Blue will bruise
[size=14pt]Blue will bruise[/size]
By Chris Jagerson
The Free Press
Although he wants to be remembered for his six tackles and one sack, safety Greg Blue was remembered for getting burned on the deep ball that Oaklandâ€™s Johnnie Morant scored a touchdown on during Mondayâ€™s preseason opener.
â€œIt was a bad play for us,â€ Blue said. â€œIâ€™m glad itâ€™s the preseason and I can learn from my mistakes.â€
Fellow safety Dwight Smith is downplaying the incident and says that no one can play mistake-free football, not even a veteran, let alone a rookie in his first game.
â€œI donâ€™t know of a safety in the league that ainâ€™t been burned,â€ Smith said. â€œItâ€™s a learning process. I think heâ€™ll do that because he listens.â€
â€œHe understands what he did wrong (on the play), and itâ€™s good it happened now and he has time to work on it. If something happens to me and (Darren Sharper), he has to be ready.â€
Blue has plenty of time left to learn from his mistakes before the regular season â€” with three weeks of practice and three more preseason games, he can put himself in a position to get increased playing time as a safety.
â€œMostly, I just want to improve my coverage,â€ Blue said. â€œI know my tackling ability is natural, I need to just work on my coverages. Thatâ€™s what I try and work on the most.â€
Blue made a reputation for himself as a sure tackler at the University of Georgia last year, when he led the team with 96 tackles as a senior. Those numbers made him a semifinalist for the Jim Thorpe Award for the nationâ€™s top defensive back, a consensus All-American honoree and a 1st-team All-SEC selection.
His new teammate has even taken notice of his all-out play on the field. â€œHe has no problem putting his hat on somebody,â€ Smith said.
As a rookie this season he hopes to carry over more than his tackling ability from college.
â€œMy toughness is going to help out a lot,â€ Blue said. â€œBecause the NFL can get stressful and you need to be mentally strong to survive in this game.â€
Blue has the ability and the toughness to play linebacker in certain situations, but heâ€™s a little thin at 216 pounds. When confronted with the idea of playing the position he said heâ€™s a safety and playing linebacker isnâ€™t something he would want to do.
For now Blue will be serving mostly on special teams, but with the season-ending injury to Tank Williams, there will be opportunities for the backup safety to get on the field in passing situations.
â€œI really donâ€™t know, thatâ€™s up to the coaches,â€ Blue said. â€œ... Where ever they put me, thatâ€™s where Iâ€™ll be.
â€œI feel comfortable in my special teams role right now. I just have to go out there and play hard. Thatâ€™s all I can do.â€
Re: Blue will bruise
The more they get burned in preseason the better.
Make them work their asses off correcting their mistakes instead of getting a false sense of security with meaningless wins.
Re: Blue will bruise
He is going to be fine, he looks good.
A little fine tuning and he will be ready to take over the SS spot.
We don't have anything to lose.
Throw him in there and he makes plays.