FanPost

Fall Scrimmage Notes 8-22-2009

Bumped. GO BRUINS. -N

I'm no football analysis expert, but for whatever it's worth, here are my thoughts on the scrimmage today. Forgive me if things are a little rough, but I wanted to get this posted ASAP.

Player of the Night- Brian Price. Every time he was on the field, he was making plays. He had a sack, a couple tackles for losses, and a pressure that caused an interception. He is going to be scary this year. I'm curious if he would have made as many plays with Kai Maiava in there, but Maiava sat this scrimmage out.

Pleasant Surprise of the Night - Damien Thigpen. He looked absolutely brilliant every time he touched the ball. He hits the line sooo fast and squeezes through the tiniest holes. He seemed to pass through the line like a ghost. Even after he got hit he was fighting for yards and always falling forward. He was fantastic on returns too, getting a huge kickoff return and a punt return. If I'm coach, I make him the starter tomorrow, even if he couldn't block a 120lb pregnant mother on a blitz. He's too dangerous to keep off the field.

Letdown of the Night - Carroll and Presley two of our biggest name freshmen, both had a tough night. They had opportunities, but couldn't really do anything with them.

Reality Check - Our offensive line still needs LOTS of work, especially in pass protection. Our run blocking was ok against the 2nd team, but really whenever Price was in, we couldn't go anywhere. We still didn't get to see Maiava (I'm getting worried about his tendency for injuries)[Edit- the announcer said Maiava wasn't playing, but LAT reports he was]. On the plus side, our freshmen didn't look like weak links out there although they were still getting beat at times.

Interesting Highlight - On one play Knox lowered his shoulder and delivered a pretty big blow to Viney, although Viney still took him down. A few series later Viney came back with vengance and delivered a big hit on Knox. It's fun to watch those little (literally they are both really small!) rivalries on the field.  

Funniest Moment- Demitrius Papadakis had a couple good runs. After his second good run, someone in the stands starting yelling, "Is Petros here? Your little brother is better than you! And he doesn't talk as much either!" (maybe not those exact words but close) I laughed and a lot of people around me did too.

The Team as a Whole - everyone looked a little tired out there today. The energy level didn't seem real high considering it was a scrimmage in front of thousands of fans. I know it's hard to get fired up for a scrimmage, but I would have liked to see a little more hustle. Everyone seemed kinda lackadaisical between plays. Multiple big returns against our coverage teams tells me that either we weren't hustling or we need to get some new guys on punt and kickoff coverage. The defense also seemed to slow down a few times before the play was over. On the Franklin touchdown, for a sec it looked like the defense thought he was stopped, and I think that brief hesitation allowed Franklin to break it. Then again there were a few times when practically the whole defense was in on a tackle. 

Position by Position - keep in mind that I was trying to get this out in a hurry, so none of my stats are confirmed. I'm going only off my notes, which I think might be incomplete in some areas. Also, a lot of these guys were going against 2nd and 3rd string defense which can make them look better than they are.

QB's 

Prince wasn't doing so hot against the first team. Most of the time it wasn't his fault, but then again he wasn't always making the throws he needed to make when he had the chance. Overall not a great night for Prince. My ROUGH stats ( I was taking some notes) 9-19 for 83 yds and a pic and a rushing touchdown (arguably, we had a defender that might have been able to stop him). He would have made 50% completions but he had an easy one dropped by Carroll.

Brehaut - He looked ok, but he wasn't playing much if at all against the first defense. He made a real nice throw on an out pattern. Rough stats - 3-6 with a drop by Presley. Looking at my notes, he didn't get a whole lot of time out there.

Craft - He looked ok as well. He was running around a lot and trying to make plays with his feet. I have him 0-1 with an 8 yard run and a zero yard run. That sounds wrong to me, but that's what my notes say... I'm sure we'll have something better shortly.

Crissman - He helped himself today. His first pass was a touchdwon to Joseph Fauria who is not eligible to play this season. He showed great pocket presence and was able to move away from the rush well. His second pass was almost a touchdown as well. Presley probably could have had it. It was perfectly thrown but coverage was tight. I didn't write down how many yards the touchdown was but it was a lot. Maybe 40-50 yds? His stats - 1-3 with a TD. He also got sacked once when the pocket completely collapsed on him.

Landers - Landers showed good arm strength and confidence. He connected with Jerry Rice on one long play when PI was called. I couldn't tell if Rice made the catch for sure, but it looked like he did. I'm showing 2-2 for 14 yds not counting the long PI play against Rice. I think he had another long one that was incomplete, but I'm not showing here... hmm.

Running Backs

Ramirez - He didn't get in too much and didn't do much when he did. At this point, I'm a little worried that he is our starter. I'm showing 2 rushes for -3 yards.

Coleman - He also didn't do much. I can't say it was his fault though. He was almost always getting hit before he ever got out of the backfield. This helps confirm for me that we should be using someone like Franklin or Thigpen who is extremely quick and can change directions and cut back in a hurry, so when those guys slip through line we have a chance to get by them. On one goaline situation they handed to coleman twice and he get zero yards both times. He looks big out there and fairly quick too, but not quite like Franklin, Thigpen, Knox. I'm showing 4 rushes for -1 yards and a 10 yard reception.

Franklin - He had a fantastic night out there. His 60 yard touchdown run was probably the best single offensive play of the game. It looked like he was going to get stuffed in the backfield on the left side, but then he cut back and then just outran everybody to the far side line and took it in for 6. He looked very fast all night, and was probably tied for Thigpen as the most explosive back out there today. I have him at 6 carries for 100 yards and a wopping 16.6 yards a carry! His only negative on the night was a dropped ball.

Knox- He was solid. He going forward every time and usually making good yards. He had a nice combination of tough running, speed and agility. He was overshadowed by Franklin and Thigpen though. I have him at 9 carries for 33 yards. He almost made 4 yards a carry.

Thigpen - I'll admit it. I really like this kid. He can play. I don't know if he's better than Franklin but he's certainly right there. He was squeezing through the tiniest holes and was hitting the line very, very fast. On one play in particular where he picked up 9 yards it was like he warped forward. I can't explain it. It was like he just appeared 9 yards down the field. This kid is rarely going to get caught for a loss. He also had two absolutely amazing returns. His speed is incredible, and I nominated him  My Pleasant Surprise of the evening. He had 7 carries for 42 yards. I didn't record his return yardage, but he got one TD on a punt return and a kick off return to the defense's 35 yard line where I think the whole return team missed him once or twice before they finally brought him down.

Fullbacks - Moline made a couple good catches out of the backfield and made some good blocks. Theriot had a great catch too and a great lead block for Prince on Prince's touchdown run. Allmond looked HUGE.

Overall, I'd love to see either Franklin or Thigpen spending a lot of time running the ball this year. I know the coaches want someone that can block, but I don't know how you leave weapons like those two off the field.

Receivers-

I'll just keep this brief. The receivers didn't do a whole lot tonight. They were dropping some balls and missing some catches that they might have been able to get. Fauria, Chandler and Rice made the best catches today and they probably won't even see any time on the field this year. Carroll dropped a pass that could have gone for big yardage. It was an underneath throw and the linebackers were playing off too much. He might have been able to sprint by them and up the side line. I have a feeling he was already looking for where he was going to run to and forgot to focus on the ball (typical freshman mistake!).


Defense

Defensive Line - Brian Price was a force of nature. Aside from him the dline did ok at all levels, especially considering how much depth we are lacking there. It looked like the middle was a weak spot when Price wasn't in there though. The freshmen played well out there. Keenan Grahm, Ian Davis, and especially Iuta Tepa did really well.

Linebackers - The first team was smothering. Bosworth looked good out there. One play he made a great tackle on Ramirez to hold him to one yard, and then on the very next play he knocked down a throw intended for Logan Paulsen (I think it was). Out of the back ups, Sean Westgate was all over the place. Sloan made some decent plays too and had a nice goal line stop. I thought I saw Papadakis on defense too? Does anyone know if he is going both ways at linebacker and running back?

Secondary- We are DEEP in the secondary. Viney is going to be a good replacement for Verner next year. My only complaint here was the fact that we had several PIs called on this group. I didn't catch the names on who was causing them. Moore had a nice pic I believe, but I don't recall who got the initial pic-6.

Special Teams - While Thigpen stole the show on the returns we got to see some other guys as well. Courtney Viney returned one for a touchdown ( I want to say a punt?). Marvray was lining up on the first team as a returner, but he looked like the weakest out of the group. He muffed a punt but was able to pick it up and keep running. He looked pretty quick, but not Thigpen or Viney quick.

Jeff Locke was on FIRE tonight. He had one punt for over 60 yards. Another one was a 46 yarder that went out of bounds at the 1 yard line. His punts were all spirals with huge hang time. He is going to be a weapon. Also, we don't need to worry about Forbath leaving after this season. Locke nailed a 53 yard kick and didn't miss one field goal tonight. When you have so many great players in your kicking bunch you've got to wonder how much the long snapper, Yount is contributing to that. He is a pre season all american and he deserves it. Look at the performances of Perez, Forbath and now Locke over the past few seasons.

Our coverage teams were BAD tonight. They better practice coverage more before the San Diego State game or we're in trouble.

It was a fun night and it was great to see all the players out there signing autographs after the game. Only two weeks left till game time!!! Go Bruins!!!

<em>This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of BruinsNation's (BN) editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of BN's editors.</em>

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