Week 14: Dominating Defense Leads To Big Win
Big plays by offense compliments great defensive play.
by Steve Saslow
Here are our position by position grades:
J.P. Losman made a beautiful pump fake and then connected with Lee Evans for a 77 yard touchdown pass. That was almost half of his total 157 yards on 10 of 15 passing with a solid QB rating of 140.8 as he also threw a touchdown pass to Robert Royal and no interceptions. Grade B+: Managed the game well.
Willis McGahee needs to play the Jets every week. He had his fifth straight 100 yard game against them despite missing a quarter with an illness. He finished with 125 yards on just 16 carries including a beautiful 57 yard touchdown run which he showed no ill effects from his ankle injury. Anthony Thomas split time with McGahee because of the illness and ankle injury but he had much less success. He had 15 carries but just 42 yards including a fumble. He did catch a team high three passes for 23 yards. Grade A-: 174 yards rushing as a team was very good.
Lee Evans was quiet except for his 77 yard touchdown. He had one other catch for 14 yards but it was enough to give him his first 1,000 yard receiving season. Peerless Price caught his usual two balls for 19 yards. Roscoe Parrish did not catch a pass and Josh Reed caught one for 11 yards. Robert Royal had two catches and a touchdown. Grade C: Didn't have too much to do in this game.
The line struggled in pass protection at times allowing three sacks but did open up holes in the running game. McGahee ran behind Jason Peters and Mike Gandy for his long touchdown. Grade C: Average, but more consistent as the season goes on.
Aaron Schobel was a monster, he had three sacks, although two of them were in the final minute during garbage time. The other one forced a fumble that Ryan Denney recovered to setup the Bills second half touchdown. Schobel also had nine tackles which is very high for him as he was solid in the running game. Denney was in on three tackles and has a sack of his own. Chris Kelsay had four tackles. Larry Tripplett and Kyle Williams were very quiet but they held the middle ok to not allow too many long runs. Anthony Hargrove had three tackles. Grade A: Generated a lot of pressure with just the front four.
London Fletcher was on fire again as he had nine tackles, two passes defensed, and an interception. Takeo Spikes was in and out of the lineup as Coy Wire and Keith Ellison both saw time at linebacker replacing the injured Angelo Crowell and Spikes. Ellison had eight tackles and was very active. Wire only was in on two tackles. Spikes had four. Grade A-: Didn't allow anything big.
Terrence McGee missed the game with an ankle injury and he was replaced by Kiwuakee Thomas who did well in coverage. He had six tackles. Nate Clements became a playmaker again with his interception return for a touchdown and he was solid in coverage while adding five tackles. Ko Simpson was active with six tackles. Donte Whitner was out and he was replaced by Jim Leonhard who had six tackles. Grade A: Scored a touchdown and allowed less than 200 yards passing.
Brian Moorman had an up and down day. His net punting average dipped below 40 yards for the season with 36.7 yard net in this game. He grossed 40.5 yards and had three stopped inside the 20. Andre Davis replaced Terrence McGee returning kicks and averaged 23 yards on three returns. Rian Lindell hit his lone field goal attempt from 34 yards out. Roscoe Parrish averaged only 5.7 yards on three punt returns. The coverage units allowed top returner Justin Miller to hit his season average of 29 yards per return including a 42 yarder that setup the Jets lone touchdown. Grade C: Not a big day from this unit but they didn't need it.
Dick Jauron had his team ready to play and they had a solid game plan. Perry Fewell had the defense ready to play 60 minutes and they were well prepared for the Jets no huddle attack. Grade A: Best game of the season.
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