Some quick thoughts from my day in the radio booth:
- Thought the Red Zone period with the first offense was outstanding. This offense staff has done a much better job of taking advantage of
Jason Wittenin his ability to make plays down in that area. Just by the alignment, Romo knew that he had Witten in the middle of the field and it was going to be a big play. Miles Austinalso had a nice play with a solid route down near the goal line out of a bunch formation. Witten and Williams were able to clear in front of him and Austin to the flat where Romo showed outstanding touch to get the ball on the line and in his hands.
- Defensive tackle,
Jason Hatcherplayed with some purpose today. With Ratliff on the sideline, Hatcher took reps at the under tackle while Sean Lissemoreplayed on the nose. Hatcher attacked Nate Livingstoday, several times getting pressure up the field but it was when he was drawn off sides on a Tony Romohard count where he became a one man wrecking crew. Hatcher played with the power and quickness that we have seen from him before but this time he managed to sustain it throughout and finish the drive which is something that he had struggled with in the past. Hatcher under these defensive coaches, is playing like a man that wants to be more than just a situational player. There have been too many times in his career where he starts a game with some fire only to fade throughout. His work today could be more of what we see in the future.
- Like what I saw from these cornerbacks on this defense today. As a group, I thought that Jerome Henderson and Joe Baker had them ready to play. I always expect
Brandon Carrto show up and he did driving on a ball to the sideline for a breakup but backups, B.W. Webb, Sterling Moore, and Brandon Underwoodwere on top of their games. Webb received a nice dose of work in the slot on the second nickel. It was on a third down play where he played the route perfectly driving underneath a pass from Kyle Ortonto secure the interception ending the drive. Sterling Moore continue his fine work in camp by once again, physically playing the receiver on the route but also getting his hand inside to deny the ball on several opportunities. Brandon Underwood is a player, I had not mentioned much in this camp but on this day, he was able to use his length and positioning on Tim Benfordto keep him from making a catch in the end zone.
- Tight end Anthony Smith continues to find ways to make plays as a receiver. Smith physcially looks more of the style of a boxy blocker but he has shown the ability to get up the field and make catches with soft hands to secure the ball. He did struggle one time in the running game against
Kyle Wilberwho beat him inside for a pressure but overall, he has been finding ways to handle blocks off the edge but this able to catch the ball and work up the field, is something that I didn’t know was part of his game.
- Have to say that I was disappointed in the way that guard
Kevin Kowalskiplayed this afternoon. With he and Phil Costain the middle of that second offensive line, I really believed that they would anchor these two young tackles, Darrion Weemsand Edawn Coughmanbut that wasn’t the case at all. From my live look, Kowalski wasn’t at his best today and the line play suffered for it. Up until this point, his play had been rock solid but it didn’t matter who he was matched up with, it was a struggle. He was beaten with quickness from Ben Bassand power from Nick Haydenand Jerome Long. There were too many reps today where Kowalski was reaching, off balance and just in bad football position. To his credit, he took a ton of reps and fought through it but I had honestly seen him play so much better this last week. It will be a good tape for him to see and learn from because I have seen him play better and I know he can.