It seems with the wonder of DVR/Tivo even casual fans are now rewatching and studying film like they're coaches. This allows for much more informed opinions than, say, watching the game once while drinking and then stomping all over the jump to conclusions mat. I find this "film study" particularly amusing when some of our sane commenters do it and then tell us what they're seeing after rewatching.
In the comments to this post you'll find a lot of that. I'll repost two of the more in depth ones so you can read for yourself. The takeaways from our commenters that seemed most interesting?
- Carson looks much better despite a couple shitty decisions
- Zim actually schemed somewhat poorly, which resulted in LBs consistently matching up with WES WELKAH, THE FACKIN HERO TO BAWSTON!!! - a rare occurence and something not likely to happen every week
- Roland & Livings are not the answer - hopefully this season at some point Mathis and Smith come in to replace them
In general, we have always matched up well with the Ravens and I see no reason why that should change Sunday. I'm actually more perturbed Atlanta couldn't keep the Steelers down sans Roetherwlihaslgijaer. I kinda liked Atlanta before that, now I hope their season goes down in flames and the Saints roll them twice.
Some analysis below the fold:
since i am unhealthily obsessed with this team i went over the dvr'd tape of the game late last night and early this morning and came up with the following tidbits, dont know if you all would agree or not:
1) carsons arm looks as good as it ever has, but his head simply needs to get better. there were two specific occasions beyond the pick-6 (an atrocious decision with the football) that illustrate the issue: a) the third and 6 down 10-0 at our own 42 very early in the second quarter when we were still very much in the game. the blitz gave pressure on palmer in the shotgun, and while he correctly read the blitz, he chose the wrong checkdown, no questions asked. he went with about a 1 yard in to a well covered TO to the left, when if he had simply looked right up the middle shipley had been crossing from slot right across the field and was completely uncovered 5 yards past the line of scrimmage. he could have walked backwards to a first down from there, and considering the pocket was collapsing from the outside and had a lane up the middle, its surprising carson went with the tougher throw. that one really hurt as we were trying to get just a toe in the door in the football game. b) obviously, the near pick floating to shipley on our first TD drive. that throw just cannot be made, although perhaps we can chalk this one up to what carson said in his postgame presser about making throws he wouldnt normally make. still, combined with his forcing the ball to TO short early and often, his pick 6, and actually 2 other near picks, the decision making has to make you a little uneasy.
2) roland and livings together on the left side just doesnt work. we did that one time in the first half, and it was the 2nd and 6 where ced ran to the left was destroyed in the backfield and fumbled. roland had motioned from being heavy right as the tight end into a "normal" left tackle position beside livings as it looked like we were trying to trick them into thinking we were running right. we ran left, and some NE guy just blew up right between livings and roland as if they werent even there, and started the swarm in the backfield. there were multiple occasions where roland got tossed around, and considering i thought andre smith looked passable himself, i would welcome a change at RT as early as next week.
3) i know we're giving zimmer a mulligan on the week, but the number of times we saw dhani jones, keith rivers, or brandon johnson on wes welker was completely unacceptable. it was part of the scheme consistently and when that was the case the patriots consistently abused that schematic choice. so many times, including his second td and both third down conversions on the pats clinching drive when it was 31-17, welker literally would just run forward 4 yards at the snap and turn around. nobody would be within 4-5 yards of him as a hole in the zone or whatever, but the point is you simply cannot have an underneath zone manned by linebackers when wes welker is your opponent and he lives by destroying that very situation. the one time we put leon on welker, he couldnt even get half a step on what turned out to be a double move bc leon had jumped the first route and then stayed step for step with him up the field. im not even convinced welker is totally back to being welker, he never even had to be shifty against us, he just went and sat in zones. i think we're talented enough at corner to challenge some people to beat us in man before we have to resort to soft short zones, ESPECIALLY against welker/k faulk types (not a good omen for ray rice receiving next week, please step up zim). this combined with 3 separate occasions in the first half when the bengals were literally just outmanned on a particular side (like the borderline comical 3 v 2 first touchdown which simms literally described as "a play you cant normally get away with in the nfl, thats normally a college type play") was not exactly the defense's finest hour.
4) i think the d line, on second observation, wasnt as atrocious as we have all made it out to be last week. brady only had 7 of his 35 passing attempts go longer than 8 yards in the air, and while a couple of those short ones were the result of zero pressure on long drop followed by a checkdown 4th option, a lot of times when we had blitzes on our someone (usually tank) actually was pushing the pocket brady would just fire it out to someone in the flat in about 2-3 seconds. j jo, in particular, seemed to play just too scared of getting beat deep by randy moss on bengals blitzes, and there were several occasions where a bengals blitz looked like it would have gotten to brady if he had not had the option of simply turning right/left at the snap and throwing directly to a moss with 10 yard j jo cushion. considering the 3 wrs of the ravens collectively average about a 6.0 second 40 at this point in their careers, i hope we use a little more press coverage this week. i think we will too bc not only do i still trust zim but i really love hte way we happen to match up w balt.
5) finally, to end the longest post ever, the skill players look very good. ced, other than his fumble, ran pretty well i thought. b scott looked good. chad and TO looked pretty good, shipley looked excellent with limited opportunity and gresham was solid in the passing game if not so much blocking (got blown up a few times).
heres a prediction, i think we not only beat the ravens sunday, call it 23-17, but the jets beat new england as well. i think they can learn from our errors and force new england to do a little more than they did against us. we're still right in the thick of it gentlemen.
1) Excellent assessment. I noticed that his technique and footwork looked better already compared to last year. My frustration with the Bengals not getting a LG early in the draft was to have them provide Palmer a good pocket where he can be comfortable and wouldn't have to force his throws as often. When he gets into situations where he is pressured, I don't think he makes good decisions and he tends to force throws. It is his main weakness as a QB. The Bengals should have done anything they could to reduce the pass rush pressure to reduce the likelihood of those errors. He also missed a couple of reads, one that I remember was the deep pass to TO down the right side of the field. Shipley was running down the seam wide open after the safety jumped on TO, Palmer was focused on throwing it to TO, and missed the easy 6. Now what kills me about that, Brat or one of his assistants had to have seen that up in the box, and they never came back to it to take advantage of it- that is why Brat sucks.
2) I think they should just put Smith in and go with it. Roland was destroyed on a couple of pass plays on Sunday. Smith may suck at times the first couple of weeks, but to quote Rumfield sometimes you have to go with what you have.
3) Couldn't agree more. We should have used Jones, Hall, and Joe on their best three guys and blitzed Brady all day. It is what the Jets and Dolphins do to them and they typically slow them down. Zimmer must have gotten too tricky-dick or something. Whatever it was it was bad. I would much rather we loose from being too aggressive than looking like a bunch of amateurs.
4) You are right, Brady killed us dinking it short and then they rolled with on the YAC. I don't know how many times Welker was either sitting down in a spot or just would do a four yard dig across the field and it would go for 8-20 yards. It never should have happened. With Brady sitting back in the pocket keeping his jersey clean he could do that. Again, Zims scheme does not call for the front 4 to get the pressure. Its the blitz that you have to watch for. Not many teams can get pressure from just the front 4. The last team that could do it very well was the Giants when they beat the Pats.
I think the Bengals are still a good team and are still contenders. They just need to stop this crap where the need an ass whoop-in to wake up. I would love to finally get to watch a big game that they are in, see how prepared they are, watch them play without hesitation, and be a witness to them physically beating down an opponent like they are capable of.