Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Power Home Opener Preview

Three weeks in, and the Power finally opens the home season. Once again, it's an NFL Network Friday night game, and the whole country can see us take the field.

Hopefully everyone doesn't get fired this time.

I covered the Soul quite a bit this past weekend in their opening game. This post is going to cover some of the same ground, but put it in perspective as far as the Power goes.

As I pointed out in my last post, playing the Soul this year is going to be a lot more like playing Vigilantes last season. I realize that Clint Dozel is not the head coach, but as the offensive coordinator, he's going to have a lot of say in how an Arenaball game goes - simply because the offense is the focus. If our last game against him is any indication, we can expect this to come right down to the line and the pressure to always be on.

But hey - he can bring as much pressure as wants, but it doesn't matter if he doesn't have the players, right? Well, he does. Tiger Jones, Donovan Morgan and Jeff Hughley. I've already explained at length their skills, but it really comes down to the fact that they're highly mobile, fast and have sure hands. I've heard a lot about RB Derrick Ross, but we haven't seen him much yet this season. Finally, there's Dirty Dan at quarterback.

He's a great quarterback, and he gave us hell last year. He's accurate and he's hard to fluster in the pocket. In general, he's really, really good.

So what does that mean for the Power? To be honest, I don't know.

The Power played really well in their opener, even though there was no cohesion to the team. Of course, their opponents were in the same situation. A lot of this week is going to depend on how much they pulled it together.

The good news is, we re-signed nearly everyone from the team we had in camp. Andrico Hines was a backup, so they had time to work with him before - even if he wasn't the starter - and he did pretty well once he go into the swing of things in the opener. He's got a lot of experience, and we brought back Bill Stull as his backup this week. If he's comfortable, he should be a pretty good bet.

Our problem with receivers is simply that they're not as dynamic as Philly's, and we need them to match up as equally as possibly. Joystick and Morgan are similar in the open field - Joystick is just a lot smaller. Dewalt and Jones are similar. PJ Berry was great on returns last week, but he's no Hughley. They're all good, but I just hope that they're good enough.

If our defense is like they were last week while all discombobulated, then our edge is there. Last week, Philly's defense played a little hard and smidge dirty, but they didn't scare me that much. If LeFlore and Williams weren't just lucky last week and Lay sees the field, we might have a chance to break their receivers up a bit.

The only pure unknown is kicking. The Soul's kicker was pretty well on last week, and we still don't have one listed on the team roster. I'm sure they'll bring someone in, but who knows who or how good.

One way or another, I'm excited to get back into Consol and see a game in person. It's a lot of fun, and this year, they're opening with a huge indoor fireworks display. Throw in some nachos, and I have a hard time thinking of a better night.

...And, besides, if worse comes to worst, I'm set. Put me in, coach!
I'm ready to play!

Elsewhere in the league
  • The games this week start with the Preds traveling to Chicago. Same with our game, it's tough to say what we'll see. Surprisingly, I'm pulling for the Rush.
  • Friday night is stacked. Opposite our game are two other division games, which is pretty annoying. The KC Command takes on Cleveland at 7:30. Both teams really under performed in their first games, but the Command really underperformed. Cleveland favored.
  • The other game is the Mustangs at the Voodoo. I really want to see this game, which is surprising when you look at both these teams last year. The Voodoo looked real good last week, and the Mustangs hung in against the Ratts. Even though they both lost their respective games, they both put up over 60 pts each. If I had to pick, I'd say the Mustangs.
  • Saturday night, the Sharks host the Force in a matchup that will Yeah, both teams are still trying to find their identity. The Sharks started pretty slow week one, and the Force looked real lackluster against the Storm last week. We shall see.
  • Finally, there is the Cats against the Blaze. Both teams are looking really good, and I'm actually going to take the Cats in this one.

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