In their first game against an FBS opponent this season, the Toledo Rockets headed west and took on the Nevada Wolf Pack. While the Rockets dispatched the home team in relative ease, there were still some red flags. Here are 5 things I learned from the game.
The Rockets miss Michael Roberts, a lot
The offense isn’t quite the well oiled machine it was last season, but that’s to be expected. It’s only the second game of the season. However, a big worry I had going into the season is manifesting and that’s trouble scoring in the redzone.
Last season, the Rockets had a giant tight end with great hands that could post up and pretty much score at will. In fact, he scored 16 times. This season, they don’t have that threat and it shows.
The Rockets are a high flying offense. Like most high flying offenses, they struggle to pull it in close and punch it in in the red zone. It’s not what they do. Not having Roberts to lean on is making it so kicker Jamison Vest is one hell of a pick up on your fantasy team.
The Rockets don’t miss Kareem Hunt, much
Kareem Hunt was a fantastic player for the Rockets and a legend. This isn’t meant to be disrespectful to him in anyway, but WOW. The Rockets really reloaded at running back.
To start the season, I really wasn’t worried about the position. Terry Swanson has proven himself. This season, Art Thompkins and Shakif Seymour are also showing me that they can perform. Overall, it wasn’t a great rushing day, with a team average of 3.2 yards per carry, but the flashes all three of those guys showed are what is encouraging.
Sloppy is bad, but sloppy can be fixed
The Rockets had 14 penalties for 110 yards. They also missed tackles and blew coverages. The bad news is that is sloppy play. The good news is that it can be fixed. What scares me is that both wins so far have come relatively easy. That can make 20 year old kids work a little less harder than maybe they should.
“The Best Team In Ohio” is there for the taking
Toledo is the last division one team in Ohio to remain undefeated. If the Rockets can beat the other Miami, they can start the conversation that they are the best team in the greatest state in the union.
I liked the Toledo helmets in this game
I am not a branding guy. I generally don’t care about branding. I don’t like the yellow turning into blue. There, I said it. I am a fan of solid colors. Going forward, I would like to see one helmet for every game. The blue with the yellow UT would be fine, or the solid white with the blue rocket outline would work, too.