Joey Harrington came out firing like we hoped he would. Nice job John!
Boss Bailey is not the best tackler on the planet, that's for sure. But I really like his playmaking ability, and I've been the most critical of his tackling of any poster (see: The Den) since his rookie year. After watching the game tape again, I'll take it. Boss can fight off a blocker with one shoulder and make a tackle with the other. Rare for a man with his size and speed...Teddy flat out can't do it. Also, I've been doing some thinking, whenever Boss has gotten shook, he does seem to keep good outside leverage, forcing the play back to his inside help. Can't believe I neglected to notice that before.
Shawn's Lions Power Rankings
Terrence Holt might be the tackler we've been looking for since...well...a long time. Holt wasn't even in the box a few times he beat the linebackers to a tackle. On one play my heart tingled as I saw Kenoy and Terrence gang tackling the running back -- and it was only like 4 yards past the line of scrimmage. In years past we'd never see both of our safeties to the ball at the same time, and the one that did get there would be 10 yards down field. This kid's got a nose for the football.
Kelly Butler moves onto the list with a little help from the refs. Obvious was his hands to the face penalties...less obvious was that he wasn't lined up on the line. They've gotten more strict on that rule, and he got away with breaking it on a lot of downs. Still, the man held his own in his first start against an All Pro defensive end. Gotta like that.
Mike Williams was pretty much assured to move up barring a Roy Williams type debut. Made two tough catches with the DB draped all over him...and that's exactly what he's going to be called on to do. The other thing could have been sorted out if Dan Orlovsky could throw a better fade route. Guess they don't have those in Connecticut.
Jeff Backus isn't going to make the Pro Bowl anytime soon, that's for sure. Not a complete liability, but he'll need to pick his game up to be what we need him to be. Not as bad of a game as most seem to credit him with, but still not a good one considering his competition.
Cory Redding was overrated in my first power ranking, sorry. He's not a huge playmaker or a consistent threat to get to the quarterback. He's a solid run stopper with average rushing ability, that's about it.
Fernando Bryant is not the answer at cornerback. Maybe if we played man-to-man, but obviously we aren't going to do too much of that. I think for our scheme Stanley Wilson would be just as good without costing a fortune.
Teddy Lehman might not be going down on most lists, but he is on mine. We already knew he couldn't read plays and attack like Earl Holmes. The return of Boss Bailey only shed more light on his lack of ability to take on and shed a block. Teddy is an outside linebacker until further notice...and should be playing on the weak side. Don't know who will be available in free agency for MLBs...but we need to figure it out if we aren't going to draft one. Anyone know anything about that kid from Iowa? Never paid too much attention to him, he'll be my pet scout this year. Ahmad Brooks went to C.D. Hylton...so as far as I'm concerned he doesn't exist (sorry, little VA football humor).
Rick DeMulling might be the latest mistake by Matt Millen. Backus gave up a sack because DeMulling missed his guy and Joey couldn't step up in the pocket. On the next play it was DeMulling's guy that got the sack. Did I mention he missed a run block on the play before those two? Either way, DeMulling only seemed at ease when he was not asked to pull or stand strong at the point of attack. As is we'll see all our pulls by Woody, all our inside running to Woody's side and all of our bootlegs with DeMulling doing a simple wash down job.