What I was looking for first were the attitudes of the Derby players with Coach French at the helm. The kids were all pumped - all game long. I saw Derby last season and I can already sense these kids want to play harder this year for Coach French.
The white team started the game on offense. Krieger (their QB from last season), who will be a junior, looked a bit rusty all morning. I've never seen him make this many bad decisions with the ball, but as I heard, he just came off of baseball and has not practiced with the football team much. The kid played awesome last year for a sophomore. I expect him to ditch this rustiness and come out slinging once the NVL season begins.
I was also very eager to see Jacob Tomczak. Krieger tried to deliver to Tomzcak on the first play, but was sacked. So much for that. Tomczak didn't seem to get many chances to catch the ball this afternoon, but made some sick open-field tackles on defense from the free safety position. He's absolutely fearless. Word on the sideline was that he has been nursing a shoulder (pinch nerve). To be honest, he didn't look like he was all there today - I think that injury definitely had something to do with it. He's A LOT better than that. If you guys haven't seen this kid, go see a Derby game or two next season. He's the real deal.
Overall, I thought the starting offense looked very rusty (as expected by some). What impressed me was the play of the back-up QB, #6. Although this kid will be a senior next season, with Krieger as the starter, I expect him to play RB or in the slot. He was making plays with his arm and his legs all morning long.
The Raiders have some very good size at WR. Big kids.
Derby's line didn't look very big at all. This will be the key to their success. It could be their achilles heel, though.
I don't think the Raiders will be a playoff team next year but the Derbyites are hoping for a better year than last.
Good luck, Raiders.