This is a list of very specific questions that have been gnawing at me for days. Undoubtedly, you guys will bring up some different questions that will cause me to re-prioritize mine. I attempt to put these questions into a rough order of importance. Here you go!
Question #1: Who will be our starting QB by the end of the season? I have no clue! If I had to bet, I would say Orton will start, Quinn will eventually replace this year, and Tebow will play in "Wildhorse" situations throughout the year.
Question #2: When will Ryan Harris be back this year? My opinion is that Ryan Harris is the key to our offensive line in 2010. Ryan Clady, hopefully will be back and ready to roll by the season opener. The absence of Ryan Harris changed the entire nature of our offensive line last year.
Question #3: Can Jamal Williams stay healthy and be effective? I was a big proponent for drafting defense in the 2010 draft but things did not work out that way. Our run defense was by far our worst statistical category in 2009. If Jamal is healthy and back to normal, you must assume our run defense would improve drastically overnight. We shall see.
Question #4: Can Mario Haggan successfully transition to ILB? He is certainly big enough to fit the bill but is he cerebral and speedy enough to make the transition? I thought Haggan had a great 2009 season and showed good instincts to recognize run vs. pass from the OLB position. Can he do the same from the ILB position?
Question #5: Will Knowshon Moreno rush for 900 yards or 1500 yards? Knowshon's rookie year featured a lot of, well, rookie mistakes. He tripped over blockers regularly, didn't pick up some key blocks, dropped several passes, and often chose the wrong blockers to run behind. With that said, he also showed flashes of brilliance with some amazing moves and tough goal line TD runs. I have a hunch Knowshon will run for closer to 1500 yards than 900 yards.
Question #6: Will Robert Ayers step up and be starter worthy? I thought Ayers showed that he has a decent ability to rush the QB in 2009. With that said, that is about all I saw out of him. He did not look aggressive against the run at all and often missed assignments when asked to cover. Hopefully these were rookie mistakes. If Ayers and Doom are successfully rushing the edge, our defense will be money! I'm hoping Ayers will show a nastiness beyond a suplex of Jamal Charles.
Question #7: Will Demaryius Thomas show first round talent? I like Thomas as a talent and think he looks great on paper. Will he become a playmaker equal to his measurables? I don't expect much from Thomas from his rookie year but I am hoping to be pleasantly surprised. By the way, I refuse to call him "Bay Bay" because I think it is annoying.
Question #8: Who will be our starting center in 2010 and will they be effective? I am hoping J.D. Walton steps in and anchors our offensive line for the next ten years. This is asking a bunch from a rookie but beggars can't be choosers. I will be curious to see to what extent J.D. Walton is a vocal leader on the line and how long it takes for him to be productive.
Question #9: Will we have an effective punt and kick returner? Will this person be JJ Arrington, Perrish Cox, or someone else? I am hoping Eddie Royal has graduated from these duties once and for all. Watching Josh Cribbs and Devin Hester transform the nature of a game is amazing. Will we have that with someone on our roster?
Question #10: Will we have productivity from the TE position? We had very little pass catching production from this position in 2009. McD has indicated he intends to change that this year. The notion that our offense and the Patriots offense do not employ pass catching TE's as a preference is wrong. I expect our offense will change and I expect one of our biggest changes will be how we use our TE's.
Four questions barely missing the cut:
11. Will we have the Eddie Royal of 2008 or 2009?
12. Will Alphonso Smith step up and show some semblance of talent?
13. Will Correll Buckhalter remain healthy?
14. Can our aging defensive backs remain effective?
Feel free and let me know where my priorities were off or where I missed questions. Thanks!