Ah nothing quiets the angry mob like a 30 point victory in front of the home crowd and this game had it all. A special teams TD, a defensive TD, an efficient offense and a defense that actually showed up and played whistle to whistle. Although it's cliche to even say it, this truly was a "total team effort." While the fourth win of the season in week 14 won't bring out all sunshine and rainbows, there was plenty to be excited about from this game, especially because so many young players were the stars.
- Skelton was obviously the story and for good measure. While his stats are nothing to write home about (although a couple untimely drops certainly didn't help him), he did some things pretty well. He was poised in the pocket and showed the best pocket awareness of any QB who's taken snaps from Lyle Sendlien this season. He still has some common rookie issues to work out (staring down receivers, couple of errant throws and forced it at times), but that's to be expected from a guy who had taken virtually zero snaps with the first string squad until this week. I won't get too excited b/c we were all saying much of the same after Hall's first start (better than stats suggest, gritty leader, yadda, yadda, yadda). All in all, I saw what I wanted to see from Skelton, at least some signs that he could develop into a capable NFL QB. He's got alot to improve upon but hopefully he'll get the next three games to work on some things.
- Before I get too far away from the QB position, I still don't quite understand Whiz's gameplan most of the time. This was a game where we never trailed by more than three and had at least a two score lead for more than two and a half quarters, but Whiz still calls a gameplan that requires a rookie QB making his first start to throw the ball 37 times (and really 40 times if you count his three scrambles). I know that the running games' final number looked much better after he gained over 70 yards on two carries in the fourth quarter, but 40 passing plays in a game that was close as this one sure seems like faulty logic.
- Oh yea onto the running game. Timmy H had a interesting day that was basically divided into two separate parts (pre-fumble and post-fumble). Up to and including his fumble early in the fourth, he'd gained just 51 yards on 12 carries but after his fumble he picked up 97 yards on six carries. Beanie continues to be a be plagued by one ailment for another, this week it was some stomach issue. The former first round pick continues to be an afterthought.
- As for the defense, where in the world did that come from? The front seven was pretty decent against the run and they put enough pressure on Orton for the secondary to make some big plays. The best thing the defense did was give the offense short fields to work with and that led to five scoring drives of 40 yards or less, plus they scored a TD of their own.
- Dan Williams is a youg guy coming into his own and he looks like a guy who we can plug into the middle of this defense and depend on upon. He looks like the real deal.
- It was great to see Daryl Washington back in the lineup. I love this kid's athleticism and instincts. He was one step away from a pick six and I hope Whiz doesn't spend all week chewing his butt off. Young kids make dumb mistakes and that what his little hotdog move was all about. I sure hope Washington gets to take just about every snap the rest of the way b/c he's going to be an awfully good player in the near future.
That's about all I've got right now, although I could probably go on for days. This was a much needed win and I'm glad it was led my your youngsters. Oh yea and Feely is good.