The GilDong Report (Nov. 28th, '00)
In light of many a fan being bamboozled and ga-ga over Jason Gildong�s 11 sacks in �98 --- despite only 2 being anywhere near "earned sacks" --- I devoted considerable time last season to monitor the work of the exceptionally average Jason Gildon. Jason has been famous enough with his coverage sacks, flop sacks, the QB-slipped-on-the-wet-turf sacks, the OT totally forgot his blocking assignment sacks, and so on, that the NFL designated a new statistic, called the "Dong Sack™", in honor of Jason Gildong. (Some fantasy football leagues are incorporating this into their point systems.) Again in '00, I'll take time to expose Jason Gildon for the fraud that he is.
Gildon began this game where he left off the past 8 weeks, with a shameful imitation of a statue. He managed to pick it up late in the 3rd quarter, and finished with an adequate game pockmarked both with a few good plays and more than a few poor ones.
On Cinci's first drive, Bennett ran untouched for an easy 37-yard TD scamper up his right tackle. On this play --- with the handoff right in front of his nose -- Gildon foolishly looped far too wide and too far up-the-field, allowing a mammoth hole between himself and the DE for Bennett to cruise through for the easy TD scamper. This might have been understandable if Gildon had been slanting to the inside on this play, or if the play was a misdirection. But clearly, neither of these scenarios occurred, and for a veteran to take this kind of pitiful angle and surrender that much acreage to an opposing RB for a long, easy TD is unacceptable.
In the 2nd series, Gildon had zone coverage on a 1st & 10 at the Cinci 40, and on a short curl to Warrick, The Dong dove and missed in his slow-footed attempt to break up the first-down completion to Warrick.
At 2:01 of the 1st, Dillon ran up right tackle, and Gildon was totally CAVED IN by TE Tony McGee on this 4 1/2 yard gain. On the very next play, Dillon ran wide of the right tackle, and this time The Dong, with no fight at all, was sealed in as easy as pie by McGee. Dillon cruised through a gaping hole for 15 yards.
At 7:38 of the 2nd, on a 2nd & 4, Dillon ran up right tackle for yet another big gain. Gildon was shoved out wide by RT W. Anderson, and Dillon dashed ahead for an easy 16-yard gain.
On the first play of the 3rd quarter, Gildon finally did something worthwhile, minimal as it may have been. Dillon ran up LG for 8 yards, and Gidlon, who was untouched on the play, moseyed over and jumped on the prone Dillon at the end of his run. This likely was recorded as a solo-stop for Big Jason.
But a short while later, at 12:44, Smith ran a bootleg to the right. Gildon jumped all over the initial fake to the left, and was totally bamboozled on the play. Smith easily ran around Big Jason for a 6-yard gain and a key first down.
At 6:03 of the 3rd, on a 1st & 20, Dillon ran wide right. Gildon cleverly juked the pulling guard, Goff, and after Kimo nearly tripped up Dillon, Big Jason made the solo stop.
Then, in one magical series that might forever be frozen in time, Big Jason awoke from his slumber and had a magical series that might someday be replayed on Disney. On first down at 2:26 of the 3rd quarter, Jason, as he was titty-fighting with the RT, got a paw on a short dump-off in the flat. On 2nd down, Dillon ran slowly to his left, and Jason slanted in and, along with Porter, nabbed Dillon. On 3rd down, Jason stunted to the inside, and when RG Mike Goff got his foot tangled with the center, The Dong bulled over Goff and sacked Smith, who clumsily then dropped the ball as he was falling for a Stiller fumble recovery. Big Jason gets credit for both an earned sack and, soft as it was, a forced fumble.
Jason wasn't done, however. On the next series, Dillon bounced a gut-run wide right after seeing no hole, and Gildon was there for the stuff of a 2-yard loss. Two plays later, a terrible shotgun snap sailed over the head of Smith. Jason slid in and recovered the loose ball. Porter had the presence of mind to pick up Gildon and shove him towards the goal line, while also fending off a Bengals' lineman. Gidlon then rumbled to the end zone for the touchdown.
At 9:57 of the 4th, on a 2d & 10 blitz package, Gildon rushed in from his LOLB spot, and Lee Flowers rushed in wide of Gildon. Knowing that he had outside help from Flowers, Gildon nonetheless looped way, and Smith spotted a large hole up right tackle and scrambled for 6 yards. Similar to the Bennett TD run earlier in the game, this is a classic case of a player not having any clue about where he is on the field relative to where his teammates are and what the opposition is doing.
At 6:08, FB Nick Williams carried the ball in garbage time on a run to his right, and Gildon, who was lined up on a slot receiver, came up untouched for the easy solo stop.
Finally, on a 4th & 21 with under a minute remaining, on the Bengals' last offensive play of what was truly garbage time, Gildon did the wide loop rush and got around RT W. Anderson, and nipped the ball from Smith's greasy hand for an earned sack & a forced fumble.
The media will point to this game -- they already have, in fact -- and gush and fawn over Gildon as though he's the next Lawrence Taylor. Yes, indeed, Gildon had that one sterling series late in the 3rd quarter. That was how a OLB in the 3-4 is SUPPOSED to play that position.
But let's not overlook the entire game versus the Bungals. Gildon had one other sack, on a 4th & 21 with the game hopelessly out of reach with 45 seconds left. He also directly gave up a long touchdown run in which he took a pitifully soft, wide angle on a simple running play run straight at him. He also allowed long runs of 15 & 16 yards to go right through his area of responsibility. He gave up a first-down-producing bootleg keeper on a play that he was badly bamboozled. He gave up a 6-yard scramble by taking a softee outside approach, even though Flowers was blitzing to his OUTside. Take just these 5 plays, and that's 38% of the Bengal rushing yardage for the day. Jason had a about 5 solid plays -- which amounts to a career day for him -- but taken in the aggregate, this was little more than mediocre and nowhere near the caliber of play needed to be playing championship defensive football. Much has been made about "Cowher dressing down Holmes on the sideline" in the Bengal game. Holmes deserved it. Great. Sure would be nice if Cowher applied the same standard to Gildon after each touchdown run Jason directly helps to give to opposing offenses�..
Season to date totals for Jason, in 12 games:
Earned Sacks: 5
Dong Sacks™: 5
Strips, Jars, fumbles caused: 3
The Still Mill