Scotland going backwards - Denton
Scotland forward David Denton admits Scotland have gone backwards in this year's RBS 6 Nations.
The Glasgow number eight was part of a side who were well off the mark as the Scots lost 28-6 to Ireland in Dublin in their Championship opener.
But worse was to come last Saturday as England brushed aside a feeble Dark Blues line-up with a brutal 20-0 win which could - and should - have been worse.
Denton told ScottishRugbyonline: "The biggest disappointment is that we never really played any rugby against England. We spent massive parts of the game defending and you are never going to be in a rugby match like that if you don't have the ball.
"It's been a tough couple of weeks, losing convincingly to both Ireland and England.
"But it was the England game that hurt most. The Ireland game we let ourselves down because we should have been in it to the end and challenged for the win.
"But against England we were never in it. We did not put up a significant challenge against the English."
The dismal defeat to the Auld Enemy - which saw Scott Johnson's side spent just three per cent of the Murrayfield match in England's 22 - has promoted several days of soul searching as Scotland's players, former internationals and pundits reflected on one of the nation's worst ever displays.
Skipper Greig Laidlaw joined Denton in admitting the team failed to deliver at all but he insists his side can bounce back by beating Italy in the Wooden Spoon decider.
"There was nobody more disappointed than myself, the rest of the boys and the management," said the Edinburgh scrum-half. "We just never got going in the game.
"We never helped ourselves, that was clear for everybody to see. We gave away too much possession, the boys fell off a few tackles.
"Credit to England, they are a good, powerful side and they showed that on the day.
"But now we need to look forward. We have got three games left in the tournament and that makes each of them massive.
"We have got the players to turn it around. We just need to get out on the training field, train hard and take the things we need into the next game.
"But we have also got to play with our heads up. We let ourselves down at the weekend when we never picked our heads up.
"We need to play what is in front of us in the three remaining games and if we do that we will put ourselves in a much better position.
"Italy will be a tough game and they will be targeting us as well. That's fine if they want to do that.
"Their forwards are their main threat so up front we need to get the battle right and secure set-piece ball. If we do that then I think we have the back line that can cause teams problems.
"Hopefully it will be on a faster track (than Murrayfield), a nice firm pitch that will help us along the way."