Let me start off by saying, I am a not a writer by any sense of the word. With that said, on with the post...
Now that the preseason is finally over, there are a couple things I would like to get off my chest:
1) Yes, the Fins went .500 this preseason. Not that big of a deal. It's preseason! How many times have teams won every preseason game and then had a crappy season? Or on the other hand, look at the Colts. How many times have they gone 0-4 in the preseason, only to go and have a playoff run season? My point? It's simply that preseason records really don't mean anything. No need for "CLS" just because of their record.
2) Probably the most controversial point... Unless they keep 4 QB's, Pat White is done. Yes, the FO could shock us all and trade Thiggy, but I personally doubt it. I'm sorry, to me, I'd much rather have Henne, CP10, and Thiggy as our QB core. All 3 have done things in this league to prove their quality. Henne is the future, CP10 is money when healthy and a great mentor, and Thiggy is a very good back-up option if the worst should happen again this year. To me, Pat just doesn't fit the right mold of a NFL QB. There's a reason a lot of college QB's switch to playing receiver in the pro's.
3) Why is there so much concern about Henne anyway? Just because he's had a questionable preseason? Am I a little concerned about the lack of scoring out of the 1st team? Yeah, a little bit, but it's not entirely his fault. First off, we all were fairly spoiled with Marino. He pretty much was great right out of the box. Though he only had about 2200 yards his rookie year, he had 20 touchdowns and 6 int's in 11 games played but only 9 as a starter. So yeah, we have high standards for our QB's after having a legend at the helm for so many years. But Henne has the ability and mentality to become a great QB in this league. Yes, there are some skills he needs to refine a bit and it might take another year as a starter under his belt, but he will be a top QB in his career.
4) The offensive line happens to be my biggest concern. Especially now with Long getting a little banged up. In my opinion, there has been too much shifting around in this preseason. Yes, I know that they want to try people out at different spots and see how certain people work together. But it's hard to gel and get better at a spot without being there play after play. To me, it looked like a ton of mis-assignments with picking up blocks and/or creating holes for our backs. A couple years ago, the first year without Ricky to be exact, there were a lot of people saying that our running game sucked and if Ricky was there it would have been so much better. Yes, Ricky is good, but when there's 2 or 3 defensive players right in your face when you get the hand off, it's kind of hard to be productive. I'm starting to see some signs of that again. Just hoping they step it up when the games actually count.
5) No more "CLS" with Marshall's drops please. Yes, it's discouraging to see our top receiver, that we just paid a lot of money to, drop some passes. But it's not something to worry about yet. Every receiver drops passes, period point blank. That should not be news to anyone. I mean look at some stats from last year. The top 5 targeted receivers last year were, Andre Johnson with 171 targets but only 101 catches. Roddy White 164 to 85. Wes Welker 161 to 123. Steve Smith NYG 156 to107. And Marshall 155 to 101. Now I know that with those numbers, the ball could have been over thrown or thrown in the dirt in their direction to avoid a sack. But still, I find it very hard to believe that Matt Schaub overthrew A.J. 70 times last year. Marshall is technically still in a learning process of the system and of Henne. Once they get in sync with each other, magic will be made. I mean, look how he made Kyle Orton and Cutler look good...
6) My last point... The rookies. A lot of people are crying about the lack of production out of Misi and Odrick. If you actually made it this far, you've already done your fair share of reading so I'll keep this simple. Both have made good play and both have made their mistakes. They're rookies. It's gonna happen. There's a reason the FO took them in the draft and I, for one, trust the Tuna. He doesn't make many bad picks. These kids fit the mold of a Mike Nolan defense. Once Nolan opens up his playbook, we'll get to really see what these guys bring to the table and I can't wait.
So in closing, this team is constantly moving in the right direction. Even last year, with going 7-9, there was a lot of upside to this team. I am excited for the future and excited to see my team in the big game. Though it might not happen this year, though it could, it will happen and it won't be too long until it does.