Looked at various things over the last day including the gamebook, and
rewatched a bit of the game.
I was most surprised that Ted Ginn had so many targets (10) and didn't
do more with them. The opportunities were there for him to have a 100+
yard game against his drafted team. While I'm on Ginn, I like him as
the punt returner (obviously) but lately his decision making to bring
out kicks isn't always great. He's not necessarily getting much past
Cam Newton's gotten a good rep lately for being efficient, and that
wasn't the case this week. Granted there were more deep shots this
week, but the disguised coverages this week confused Newton, something
that hasn't happened often this year. That's part of why Newton
struggled greater without blitzers than with, and I'm sure the coverages
get a bit easier with an extra rusher. But he also struggled the first
half, partly from the illegal hit. I do hope that teams don't see that
and decide it's worth it to take the 15 early, and pay the fine the next
Friday, to rattle Cam's cage.
Related to that, I underestimated Kevin Coyle schematically. Not that
there's much of anyone keeping score of my accuracy, and if anyone is,
consider better hobbies. Coyle didn't sit back in zone and just let
things happen - it's a base defense but he did some interesting things
with it. That said, the prevent he used late in the game, he's said he
wishes he had that back. I can't agree or disagree - it's not that hard
to have someone sit in a 15 yard zone instead of dropping everyone past
25 - but credit Mike Shula for getting LaFell out there to the sideline
with minimal time left, and credit to he and Greg Olsen for pulling it
off and creating points.
The Luke Kuechly penalty that was picked up in the endzone - since it's
becoming vogue to complain about how Kuechly goes about his business
despite, fair to say, is a lot of competency - was the right call.
Kuechly doesn't deliver the helmet, he doesn't touch the opponent's
helmet. Kuechly does have to be careful, as he does draw flags. While
I appreciate his very measured but intense and forceful approach, he has
to do a good job of staying on this side of the line. From this play to
the Pats' final play, all the way back to the Ravens game (where he was
in beast mode) and forced a turnover that was called back because of a
questionable hit, Kuechly has to be careful.
Rivera promises some changes in the secondary if things don't continue.
That's a hefty promise - and it's worked out before. But I don't know
what he expects to do. Captain Munnerlyn, largely the team's best
corner, gave up his first TD of the season there. Mike Mitchell isn't
currently a guy you can really bench, even though the team does have
enough next to him with the Quintin Mikell/Robert Lester duo. The team
has to watch how it handles its matchups, but that's on coaching.