Another tough road loss makes analysis a lot less fun. As is always the case, we try to nitpick after the wins and look for silver linings after the loss. The silver I found won't make many happy.
Clary had a very good game. I said it. He gave up 1.5 sacks, had some other negative plays, but that's it. He also had a slew of big blocks and very good pass pro. I can't help but notice that his footwork has improved tremendously from last year. His last hurdle is to perfect consistency. He is playing well though, just still lapsing.
Vasquez definitely struggled. Also giving up 1.5 sacks (although one of those was strongly on Rivers as well) he missed more blocks than he would usually. This may have been expected being his first game back, but the line can't afford to have him play like this for too long.
Hardwick was very good, as he always is against 4-3 teams. One negative play early, and then consistency. His athleticism is apparent throughout, and other than a missed protection call, seemed to do his job well.
Dielman was very, very good. Yes, he gave up a sack. Yes, he had a negative play on the very first snap. Yes, there was a pull where I wanted some perfection, but.... The man played well. He had a ton of positive plays, a few jaw-clackers, and on one pull gets two pancakes with a single block! It's safe to say he's playing a lot better than last year. His double teams are looking very good as well. His main weakness continues to be zone blocking, and if I were to critique, I'd say it's his angles and zone paths causing the problem. This is either rooted in footwork or overthinking.
McNeill is back! And he looked good. Giving up 1 sack and beat a few other times on the pass rush...that wasn't the news. His run blocking looked good, period. He had major consistency issues, and did miss a few blocks. He was shed a bit too easily on the backside (a problem from last year as well) but had some drive blocks that looked VERY good. Welcome back big guy!
Hester continues to stake his claim as a legit FB in this league. His blocking is still not there yet, but is so much better than last year. The tight ends and receivers struggled. McMichael and Wilson did some very good things, but also left some plays on the field. The same thing can be said for the receiving corps.
Well, if you're still reading and gutsy enough to click the link and rewatch, you are a true fan and I hope you enjoy!