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Observations of the Chargers performance

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by Blue Bolt, Aug 11, 2011.

  1. Blue Bolt

    Blue Bolt Persona Non Grata

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    Observation deck: Chargers vs. Seahawks
    August, 11, 2011
    By Bill Williamson

    Here are some thoughts from the Chargers’ 24-17 loss to Seattle in their preseason opener on Thursday night on ESPN:

    The first-team offense is nice: The expectations in this post-lockout world have been that established offenses would be further along than teams with major change. The Chargers are virtually the same offense as they were last season.

    The first-team offense looked like it’s been working daily all year. Quarterback Philip Rivers led San Diego on an impressive 10-play, 89-yard drive in five minutes, 33 seconds. Rivers completed 5 of 6 passes for 87 yards and a touchdown pass. The Chargers cruised down the field as if it were November.

    The fact that Rivers led more than 40 players in four-times-as-week workouts beginning in March makes it’s easy to understand why the first-team offense clicked so well.

    Happiness on special teams: The Chargers’ area that needs the most improvement is the special teams. It got off to a terrific start in 2011 under new coach Rich Bisaccia. Bryan Walters energized his team with a 103-yard kickoff return in the third quarter. Even though it is just the preseason, the entire stadium erupted and Bisaccia acted like he just won the Super Bowl. You can’t blame the Chargers for reveling in the moment. After a year in which special-teams misery cost them a playoff spot, this was a welcome moment.

    VJ-Rivers combination is back: The highlight of that first drive was a 48-yard pass from Rivers to No. 1 receiver Vincent Jackson, who held out for much of last season. Prior to last season, Rivers and Jackson developed a tremendous chemistry and it is clear the combination is back in form. This will make San Diego’s offense, which was ranked No. 1 in the NFL last year, even more dangerous.

    Mathews has nice hands: Rivers told me this week when I visited the Chargers’ camp that he was impressed by how second-year running back Ryan Mathews was coming around in the passing game. Mathews made a nifty 9-yard catch on that first drive. If he can continue to make strides, Mathews can help make up for what is lost in the passing game with the departure of free-agent Darren Sproles, who is now in New Orleans.

    New coordinator, same nasty D: This was the debut of new defensive coordinator Greg Manusky. He replaces Ron Rivera, who is now the head coach in Carolina and who led the Chargers to the NFL's No. 1-ranked defense last season. I heard good things about Manusky, and Thursday, his defense came out and looked great. The Chargers’ defense was swarming and aggressive -- just the way Manusky likes it. Seattle didn’t pass midfield in the first half. It seems like this defense is still in good hands.

    Liuget is explosive: A big part of the new defense is first-round pick Corey Liuget. He was drafted for his speed and his ability to quickly get into the backfield. The Illinois product displayed that Thursday night, and the Chargers have to be thrilled. He didn’t have an offseason program, signed late and missed some camp time. Yet, he looks ready to go.

    Todman looks good: The Chargers have been thrilled about sixth-round running back Jordan Todman. They thought they got a steal when he lasted until the sixth round and they loved the way he worked in camp. The hope is he can replace Sproles. After his first preseason game, that hope shouldn’t change. Todman looked good Thursday. He had 30 yards rushing on six totes and he added 21 yards on four catches.

    Third stringers not so much: The Seahawks outscored San Diego 24-7 in the second half. It was a tough game for San Diego undrafted rookie quarterback Scott Tolzien, who has been impressive in camp. He led a good drive at the end of the game that fell just short of the end zone. Overall, this was a good night for San Diego, just not for many of players who likely won’t make the roster.
     
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  2. matilack

    matilack Take A Knee McCree!!!

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    Love it.
     
  3. AnteaterCharger

    AnteaterCharger Calibrating Bolttalk, Podcast by Podcast Staff Member Super Moderator Podcaster

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    What plays were he watching regarding Liuget? He, Cam Thomas and Vaughn Martin were pushed around pretty much all game long.
     
  4. 1 COOL GUY 13x world Chmp

    1 COOL GUY 13x world Chmp Jesus gives wisdom if you pray for it! Banned

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    Positives: Lots of better players than last year. A few D formations with the LOS stacked with players worked excellent the few times it was used "ThunderHammerISH." No delay of game penalties like last year so far. Players look to be better trained about holding onto the ball after catches and runs. Using 2 hands on the ball when contact comes be it ground or players, well done someone! Special teams looked legit.

    Negatives: Our offense still relies on passes to our RB's to succeed. (Just like last year, except why were we showing our Norv calling type of offense in preseason?) Jump ball down the field slow developing plays that work well only if QB get time. If we would have scored legit type TD's with a unstoppable type strat then I would have been happier. A play-off type of team will shut down our offense for sure. If we have not learned anything in all these years under Norv ball playoff level teams know our tricks. A top team will have 1-2 LB's all over our RB's and safeties that will shut down our jump ball stuff, like Jets do. Much less top teams will not allow Rivers that much time to throw the ball period. People will think Rivers scored on his only series, yet don't realize scoring a TD by passing to your RB is not legit offense. That is called "gimmick" offense that is supposed to be used in dire situations only TBH. A top team would save that for the end of a game. Not on your 1st series with your starting O in a preseason game =/.

    99% fans think if AJ stacks our team with talent we will win.... Truth is scheme is more important than the players. NFL teams don't have that much of a player talent gap yet....Teams like the Patriots/Colts win all the time with low draft picks year after year.

    Our "3-4" D that relies on blitzing just like last year, will still suxs. This is so discouraging, same bend but don't break failed thought process. DB playing 10 yards off the LOS giving up 8 yard free passes is so sad to see again. Top teams will exploit soon enough. Not only that, it's complicated to run this u run up fake blitz or real stuff. A great scheme its built in so as no way that would be necessary and 100X more likely to succeed as designed. The 3 D lineman clearly look worn out by the end of the game as u would expect from a losing scheme that thinks its ok to ask 3 guys to control 5-6.

    Conclusion: C grade so far. Our team O/D looks exactly the same as last year scheme wise that led to 9-7 with one the most talented teams in the NFL. The only real good news is we have great players who will be filling these schemes position wise than most teams. Also the special teams look professional at least now. Better fundamentals than last year.

    Sadly this is my honest opinion and I love the Chargers. All my posts about how to make changes that will make us #1 don't seem to be read by anyone at the top =(. Not only all this but we still get penalties (off-sides/false starts) that other team don't usually get as often as we do.

    I'm sad to say that unless the Chargers have a completely new unseen schemes D/O they are saving for the REG season, we will not be more than a 1 play-off win team. I'm historically 95% correct factually. Our 4th and what-ever last play of the game 2 of our WR's used stop routes? Are u kidding me? That is the NFL Chargers strat to score? Real easy to cover the 2 WR's that don't move at all as the play called for=(. Real plays they would have crossed or tried and move to an opening like the Seahawks WR's did.
     
  5. matilack

    matilack Take A Knee McCree!!!

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    I saw 2 or 3 times when he got stood up, and 1 time where he got flattened, but other than that Liuget did penetrate a couple times and disrupt the backfield. He wasn't bad.

    That said.....you get what you pay for when you spend a 1st round pick on a 3-4 DE. Don't say I didn't warn you guys, he will not be an "impact" player on the defense, but hopefully a solid presence.
     
  6. Blue Bolt

    Blue Bolt Persona Non Grata

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    You're saying that based on a week's worth of practice......... OK. :rolleyes:
     
  7. BoltsFanUK

    BoltsFanUK Well-Known Member

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    when it was first string vs first string- we dominated Seattle. probably would have been a shutout if it was a regular season game. Opening drive was a thing of beauty. Chargers are in great shape
     
  8. PB Bolt

    PB Bolt Well-Known Member

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    Great opening drive. Don't over-think this.
     
  9. Ride The Lightning

    Ride The Lightning Join the Dark Side, we have cookies.

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    I love Tolbert.
     
  10. charger1993

    charger1993 bad motherfucker

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    The defense was a very strong point, gamble is a rookie who needs to make the team if he keeps up the performance, I don't think Liuget will be a factor at the end posiston, he was talked as a 4-3 under guard tackle, the LB core seams to be much more solid, the only question I have is the run game, wtf was Matthews and tolberts problem they seemed tonlack the acceleration that inam use to seeing from them,
     
  11. ThunderHorse17

    ThunderHorse17 Lone Wolf

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    It was a great first game of the year.
     
  12. DenverBolt67

    DenverBolt67 BoltTalker

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    Except that we still couldn't run the ball
     
  13. HEXEDBOLT

    HEXEDBOLT Don't like it, lump it!!!

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    I wasn't able to pay much attention to the game last evening, I received a nice call from a great lady and some things are just more important than preseason football.
     
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  14. Dublin Bolt

    Dublin Bolt BoltTalker

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    I'll watch the game 2moro. I saw some highlights though. On the last play of the game Tolzien had McNeal wide open underneath for a TD. Instead he tried to get it to the back of the endzone and it fell incomplete. Loved the work Odim did on the kick return for a TD.
     
  15. Shu303

    Shu303 BoltTalker

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    Yeah, but it was one drive and Rivers was feelin it....I have no doubt Mathews and Tolbert are going to be a great tandem this year :)
     
  16. Concudan

    Concudan Caffeinated Commando

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    :roflmao: :roflmao: Preseason, one drive, does not a running game make... :roflmao: :roflmao:
     
  17. matilack

    matilack Take A Knee McCree!!!

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    No I said it before the draft, even when I thought we were going to take Cam Jordan or JJ Watt. The fact of the matter is 3oolb men are not often pass rushers or tackling machines, 3-4 DEs are there to take up space, anything else you get is frosting.
     
  18. Chargerfn909

    Chargerfn909 High and tight kid, high and tight!

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    Gonna re watch tonight, as bbq'n, chasin the kiddo around, and drinkin some beer..

    Quick observations:

    Our O line can NOT run block. its pathetic.. I knew this would be an issue but jesus christ when the balls snapped the guys don't fire out, they stand straight up like they are pass blocking..Good thing we have a human battering ram for a rb to run between the tackles. RM's only success will be tosses and little catches in the flats where he can use his speed, unless something gives with that OL

    VM is making plays, but not finishing them.. He is without a doubt looking much better.

    Cam Thomas also looks like he's pass blocking...[​IMG]

    Todman is looking like a Sproles clone

    Loving Walters

    Liuget flashed when up against the 'hawk 2 and 3's, I like his high motor (chasing down plays), he will be really good in a year or two.

    Phillip Rivers is going to have an amazing year

    We missed VJ more than we know it last year. AJ HAS to lock this dude down.

    Butler lookin like a stud, gonna watch more of him tonight though.

    LaBoy flies off the edge well.

    95 should have a big year, again.

    The trenches is where we will lose games this year..AJ HAS to do something about the O line, unless he's cool to have an O like the Colts that is strictly one dimensional. The D line should be OK, but I do not have a whole **** load of confidence in them right this second.
     
  19. Fouts

    Fouts I heart Deano!

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    I saw Too Legit to quit, tackle someone with his back.. Did anyone else see him fling himself backwards on the ball carrier? :laugh:
     
  20. Pointyearedog

    Pointyearedog I only put idiots on ignore...

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    Did anyone get a youtube snippet of that catch, backflip, and subsequent dance that Tolbert performed?
     
  21. MadMike

    MadMike Well-Known Member

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    Did someone really call passing to your RB a gimmick??? Maybe you havent seen the Niners and a dude named Roger Craig win a Super Bowl. Possibly missed the Rams and a dude named Marshall Faulk win a Super Bowl. Win you have fantastic receivers like we do and those teams mentioned did, then you can send them out into the pattern, eat up all the corners and safeties and you end up with a RB running free against a LB which is a mismatch. Sounds like a pretty solid scheme to me that has worked in the past for many teams. As for the game, here are my thoughts from F39:

    Rivers is ready. He wants it. He is excited to have a solid team from the start this year,

    VJ looks fast, agile, and hungry. Dude knows a solid year means big bucks from the Chargers (or someone else)

    O-Line is pass blocking really well but still missing that push and pound for the run blocking, they need to step it up (Plus having big Marcus back should help)

    Ryan Mathews showing some good hands which is awesome because we really need that from him

    Tolbert is a beast. Needs to be more decisive and be a cut and run type dude though. He cannot bounce around like a Barry Sanders and hope to make it out of the backfield. See hole, cut one, hit it hard.

    Dombo needs to work on finishing his blocks. Guys were going around him after he turned to the side.

    Butler and Mouton need to work on hitting the hole harder during run plays. Don't need Matt Wilhelm #2 and his solid form tackles while being dragged for 5 and 6 yard runs. Other than that both played pretty well with Butler being in position better and Mouton hitting like a beast. Anyone think Jackson is feeling that thump Mouton gave him this morning?

    Takeo looks to be fired up and ready to hit.

    Bob is already flying around. Love It.

    Big Corey Liguet had a few errors but love to see the penetration he was getting when he did it right. That is something we rarely see from Luis.

    Gamble and Ihenacho made some terrible off-sides penalties. They need to fix that crap quickly if they hope to land a position on the PS or Team. Other than the penalties though, they both played really well and Gamble sure doesn look like he knows how to get to the QB. Good project players.

    Todman looked poised and solid. He runs low, protects the ball, had good hands, and showed us why he is the de facto #3 back.

    Isaac Odim didnt get to show much, one Off tackle for 4 yards, and another standard run up the middle on a running down for 0 yards that Norv seems to love to call. Hopefully we get him in space next week and see what he can really do. This week goes to Todman for sure though.

    Gilchrist needs more practice at punt returning.

    Brian Walters return was amazing, and the kid has great balance. Caught the ball well too. Hope he keeps showing up.

    The 3rd string secondary is pretty poor right now. They were playing a loose zone and were getting picked a part.

    Tolzien was nervous, jittery, and not quite ready for this game. That being said, after making some poor throws, poor decisions, and not protecting the ball, the kid forgot all that and almost brought us back for the tie. Like to see young guys like that not fold. It's a good sign.

    Give the team a B grade for this game. Philip gets an A as does VJ. Run blocking gets a D. Lets pick it up boys. Great that we stayed healthy through the game. Keep it up.
     
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  22. Pointyearedog

    Pointyearedog I only put idiots on ignore...

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    Did anyone mention #97, Bront Bird? That guy was all over the place defensively. I believe he came through on a pass play and smacked the opposing QB just as the ball got away. And that kid Gamble, his motor was running the whole time he was out there, making plays and being around the ball.
     
  23. matilack

    matilack Take A Knee McCree!!!

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    Yeah with a deep game like ours we're gonna see a lot of underneath routes and RB screens open up. I believe Sproles led our team in catches last year with 59, so people better get used to the "gimmick".
     
  24. Blue Bolt

    Blue Bolt Persona Non Grata

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    3-4 DE may not be a glamour position, but it was a position of need. Did you really want to see Cesaire starting again this year? Cam Jordan or JJ Watt are unlikely to be game changers either. From what I saw, Luiget is very athletic for a man of his size. Though a rookie, he shows pretty good use of his hands, and he was disruptive at times. He certainly isn't a statue like Igor was. His mobility will require more attention form the O-line, which in turn should free up the OLBs more. I haven't seen anything so far that would tell me that he wasn't a good pick...... have you?
     
  25. SDRaiderH8er

    SDRaiderH8er Well-Known Member

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    Gamble may of had on offside’s penalty, but he also had a sack and tackle for a loss of yardage
     
  26. Concudan

    Concudan Caffeinated Commando

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    First string v First string = A LOT OF REASON FOR EXCITEMENT!
    Second string v second string = not bad, not great, but not bad
    third string v third string = dont really care...
     
  27. Concudan

    Concudan Caffeinated Commando

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    Gamble looked very good. I want to see him do that in week 3 & 4 of the pre season, however to show that it was not a first game/1 week practice fluke, which I have a gut feeling it was not.

    Say what you will, the Chargers FO can find decent UDFAs...
     
  28. matilack

    matilack Take A Knee McCree!!!

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    I don't think you get what I was saying.....I'm against taking any 3-4 DE in the 1st round, Watt and Jordan included.

    I think you pay for playmakers, and bargain for those lunch pale positions. I feel the same way about guards and centers, they have to be EXCEPTIONAL to spend a 1st on.

    Just my opinion.
     
  29. Blue Bolt

    Blue Bolt Persona Non Grata

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    I see....... but what if you have two guys on the line that can require a double team? Doesn't that make an impact for your defense? Garay and Liuget together an suck up the blockers, creating more opportunities for the other players. I'm not really sure about being "EXCEPTIONAL"....... was Buster, or English and better? Obviously not. Liuget looks like he's got real ability though, so he will upgrade the D-line. That makes it a good pick IMHO.

    [​IMG]
     
  30. matilack

    matilack Take A Knee McCree!!!

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    AJ reached a full round or more on both Davis and English, we could have taken Sidney Rice or Clay Matthews and be in a completely different situation, both were higher rated and flat out more talented players at the time.
     

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