Welcome back to Corner Three, and welcome to Tuesday Takeaways – on a Wednesday – as we kick off football season and get the juices back flowing!
What Happened to Revis Island?
For many years Darrelle Revis has been considered one of the best corners in the business, consistently adding new residents to the famous “Revis Island.” However, Revis did not play at the level we are accustomed to seeing from him last season, and received his lowest Pro Football Focus grade of his career at 78.4. To put that into perspective, he had previously never graded lower than 80 and his incredible 2009 season earned him a 97.6 grade. Questions of his decline will only continue after his performance on Sunday. Revis found himself guarding AJ Green on 8 targets; Green hauled in all 8 targets for 100 yards. Revis may be calling on his front seven to help make his job easier. Yes, the Jets’ defense sacked Bengals’ QB Andy Dalton 7 times, but his numbers under pressure compared to his numbers when not vary drastically. Dalton threw the ball 30 times on Sunday – on 25 of those throws he felt no pressure and completed 21 passes for 344 yards and a touchdown. On the remaining 5 attempts, he only completed 2 passes for 22 yards, and threw an interception. It will be interesting to see how Revis continues to fare against the best of the best at the wide receiver position. He lucks out and may not have to face Sammy Watkins this Thursday, who is dealing with a foot injury.
Cowboys’ Red Zone Struggles Cost ‘Em
The Cowboys’ first three scoring drives this past Sunday accounted for 41 plays, 190 yards and 21 minutes and 57 seconds, but only resulted in 9 points. You hear coaches preach it constantly: when you get in the red zone you must find a way to walk away with 6 points. Dallas did find the end zone in their third trip inside the 20, finishing the day 33.33% inside the red zone. This should be concerning for Cowboys fans considering their struggles inside the red zone last season – Dallas’ red zone touchdown scoring percentage ranked 30th in the league at 44.44%. Although unable to throw for a touchdown in the red zone, rookie QB Dak Prescott did complete 4 of 6 passes in the red zone, a sign of optimism for fans of America’s team.
You Like That?! Nope
After a breakout season last year, many were quick to jump on the Kirk Cousins bandwagon. After last night’s performance, many will be jumping off even faster than they’d jumped on. Despite having solid protection and only taking one hit all night, Cousins was unable to work the ball downfield against a secondary that allowed the 5th most passing yards per game last season at 264, and the highest opponent passing touchdown percentage of 78.95%. Both interceptions that Cousins threw occurred against no pressure and he only completed 4 of 8 passes on throws that traveled 10 or more yards, including an interception. The road does not get much easier for Cousins, who has to face division opponent New York Giants, who this past Sunday held Dak Prescott to a passer rating of 69.4 and limited all-pro wideout Dez Bryant to eight yards on one catch.
by Sean Fener, Saint Joseph’s University