If that's what it takes to win a preseason game, I say we just start losing.
Pretty poor performances from Harrington and Redman. Both managed to look decent for a short time before descending down the slippery slope of mediocrity. Shockley looked fine and had a chance to either make or break his shot as the backup spot, with me crossing all of my fingers and most of my toes that he'd lead the team on a terrific drive. Instead, he's now awaiting the results of an MRI on his leg that will determine whether he misses a significant chunk of the season. If the team is forced to put him on I.R., Redman is almost definitely the backup and Bramlet will probably make it as the third QB. Given the mobility issues for our other pass-slingers, I'm dreading the results of the MRI. Cross your fingers now if you had any hope of Shock doing something good for this team.
Fumbling was also an issue. Snelling lost a fumble and I'm sure that will be something the coaching staff keeps an eye on. One of the worst traits a goal line back can have is slippery hands. Even though it won't get as much press, it's also worth noting that Redman fumbled freakin' twice, although the team didn't lose either of them. That's still incredibly disconcerting from a guy who also threw an interception and didn't play a full game. He can't do that if he ever wants to get near the playing field this season. Harrington also threw an interception, making this a pretty sloppy, gruesome game to watch.
So how the hell did the Falcons win, you ask? On a crappy little Redman dump pass to George Cooper and a couple of field goals from Silly Billy Cundiff. When a game is that messy, you take what you can get. But it's really some of the individual performances that I found more encouraging. Aside from his fumble and getting stuffed at the goal line, Snelling again flashed surprising speed and decent power that makes him a pretty promising young runner. Laurent Robinson continues to defy my expectations by not being another Roddy White clone, though there's still time for that. If he and White continue to perform well, Jenkins could very well be stuck in the slot this year, which might be good because he'll be matched up against lesser (and shorter) corners in the red zone. We'll see.
On the defensive side of the ball, Daren Stone looks like a stud. Yeah, he's playing against backups and he has a long way to go, but I don't really care. He tied for the team lead in tackles, all of which were solo tackles, and picked up a sack. Stephen Nicholas and David Irons looked good last night, as well. The only thing I would've liked to have seen out of the defense was an interception or two, because I didn't think Losman was tossing anything particularly fearsome. But the encouraging news this week is that the special teams and defense looked better, and I think Adam Jennings should have be our kick returner without a doubt.
So it was a pretty bad win overall with a few encouraging signs. If Shockley's alright and the fumbles turn out to be a non-issue, this is a gutty performance the Falcons can build off of. If neither of those things happen, this could be a less than stellar rest of the preseason.
Fun, ain't it?