The Daily Wave: Forward Corps Must Step Up

Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Spor

There's a ton of depth at forward for the Rapids, but the entirety of that depth is doing nothing in particular this year. Someone's got to step up and deliver the goals, or it will be tough for the Rapids to keep their winning ways up.

One of the exciting things about the Colorado Rapids this off-season was the fantastic depth that they had put together at forward. Deshorn Brown was coming off of an electric rookie campaign, the Rapids finally had a designated player to call their own, ol' steady Edson Buddle was there as the big man in the mix, and they had a bunch of other guys who had talent and the want to prove themselves like Kamani Hill, Danny Mwanga, Charles Eloundou and Marvin Chavez.

That depth is still there and that depth is still talented, but that depth has yet to produce anything of much note so far through six games, and that's a problem. Colorado are off to one of their best starts ever and they've looked quite sharp defensively at times to go along with a fantastic, stifling midfield, but the goal-scoring is still dry. The complaints about there being nothing but goals from penalties are out of the way, but they've scored only eight goals this season, tied for third-lowest in the Western Conference and the fewest by any team currently in the Top 5. Only two of those goals came from forwards: a penalty from Deshorn Brown and a poacher's effort from Edson Buddle inside the box against Toronto FC.

After that, four penalty kicks by Vicente Sanchez and two wonderstrikes by Jose Mari provided the three wins that the Rapids have seen through six games. The midfield has been fantastic this season, holding possession and keeping opposing teams from getting tons of chances, but whenever the ball has gotten into the final third, things have simply died for the Rapids.

It's different from the last few seasons, as well. Both seasons that Pareja was around, the Rapids would end up getting mountains of chances every single game with awful finishing being the culprit for any scoring woes they ran into. This time around, they're simply not creating as many chances. Colorado are currently second from the bottom in MLS in terms of shots, only ahead of DC United. Most of their chances have been on goal -- they're 12th in the league in terms of SOG -- but there simply haven't been enough of them to provide the pile of chances that the still questionably-finishing Rapids needed most of the time in the past two seasons.

None of the forwards have impressed, save for Sanchez in his midfield role that often sees him drift forward into the attacking third and act as a pseudo-forward. (I, personally, don't count him.) Deshorn Brown has looked out of sorts and in a sophomore slump. Gabriel Torres simply hasn't found his shooting lanes and has tried to get too fancy at times. Edson Buddle is holding the ball up well, but to nobody in particular seemingly half the time. Past that starting trio, nobody else has stormed in to take the spot like Chris Klute did to fill the left back spot last season.

Someone in the forward corps is going to need to step up, and soon. If they don't, the winning probably won't be sustainable for Colorado.

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