The reason that the Rapids were able to keep themselves afloat earlier in the season wasn't the now new-found offense that the Rapids are currently enjoying, but one of the most stalwart defenses in the league. It's starting to look like after a bit of a hiatus, the defense might be back in business going into the late season stretch.
Drew Moor has been a solid rock at the heart of the defense all season long, along with Marvell Wynne. Both are fairly new to the team, with Wynne being added this season and Moor being brought in from Dallas for Ugo Ihemelu late in the 2009 season. Moor has yet to miss a game this season and has played all over the line when needed, showing amazing versatility while not losing any of his style even while being stopgapped around the back. Wynne has played at center and left as well, working out even better than Moor in some circumstances.
Julien Baudet's horrible start to August has been put behind him and in the past couple of games he has looked much better. New kid Anthony Wallace shut down Chivas USA in his first ever start, showing why Gary Smith brought him in for depth. Kosuke Kimura has been great ever since coming back from injury. Even Danny Earls and Scott Palguta have impressed in their short spurts from the bench in case of injury or fatigue. In short, everyone on the back line is getting hot at a good time.
The middle of the 4-4-2 that Gary Smith has been playing has been a double salvo of amazing defensive midfielders to bolster the defense. Jeff Larentowicz was good enough to grab an all-star berth this season and team captain Pablo Mastroeni hasn't lost a step in his old age and is looking primed to give himself the lead in the category of most games played as a Rapid of all time. You don't accomplish all of that by playing mediocre!
In their last three home games, the Rapids defense has given up a total of zero goals against. In the last five games counting ones on the road, they've only given up a total four. Depending on Marvell Wynne's health going into the next game, the Rapids might have the strongest line up on defense that they've had all season long. Even if Wynne is absent the Rapids defense will certainly be formidable.
They will be facing a hell of a test tomorrow as they face Thierry Henry and Juan Pablo Angel - quite possibly the best gang of forwards in the entire league - when the Rapids take on New York in the big apple.