Pointing Blame For The JAX Game, Coaches Should See Three Fingers Pointing Back

Michael KellerAnalyst IIISeptember 15, 2010

JACKSONVILLE, FL - SEPTEMBER 12:  12:  Head coach Josh McDaniels of the Denver Broncos watches the action during the NFL season opener game against the Jacksonville Jaguars at EverBank Field on September 12, 2010 in Jacksonville, Florida.  (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

Immediately after every NFL game, the coaches break down the film of the previous game and look at what went wrong and what went right. This was true for both the Denver Broncos and the Jacksonville Jaguars. I just hope the Broncos coaching staff took a real hard look at that film. 

Much of that effort is to see where players did and didn't do the right thing on every play. All the way from missing a tackle to missing being on the field for a play.

Mistakes can be broken into many categories but usually fall into the Physical, the Mental, and the Level of Effort variety. In this game against JAX, I saw all three varieties.

A couple of  the Mental variety: Not knowing the play. TE Richard Quinn, who was drafted by trading up to get him when he wasn't on anyone's radar, has been on this team for a full year, and still doesn't know the playbook. Plus he is facing a domestic violence charge that may cost him some money, and maybe some time. What we do know, is that it cost the Broncos a time-out and loss of momentum when they were moving towards a score.

DL Ryan McBean cost the Broncos not one, but two 15 yard personal foul penalties, in the same series, This resulting in 30 additional yards on the Jaguars final scoring drive. And in both instances, there were multiple defenders engaged and able to complete the tackle.

Level of Effort Variety: I saw more than a few arm tackle attempts that didn't bring down the ball carrier. The inability to finish a tackle has been an issue since last year, and was evident in several of the preseason games. And let's not forget some of the worst Special Teams coverage I have ever witnessed at the professional level. We made the Seattle 3rd string KR look like the next coming of Neon Deon. That should be chalked up to both the players and the special teams coaching.

These are areas where the finger should be pointed at the players and I hold them responsible and appropriate actions and adjustments must be made.

But let's look at those three fingers that point back at the coaches, shall we?

Example 1: Why do you play two RBs almost exclusively when they haven't touched the ball in any of the four preseason games? Knowshon Moreno and Correll Buckhalter made some good and some bad plays, but didn't look quite ready for primetime. They both looked hesitant at times and I think the Buckhalter fumble was a result of him not having had any serious contact before this game.

We had a player in Lance Ball, who showed some ability and toughness and seemed to have his timing down but wasn't called on.

Example 2: Having only 10 men on the field during a critical defensive series INSIDE the redzone. In this case, it looked like there were too many cooks in the kitchen calling defensive plays. The end result was a TD by JAX. With all the defensive coaching eyes on the field from the sidelines and the booth upstairs, a timeout would have at least allowed a regroup.

Example 3: Using Tim Tebow in a Wild Horse or whatever formation and calling two dive plays for a total of two yards. Watching this, there was no one on the Jaguars side of the ball or on their sidelines that didn't know what was coming. That was like giving away a down in two separate series. And on another one, he was flanked out but was half-heartedly covered by a LB and didn't even run a decent route.

Example 4: When there was obvious communications issues between Kyle Orton and Josh McDaniels on getting the plays in (one theory was static in the headset), manually signal them in or have a backup plan. Technology won't always work, especially in a visiting stadium, and in an electrical storm.

As much blame as there was to go around in this game, if the coaching staff, and Josh McDaniels in particular, doesn't take a lot of the blame, then they don't deserve to be coaching in the NFL.

Most of the problems we saw on the field can be fixed, but if the coaching doesn't get better, it won't matter.

Just one fan(atic)'s opinion.