Sunday, August 06, 2000

Coslet blames Pelfrey for block




By Jeff Carlton
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        A day after the Bengals' 21-20 preseason loss at Buffalo, coach Bruce Coslet had high praise for his young quarterback, Akili Smith, and pinned blame for the game-ending blocked field goal on kicker Doug Pelfrey.

        Coslet spoke minutes after reviewing game film Saturday afternoon and said the angles he saw showed the Bills getting some penetration on the field goal attempt. But he also said Pelfrey took too long to kick the ball.

        “The snap and hold were good, it was just the slow timing of the kick,” Coslet said. That miscue aside, Coslet said he was mostly pleased with the Bengals' efforts, particularly those of second-year quarterback Smith. He completed 12 of 18 passes for 104 yards and no touchdowns.

        Coslet said Smith proved he has a quick release, a powerful arm and impressive accuracy. He said a few of Smith's six incomplete passes “were just cold drops.”

        More important, the coach said, Smith threw the ball away twice to avoid being sacked and wasn't tackled for a loss. In an intrasquad scrimmage last week, Smith was sacked three times.

        “He didn't hold the ball, didn't take sacks, didn't run backward when linemen were chasing him, threw one away,” Coslet said. “He corrected a lot of things.

        “Specifically, I didn't see panic. You always look for that in a young quarterback.”

        Coslet tempered his praise for the wideouts, who he said were decent for the first game of the preseason. Among his complaints were dropped passes and some bad cuts. Coslet said he senses an attitude among players that was missing in previous years.

        “They weren't happy we lost. They were expecting to win,” he said.

       



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