Why Playing Badly is Good

Just a quick thought here before I run off to get food, more coverage will be coming a bit later. I think the first string defense looked bad yesterday, with few exceptions. There was hardly any penetration through the Broncos’ (very good) offensive line. We were missing a lot of tackles, not attacking the ball, and generally looking sluggish. The defense looked a lot more like it did in 2008 than 2005. Darryl Tapp and DD Lewis were, however, standouts in that unit (note though that neither one of them will be regular season starters).

And that might be okay.

What I mean is, it’s good to play like crap in preseason, at least once. I wish we had lost, because honestly we were goofy one left-handed pass away from going into the half down 17-14. We turned it around and looked great in the second half, which is nice and all, but we can’t guarantee that same thing would have happened in the regular season. The Broncos are a bad team, and we made them look good. That’s not okay.

But this gives Mora a chance to really come down on the players, force them into accountability, point out every mistake and remind them that (especially on defense) no one’s job is safe because we have the depth to replace them. (Maybe not the secondary, but you know what I mean.) We need every single one of our linemen playing with the same intensity and intelligence that Nick Reed does. Reed will most likely make the team now, and he deserves it, but if you’re a first string guy it’s embarassing to have a 3rd string end come in and be the paragon of your teams pass rushing; but he has been thus far. Whose fault is that?

If this game can be as much of a learning experience as I think it can be, then looking terrible was a great thing. That falls back on Mora now. This should be his first real game-based reaction period, and he better be fuming mad when they look over film today.

What do you guys think? Is losing (or looking like we did in the first half) a good thing in the preseason, or am I just blowing smoke? I remember last year we talked about how great it was that the Hawks looked terrible in one of the games, then were able to bounce back. Well, we know which team showed up in the regular season, so what will we get in 2009?