Our good friend over at the National Football Post, Matt Bowen, wrote a nice piece on what coaches are looking for in the final preseason game. He covers the ins and out of penalties, turnovers, but then gets more in depth regarding the not so obvious:
That's why we want to see who makes the big hit tonight, who is in on the tackles and who can blow up blockers on their path to the football. Kickoff coverage is the most important aspect of any football team in this league - bigger than both offense and defense. And, coaches want players who will sacrifice their bodies to sell out and make a play.
With Special Teams it's safe to say most of us just watch the runner. I'll be keeping an eye on who gets through their lanes on kickoffs. The gunners on punts are also a key to watch for. Byron Westbrook and the backup WRs will see some action here. Lorenzo Alexander was a human wrecking ball last year, so hopefully some players can stand out like that.
Have to tackle to play in this league...Players miss tackles at this level because of poor technique. Duck their heads at contact, don't use their legs to drive through the player, over pursue to the football and take bad angles.
If that's the case, how does Landry have a starting spot? Phillip Daniels tweeted how exhausted everyone was from the plane ride last night. Will that show? I doubt it...adrenaline takes over. Most of the Redskins corners (even the backups) have seen regular season action, so mistakes should be far and few between.
Keep an eye on this tonight. Every young player will play almost the entire game - and that includes covering kicks and then playing defense on the very next play...We will see players get beat tonight in the second half because their conditioning is poor.
Does that mean I should bet the over?
The SB Nation Cardinals site, Revenge of the Birds, posted their 6 Things to Watch for tonight. Interesting to see how Beanie Wells has struggled. I guess when you don't have Kurt Warner to worry about, it makes it a lot easier to take away the run. I'd also expect a lot of Matt Leinart tonight...anything to help his trade value and ship him out.