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2013 Pre-Season Week 1: The Day After Analysis 

Top Performers:

 LaGerrette Blount: 11 rushes, 101 yards, 2 TDs

Steven Ridley: 8 rushes, 89 yards, 1 TD

Alex Smith: 7/8, 68 passing yards

DeAndre Hopkins: 4 receptions, 52 rec yards, 1 TD

Victor Cruz: 1 catch over the middle for 57-yard TD

Luke McCown: 18/28, 216 yards, 2 TD, 1 Int

Position Battles

Battle between Mark Sanchez, Geno Smith, and Greg McElroy for QB Depth

Mark Sanchez first throw went for a pick six and worst of all it went to a defensive lineman. After that, Sanchez settled in and threw a nice seem route to Chamberlin for a 26-yd touchdown. Sanchez played three series, going 10 of 13 for 125 yards and a touchdown. Smith was 6 of 7 for 47 yards but left shortly after halftime. The rookie Geno Smith went 6/7 for 47 passing yards and left shortly after tackling himself. McElroy went 11/19 for 145 passing yards and 1 TD. McElroy didn’t turn the ball over and didn’t hurt himself so based on the first pre-season McElroy has the best chance of any to win the starter job. Will this happen, probably not, but if the pre-season remains the same for each player McElroy will have to get the nod in Week 1.

Minnesota QB Matt Cassel and Christian Ponder

The only way Ponder doesn’t start the season is if he gets injured in the pre-season. That being said, Cassel didn’t hurt his chances, in the case Ponder struggles early, completing 12-of-19 for 212 yards, a TD, and an INT. The only thing I couldn’t wrap my head around was why they pulled Ponder after throwing his second attempt of the game for an interception. It just seems wrong on so many levels (confidence builder, Ponder needs reps, Ponder has yet to prove himself, Ponder is battling for a job, etc).

Battle at RB Depth: Rookie’s Eddie Lacy, Jonathan Franklin, and James Stark

Lacy sat out due to a hamstring injury. Stark was the featured back with a dozen carries averaging 3.1 yards per rush. In half the carries, Franklin averaged 2.3 yards per rush added with two grabs for 12 yards. Third-year Packer James Stark understands the offense better at this point, thus starting the game, but Franklin didn’t do anything to hurt his chances also returning a kickoff and a punt.   

Battle between Miami RBs Lamar Miller and Daniel Thomas for No.1 Back

Miller, 2,  and Thomas, 4, were only a part of 6 of the 36 total rushing attempts by the Dolphins. Miller added a reception for six yards. Not much to take from this game. Stay tuned.

THINGS THAT STOOD OUT:

An anemic Chiefs offense in 2012 did something they hadn’t done all year in 2012, score a touchdown on the opening drive. A 14-play, 80 yard drive capped off by a Jamaal Charles 1-yard touchdown.

New England backfield accounting for all four New England touchdowns. Ridley opened the game up with a 62-yard run and Blount’s Madden cut back went for a 51-yard touchdown. Vereen was the icing on the cake with a nice touchdown grab in the corner of the end zone from Brady.

The Efficiency of the Eagles Top Two QBs Michael Vick and Nick Foles. Projected starter Michael Vick and No.2 Nick Foles combined throwing 9-of-11 for 137 passing yards and a touchdown. Plays were short, quick, and concise. As soon as you think to yourself when are they going to go deep, they go deep, Vick to Jackson connect on a 47-yard touchdown pass. Vick looked comfortable and poised in the pocket.

Denard Robinson with 10 Total Touches.  Nine rushes for 32 yards is not impressive, by any means, but it does show you the coaches plan of attack of how to use Robinson in the offense. The rookie also had a reception and a fumble, but losing the rock once shouldn’t hurt his chances at getting touches down the road because he is the only play maker in one of last years worst offenses.