Ti Rider's Annual Reasons for Optimism/Pessimism (1 Viewer)

Ti Rider

Me Worry?
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Reasons for Optimism

Drew Brees - has thrown for 4800+ yards for the last five seasons including two seasons with over 5000 yards. He's the engine that makes Payton's O go so despite a shaky preseason in which he was under pressure early and often it's a pretty good guess he should end up passing for around 4800 yards. If he does, that alone should have the team around .500.

Youth on O & D - this team is steadily improving it's young talent by adding Thomas and Lasco on Offense and Rankins, Onyemata, Bell on Defense. The D had been largely ignored for most of Payton's time with the team so the focus on adding young talent is welcomed.

Improved Defense - the team looks to better on Defense than the last few miserable seasons. The majority of players have now been in DC Dennis Allen's system for year. They added James Laurinatis to QB the D so there shouldn't be as much confusion pre snap. The team added LBs so the starters/depth should be improved. The secondary is young but extremely talented. They will have some growing pains but should end up being a strength once they mature.

Reasons for Pessimism

The Preseason Games - I know - the preseason is meaningless. It's a time to evaluate players, nothing more BUT it was hard to watch this team during the preseason games and not come away pessimistic. Brees was under constant instant pressure behind the starting OL. There were no running lanes. Brees moved the ball but struggled to score TDs in the redzone. McCown and Grayson? Well....one is career backup and the other looks like his ceiling might be career backup at best.

The OL - LT Terron Armstead is a terrific player but hasn't been healthy all preseason, LG Time Lelito has struggled but looked decent in final preseason game, Max Unger is solid but is stuck between two Guards who both need help, RG Andrus Peat has never been allowed to learn his ultimate position and has been moved all over the OL. His development has been massively set back because of it. RT Zach Streif was never athletic and father time has slowed him down even more.

The Pass Rush - it was nonexistent in the final two preseason games. Without a pass rush from the front four Allen will be forced to blitz and the young CBs will be forced to play on a island (expect huge cushions so they don't get beat deep). The addition of Kruger should help and when Rankins returns hopefully the team will be able to pressure the QB without the blitz but we have yet to see it.
 

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