I'm pretty disappointed with this loss. As good as we looked last week coming together as a team, I can't help but feel like we just let this one slip away. There are some good things that were done in this game. For a team rebuilding, I'm seeing some things that are encouraging. For instance, we were much more disciplined this week with penalties. Tenn looked like the 2nd coming of the jokeland faders out there with penalties...too bad we couldn't capitalize on it. I'm also seeing the things down the line that we HAVE to improve because we will be wallowing in mediocrity if we don't. Hopefully there are some lessons learned about our team that are worth discussing...follow me after the jump.
- First off, I'm pretty disappointed with the play calling in this game. Let's start with the offense: the run wasn't working. We didn't do anything intermediate to deep other than one play-action pass to Lloyd that challenged the defense down the field. That allowed them to play up on us and smother almost everything we did. Where was the play-action we saw last year? Orton is so good at it, why aren't you calling it more often? I did love the 4th down call to go for it in the 3rd quarter...just love it. I didn't like the run up the gut though. That was so predictable and it was failing all game long. Sweep it to the outside and see what we can make happen.
- Defensively we had big problems with the play calling. I talked about this earlier this week - Hasselback is just deadly if you let him sit around and pick you apart. Where was the pass-rush? Where is that aggressive blitzing defense that our DC is known for having a background in? I soundly lay the majority of this loss on our DC...when we did blitz we had success. We should have been doing it all game long.
- I love me some Decker, but him not knowing the play is getting very old. That is just not excusable at this level. Get your head in the book kid and pay attention on the field.
- Man we can't run a screen to save our lives.
- Orton looked completely poor today. He overthrew receivers (once leading to an INT). He kept trying to throw the ball through the linemen not two feet in front of him and getting them tipped. His TD throw to McGahee was awesome to his credit - great velocity and a tight window to make. He led us on one superb drive and looked completely lame the rest of the game. I'm looking forward to seeing a future QB because games like this are old and all too common with Orton.
- I'm not a big fan of throwing screens to Lloyd - a) Orton sucks at those throws, b) Lloyd's forte is NOT making a guy miss in the flat. Take that out of the playbook - maybe throw that to Willis.
- Props to the Offensive Line...that was their best game so far in pass protection against a solid front 7 on the Titans.
- I wish Wilhite would develop more than blitzing ability - he is awesome at that, but he was a liability on the field today and got picked on quite a bit.
- Our run defense was just outstanding in this game. This is the one thing I'm most happy about. We looked great out there not letting them run the rock on us.
- I wrote early in the first half that I was afraid the Titans would start throwing more and we'd be shredded - look at Mr. Prediction! :(
- Von Miller did a great job forcing a fumble. I like seeing him make a play each game, but I need more guy! Here's the guy that should have been blitzing more from different positions.
- Once again, Vaughn got caught playing off coverage too deep against a short throw on a 3rd and long. They will NOT go deep on that Vaughn...you have to stay in your guy's pocket!
- We let Kern get a first down and that was awful.
- Chris Harris had a good down-field tackle late in the game...great work.
- I was really impressed with Cosby - he was solid in the return game.