This offseason, UZ and Ben will give short reviews on the play of all Colorado Rapids players who received a decentamount of time on the pitch during the season along with a season grade. Starting with Goalkeepers and then moving up the field as necessary from defenders to forwards, today we'll go with Omar Cummings.
Name: Omar Cummings
Appearances: 29 (1)
Stats: 14 Goals, 3 Assists
That's the way (Omar Omar) we like it (Omar Omar)...
After Conor Casey's 16 goal campaign in 2009 it was hard to imagine a striker could be more impressive in 2010. It might not have been a 16 goal season but Omar Cummings had himself a heck of a year, not only getting over 10 goals for the first time in his career but also won the Rapids golden boot and even got himself into the MVP race with players of the caliber of David Ferreira.
Cummings certainly had a season to remember, scoring the first goal of the season against Chivas USA and pulling 13 more out along the way. He started the year playing winger in Gary Smith's original 4-5-1 formation but a need for more offense forced Gary's hand and in the new 4-4-2 Cummings took off. He scored what was certainly the Rapids goal of the season in the otherwise unremarkable away game in New York against the Red Bulls, a blast from over 30 yards out that bashed right into the underside of the crossbar. His yellow shoes jumpstarted the Rapids offense during their fantastic goalscoring streak in the late summer as well.
Cummings still tends to have off days - his game away at FC Dallas still rings out as his worst performance of the season - and he still has problems with looking for the pass far too often rather than just getting the ball to the net. Those problems should be considered marginal with his pure goalscoring ability for sure. His disappearance in the playoffs was because other teams had to gameplan specifically for Cummings, giving other playmakers like Conor Casey the glory. Either way, Omar is one of the most important cogs in this squad with his blazing speed and beautiful shooting.
Omar is almost guaranteed to be gone after this season with the looks that other clubs are giving him. It was only a bad transfer that kept him away from Aston Villa on trial during the offseason - although a full blown move to Villa was very unlikely with the Rapids saying 'he's a Rapid' all the way - and Mexican club Necaxa has looked at him as well. If he is not around in 2012, he's sure to go down as one of the top players in Rapids history.
PLAYER RATING: 8.5