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Broncofan

Week 2 Preseason SF @ DEN GD Thread

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Posted (edited)

Things to watch for:

1.  First team O likely gets more reps - how do they fare against a starting D?   SEA played their 2nd team D vs our starters, so this week provides a better glimpse (but just that) as to how the new O is adjusting.   The other reason why it matters a little more - SF had scrimmages against our O, so they are more familiar with our personnel.

2. Lock (duh) - no doubt he's going to get a ton of game time this week, to see where he's at.  SEA's game showed 4-5 throws / plays where you see the tools & ceiling - the lack of pocket awareness and read progression with pressure and subsequent footwork still is his biggest adjustment required.   Now, he likely won't face the starting D, so it's a test that's only about 70-80 percent game speed at best (and why preseason success isn't nearly as much to predict immediate impact, while struggling in preseason shows guys aren't ready for reg. season major roles).  Elway has talked up his progress this week...but we've been down this alley before, so seeing progress on a consistent basis, and not just flashes, goes a long way in believing he's on the right track.    Clear progress the next 2-3 weeks would already put Lock well ahead of Lynch's awful development curve.

3. 4th RB / 5th WR / backup OL battles on O - pretty much set on our top 3 RB's / top 4 WR's / starting 5 OL plus Wilkinson at swing T - but the battles for the last positions here now start to take shape.   I'm still on record as preferring a guy like Muhammad or Jackson staying on and getting reps over Theo Riddick, but the best way to ensure this happens if Riddick goes to IR-return is to flash hard the next 3 games.  At the WR position, no one has separated themselves from the Winfree/McKnight/Brown trio, those 3 have been the best of a pretty motley crew on GD so far, with Langley/Cracraft adding in ST return versatility (but both showing little so far vs. the others at the actual WR position).   OL has been a mess to watch once the starters and Wilkinson are out, and with the added element that the SF D has had 2 very spirited scrimmages with our O, should be good to see how the backups fare against a pretty meh SF DL (they aren't going to be playing their 2 best DE's in Nick Bosa & Dee Ford, both dinged up).

4. 4th EDGE / 3rd - 4th ILB / 4th-5th CB / last S battle - with Jeff Holland cut, Malik Reed seems like our 3rd EDGE, although Aaron Wallace apparently is ahead of him on the depth chart - really have to see more of what Wallace brings this week.   Hollins looks to be our 3rd ILB right now (I'll believe Joe Jones is OK and able to play there when he actually gets on the field and doesn't experience setbacks, triceps tears at a trench position is usually a season-killer and attempts to go conservative route don't usually end well for that season) , and Jamal Carter has now moved to ILB, supposedly as a temp measure, but in reality, it shows how meh our ILB play has been.  Outside of our starters Davis (who we all recognize his limitations in pass coverage) & Jewell (who won't ever be a star in the pass coverage game, but whose ceiling as "OK" still surpasses Davis), it's really a wake up call to Alexander Johnson, Keishawn Bierra & Dekoda Watson.   

On the CB side, Yiadom's consistently flashed and his draft capital has him locked in as 3rd CB (if Kareem Jackson is the S, 4th if he goes outside).  Bausby's progress has him on the inside track for the 4th/5th CB spot, but Horace Richardson is coming on.   On the S front, Dymonte Thomas vs. Sua Cravens seems to be the big battle - with Jackson as a hybrid player, it creates a roster crunch at either spot, so 1 or more of the guys at the CB/S spot is likely getting cut and attempted to be stashed for the PS (my hunch would be Richardson at CB, not as clear with backup S what happens there). 

5. ST contributions - whoever flashes here likely helps their case a ton in the above battles.   The next couple of weeks are crucial for Langley - he's got to show great gunner / return chops IMO to ensure he gets a roster spot, because he's behind in the WR battle right now.  The guy who should feel a lot of pressure is Wadman, as his position is the most replaceable, and he's been downright brutal so far (and if we are looking for a replacement, making that call sooner, so the new P can get in sync as a holder, is actually more important, that isn't as straightforward as finding guys to punt).

 

It's a day away, but figure we might as well get this started....still nowhere near reg. season speed, but we should get a lot more clarity on the back-end roster battles, before the typical reg. season audition game next week.

Edited by Broncofan

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Last year Wadman was putting up youtube videos trying to get noticed - and he didn't look good on them. Can't understand why he is still on the roster - we should have been bringing in several punters to see what they can do.

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, jolly red giant said:

Last year Wadman was putting up youtube videos trying to get noticed - and he didn't look good on them. Can't understand why he is still on the roster - we should have been bringing in several punters to see what they can do.

Yeah, the problem is also biggger because Wadman is our holder - so if the coaching staff want to make a change, they need to bring in guys yesterday TBH.    As much as I don't think we're a legitimate contender, you can't have a bad holder-K situation, that's a killer when games count - which is why you need to lock down the punter/holder in OTA's, and not now.    It's not like we are attached to punters, cutting King last year midseason shows that in spades.  It's just curious that Wadman has been far, far worse than anything King did - yet nothing was done, and no word yet even now.

It's not going to make or break our season, but the optics of changing punters late when Wadman has clearly been struggling, and then having a bad FG holder come up in real games, well that would be less than ideal.  Then again, we're more about 2020+ - I'd just rather we get our ducks in a row in for the min wage positions.   Obviously a good P is a huge ST asset, but it  matters even more if they are the FG holder.   Oh well, hopefully Wadman turns it around completely, or we see competition brought in ASAP.  

Edited by Broncofan

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How absolutely insane is it that Emmanuel Sanders is about to play tonight? I've tried to be cautiously optimistic but never counted on him making an impact this year. What a comeback. 

Looking forward to seeing Drew, the O-line, LBs and special teams tonight. Need improvement from all of them. 

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26 minutes ago, BroncoBruin said:

How absolutely insane is it that Emmanuel Sanders is about to play tonight? I've tried to be cautiously optimistic but never counted on him making an impact this year. What a comeback. 

Looking forward to seeing Drew, the O-line, LBs and special teams tonight. Need improvement from all of them. 

Sanders is a beast.  One of my favorite Broncos of all time.  He’s tough + clutch and brings a passion not only to games but the practice field.  A guy that truly loves football.  

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Really curious about our IOL situation. Looks like a 3 man race for 1, maybe 2 spots.

Brendel, Barclay and Schlottman. Hope one of them steps up.

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Posted (edited)

Well if our OL doesn't play well, we should get really worried.

 

On the flip side, if the OL plays well, it's going to be against 2nd/3rd stringers.   So we should see good play tonight.   I would much rather we have faced SF with their full complement in the preseason - you'll take the breaks about facing a depleted squad in the reg. season, but the preseason better to face the best talent you can find to get max growth from the team.  Oh well.  Keep in mind that Nick Bosa & Dee Ford are already out.   We're basically facing their 2nd string front 7 with our starters for 1 quarter, then likely our 2nd team is facing their 3rd team.

I'd expect a big night from our O with that advantage gap.

Edited by Broncofan

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Posted (edited)

49ers first drive, the run D a little soft early, but pressure got to Jimmy G on 3rd down, and a badly thrown wheel route, easy pick for Yiadom (coming off his coverage).  That pick is more on the pressure created, but it shows what playing facing the ball does for the CB's.

Time to see what the O can do with 1st team O vs. 2nd string SF D.

Edited by Broncofan

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Two plays back to back get us there, both on the QB. First, Joe “just entering his prime” Flacco throws behind Fant and then throws an uncatchable ball out of the end zone.

On top of that, this much-ballyhooed OL can’t run block to save their lives.  Oh well, at least Yiadom set us up for a field goal. 

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Posted (edited)

Well, a mixed bag - nice 3rd down conversion with Flacco moving up with pressure forcing him inside, and getting to Hamilton, and a nice end around by Sanders for a big chunk gain.   On the down side, the OL got manhandled on every other run.   And those weren't good RZ plays on 2nd & 3rd down at all.  

Again, this isn't a problem by itself, but context-wise, the 49ers aren't playing their top 4 DL and top 2 LB's.  So hopefully we see better play the 2nd drive. 

Edited by Broncofan

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Posted (edited)

2 drives, and already 2 tipped passes by Shelby Harris.    Good to see he's in top form coming off a breakout season last year.   

Bausby drops a pick 6.   On the plus side, he made a great read.    Just needs to hang on.  

You can see what the Fangio scheme does for keeping CB's ready to ball hawk.   Yiadom & Bausby could be very cheap guys to be our 2nd/3rd CB's after CHJ leaves (Callahan being the top slot guy), that would be MASSIVE for our 2020+ contention chances.  You have to find bargains somewhere, and premium position bargains changes the dynamic of team building so much.    With young guys like Bausby and Yiadom, they're likely going to get beat, but it's good to see their nose for the ball in game time vs. 1st string O's.

Edited by Broncofan

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Posted (edited)
8 minutes ago, AnAngryAmerican said:

Yikes if I was Kyle and Lynch I’d be a little worried about what I’m seeing from Jimmy GQ. 

Keep in mind he's only 10 months post-ACL recovery.   It's a well-established fact that you don't get your full explosion until 18 months.   Right now JimmyG is saying all the right things, but when there's pressure, I don't think he's trusting his ability to move, or step up into pressure and deliver the ball, and it's showing in him getting rid of the ball with bad footwork and even worse decisions.    He had a practice this past week where he threw 5 picks.  IN A ROW.   That tells you he's still getting the rust off.



As long as it doesn't result in embedding the bad habits to be permanent with pressure (see:  Derek Carr), then it's OK.  But yeah, I don't think we'll see a hot start from JimmyG in September, unless the OL can keep the pocket clean.  

Edited by Broncofan

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3 minutes ago, thebestever6 said:

Is their  first string offense a full go for the most part?

I'd think so - no reason to put JimmyG out there and leave your starting OL out there.   That would be lunacy.  

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