Featured Departing Flights, Arriving Flights, Does It Equal a Good Flight

Discussion in 'Fan Zone' started by Hostile, Sep 2, 2013.

  1. Hostile

    Hostile The Duke

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    Every year I like to stop and take stock of the departures measured against the arrivals. This year was harder than any other I have ever done because so many of our players are not true arrivals, but returns from IR.

    Still I want to take a look at who has taken a departing flight out of town, and who had an arriving flight.

    No change at QB, so let's start with RBs. Felix Jones left, Joseph Randle arrives. The jury remains out on this move and whether we have improved or not. If Randle has to fill in as the starter we may learn whether it is an improvement or not. To me Randle looks like Murray Lite, and by that I mean that he has very similar skills, but not quite as much pop.

    At WR Kevin Ogletree departed, Terrance Williams arrived. For my money this is a potentially huge improvement, because I actually think this kid has the tools to be a #2 WR, and to me O-tree was questionable as even a 3. I like O-tree a lot, I think he's a good person, and a decent football player. But standing side by side and I'm a captain picking my team to play your team, I am going to take Williams and leave you stuck with O-tree every time if I have the chance, and you know what, if you had the pick and I had to wait for you to choose, you'd stick me the same exact way.

    At TE and FB we saw the departures of Lawrence Vickers and John Phillips. We also see the arrivals of Andre Smith, and Gavin Escobar. Phillips rookie year had me hopeful. I won't lie. Loved the kid. I don't think he ever recovered from that leg injury, and I'm not talking physically, I'm talking mentally. He just didn't seem to be going as hard. On his best day he doesn't have Escobar's hands. Hard to compare a TE to a FB, but I was excited about the arrival of Vickers last year, and disappointed with the results. I'll call it a push for now, but I think Escobar alone is better than both of those guys if I am being truthful.

    The O-line sees the departures of Livings, Cook, Kowalski, and Dockery, and the arrivals of Frederick and the return of Phil Costa. Every other O-lineman on the 2013 team spent time here in 2012 as well. Let's start with the obvious. I'll take what I have seen from Travis Frederick and Ron Leary over what I saw from Nate Livings and Ryan Cook any day of the week, and twice on game days. I'll take Costa over Kowalski any day of the week too. That leaves someone trying to convince me that the addition of Derrick Dockery makes 2012 better than 2013. Yeah, good freaking luck with that.

    Moving on to the Defense. Going to be hard to judge until we see this 4-3 in actual action. But I will do my best to give it a try.

    As of right now the departures from the DL are Marcus Spears, Sean Lissemore, and Kenyon Coleman. Not going to lie, I'd feel a lot better with Ratliff in there healthy, and Crawford here too. I do think Ware in particular will benefit from not having to play coverage. Just send him hell bent for leather for the QB. So far, I like Hayden a lot. Selvie has impressed me, and so has Cohen. The key to this is does having Spencer and Ware here in a 4-3 with their hand on the ground improve us over the 3-4 and standing up? For my money, yes it does.

    That brings us to the LBs which was a MASH unit last year. I'm talking patients, not surgeons here. On an outbound flight we had Brady Poppinga, Orie Lemon, Alex Albright, and Dan Connor. Albright would still be here if he weren't hurt, so that one doesn't count. We have the return of Sean Lee and Bruce Carter. That alone is the biggest freaking improvement on this team. Does anyone still not get how instinctive Lee is? Does anyone not see how unreal Carter is? Now let's add Justin Durant, Edgar Jones, Kyle Bosworth, and DeVonte Holloman. Gonna say it right now, I love Holloman. Freaking love the kid. Justin Durant has a proven track record, Sims is now free to play all over the as the primary backup to all 3 starters, and the other 2 guys main jobs are to cover kicks, punts, and block for returns. In other words, the job once held by Albright. I expect huge improvements in this corps this year, and not just the obvious returns of the 2 stars. I think you will see Durant, Sims, and Holloman all playing with fire, energy, and smarts.

    CB sees the departure of Sterling Moore and Michael Coe, and the arrival of BW Webb and the return of Orlando Scandrick. No contest. I am so glad to have O-scan back, and Webb has some upside that shouldn't be denied. Let's be honest here, the biggest improvement we have seen on this team is taking the ball away and the DBs are the guys who did it in PS. Improvement? I think so.

    Brings me finally to Safeties. Gerald Sensabaugh opted to retire to his favorite fishing hole, Charlie Peprah is gone. We bring back Barry Church and signed Will Allen. We also see the arrival of Jeff Heath and JJ Wilcox, who by default are my new hopes for Charlie Waters and Cliff Harris. How can you not like these two kids? Improvement at Safety? I'll hold off on a yes, but my expectations are high.

    So let's break this down shall we?

    Has the run blocking improved? Everything I have seen so far indicates it has. Ron Leary thrilled me in the games he played huge roles in before needing the clean up surgery. Doug Free is undoubtedly better than he was last year no matter where you line him up, and holy cow is Travis Frederick ever going to make me a fan. The kid is smart, aggressive, and powerful. I'll take it, I'll take it, I'll take it. Improved? My flight schedule says we are on time.

    Has the pass blocking improved? Due to all the injuries the jury is still out on that to me, but other than one play I haven't seen the 1st unit trying to get Tony killed. I think Frederick in particular will be a huge upgrade, and Leary seems like a potential Nate to me. Does anyone disagree with me that Free looks like the Free we all used to trust? I'll take my crow on him. Fried please. Will Bernadeau or Parnell be the 5th guy? I don't know yet. Improved? On time.

    Last year we scored 376 points. This year I am predicting we're going to score 425 or better. In other words, real improvement.

    Conversely, last year we gave up 400 points. If this is satisfactory to anyone out there say hello to Nurse Ratchett for me please. I don't drink but I'd rather have a bottle in front of me than to have to have a frontal lobotomy. We couldn't hold leads, we couldn't take the ball away, we couldn't stay healthy to save our lives. I'm going to shock you all by predicting we will hold teams below 325 points this year, will more than double the takeaways, and increase the total sacks and QB pressures from 2012. Improvement? No need to hold that flight. We're on time.

    That brings me to Special Teams. Losing Albright hurts. If we get anything close to his production from Jones, Bosworth, and Holloman, it can be offset. I noticed that our Kick Returners no longer jog to the 20 yard line to look for a hole. They hit stride and run. Improvement? Someone shout hallelujah for me please.

    Finally, the intangible, schedule. I think this schedule is weaker, spaced perfectly, and in our favor. 12-4 here we come. Yes, I am serious.
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2013
  2. physeter

    physeter Active Member

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    I agree, overall this team looks better than last's years'.

    We also lost Jenkins...

    BTW Welcome back man...
  3. MichaelWinicki

    MichaelWinicki "You want some?" Staff Member

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    Nice write up Hos.

    I agree.

    This team is better than last year's team.

    We'll see by what margin.
  4. jobberone

    jobberone Kane Ala Staff Member

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    Nice post. I'll take it. I'd love to score 26 ppg and give up 20 ppg.
  5. StarBoyz83

    StarBoyz83 Well-Known Member

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    Talent wise I think we arent as good as the last few years. But Im hoping with all the changes implemented we are getting the team in the right direction. Hopefully a sb appearance in the next 2-4 years.
  6. big dog cowboy

    big dog cowboy THE BIG DOG Staff Member

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    Too much Kool-Aide for me but still a wonderful read Hos.
  7. FiveRings

    FiveRings Well-Known Member

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    I click the thread expecting to see an Off-Topic thread that got posted in the Fan Zone by accident, but instead a great post, and Hostile has returned. What a chain of events
    Shatz88 likes this.
  8. Richmond Cowboy

    Richmond Cowboy Well-Known Member

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    Great post, don't be a stranger Hos!
  9. blackbull

    blackbull Well-Known Member

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    Wr is upgraded even without Williams. Harris is better than o tree easily.
  10. Mr_Bill

    Mr_Bill Member

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    Good to see that you haven't totally given up on converting the unconvertable.
  11. john van brocklin

    john van brocklin Captain Comeback

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    Thanks for the post Hoss, we miss you around here !
  12. Hostile

    Hostile The Duke

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    Go check out my rant earlier today. Fur flew. Good for a laugh.
    john van brocklin likes this.
  13. john van brocklin

    john van brocklin Captain Comeback

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    Where is said rant ?

    I love to see fur fly LOL
  14. perrykemp

    perrykemp Well-Known Member

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    Hostile, the Cowboys were 3-5 through the first 8 games of the 2012 season. There were injuries during that period but nothing outside of the norm that you might see with other NFL teams.

    The injuries definitely had an impact on the team, however, I don't buy into the theory the the team at the end of the year was so much worse, due to injury, than the team the started the season.

    It's an easy excuse and the facts don't fully align with the how the 2012 season played out.
    AmberBeer likes this.
  15. theebs

    theebs Believe!!!!

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    That's not really accurate.

    We lost our center immediately, Witten was hurt, Hannah wasn't ready.....That stuff affected our offense greatly. The tackles switching sides took a while to settle in.

    There were a lot of problems on offense when the season started, the night we played the redskins we had 14 players out by the second quarter.

    Hopefully this year they have things more settled down when the season starts sunday, it appears we do.
  16. Hostile

    Hostile The Duke

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    Brady Poppinga or Sean Lee?
    Ernie Sims or Bruce Carter?
    Michael Coe or Orlando Scandrick?
    Charlie Peprah or Barry Church?
    Brian Scaheffering or Jay Ratliff?
    Ryan Cook or Phil Costa?

    Those aren't excuses, those are facts. I will never agree that those players couldn't have made a difference. I will never agree that other teams had as many significant injuries. I was at the Atlanta game. I watched the Atlanta news after I got back to my hotel. I know exactly what the Falcons were saying about our team.
  17. BraveHeartFan

    BraveHeartFan We got a hat. I want a ring.

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    Good write up Hos. I enjoyed it.
  18. perrykemp

    perrykemp Well-Known Member

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    Sean Lee, Bruce Carter, and Orlando Scandrick were all there for that 3-5 beginning of the season.

    Costa, Ratliff, Church were injured. If you believe those two UDFAs and broken down Ratliff tilted the scales vs other team's injuries, so be it.
  19. Hostile

    Hostile The Duke

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    No, I believe an inept Rob Ryan's inability to hold a lead and stop a team in critical situations was the biggest factor there along with Tony Romo running for his life behind a subpar Doug Free, Ryan Cook, Livings and Bernadeau were the biggest reasons, and I believe I noted in the OP. You may choose to ignore that if you wish. But I will stand on the fact that if we hadn't lost so much in the way of personnel we would have been a playoff team. The Falcons players called us the toughest team that had played. I suppose they have no idea what they were talking about right?
  20. MichaelWinicki

    MichaelWinicki "You want some?" Staff Member

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    You think there was more talent on this team in 2010, '11 or '12?

    If true, that's a stunner for me.

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