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Member Since 25 Nov 2008
Offline Last Active Dec 16 2014 06:35 AM

Posts I've Made

In Topic: Looking back, how did we manage to hold Detroit to just 7 points?

26 October 2014 - 07:00 AM

Confidence is the biggest factor in my opinion.  Confidence leads to focus.  The defense had focus in the first two games, then they came unglued.  Pittsburgh exposed a lot of weaknesses.  Those weaknesses have now become glaring.


I think it was a mistake to jettison the entire secondary.  I understand it was a business decision but the guys we have now are NOT better.  They are older and less skilled.  There is no leadership in this secondary.  Godfrey was freaking atrocious (now he's goneā€¦fine).  But i don't see where Harper is helping or Cason or the other safety.  


Of course the pass rush has been less than stellar and the linebackers have been outplayed. Let downs in focus (angles, tackling, getting off blocks, etc.) have led to the team looking lazy and tired (GB game first half we were absolutely not ready mentally or physically).


Finally, the offense sucked against Pitt., Bal., and GB in the first half.  We got down early and the defense ended up on the field for long, long stretches and giving up long drives and big gains.  The D ended up getting pummeled by Cincy, but the offense kept us in it and they D/ST did make some plays in that game.  The difference was Cam opened up the running game vs. CIncy.  It's been said many times: when Cam runs the ball 4-5 times in the first half and especially if he converts 1 or 2 3rd downs, this offense begins to click.


This game could very well come down to a battle between Cam and Wilson.  All other things aside (defense included) whichever team gets the most running yards from their QB will likely win this game.  That will show how effective the offenses can be.


I expect it to be close late.  Outcome is 50/50 IMO.

In Topic: Here is the thing about Belgium v. USA

29 June 2014 - 07:07 AM

Belgium are very much like Portugal in that they have amazing individual players and are overall more talented than the US. However, they are underperforming, barely beating the competition in the cake-walk group H. They have yet to be challenged and thus have not needed to play up to their potential. They have played down to the level of competition and that lack of drive and competitive effort is going to hurt them against a true team like the US.

The Yanks have played 3 very difficult matches, outlasting a frenetic Ghana and simply out classing the mopey Portuguese (at least for 44 and 1/2 minutes of the second half). The loss to Germany was a total loss and we were dominated in many phases, but after only 3 days rest coming out of Manaus...it's understandable and we came close to an equalizer.

Belgium played like they felt they were entitled to go through. They have not faced adversity. Their top striker is playing like crap, they lose a starting midfielder to suspension and captain Kompany is injured.

US will be a tough draw for Belgium, a team than can move quickly on the counter and is dangerous on set pieces. But the thing that the Americans have that the Belgians clearly do not is freaking heart. They will not give in and they are a tough physical team that is willing to suffer more than the other team.

I see a 2-1 win that really isn't as close of a match as that scoreline would indicate. Belgium are not ready for this challenge. US are built for it. Look for Bradley to have his best game yet and I look for goals from Johnson and Dempsey.

Now, Argentina...that's a long shot.

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In Topic: USA vs GER

24 June 2014 - 06:36 AM

Germany will not want to risk losing this game. If they lose it, they will have to go across the draw and play most likely Belgium. If they tie or win they will stay on the Brazil side and most likely play Algeria. Germans are practical, pragmatic people. If we were playing a team from South America, Asia, or Africa, I would expect that team to push forward and try to win, but German culture is not like that. They don't simply react emotionally to a challenge. They will remain calm and in control. They could certainly beat the US even without trying, just because they are so talented and clinical in the final third. But, I don't think they will look to press the issue and risk leaving their defense exposed to the formidable US counter attack.

This will be a game where both teams play to minimize exposure. I don't look for a dynamic contest, but instead a very static one with little in the way of attacking play.

A draw favors both teams and eliminates the rest of the competition. It's not collusion, just smart group play football.

Why would either of these teams risk injury, loss, or fitness just to prove a point and win the group? It only makes sense to get a mutual draw and move on.

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In Topic: USA vs GER

23 June 2014 - 06:52 AM

It would be no surprise to me if this game goes deep into the second half at 0-0. Even if we lose to Germany, we should be okay as long as we keep it within 1 goal. In that case though, it would be better for Portugal to defeat Ghana. Not unrealistic, but Ghana is probably playing better that Portugal at this point in the tourney. I wouldn't be at all surprised if Ghana pulls off a 2-1 victory. That could put us in a difficult position.

We will need to have our best game so far on just 3 days rest after the sweltering swamp that is Manaus if we are to defeat the Germans. A tall task.

I like what Landon Donovan said about both teams playing for the tie. It's not cheating. It's calculated. It would be the ideal outcome for both teams, really. Germany May not want to commit 100% to get the outright win. We could make it very difficult on them and have shown the ability to score when tied or down 1. Playing to win this game could come around to bite them.

I expect us to be conservative and put 8 or 9 behind the ball. We will look to counter.

I would not be surprised if both teams play for the draw. What is the point in risking the loss? Consider that the US will likely face Belgium and will still be in recovery from Manaus.

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In Topic: USA and Portugal, Who should play?

22 June 2014 - 06:20 AM

I think we are going to see Dempsey up top in the lone striker role. Zusi and Bedoya on the wings. This gives us the most consistency with our most dangerous goal scoring threat in position in front of goal. Dempsey is better than anyone on this team one-on-one off the dribble. He is savvy enough to hold the ball up and also has a decent strike from distance.

That being said, I wouldn't be at all surprised if JK brings on Wondo near the 70 min mark. Dempsey is not as young as Altidore and will fade faster. We need him against Germany, so he probably can't go the full 90. Johansson or even Green are possible options.

Beasler will start. Brooks is not ready for the starting role. We could see a Brad Davis subbed in for one of the wingers in the 2nd half.

One of my biggest concerns is Beasley. I have no doubt that he is fit and his recovery speed is good, but he often makes mistakes in one-on-one situations. Could wear down quickly from being targeted by Portugal and isn't the biggest guy. I don't like Chandler's form and there really aren't any other options. I don't want to see him on the field any more than I want to see Gonzales.

It would be nice to have Donovan off the bench in a game like this...

If Bradley can get back in form, I feel our chances are good against a reeling Portuguese side.

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