Saturday, August 22, 2009

Saturday's scrimmage

Some thoughts from the team's first scrimmage.

First off, I thought Jeff Fleming separated himself in the quarterback race. I liked Trevor Walls, but Fleming threw the ball well on Saturday. He hit Marcus Anderson on a long touchdown pass and found Todd Lee on a 10-yard scoring strike later in the evening.

On the first possession, Fleming led the team into field goal range (Jordan Davenport missed the FG attempt from about 40-yards out).

Walls really didn't play poorly and he's working with the second unit. But Fleming made some plays. I was particularly impressed with his deep ball to Anderson. It was on target and it was a nice grab by Marcus.

More on the receivers: Anderson will have a good year again. He's got a little Chris Williams in him. Marcus plays hard and is very fast. Small, yes, but he's a big-play threat. He will also make some plays returning punts this season.

Todd Lee is getting an opportunity to perform. He was playing with the first unit along with Anderson, Marcus Allen and Barry Huntley. Allen made some good grabs as well and worked the underneath routes.

Darrius Preston, who I've been high on during camp, was not with the first unit. He played mostly with the No. 2 and No. 3 teams.

Tight ends: Kyle Nelson did not see any action during the scrimmage. Nelson got hurt two weeks ago after getting twisted awkwardly on a tackle during practice.

Kyle Hipp caught a ball over the middle in traffic. Hipp is big and I've seen him make a few tough grabs during camp. He's got a nice pair of hands.

Jason Scott: I like Jason, he plays the game the right way and is a leader. At one point, he pulled the defense together on the sideline and gave an inspired pep talk to get them to play better. It was all Scott.

He was also active on defense. He nearly picked off a tipped ball during the first possession of the scrimmage and knifed through the line to bring down a ball carrier in traffic minutes later. After the play he got up, clapped his hands and shouted toward the defensive sideline. As long as he stays healthy, he'll have a productive year. He might even surpass last year's numbers.

David Quiroga: He had a pick return for a touchdown.

A poster always asks about Quiroga. Well, he made a big play Saturday night.

Tonny Glynn, Marquell Colston: The one bad piece of news on the evening was Tonny Glynn, who went down with an arm injury midway through the scrimmage.

Glynn was going to get X-rayed following Saturday's action. If Glynn's out, it will hurt.

Tonny ripped off a long run down the left sideline early in the scrimmage. He hit the open field and was cut off at the 20-yard line. Trying to cutback to the middle of the field, he stumbled, kept his footing, and was hit. He fumbled the ball and it was recovered by the defense.

Glynn struggled with fumbles last year. But really, first things first, lets hope he's healthy.

As for Marquell Colston, he ran the ball well. He had one run that went for about 15-yards down the right side on the team's first possession.

Kicking game: Jordan Davenport went 4-for-7 on field goal attempts.

Mike Diaz and Kyle Hughes split punting duties. Both got off some pretty decent kicks.

The last word: Throughout camp, it seemed like the defense was getting the better end of the offense.

Saturday night, the offense had the edge.

It was good to see. Offensively, the team looks good one day, and not so good the next. The team needs to find more consistency on that side of the ball. Saturday was a good sign though, particularly because Fleming looked good.

At the end of the day, we need to see this team play against another Division-I program. Practices are fun and they can show us some things. I, for one, have seen enough of them. I'm ready for Week 1.


Anonymous said...

Turnovers. Historically our achilles heal. Most seem to come when trying to do too much with the ball. I hope the coaches address this aspect of the game. Most of all, I hope Glynn is okay.

Anonymous said...

Quiroga seems like he'll be a good player over the years. He may not start this year but I expect big things from him in the upcoming years.