Last game gave me some renewed hope in this team. I like where we're sitting going into the preseason and I think we've got a legit SuperBowl contender here. Here's some of the why:
1. Ben looks great and ready to go. He's still got the magic to carry this team. If we can just keep him healthy, we're a SuperBowl favorite imho.
2. Troy's got his game back. He's got the lightning quickness back and should be able to carry this unit to being one of the best in the game. Everything else will fall naturally in place as a result of healthy Troy.
3. We got a couple of stars on D ready to emerge in Timmons, JJ, and Cortez. For the past several SuperBowl runs, we've been effectively carried by 3 guys in Ben, Troy, and James. I think this team might be on the verge of having 5 star players this season. And I also think we've got some future stars in Wheaton and Thomas.
4. Preseason game 2 to game 3 was night and day for the DLine. We got a solid performance from McClendon and Hood. Hope they can keep in up in conjunction with Keisel. Aside from the OLine, keeping Ben clean, I think the biggest concern this offseason was replacing Casey and Aaron on the DLine. Have to admit I was still concerned after the first 2 preseason games.
Overall, I expect the formula to hold true Ben + Great Defense = Championships. We just need to keep Ben alive and I think Troy frees everyone up Timmons to be more aggressive in the box which should in turn free up Woodley and JJ to make plays. It's a domino effect which will change the whole dynamic of this defense and will force mistakes/turnovers.
Sure the OLine and Haley's offense are still a concern going into the season. But I think we have the ingredients for something special.