The season is dead. Long live the season.
One thing that struck me more than anything this season is how many losses of 20 point’s or more (8 in total). All VJ has talked about is what a great practice the team have had, and that we can’t keep giving turnovers away.
We gave away 34 in all, just 7 behind Cleveland and the nearest team after us was Miami on 29 followed by Chokeland on 28. So we wasn’t even there or thereabouts in the rankings, making that a hard stat to look at.
22 of those were INT’s and 12 were fumbles. I would suggest, as I cant find a stat for it, that our QB’s gave away a good half of those fumbles.
We had 17 take aways, 10 INT’s and 7 Fumbles, putting us in the bottom 5 for takeaways.
Did it appear that the team had worked on ball retention after every VJ’s wax lyricals? I’d say not.
My son plays Junior Rugby League, and ball protection is a constant teach to them. It is literally school boy stuff. This is how bad it looks to a Brit looking in from outside, because I’m quite sure the same is taught over the pond. The question then is, who’s to blame for this?
Another stat for me is balls dropped from passes, not just the Receivers, everyone. Again that’s taught from junior level, a few drops balls have cost us TD’s and possibly wins this season. Therefore I’d seriously be looking at some of these WR free agents that are about to come on the market.
Sunshine has proved his retention, and Latimar before injury, was starting to show why he was drafted, having said that, they are both excellent ST players, and that also should worry everyone. The fact that our best recievers aren’t starters and are only here because of their ST work, makes you wonder.
So, turnovers and drops are the main highlights of what went wrong, but it is my belief that not starting Paxton from the off has now put us 2-3 years behind where we need to be. Another QB battle will no doubt ensure, unless a major move is made in the off season, but our starter needs to be named by 1st July I feel, and put to bed any competition, which has proved doesn’t work and isnt helpful. Those couple of months of camp with the NO1’s are vital, and if no one knows who the QB is how can anyone get into a rhythm or an understanding with each other?
We still need OL help, I feel we’ll draft one and bring one in from FA. I’d retain Bolles, Leary, Paradis and McGovern.
Joe Woods as a DC has really disappointed me, so much so I’d be happy to see him not retained, after being so happy we’d kept our DC in house, so it wouldn’t mess with the Defense to much. Rather than learn from his mistakes, his interviews came over as he was more than happy with what he’d put out there, or an it’ll do type attitude.
Brock Olivio so far like Vance, has talked the talk, but failed to walk the walk, i do however feel this is more personelle than coaching, although he has failed to coach the holding penalties etc out of them.
Joseph and his staff being unable to make adjustments again tells its own story.
VJ has stated he feels its more a personelle problem than coaching, but when all said and done, HE chose the personelle, so must shoulder all the blame. Look at McKenzie for instance, rather than benching him for the season he was constantly sent out there and consistantly made mistakes. That was on the coaches not the player. Another example of bad decision making by VJ.
Going back to Special teams, what on earth was up with Riley Dixon? He regressed this year, and wasn’t as affective as last year. His bad kicks giving the opposition great field position again hurt us. Again if it was a personelle issue why didn’t VJ change it, he is the man in charge, or why didn’t Olivio do something about it? This shows a severe case of complacency amongst the coaching staff, and Elway puts up with that, then we are done as a force in the NFL, he sacked John Fox and his staff for a hell of a lot less. He sacked Fox for the team not having a kicking and screaming mentality, yet this year’s team hasn’t even let out so much as a whimper, so my flabber will be totally gasted if changes aren’t made.
Out of all the rhetoric that VJ has said, the only one thing I really agreed with and believed in, was when he said, “things get magnified when you’re losing”. It’s easy to paper over the cracks when your winning, but this season has really highlighted how awful our whole Offensive set up is. With a few exceptions I’d get some scissors and cut cut cut. I’d like to retain Bill Musgrave, I believe we have a decent OC there, i liked how he did play to each QB’S strengths, and not just say he would like McCoy.
FA and Draft for me should be, QB, and an OL on top of the list, along with a LB, WR and Punter.
Ultimately the players love VJ, so why did they all play like they’d lost confidence in him and were playing like they wanted him fired, even through he constantly threw them under the bus on game day, after all they’d all practiced really well all week hadn’t they?