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September 11, 2022 vs Pittsburgh Steelers

Game Dey!!!

1st Game in Paycor Stadium


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12 minutes ago, COB said:

Gunter looked good.  I watched Ossai early on, then didn’t see him again.  Did he ever get back in?  I don’t recall him being quite as heavy as he looked tonight.

Ossai looked....fat.  I don't now if that's a good thing or a bad thing, maybe they told him to put on weight, but I'm guessing that may not be the case....

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I was at the game. The score is irrelevant to me, and I will focus on the good things:

~ Four rookies of the six we drafted showed up and looked good. Taylor-Britt didn't play, and I didn't notice anything (good or bad) from Tycen Anderson. Dax Hill had at least two moments where we got to see what he can be: the near-interception in the endzone, and an absolute clobbering hit over the middle to force an incompletion. Zach Carter looked like a legitimate force in the middle, both against the run and as a pass rusher. Jeffrey Gunter had an up and down night, but the ups were exciting. He even had a single play that fit that description: in his initial jump off the line, the tackle managed to shove him straight out of the play -- he had bad leverage and got beat. But then he managed to throw himself off of that block, turn around, and make the tackle 3-4 yards up the field. That was a great display of recovery and motor. I'm officially excited about the rookies on the defensive line. I didn't see Volson as clearly from my vantage point, but I do know the offense immediately improved when Carman left the field, and that Volson had a key block to spring the second-last Bengals touchdown.

~ Evan McPherson is a monster. We're going to be attempting multiple 60+ yard field goals this year, and I am not even sure it has to be at the end of the first half or the end of a game. If it's 4th and 13 at the opposing 43 yard line in the middle of the third quarter, Zac Taylor is going to kick that 61 yard field goal. I mean why the hell not? This dude's range is obscene, and he is hitting almost everything in camp too.

~ There's no way in hell that Trent Taylor doesn't make this team. He has been discussed as someone who is "in a roster battle" through much of camp, and I really don't get it. If he is, then he shouldn't be. The guy is a quality punt returner who not only can provide big plays, but he also makes good special teams decisions (e.g., tonight, he didn't do a Brandon Tate and fair catch a punt dropping in at the 5 yard line and let it go into the endzone). He was a security blanket while Jake Browning ran around behind a porous line struggling to survive and looked great all night.

~ I'm not sure Kendric Pryor has a realistic path to make the roster, but he sure made the most of his opportunities. Watching him close the game out with New Preseason Superstar Drew Plitt was a ton of fun, and he had an incredible grab earlier in the game from Browning too. The receiver conversation has become quite interesting, because we have talked at length around here about the dropoff from the Three Amigos to number 4 and beyond. Many podcasters et al seem to think Mike Thomas is a sure bet for that spot, and at the very least I don't think he should be. I'm seeing this at wide receiver:

Locks (Chase, Higgins, Boyd) | Very strong case (Morgan, Taylor) | Battle for 1-2 spots (Thomas, Irwin, Lassiter, Pryor)

~ Chris Evans is a big play waiting to happen every time he touches the ball. His rushing numbers tonight are absolutely terrible (8 carries for -3 yards), but we all saw how the line in front of him looked. He opened the game with a huge explosive play called back by a hold, and he put up a 41 yard kick return. If he can keep that up, and Taylor can handle punt return duties efficiently, then that really dampens the value of a guy like Lassiter. We'll see how that turns out.

~ The only injury I am aware of is a concussion to Brandon Allen. Hopefully he is okay, and maybe he can just take the next game or two off while the practice squad level QBs take the reigns. Otherwise, it's always a relief to get out of these stupid games unscathed.

I'll acknowledge some of the stinkers too, just by name:

Jackson Carman, Isaiah Prince, Hakeem Adeniji, Pooka Williams, Jaques Patrick*, Tyler Shelvin, Jake Browning**

*This might come as a surprise, since he wasn't terrible and he did score a touchdown. He seems extremely slow to me, and I don't know that I'd ever want him carrying the ball consistently in this offense.

**Clearly the line made his life worse, but I thought he looked bad anyway. His pocket presence was non-existent. He hardly ever set his feet to throw, he didn't seem to have great awareness of the rush, and he held on to the ball with open receivers visible at least to me.

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Thanks for a good write up.  On tv at least, Browning looked pretty good the first 2 or 3 series.  I think it sunk in - what he was dealing with, and his performance certainly dropped of.  

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I thought all of browning’s issues stemmed from the line myself. He kept some plays alive and had one helluva throw along the sidelines at one point.

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So a great time and an amazing evening weather wise down at the stadium. Stripes gave some great thoughts that I basically agree with.

I thought the young guys Carter and Gunter had some really good flashes, but are, as expected, a little inconsistent. They weren’t first round picks, so Im good at this point.

There were some good plays and flat out horrible plays from the secondary. Hill looked smooth, but you could see how fast the game appeared to him at times. It will slow down.

At this point Carman = Ass and that was the biggest disappointment of the game. I was really expecting far more from him since he wasn’t going against starters the majority of his snaps. LG is a true concern at this point. Prince looked like he should be cut right now.

Thad Moss… I want to love that guy, but Jesus Christ the holding calls. Negated Evans massive run AND his TD which was called back. He did make some other catches but he doesn’t have much wiggle.

Chris Evans needs to be getting game time reps. Somehow, someway, get him snaps.

Lastly, I love McPherson. Love that he can hit 60+ yarders. However, could they please stop trotting him out there to do that in preseason? The crowd loves it, but if he gets hurt trying a long field goal, no one is going to say, “Well at least he hit two 58 yarders in preseason”. 

All that said, it’s preseason. Next…

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Only caught the last 7 minutes.   Volson looked good, IMO.   Could get up to 2nd level.   The QB throws a good ball.  

Caught ZTs presser he said Dax Hill jumps off at you.  So that’s great. 

Sounds like Carman struggled and was only offensive starter out there so that position is still unsettled.  

I fell asleep trying to catch the NFL Network replay so poop. 

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