There was once a time when the first week of preseason games gave us answers to a lot of important questions. Now it is more like driving on unfamiliar roads in patchy dense fog. Every now and then you see a sign clearly enough to know where you are going but more often you see just enough of the sign to become more confused. Here is to figuring our if we turn right or left at the next intersection.
Haasan Reddick had a knee scope and was not available to face the Chargers. The Cardinals are hopeful he will be ready for week one. After watching backup Dennis Gardeck with the starters versus Los Angeles, the team is going to need Reddick. Gardeck was decent versus the run most of the time but did not look comfortable and was slow to react at times.
With the release of Robert Nkemdiche and Darius Philon, Rodney Gunter and rookie Zach Allen are set to start at defensive end. Neither is particularly exciting but in this scheme, both are worth keeping an eye on.
Inside linebacker Jordan Hicks looked good on the during the short span of time the starters were on the field.
The Falcons showed nothing against Miami. The only defensive starters to see action were linemen. Damontae Kazee played safety against the Dolphins, which confirms Ricardo Allen as the actual starter.
When I initially covered the Ravens back in early July, Inside linebacker Kenny Young was a guy I identified as a mid to late-round target. After the first round of warmup games, things look much different than anticipated. Instead of putting Young in the position vacated by C.J. Mosley, the Ravens have shifted Patrick Onwuasor into that role while last year’s undrafted rookie Chris Board has moved past Young on the depth chart, at least for now.
Baltimore played their starting front seven against Jacksonville. Both Onwuasor and Board started at the ILB positions and stayed on the field in sub-packages. Onwuasor looked good in the role, making a number of plays in the short time the starters were in the game. Board moved around the formation more but did not make much of an impact statistically.
Young is not going quietly. He worked with the second team but led the club in tackles for the game and was fairly impressive in the process. He may be the odd man out at this stage but the competition is not yet over.