from Colonel Mustard
Man, did I hate to see DeAngelo go down. Let's hope he recuperates on schedule, because he's the key to the season for our offense. When he's healthy he can control the game and take some of the pressure off Newcombe and our young line. They are going to make mistakes anyway, and he will be a reassuring constant. Newcombe is as electrifying as they come, but he will call bad audibles and the line will make bad check calls. All our first-year starting QBs struggle with audibles. Remember '96 and the sense of dread you'd get whenever you saw Frost checking off? Unfortunately, it takes most guys a year to learn to run our offense.
I've been impressed with both Crouch and Newcombe this fall. The coaches are letting Crouch throw a lot in scrimmages, so they want to see what he can do. Christo has been solid, which is reassuring since he is the only one with experience. With Evans out, we are as thin at TB as I can remember. If Buckhalter or Alexander gets hurt, look for Miller to move over to TB. I've been disapointed that our O-line has had so little time together in practice. If they aren't all on the same page, everything else falls apart.
Our offense must be pretty decent, though, because those guys can move the ball on our defense. I do have concerns about the two interior postions on the defensive line. Our great defenses have always had a great interior. Jason Peter will be missed. The rest of the D should be spectacular. There's speed and depth at all postions now that the freshman DBs look good.
I'd take Kris Brown over any other kicker in the country, and our return game ought to be good because of our speed. The punter Lafleur looked lousy in the spring game and has not been good this fall. Let's hope it doesn't matter.
-- The Colonel