trick played our way into other drive killers. It wasn't our finest performance---players and play-callers alike.
We played very hard this week. We were a couple of "big" plays and too many missed tackles away from a very good game. Guys were flying around with kinetic energy abound. I liked the approach we took this week. We did basic seek and destroy tactics while keeping it simple. Since we had a mash unit with everyone finding a way to contribute it turned out our "busy" made up for mistakes in angles, MT's, and dag-nabbits.
Right up front I just want to acknowledge that these guys have some kind of blurs aligning as edge foundations. I wouldn't be surprised if they anchored the sprint relay back in their high school days. That was the bad news although that alley runner (12) was as good as advertised. The good news is we handled their action with our secret weapon (for the most part)---a real offensive line playing to gut the opponent.
If you are looking for feel good words about our defensive performance yesterday you might need to check another post. I will attempt to use only the best of the worst in describing the defensive effort from the top on down.
We played well enough to win despite some minor miscues along the way. Sam bounced back with a solid performance and even better leadership. The Oline broke down in a few situations but overall played winning football. The receiving group wasn't their usual dependable playmakers but managed to support the offense with a few key catches. The RB's made the most out of their opportunities plus they blocked extremely well.