Not only did Purdue not compete in the second half, but, our Boilers may have lost the MVP (so far) for the rest of the season (we should know more Monday). It looks to me like he broke his collarbone. According to the interwebnet, that takes 6-12 weeks to heal. Not good.
This is one of those games that leaves you questioning about everything.
With a 7-0 lead and the ball on the 9, Purdue's offense sputtered and came away with zero points. It's one of the turning points of the game...but it didn't lose the game. What did lose the game was rigidity by the coaching staff- as UND made adjustments, Purdue simply didn't...in all facets of the contest. I texted J as UND was driving for a 14 point lead- I told him a 14-point lead was as good as a victory for the Irish...turns out, I was correct; our Boilers were dead in the water.
Painter played poorly, sailing passes over and over again...he made bad checks and lousy decisions (especially after the first quarter). His line didn't look too bad, and the receiving corps seemed pretty consistant...I am continually impressed with Orton, Smith and Tardy. Sheets was very good, both catching the ball out of the backfield and running and earning yards after the initial hit. It seems to me, that it's time to, at very minimum, see a second quarterback, at least situationally, if not a different quarterback starting next week...once again, that's just my opinion.
Defensively, the corners played poorly and didn't react to rainbow after rainbow thrown by a mediocre quarterback. While UND's receivers are very talented, Purdue's DBs never turned their heads to try to find the ball...even on defended passes, their eyes were not on the ball, but they were desperately waving their hands in hopes to hit the pigskin. The linebackers, that have been undermanned all season were out of position over and over, both in passing downs and running. The defensive line played OK at times, but didn't put enough pressure on a quarterback who clearly gets rattled under pressure...furthermore, they didn't stop the run at all in the third quarter. The defense's performance was really disappointing and underwhelming.
I've been saying this since the NC game, this Purdue team, unless something changes is not that good. Before this game, I thought they'd struggle to become bowl eligible. Well, I don't know how they can win 5 now...Let's look at the schedule:
@ aOSU (L)
@ NW (-)
UM (L...they all of a sudden seem to have things together; we all know how Tiller teams compete v. the Maize (you call it corn) and Blue)
@ MSU (L)
@ Iowa (-)
Werner may be back soon, and Adams too...both will help out. But, it doesn't look to me like their additions will be able to change a mediocre (at the very best) team to a good one. Major changes are needed, but probably won't be made.