While i stood post on the sidelines during the Steers-Giants clash these are the thoughts and names that caught my attention.
LaRod Stephens-Howling has a nice feel for running the zone blocking scheme. I like how he keeps his shoulders square to the line of scrimmage while he works the cutback and when he picks his hole he pops through the line like a champagne cork at a party on New Years eve.
I like what i saw of the zone blocking scheme thus far. When you can switch from making the bulls run sidewise to rolling over the front foot and hitting them right down the middle you create a hesitation in your defensive opponents minds. The first unit looked better on the Giants linebackers trying to run through on the front side of the stretch. Of course the Giants linebackers won’t remind you of anybody named Lambert, Ham or Russell either.
Terence Garvin; got into the game and showed some hit-a-bility at inside linebacker after Stevenson Sylvester got caught in friendly fire . Terence will help himself more by attacking downhill rather than waiting on the ball. It’s early, absolutely, but i like this young man’s bang so far in camp.
David Paulson can catch the ball for sure, he looked almost terrific ( a pass i thought he could have caught he dropped), but a burly tight end that can knock someone off the line of scrimmage is needed. David will get better at the blocking part of it, but some more ooomph from an in-line tight end will help the run game now. Unfortunately the tight end’s are under going an infestation of the dastardly injury bug right now.
There is a log-jam of good players at the inside linebacker spot. Brian Rolle, Marshall McFadden, Kion Wilson and Vince Williams all took turns at slobber knocking somebody at the point of attack. This is the most hotly contested area in camp so far.
Markus Wheaton is fearless and has no regard for his personal safety, or anyone else for that matter. He caught a combat worthy ball in a tight spot, had a nice foot drag on the sidelines only to gopher up the ball after pulverizing himself on the sidelines while laying out for it and was the a fore-mentioned assassin on the punt coverage unit that snipered Stevenson Sylvester.
John Malecki continues to impress me with his overall game. In a day and age when you dress only seven offensive linemen, he covers the inner three well.
Ziggy Hood flashed two things i thought he has sporadically displayed. Disengaging from blocks on runs while accelerating to the tackle, and switching gears from his run keys to pass-rushing mode faster. Saw some of both.
Rookie defensive end Brian Arnfelt from Northwestern showed me some range down the line of scrimmage and some good stuff on a pass rush.
This is by far the best NT Alameda Teámu has looked to date.
If you are worried about Brett Keisel’s age slowing him down, don’t be. When Ike Taylor fired on a corner blitz and Ryan Clark and Troy missed the hot throw receiver in the flat, it was Da Beard sprinting from the line of scrimmage to run down the ball carrier from behind. Sensational hustle.
Sean Suisham, a.k.a. the kicking Canuck, has his tuque on early. Nice kicking.
One thing we know for sure. Rookie WR J.D. Woods is a tough guy. He almost stuck the landing on that 360 degree catch and flip dismount.
I like the switch of Mike Adams to the left side and Marcus Gilbert on the right. Marcus may like the blind side, but he plays better on the sight side.
Jonathan Dwyer looks lean. I mean lean like he’s been eating tuna fish out of a can lean. That loss in lb’s translated nicely when he took the ball on a G-TE counter trap and turned the corner sprinting up the sideline. That doesn’t happen a year ago. He’s gottá squeeze the Charmin on that catch over the middle though. It would have been a tough catch but Jonathan you’re better than that.
Jarvis Jones realized that holding in college and holding in the NFL are two different animals altogether. His jersey looked like it was worn by one of those guys on the “Gator Boys” episodes.
Al Woods showed some athleticism, speed, and good hands in trench fighting. He’s continuing to improve on a good camp.
Robert Golden and Adrian Robinson also had their moments. Robert should have joined Adrian in the scoring column with a pick six, but he dropped the ball after he undercut a route in the flat. Adrian showed me he has improved over the year. While playing backside on a TE, Adrian nicely got his fit in the gap defense and patiently locked out on the TE while sinking into the backside gap. When the Giants RB cut back, Adrian disengaged from the TE and stuffed the run. Well played Adrian.
Steve McClendon’s arms are huge. If his guns were any bigger, he’d need a license to carry them.