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Random Ramsdom 8/20: an injury to the conscience

In last week's game, Bulger and his receivers, mostly Bulger, passed their way to the horse collar, or some other symbolic anti-MVP award. Unlike last year, when I was able to keep "if only the o-line..." on the computer's clip board, they were (mostly) above reproach against the Chargers. So, here's the kind of thing you don't want to read in the middle of the week, wondering if Bulger et al can get the playbook loaded into muscle memory:

Orlando Pace is experiencing soreness, including in his surgically repaired left shoulder. Swell. Head coach Scott Linehan says Pace's soreness is mostly a result of the big left tackle just getting back into game shape, having played at a high level through plenty of snaps in practice and preseason games. That makes sense, given that Pace played less than half a game last season, but it's something to keep an eye on...and don't let the Paxil get to far out of sight.

This makes the reported progress of Adam Goldberg even more important, and it's a good bet that Goldberg will see some time with the first team this weekend, giving Pace the chance to rest up for the regular season slog.

Some other items with comment:

  • From the PD's Bill Coats, Torry Holt says you can blame the offense, the skill guys in particular, for ugly results recently as they learn Al Saunders' system and get the routes and timing down. That should be fairly obvious. You can watch the highlights (or lowlights) from last week's game and see Bennett and Bulger on a different page on the INT meant for Bennett. Unfortunately, that comes from two players looking to bury some poor results from last season, thus the deluge of "these guys suck" posts on the message boards. 
  • I don't want to get off on a tangent here, but you can never underestimate the benefits of a healthy diet. Just ask Dante Hall, between that and Al Saunders, he's a new man this season. He sure looked sharp on his returns last weekend, giving the offense great field position (to squander). I have concerns about using the 5'8" Hall as a regular WR, for reasons you might imagine (hurts his return game, too small). However, during his best seasons with KC as a returner, 2003-05, Hall's work at WR didn't cut into his return game. In 2005, for instance, he caught 34 passes for 436 yards an 3 TDs to go with 65 kick returns for 1560 yards and 1 TD and 42 punt returns for 476 yards. Those 42 punt returns were a career high, by quite a bit too. 
  • Torry Holt, back on the field yesterday for practice, has been in touch with Steven Jackson. No luck on breaking his holdout though. 
  • I'd rather have rookies learning the guard position on the fly at the NFL level than the tackle position because the nature of the position is relatively simple and the more ability a rookie brings with him, the easier it is to perform well or at least adequately there. 2008 draftees John Greco and Roy Schuening will get plenty of chances to make an impression at guard with Setterstrom out now. I think Greco can have an immediate impact, and I'm, frankly, a little surprised that Schuening hasn't had a better preseason thus far given his ability. Plenty of time left to see just what these guys can do though.