Let's take a closer look at one part of our team. Tyler Smith, Matt Farniok, Tyler Biadiaz, Zack Martin, Terence Steele. Our offensive line. How did they do?
Shout out to Connor McGovern. He was injured in the 1st quarter and didn't have to see the field for this debacle. Should get a MRI today. Probably a high ankle sprain. Josh Ball and Matt Waletzko, your time is now. Maybe get Jason Peters ready–now!
The line looked good in the first quarter and most of the second. Notable, Tampa played a very basic scheme early on. After that, well…
Tyler Smith. I posted last week that he should get the start at LT. Some of you agreed, some of you didn't. I feel vindicated for at least one game. He made a few rookie mistakes. One penalty, one sack, but he held his own against a very good front. He continually was able to ride his rusher beyond Dak and held up almost the entire night at the point of attack. His footwork needs work, but he clearly has the talent, quickness, and strength to play the position. He showed good arm extension in pass protection. I don't think anyone can be disappointed in his first game. I don't want to jump the gun, but I believe we have a winner in Smith.
Matt Farniok. Looked okay early on, but once Tampa started to run stunts and delayed blitzes in the second half, was clearly outmatched. He looked outright confused on some plays. He looked like he was in position much of the night but was simply not good enough to get the job done. Better in run blocking than pass protection. Showed no cohesiveness with the unit on several plays. Was pushed back a number of times and stoned on run blocking a bit too much in the second half.
Tyler Biadiaz. Much like Farniok, looked okay early on, but once Tampa started to run stunts and delayed blitzes in the second half, was clearly outmatched. This is not good, as he has to make calls at the LOS. The problem here is Dak must recognize changes and make those calls if Biadiaz doesn't see or understand what's happening. He didn't do a good job of that (unlike Brady). Was blown back on a number of plays. Couldn't pick up stunts with any consistency, like Farniok. Poor blitz recognition, allowing Dak to get hammered on a number of plays.
Zack Martin. Poor guy. He was his usual one day to be HoF self. Consistently beat him man at the point of attack and help up in pass protection. Did his best to help Biadiaz and Steele. One play in particular caught my attention. Zack was blocking his man and helping Steele when a LB delayed blitzed up the middle. Biadiaz was blocking the same man as Farniok and didn't react to the blitz. Martin, already engaged, shoved his man into Steele, peeled off his block and tried his best to cover the hole. He just missed being able to chip the blitzer, and frankly, if he did, it would have been a great Baldy breakdown moment showing again how damn good Zack is. Now Dak gets a bit of blame here. Smith did his job on this play, as the edge rusher was pushed far to the left. Dak couldn't step up to the left because Farniok and Biadiaz were getting destroyed. Dak could have gone right, as Steele was actually holding his opponent. I assume the ref didn't throw a flag out of pity. So, Dak decides that the best course of action was to step back–staying in the path of the blitzer. Yeah, didn't work out so well.
Terence Steele. Three false starts. One hold. Another false start and two holds not called. Subpar arm technique, footwork, and situational awareness. I will be generous and say he is a work in progress. I don't want to comment any more.
A special shout out to our moving turnstile, Tony Pollard. At least throw yourself at someone's feet. You might get lucky and slow down the rusher for half a second.
This line at the moment is best suited for run blocking. It worked early on. Why did our expensive RB only get 10 carries????
I am frustrated.