After reviewing the game tape, here's a breakdown on the offense focusing on the offensive line.
Bledsoe played poorly on Sunday, that much is obvious. Bledsoe is the kind of quarterback that needs a clean pocket to operate - there's no secret about that - and on Sunday, he didn't always get it. The pass blocking and run blocking from the offensive line was uneven at best. Surprisingly, it wasn't from the middle that caused most of the problems, it was from the ends of the Jacksonville line. Whether it was straight forward rushes, stunts or blitzes, our tackles didn't answer the challenge and neither did one of our guards.
Marc Colombo - RT: After showing promise in the preseason, Colombo had an uneven first real game. Early in the game, his man beat him on the rush, but twice Bledsoe saved him by making quick throws for completions. On a crucial 3rd and 7 in the redzone, he got beat and Bledsoe had to throw quickly and was off-balance, leading to an incompletion. He got pushed backwards on a run block that resulted in no gain. Colombo missed a blitz pick-up that forced Bledsoe to scramble and underthrow a receiver, then got beat on a stunt that resulted in Drew throwing the ball away.
On Bledsoe's first interception, Colombo got pushed back into Drew's face so Drew couldn't follow through on his delivery. The ball sailed to the right, Witten had to move to the right after slowing down in the open spot, but the ball went right into Rashean Mathis' hands. Bledsoe probably shouldn't have thrown into the tight coverage, but it didn't help that he couldn't follow through. In the second half he had two more bad blocks that helped to kill JJ runs. And he finished off the evening by completely whiffing on a block that forced Bledsoe to throw the ball away.
Marco Rivera - RG: Rivera also played a poor game, having 7 plays that were harmful to Dallas' offensive attack, a couple of times in tandem with Colombo's bad plays. Bledose saved him one time my making a quick pass for a completion, but on another he got bull-rushed straight back into Bledsoe for a sack. He had two plays where his poor blocking forced Bledsoe to throw the ball too quickly or from an unbalanced stance, leading to incompletions. He was involved in two of Bledsoe's interceptions, on the first one he was beat just like Colombo and his man helped to impede Bledsoe's follow through. On Bledsoe's last interception, Rivera's man forced Bledsoe to slide left as he threw, and the ball was off target.
Please note, I'm not blaming Rivera and Colombo for Bledsoe's interceptions, but they sure helped the process along. Ultimately, though, it's up to Bledsoe to choose not to throw the ball when his mechanics are going to be altered.
Andre Gurode - C: Andre Gurode had a very clean game and grades out as the best offensive lineman we had in the game. After reviewing the tape, I didn't see one glaring error that he made. There were a couple of plays where he could've got a better block in the run game, but that's always going to happen. On Julius' TD run, Gurode got to the 2nd level and made a killer block, opening the way for the TD. He got to the 2nd level on a couple of other JJ runs, and overall played an excellent game.
Kyle Kosier - LG: Kosier also had a pretty good game, playing almost as well as Gurode, except he had a couple of mistakes. On the play when Bledsoe overthrew a wide open Owens in the Jags redzone, Kosier had let his man through and Bledsoe had to side-step and double-clutch the ball and the pass sailed high. Bledsoe should have still made the throw, but the little bit of distraction caused an errant pass. Late in the game, Kosier (along with MB3) missed a MLB blitz pick-up that resulted in Drew throwing the ball away and getting an intentional grounding call. On the plus side, Kosier had a few superb run blocks when he was asked to pull or in straight ahead blocking. For the most part, he was solid in pass protection except for the aforementioned errors.
Flozell Adams - LT: Flozell had a bad game, and his was probably the most noticeable on the first viewing. When you watch the tape, it gets worse. I have Adams down for 7 mistakes, putting him the category of Rivera for 2nd worse performance on Sunday. Adams had two plays where poor run blocking resulted in a wasted play for the Cowboys offense. He got the holding call that wiped out a big play to Terry Glenn, putting Dallas in a hole and Bledsoe eventually threw his first interception. Add on a silly false start penalty to his list of problems. His pass protection caused three problems; one was a total whiff on a block that led to a sack late in the game. Another time he let his man by and he hit Bledsoe just as he was throwing a pass, leading to an incompletion.
Finally, there was one play that no one is talking about. On the play early in the game where Bledsoe hit Julius down the sidelines that lead to a big gain; it could've been a whole lot better. The Jags only rushed three men, but Flozell was in one-on-one blocking and let his man push him back towards Bledsoe. If you watch the play, Julius is wide open but has to slow down to catch the ball and the corner eventually catches him from behind. The reason the ball was underthrown was because Bledsoe had to throw it off his back foot with no follow through because Flozell was pushed right into Bledsoe's space. If Bledsoe can follow through, he probably hits Julius in stride and the play is a TD. Instead, we ended up with a FG.
Leftovers: Anthony Fasano actually had a pretty good night in the run blocking and pass protection game. He showed better on Sunday than he had in some of the preseason games. Jason Witten still has problems when he's asked to run block, on a couple of plays he got no drive off the line and the plays stalled.
Al Johnson lined up at TE on two plays that I saw, there might have been a couple more. On one play he missed his block causing Bledsoe to throw the ball away and on the other he did a good job in pass protection with a one-on-one block in space.
Terry Glenn didn't have a good game besides the bomb he caught late in the 4th quarter. He was whistled for two false starts and missed a block on the CB that would've opened a huge hole for Julius, instead they lost a yard on the play.
Julius Jones did pretty well running the ball, for the most part he took advantage of the holes that were given to him. But on two plays, he had huge holes in the cut-back lanes, and missed them.
I'll have a review on the defense later today.