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Tuesday, February 9, 2016

U.S. vs. Argentina: Eagles Player Grades


Our player grades are in for the U.S. vs. Argentina match. By and large most of the players did very well. The U.S. weren't expected to be in the match so to gather a draw was a solid result and our grades reflect that.

Blaine Scully, 80 minutes (7): First up, Scully was a leader. He picked up right where Chris Wyles left off in organizing the team from fullback. He made the right decisions and most importantly he led by example. Defensively he was good and on offense he did the right thing.

Taku Ngwenya, 80 minutes (7.5): This was the best game Ngwenya has had for the Eagles in years. You can tell he loves to get out and run and with the game being wide open he had plenty of chances. His try was vintage Ngwenya and he was a menace all game. Maybe too much of a menace at time as he was lucky he didn't cost his team when he through the ball at an Argentine player. Defensively he was solid as well.

Chad London, 80 minutes (6): When London had the ball he made good things happen. He just didn't see the ball too much.

Take the jump to read more.

Lemoto Filkitonga, 80 minutes (6): Not the most active game for Filikitonga. He didn't get to touch the ball much on offense and also had a difficult time defending in some instances.

Kingsley McGowan, 62 minutes (5.5): There wasn't a lot for McGowan to do on debut in his hometown. The ball mostly went the other way to Taku Ngwenya but on the few chances that McGowan did have the ball he did alright. With more time it will be better to judge his long-term prospects.

James Bird, 80 minutes (7): We though that Bird was fantastic on his debut. Not only did he lead the offense well but defensively he also had a good shift. By and large his kicking was accurate both from the tee and on the fly. All told, it looks like AJ MacGinty has a back-up.

Niku Kruger, 58 minutes (6): A solid match from Kruger. He looked comfortable in the positions which is exactly what you want from a young player. He was quick to get rid of the ball and he had some good box kicks. Still, there are a few decisions that he could have improved upon.

David Tameilau, 80 minutes (6.5): Tameilau was another player that did very well on debut. He needs to work on his fitness but if he can get into top shape the U.S. found a good one.

Todd Clever, 80 minutes (6): In his first game back for the U.S. Clever played with purpose. He wasn't always the most noticeable out there but his work came in at the breakdown, where he was fantastic.

Cam Dolan, 80 minutes (7): Dolan was another of the European-based players to come in and play really well. What is that, like 10 intercept tries for him now with the Eagles? It's exactly that type of veteran move that is going to help the U.S. over the next cycle.

Greg Peterson, 80 minutes (7): You can see why the coaches at Glasgow love Peterson. He is in fine form whether it's in the line out, the scrum, or at the breakdown. He's looking like a piece that will start at lock every match he's available for the next four years.

Brodie Orth, 70 minutes (6.5): We thought Orth did very well in his first match. He's maybe not the most mobile of players but the scrum sure looked good with him in there and he got stuck in at the rucks.

Chris Baumann, 62 minutes (7): Baumann impressed in the match. Not only did he show that he is very capable in the scrum but he's a much better ball runner than he gets credit for. The question for Baumann going forward is if he can sustain that level of play.

Joe Taufete'e, 67 minutes (7): A good shift from Taufete'e. By and large his line out throws were good and he was good in the scrum. He could have gone either way after the World Cup but it looks like he's improved.

Eric Fry, 80 minutes (8): Fry was our Man of the Match. He must be really frustrated by his inconsistent time with Newcastle because he came in and made a statement. He is leaps and bounds better at scrummaging than he was a few years ago and he seems to have embraced his new role as one of the elder statesmen.

Substitutes

Mike Te'o, 22 minutes (7): Te'o showed just how versatile he is coming on in place of Kruger at scrumhalf. He's not known for playing the position but he came in and gave the offense some pop. He's also a great ball runner. Look for more of Te'o in the weeks to come.

Ollie Kilifi, 18 minutes (6.5): Kilifi was a player that had to make a big statement in the match and while he didn't completely transform the match when he came in he did keep the scrum going strong.

Jake Anderson, 18 minutes (7): There wasn't a lot of work for Anderson to do but on the few occasions he was called upon we thought he was good. In particular, he made a couple of tackles that saved the game for the Eagles.

Alec Gletzer, 13 minutes (6.5): We almost didn't recognize Gletzer with his haircut. His debut was one of the more highly anticipated debuts and he didn't really disappointed. What stood out in our eyes is that he immediately jumped in on the defensive side of things.

Mike Sosene-Feagai, 13 minutes (7): It was only limited minutes but Sosene-Feagai showed why the U.S. scored with his decision to play for the Eagles. given all of his experience he did very well and picking the right moments to come up big. That's what you need in a player.

1 comment:

  1. I too had said Eric played really well..very mobile around the pitch and effective!!. Thought Bodie Orth gave a great accounting of himself for his first match. As for "Intercept Trys", the count is now at four!...lol....

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