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Traveler
05-14-2009, 06:51 PM
By Gray Caldwell
DenverBroncos.com
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- With all of the changes the Broncos have undergone this offseason, much of the talk has been about the installation of a new offensive system brought by Head Coach Josh McDaniels (http://www.denverbroncos.com/page.php?id=357&contentID=9591).
But the defense is undergoing plenty of changes as well.
McDaniels confirmed before the draft that the defensive side of the ball is transitioning to a 3-4 alignment. That means right off the bat that the team will have a nose tackle position and there are going to be a group of hybrid defensive end/linebackers on the roster.
McDaniels said that first-round draft pick Robert Ayers (http://www.denverbroncos.com/page.php?id=498&contentID=9871), Tim Crowder (http://www.denverbroncos.com/page.php?id=498&contentID=7253), Elvis Dumervil (http://www.denverbroncos.com/page.php?id=498&contentID=5911), Jarvis Moss (http://www.denverbroncos.com/page.php?id=498&contentID=7252) and Darrell Reid (http://www.denverbroncos.com/page.php?id=498&contentID=9698) are part of that hybrid group.
Moss, for one, said he's extremely excited about the way the new position allows him to utilize his speed and athleticism.
"I think this is something I could have been -- and maybe should have been -- doing since I got into the league," he said. "But this is a whole new chapter for me. This 3-4 defense, you know a lot of teams were looking for me to be a 3-4 player when I was coming out, so I'm excited about it. It will give me a chance to show that I'm versatile, and kind of a new beginning. I get to start all over with the new staff and coach in here."
What it means for some of the bigger defensive linemen is that they will have to start transitioning from a one-gap assigment to a two-gap. Essentially that means the nose tackle, for example, can either go to the left or right of the center, rather than being assigned to one gap or the other.
"In the two-gap, you have a little bit of freedom," Marcus Thomas (http://www.denverbroncos.com/page.php?id=498&contentID=7256) said, demonstrating some of his juking ability. "That's what I like -- just get up field, make plays in the backfield and create havoc."
Thomas said he has gained some weight to try to fit the mold of a nose tackle, a position where he feels he could excel because of his athleticism.
Ronald Fields is another candidate for the nose tackle position. He played under Defensive Coordinator Mike Nolan (http://www.denverbroncos.com/page.php?id=357&contentID=9625) at San Francisco, so he said he has a little bit of an edge because he knows how Nolan wants the defense to be played.
"It's not really the usual 3-4," Fields explained. "It's an attack 3-4, it's like an offensive mindset. Some people play the 3-4 different, they're more like sit back and wait. But as far as us, we attack. It's kind of mixed-up with a 4-3. There are a lot of good things in there for linemen instead of just sitting there and catching the blocker and being passive and waiting."
It's that attacking style that has players at all positions excited about the defensive prospects for the 2009 season.
Wesley Woodyard (http://www.denverbroncos.com/page.php?id=498&contentID=8678) said it was shocking at first to see former defensive linemen like Crowder and Dumervil floating back with the linebackers, but once he saw how well they've been adapting, he realized the type of dangers they present to opposing offenses.
"It's an exciting defense -- it allows the players to run around and basically do something that was back in the day, and that's just having fun," Woodyard said. "I think that's what our defense is based on -- having fun, flying around and making plays."
So the transition to the attacking 3-4 could help breathe some life into the defense. But McDaniels was quick to point out that he and the rest of the coaching staff are always evaluating players, and they will work to put everyone in the best position possible, even if that means altering the scheme.
"If we get to any week in the season, ever, and we don't feel comfortable with the 3-4 or what we did last week on offense or what we did last week on the punt team, we're changing it," he said. "So if that means you're going to look out there and see five defensive linemen, you may see five. We're going to do whatever we feel every week is in the best interest of beating that team."
Moss said the players respect the fact that their head coach is willing to see what they do best and find ways to utilize those skills on the football field.
"I think that's awesome to coach like that," he said. "It lets your players be more comfortable with what they're doing as opposed to making a guy do something that he's not so comfortable with or used to doing, or can't get his job done as well. I think it's awesome to coach this defense the way that they coach it.
"It's pretty sweet."

http://www.denverbroncos.com/page.php?id=334&storyID=9067

kent156
05-14-2009, 06:56 PM
notice how mcdaniels does all the talking about the defense, where is Nolan at?

elsid13
05-14-2009, 06:58 PM
notice how mcdaniels does all the talking about the defense, where is Nolan at?

Posting his resume on Monster.com

Br0nc0Buster
05-14-2009, 06:59 PM
Now if only Moss could demonstrate that he belongs on an NFL team

Well I guess this kind of points to Thomas at the NT position.
Doesnt mean that is all he will play, but I highly doubt he would put on weight if was planning on playing end a lot.

So Thomas, Fields, and Powell maybe at NT
With Peterson, McBeam, Clemons, and possibly Powell at end....yeah that doesnt look too great.

I might be more concerned about our ends than our nose tackles at this point

Bob's your Information Minister
05-14-2009, 07:01 PM
This year they are turning the d-line loose!

DenverBrit
05-14-2009, 07:04 PM
notice how mcdaniels does all the talking about the defense, where is Nolan at?

Nolan was traded..

tsiguy96
05-14-2009, 07:06 PM
you can tell the players are far more excited about it this year than they were in years past...as far as utilizing all the players skills and understand how it will all get together to make a defense.

Tombstone RJ
05-14-2009, 07:29 PM
Sounds great in theory, the question I pose is simple: do the Broncos have the talent to pull it off?

azbroncfan
05-14-2009, 07:31 PM
Problem I see with this article is Nolan's version of the 4-3under/3-4 hybrid is it is more a read and react and doesn't involve a lot of blitzing. An attacking 3-4 is like Pittsburgh and we won't be seeing that in Denver.

Tombstone RJ
05-14-2009, 07:38 PM
Problem I see with this article is Nolan's version of the 4-3under/3-4 hybrid is it is more a read and react and doesn't involve a lot of blitzing. An attacking 3-4 is like Pittsburgh and we won't be seeing that in Denver.

The way the article reads is that it's an attacking style of 3-4, not a read and react. And again, if that is the case, I hope we have the talent to pull it off...

Arkie
05-14-2009, 07:38 PM
Much better attitudes this year. I hope that helps break them out of a self-fulfilling prophecy cycle of playing bad and getting worse as the negative 2nd class citizen feedback loop intensified. Hopefully, it's not really lack of talent. Anyway, I like to see these guys fired up. Marcus Thomas is a character. Ha!


"I think this is something I could have been -- and maybe should have been -- doing since I got into the league," Moss said. "But this is a whole new chapter for me. This 3-4 defense, you know a lot of teams were looking for me to be a 3-4 player when I was coming out, so I'm excited about it. It will give me a chance to show that I'm versatile, and kind of a new beginning. I get to start all over with the new staff and coach in here."


"In the two-gap, you have a little bit of freedom," Marcus Thomas said, demonstrating some of his juking ability. "That's what I like -- just get up field, make plays in the backfield and create havoc."

Florida_Bronco
05-14-2009, 07:44 PM
Problem I see with this article is Nolan's version of the 4-3under/3-4 hybrid is it is more a read and react and doesn't involve a lot of blitzing. An attacking 3-4 is like Pittsburgh and we won't be seeing that in Denver.

We don't need a heavy blitzing defense. It looks real sexy on the field but when it comes right down to it we just need players who know how to play their positions. Nolan has never been a blitzing maniac and he's put some really good defenses on the field.

fdf
05-14-2009, 07:59 PM
you can tell the players are far more excited about it this year than they were in years past...as far as utilizing all the players skills and understand how it will all get together to make a defense.

I'm not one of the anti-McDaniels gloomers. But this time of year, we always hear about how the D is going to attack this year. Never happens. They are always pathetic.

You also have to consider that there's some serious brown-nosing going on. Moss is on the bubble. Paens to the coaching staff are pretty routine in that situation.

So let's see how it works out. I personally think we have a rough year or two coming. But given the state the franchise was in when Shanahan left, I think that is a reasonable time to get things turned around. I think it's going to take more than enthusiasm to fix the talent deficit on D.

tsiguy96
05-14-2009, 08:08 PM
I'm not one of the anti-McDaniels gloomers. But this time of year, we always hear about how the D is going to attack this year. Never happens. They are always pathetic.

You also have to consider that there's some serious brown-nosing going on. Moss is on the bubble. Paens to the coaching staff are pretty routine in that situation.

So let's see how it works out. I personally think we have a rough year or two coming. But given the state the franchise was in when Shanahan left, I think that is a reasonable time to get things turned around. I think it's going to take more than enthusiasm to fix the talent deficit on D.

yea i know, i remember them talking up bob slowik. but still, atleast they are excited about it and it seems they all understand their roles much better than they have in the past. even last year you could tell that people didnt realy know what was going on ever.

eddie mac
05-14-2009, 08:13 PM
Here's hoping the ex-Steeler McBean can turn into a Bertrand Berry type street FA pick-up and shock us all.

UberBroncoMan
05-14-2009, 08:23 PM
The way the article reads is that it's an attacking style of 3-4, not a read and react. And again, if that is the case, I hope we have the talent to pull it off...

I hate the "vanilla" read and react crap... it just isn't that good. Nolan was more aggressive when he was in Baltimore, but in Washington there is a reason he literally had a gallon of vanilla ice cream left to melt on his desk.

Willynowei
05-14-2009, 08:32 PM
yeah, attacking defense, just like sanfran played last year?

footstepsfrom#27
05-14-2009, 08:57 PM
But McDaniels was quick to point out that he and the rest of the coaching staff are always evaluating players, and they will work to put everyone in the best position possible, even if that means altering the scheme.
"If we get to any week in the season, ever, and we don't feel comfortable with the 3-4 or what we did last week on offense or what we did last week on the punt team, we're changing it," he said. "So if that means you're going to look out there and see five defensive linemen, you may see five."
What does that mean?

cutthemdown
05-14-2009, 08:58 PM
notice how mcdaniels does all the talking about the defense, where is Nolan at?

coaching the defense like he should be.

Nigelcrombie
05-14-2009, 09:00 PM
hmmm.. 2 gap is usually NOT referred to as an attack style. More read and react. i.e. NE and Clev.

cutthemdown
05-14-2009, 09:02 PM
What does that mean?

I guess it means Broncos could have some hybrid alignments.

I would guess maybe that would mean we could see 5 DL and only 2 linebackers. I would think maybe because Doom and Moss are smaller and quick enough to drop into coverage.

footstepsfrom#27
05-14-2009, 09:03 PM
I guess it means Broncos could have some hybrid alignments.

I would guess maybe that would mean we could see 5 DL and only 2 linebackers. I would think maybe because Doom and Moss are smaller and quick enough to drop into coverage.
What does the bolded part mean? It makes no sense.

azbroncfan
05-14-2009, 09:07 PM
The way the article reads is that it's an attacking style of 3-4, not a read and react. And again, if that is the case, I hope we have the talent to pull it off...

That is what I said is the article acts like Denver is going to be a blitzing machine but Nolan's last two D's didn't blitz a whole lot and is more of a read and react.

azbroncfan
05-14-2009, 09:11 PM
We don't need a heavy blitzing defense. It looks real sexy on the field but when it comes right down to it we just need players who know how to play their positions. Nolan has never been a blitzing maniac and he's put some really good defenses on the field.

I never said I wanted a heavy blitzing defense but in Pittsburgh's defense when have they sucked past 10-15 years? I was pointing out that the article says Denver is running an attacking D when Nolan has showed he runs more of a read and react. Not counting Baltimore who already had the talent when he took over what really good D's has he put on the field?

bowtown
05-14-2009, 09:12 PM
This exact article comes out every single year about this time. We'll see.

~Crash~
05-14-2009, 09:15 PM
Much better attitudes this year. I hope that helps break them out of a self-fulfilling prophecy cycle of playing bad and getting worse as the negative 2nd class citizen feedback loop intensified. Hopefully, it's not really lack of talent. Anyway, I like to see these guys fired up. Marcus Thomas is a character. Ha!


"I think this is something I could have been -- and maybe should have been -- doing since I got into the league," Moss said. "But this is a whole new chapter for me. This 3-4 defense, you know a lot of teams were looking for me to be a 3-4 player when I was coming out, so I'm excited about it. It will give me a chance to show that I'm versatile, and kind of a new beginning. I get to start all over with the new staff and coach in here."


"In the two-gap, you have a little bit of freedom," Marcus Thomas said, demonstrating some of his juking ability. "That's what I like -- just get up field, make plays in the backfield and create havoc."

Hey Arkie you ought to change your user name to piggy back and use that avitar I love the picture of hillis thaat is when I stared calling him piggy Back....:approve:

~Crash~
05-14-2009, 09:17 PM
This exact article comes out every single year about this time. We'll see.

yep all is changed yep that is what was said last year one proble no NT and not one MLB'[er not one ! DJ was not a MLB and he never will be !:welcome:

Anaximines
05-14-2009, 09:29 PM
Everyone's talking about how the Colts defense is going to be more aggressive and more of an "attacking" kind of defense now that they got a new defensive coordinator... who was that again?

Lolad
05-14-2009, 10:49 PM
I don't know about you guys but I'm going to keep my dick in my pants until she takes her underwear off and bends over

Seamus
05-14-2009, 10:57 PM
Everyone's talking about how the Colts defense is going to be more aggressive and more of an "attacking" kind of defense now that they got a new defensive coordinator... who was that again?

Kind of like KC when Herm showed up?

Popps
05-14-2009, 11:12 PM
Thomas said he has gained some weight to try to fit the mold of a nose tackle, a position where he feels he could excel because of his athleticism.

Pretty good news to hear. Thomas definitely has the frame to bulk up, and he's an athlete. Questions will revolve around whether or not he's got the mindset to play NT. I thought he'd make a better end in this system, but who knows.

Sounds to me like we're going to see a lot of different looks.

Odysseus
05-14-2009, 11:23 PM
Does that mean they are going offer Samurai screams or dress like Ninjas?

Are the players going to wear camouflage? Use Jedi mind tricks?

Willynowei
05-14-2009, 11:28 PM
Thomas said he has gained some weight to try to fit the mold of a nose tackle, a position where he feels he could excel because of his athleticism.

Pretty good news to hear. Thomas definitely has the frame to bulk up, and he's an athlete. Questions will revolve around whether or not he's got the mindset to play NT. I thought he'd make a better end in this system, but who knows.

Sounds to me like we're going to see a lot of different looks.

Or he becomes a misfit at the position and gets traded out, a shame considering this kid was one of the few bright spots for us last year. Keeping a 4-3 and getting a real 2-gap guy to let him penetrate might've made our interior a force all of a sudden.

But we'll see how this goes.

cutthemdown
05-15-2009, 12:54 AM
What does the bolded part mean? It makes no sense.

Well quotes in print often get misconstrued. I can't tell you exactly what it means because I have no idea.

fdf
05-15-2009, 01:10 AM
yea i know, i remember them talking up bob slowik. but still, atleast they are excited about it and it seems they all understand their roles much better than they have in the past. even last year you could tell that people didnt realy know what was going on ever.

And Jim Bates. And Rhodes. And Coyer. We need to add talent across the D and get some continuity of scheme. We need a good DC and then we need to give him at least a couple of years to fix things. That was a seriously broken D the last 2 1/2 years.

Too bad we couldn't land a good 330 lb nose tackle this year (maybe Baker is the guy but that's a long shot). Maybe next.

At the point the D gets up to mediocre, we're going to have a pretty good team because the offense is going to be pretty solid, starting about the middle of next season.

fdf
05-15-2009, 01:12 AM
Does that mean they are going offer Samurai screams or dress like Ninjas?

Are the players going to wear camouflage? Use Jedi mind tricks?

LOL.

BroncoBuff
05-15-2009, 01:18 AM
Thomas is a DE in the 3-4 ... I cannot imagine him fitting at NT.

Popps, I think you're wrong about his frame, he's playing at a comfortable weight now ... but we'll see I guess. Hampton is "smallish" for a NT at 325 ... no way MT can gain 25 pounds.

Powell might get up to 315-320, but the reality is we have ZERO nosetackles. Fields is 315 and has just 5 career starts. Color me unimpressed (so far).

Chris Baker is our best fit right now for a true 3-4 NT.

cutthemdown
05-15-2009, 01:24 AM
Thomas is a DE in the 3-4 ... I cannot imagine him fitting at NT.

Popps, I think you're wrong about his frame, he's playing at a comfortable weight now ... but we'll see I guess. Hampton is "smallish" for a NT at 325 ... no way MT can gain 25 pounds.

Powell might get up to 315-320, but the reality is we have ZERO nosetackles. Fields is 315 and has just 5 career starts. Color me unimpressed (so far).

Chris Baker is our best fit right now for a true 3-4 NT.

If you read the article you would understand Broncos won't be asking the NT to just try and occupy blockers. They will have them trying to penetrate and attack. I'm not saying it will work, only that if that's how they play it they will need some big inside linebackers and we don't have them either.

BroncoBuff
05-15-2009, 01:43 AM
If you read the article you would understand Broncos won't be asking the NT to just try and occupy blockers. They will have them trying to penetrate and attack. I'm not saying it will work, only that if that's how they play it they will need some big inside linebackers and we don't have them either.

Yeah I saw that, but it seems unrealistic. One of them said other teams' 3-4 defenses are "passive." Well that doesn't sound like the Ravens, Chargers or Cowboys defenses ... "passive" :nono:

Article seems a bit blue-sky to me ... when Tim Crowder and Jarvis Moss are the most quoted guys in a story, I tend to discount that story some ;D

BroncoBuff
05-15-2009, 01:45 AM
The DEs going down in 3-points, or dropping back on their feet - offenses won't know which - that sounds an awful lot like Buddy Ryan's unbalanced lines for the 80s Bears defenses.

watermock
05-15-2009, 01:48 AM
meh. Nolan isn't known for attacking defense since he was at Baltimore.

Read and react.

footstepsfrom#27
05-15-2009, 02:01 AM
Thomas is a DE in the 3-4 ... I cannot imagine him fitting at NT.

Popps, I think you're wrong about his frame, he's playing at a comfortable weight now ... but we'll see I guess. Hampton is "smallish" for a NT at 325 ... no way MT can gain 25 pounds.

Powell might get up to 315-320, but the reality is we have ZERO nosetackles. Fields is 315 and has just 5 career starts. Color me unimpressed (so far).

Chris Baker is our best fit right now for a true 3-4 NT.
I think you're right. Regardless of whether the defense is designed for an attacking style or not, you're still going to need size at the NT spot and he's the only guy who gets close to that. I question whether using only 3 undersized defensive linemen will enable them to attack along the line. The whole pont of the 3-4 is to occupy the O-line and keep them off the linebackers. How are they doing that if they're focused on penetrating gaps? As others have said...Nolan's units have previously focused on read and react type schemes.

BroncoMan4ever
05-15-2009, 02:36 AM
notice how mcdaniels does all the talking about the defense, where is Nolan at?

probably pacing the sidelines and screaming at players

BroncoMan4ever
05-15-2009, 02:38 AM
one thing i really liked about the article is how they are NOT going to just play one scheme and hope it all works out like our previous few DCs were doing.

i like that we will cater the defense to our players strengths and not try to stuff a player into a scheme he doesn't fit. and how the defense will change week to week based on opponent.

UberBroncoMan
05-15-2009, 03:48 AM
The way the article reads is that it's an attacking style of 3-4, not a read and react. And again, if that is the case, I hope we have the talent to pull it off...

I hate the "vanilla" read and react crap... it just isn't that good. Nolan was more aggressive when he was in Baltimore, but in Washington there is a reason he literally had a gallon of vanilla ice cream left to melt on his desk.

watermock
05-15-2009, 04:04 AM
I would have preferred Spags and an aggressive 4/3, with only a viable RB like Green in the 3rd, and spend the rest on defense, not spend 6 picks on offense.

One thing is, with Knoshon and McDuummy's dink offense, we will probably eat more clock so the defense will have better stats by default.

BroncoBuff
05-15-2009, 04:13 AM
I would have preferred Spags and an aggressive 4/3, with only a viable RB like Green in the 3rd, and spend the rest on defense, not spend 6 picks on offense.

Would we keep Jay Cutler in this scenario? :(


I like it ... I wish we had loaded up on defense too.

cutthemdown
05-15-2009, 04:21 AM
I'm sort of through guessing. We will just have to wait until preseason to see what Broncos will look like.

Spread offense, 2 TE and pound the ball? 3-4, 4-3, decent ST? who knows. It's a fact that losing Cutler sucks. It's also a fact he didn't want to be a Bronco. First thing he did was say Bears fans better then Bronco fans.

I'm looking forward to seeing if Moreno can be an every down back. Looking forward to seeing if Bailey can be an elite corner still. Looking forward to the team being bigger then last yr. Not looking forward to hearing about Cutler in Chicago all yr.

Drek
05-15-2009, 05:08 AM
Thomas is a DE in the 3-4 ... I cannot imagine him fitting at NT.

Popps, I think you're wrong about his frame, he's playing at a comfortable weight now ... but we'll see I guess. Hampton is "smallish" for a NT at 325 ... no way MT can gain 25 pounds.

Powell might get up to 315-320, but the reality is we have ZERO nosetackles. Fields is 315 and has just 5 career starts. Color me unimpressed (so far).

Chris Baker is our best fit right now for a true 3-4 NT.
From how Thomas talks about the NT role I'd be willing to bet they see him as a running downs DE, passing downs NT (getting to attack up field).

Also, I'd disagree with the notion that a 325 pounder is legitimately "smallish" for the NT position. Wilfork and Hampton are both in that range, and they're the two best NTs in football. Just because some of their peers are bigger, doesn't mean its a prerequisite. Rubin Carter was well below 300 by his listed weight, and that was into the mid-80's when the "planet theory" was in full effect in some organizations. Seth Payne was a regular starting NT in 3-4s up until just a few years ago and he was about 310 tops. If a guy can be around 315 or 320 he's got enough size to play the position effectively, assuming he's got the mentality and skill set to handle it.

Its one of the ultimate size of the fight in the dog, not the size of the dog in the fight positions. My concern is more that I don't see anyone proven to be capable of making the right decisions from a two gap perspective, and having the leverage/technique skills needed to control both at once if needed.


Would we keep Jay Cutler in this scenario? :(


I like it ... I wish we had loaded up on defense too.

No, Spags would've given him his wish and traded him a hell of a lot sooner.

We'd also probably have seen at least as many cuts and roster turnover, and Jeremy Bates likely would be out still.

The notion that Spags would've come here and just ran the defense is just about the most misguided notion anyone has put forth this off-season. The guy basically ran the show on defense for the Giants and they offered to let him be Coughlin's successor if he'd wait it out. He only changed jobs to be a full on, my way or the highway, head coach. Since getting to St. Louis he's issued a team wide memo that is basically word for word what McDaniels says in every press conference here. He cut Tory Holt and Orlando Pace outright. He cut Pisa Tinoisamoa (sp?) their leading tackler of last year. Pretty much their entire coaching staff was overturned.

He burnt the Rams down and he did it without a second thought. They needed it, but the idea that he would've come here, pandered to Cutler, kept Bates (or even Dennison and Turner), and not done the same things in regards to taking the FO powers offered him that McDaniels has done is just delusional, because he's done basically all that in St. Louis and then some.

Broncos_OTM
05-15-2009, 07:11 AM
The way the article reads is that it's an attacking style of 3-4, not a read and react. And again, if that is the case, I hope we have the talent to pull it off...

Most generally when you play a 2 gap 3-4 it is not a attacking the lineman usually get beaten up and are responsible for two gaps.l a one gap 3+-4 is attacking ...


this all makes no sense to me i guess well just have to wait and see

Broncos_OTM
05-15-2009, 07:17 AM
I never said I wanted a heavy blitzing defense but in Pittsburgh's defense when have they sucked past 10-15 years? I was pointing out that the article says Denver is running an attacking D when Nolan has showed he runs more of a read and react. Not counting Baltimore who already had the talent when he took over what really good D's has he put on the field?

Actually Pitts D runs the zone blitz scheme.

watermock
05-15-2009, 07:17 AM
St. Louis was crap in an even crappier division than ours.

We need a RB and 5 new starters on D.(if we stayed 4/3.)

I don't think we needed 6 offensive draftees, or a 2nd round blocking TE, OR should of given up our '10 1sr.

And so do alot of impartial observers.

What Spags does in St. Louis or Jay does in Chicago has no bearing on Denver, but it will be interesting to watch.

alkemical
05-15-2009, 07:21 AM
Most generally when you play a 2 gap 3-4 it is not a attacking the lineman usually get beaten up and are responsible for two gaps.l a one gap 3+-4 is attacking ...


this all makes no sense to me i guess well just have to wait and see

haha...it's all part of the hybrid. Half the guys play 2 gap, the other half play 1 gap, and the secondary just holds on...

footstepsfrom#27
05-15-2009, 07:23 AM
Just because some of their peers are bigger, doesn't mean its a prerequisite. Rubin Carter was well below 300 by his listed weight, and that was into the mid-80's when the "planet theory" was in full effect in some organizations.
Ruben Carter played at 256 pounds in an era when NFL guards were in the 260-280 range and Joe Green dominated at 275...apples to oranges. 325 is probaby OK but Baker's the only probable fit I see at NT on this roster...at least as a starter, and few rookies can handle that job. No matter how we slice it, we're highly suspect at this postiion unless something unexpected happens. I suspect we'll see more 4-3 than we think we will this year.

BroncoBuff
05-15-2009, 07:25 AM
Wasn't William "Refrigerator" Perry the first 310+ guy?

footstepsfrom#27
05-15-2009, 07:31 AM
Wasn't William "Refrigerator" Perry the first 310+ guy?
Louie Kelcher played NT at 285 in the mid-70's and was considered massive at the time...now we've got LB's starting to show up at that weight. How long before we see 300 pounders at ILB?

BroncoInSkinland
05-15-2009, 07:35 AM
325 is probaby OK but Baker's the only probable fit I see at NT on this roster...at least as a starter, and few rookies can handle that job.

Add in the fact that one of the few on the field knocks on Baker was that stamina is an issue. The scouting report I read indicated he would have to be part of a rotation, not an every down player.

Drek
05-15-2009, 07:36 AM
Ruben Carter played at 256 pounds in an era when NFL guards were in the 260-280 range and Joe Green dominated at 275...apples to oranges. 325 is probaby OK but Baker's the only probable fit I see at NT on this roster...at least as a starter, and few rookies can handle that job. No matter how we slice it, we're highly suspect at this postiion unless something unexpected happens. I suspect we'll see more 4-3 than we think we will this year.

Doesn't that prove the point though? The weight/size ratio of NTs to interior OL shouldn't have changed, just the interior OLs have gotten bigger.

Carter got the job done being smaller than either of the two guys he'd face in a double team, or a single person he'd face one on one.

Fields, Thomas, and Powell will all likely be bigger than 9/10ths of the interior OLs they'd face at the NT position, and would have a closer ratio of size relative to any possible double teams than what guys used to get away with all the time in the 3-4.

An extra 20 pounds isn't going to help much at all when two 300 pounders double team you to open a running lane. Good leverage skills and recognition of the play before and as it is happening will. Its no sure thing that Thomas, Fields, or Powell can do that, I agree, but eliminating them from consideration as possibly legitimate starters simply because they are lighter than some supposed "ideal" NT (which isn't true since the two best NTs in the NFL are both at 325 which by that ideal is undersized) is glass half empty thinking at its finest, and the wrong way to break down what their potential fit for the system is.

If Marcus Thomas is asked to be a two gap run stuffing NT on 1st and 2nd downs I think he'll suck at it. But it won't be because he's too small. It'll be because his skill set is heavily geared towards getting penetration and making plays in the opposing backfield. To me thats a 1st and 2nd down 5-tech in the 3-4, though he's probably best suited to being a 4-3 UT if a legitimate 4-3 NT was provided next to him. But on passing downs I could see the rationale behind moving him inside and letting him try to create up the middle penetration from there.

One of the single best ways to pressure a QB is to create pressure up the middle because it splits the pocket. You can bring all the DE and OLB pressure you want all day but if the opposing interior OL creates a tight bubble for the QB to step up into you'll never see half the sacks you should, and a high dose of big offensive plays deep down field as well since the QB will have extra time to read the D and the ability to step into his throw and deliver it cleanly.

tsiguy96
05-15-2009, 07:37 AM
\

I don't think we needed 6 offensive draftees, or a 2nd round blocking TE, OR should of given up our '10 1sr.
\

too bad you did zero work in scouting or coaching for the denver broncos....the coach we do have feels differently. or rather, correctly. you dont take a position beause he has a position next to his name, you take a player if you feel he will contribute to the team.

Beantown Bronco
05-15-2009, 07:45 AM
If you read the article you would understand Broncos won't be asking the NT to just try and occupy blockers. They will have them trying to penetrate and attack.

All the more reason they should've moved up to grab Raji IMO. Now, even the anti-Raji crowd that didn't feel he would be an ideal NT because of his skills at penetrating and not necessarily eating up multiple blockers, has to be on board with this one.

footstepsfrom#27
05-15-2009, 07:47 AM
Doesn't that prove the point though? The weight/size ratio of NTs to interior OL shouldn't have changed, just the interior OLs have gotten bigger.

Carter got the job done being smaller than either of the two guys he'd face in a double team, or a single person he'd face one on one.
NT is about leverage and at 5"11 Carter was a fire hydrant. Keep in mind he was backed up by arguably the best set of LB's in the league...Pittsburgh may have been better but it was close. We're nowhere near that currently.
Fields, Thomas, and Powell will all likely be bigger than 9/10ths of the interior OLs they'd face at the NT position, and would have a closer ratio of size relative to any possible double teams than what guys used to get away with all the time in the 3-4.
I highly doubt that our NT's will be bigger than 9/10ths of the interior OL's the face...certainly not the guards. Fields is a backup, and Powell at 300 would be way undersized. I actually think he winds up starting at one DE spot though...with Thomas at the other. Powell is pretty stout and has a chance to be a strong run stopper but I don't see Fields as anything but a body to throw in there.

gyldenlove
05-15-2009, 08:02 AM
notice how mcdaniels does all the talking about the defense, where is Nolan at?

It is the Patriots way, the HC does the talking.

gyldenlove
05-15-2009, 08:04 AM
Add in the fact that one of the few on the field knocks on Baker was that stamina is an issue. The scouting report I read indicated he would have to be part of a rotation, not an every down player.

That is essentially what our NT would be anyway since we would go to 4-3 in a lot of pass rush situations with the NT coming off and more agile DTs coming on.

Hulamau
05-15-2009, 08:06 AM
St. Louis was crap in an even crappier division than ours.

We need a RB and 5 new starters on D.(if we stayed 4/3.)

I don't think we needed 6 offensive draftees, or a 2nd round blocking TE, OR should of given up our '10 1sr.

And so do alot of impartial observers.

What Spags does in St. Louis or Jay does in Chicago has no bearing on Denver, but it will be interesting to watch.

If Cutler doesn't win 12 games in Chicago this year, he's a loser with THAT cream puff schedule!

Hulamau
05-15-2009, 08:11 AM
NT is about leverage and at 5"11 Carter was a fire hydrant. Keep in mind he was backed up by arguably the best set of LB's in the league...Pittsburgh may have been better but it was close. We're nowhere near that currently.

I highly doubt that our NT's will be bigger than 9/10ths of the interior OL's the face...certainly not the guards. Fields is a backup, and Powell at 300 would be way undersized. I actually think he winds up starting at one DE spot though...with Thomas at the other. Powell is pretty stout and has a chance to be a strong run stopper but I don't see Fields as anything but a body to throw in there.

Thomas played around 323 I remember Shanny quoting last year, and yes that IS bigger than most 'interior' linemen, maybe not Tackles vut most guards and centers yes. And now Thomas says he has put on weight to play the NT even better.

Forget what it says on Broncos.com. those figures are almsot alwasy fixed from their rookie year.

Garcia Bronco
05-15-2009, 08:12 AM
The Nolan 3-4 is a read and react defense.

cmhargrove
05-15-2009, 08:19 AM
Man, this is a long offseason.

I like you guys, really. But stop b****ing.
Anyone want to bet whether or not we have a better defense than last year? How could it possibly be worse?

Even if the D-line is "growing" into their assignments, we got rid of the seven yard cushion and have safeties that can actually cover. We were relatively decent at slowing down the run on first and second downs, we just couldn't stop anyone on third downs. I think we have better personnel to fix that this year.

Even if we just make a jump to the "middle of the pack" this year, isn't that enough for a first year coaching transition while we build the team?

I'm in the process of helping to rebuild a 5A Middle School and High School program right now and we have gotten a lot done this offseason, but there is still a long way to go to reach our goals. It just takes time and a huge amount of effort to transition a "franchise."

This Broncos team has improved defensively - I have no doubt. If McD can work his magic with an "average" system QB, then we just got a lot better. If Moreno does indeed become the next LT, we just struck gold...

Beantown Bronco
05-15-2009, 08:36 AM
Even if the D-line is "growing" into their assignments, we got rid of the seven yard cushion

This is more belief than fact at this point. The seven yard cushion existed before Slowik, so unless I missed a quote somewhere, it's hardly a given that they'll go to all press all the time post-Slowik.

In fact, with Champ still around (who prefers to play "off coverage"), I'd say that the 7 yard cushion will still be seen more often than not this season.

BroncoInSkinland
05-15-2009, 08:44 AM
That is essentially what our NT would be anyway since we would go to 4-3 in a lot of pass rush situations with the NT coming off and more agile DTs coming on.

Fair enough, but I worry about hurry up offenses locking him on the field in that case. It's easier to get one guy off the field than substitute an entire personel package, and if we don't have a legitimate backup (to an unproven, undrafted starter at a position that is supposed to be very difficult for a rookie to contribute at in his first year), I think there is some cause for concern.

Drek
05-15-2009, 09:13 AM
NT is about leverage and at 5"11 Carter was a fire hydrant. Keep in mind he was backed up by arguably the best set of LB's in the league...Pittsburgh may have been better but it was close. We're nowhere near that currently.
I agree with this completely, and I think you see it bare out in the success of various NTs around the league. Wilfork and Hampton are supposedly undersized from a weight standpoint, and they're 6'2" nad 6'1" respectively. Ngata, Jamaal Williams, Shaun Rogers, and Kris Jenkins are all in the 6'4" range and weigh in the 340's. 20 pounds bigger, just a couple inches taller, but Wilfork and Hampton better leverage and control of the middle of the field than any of them.

And using leverage is as much a technique and developed skill as it is a matter of raw size versus size.

I highly doubt that our NT's will be bigger than 9/10ths of the interior OL's the face...certainly not the guards. Fields is a backup, and Powell at 300 would be way undersized. I actually think he winds up starting at one DE spot though...with Thomas at the other. Powell is pretty stout and has a chance to be a strong run stopper but I don't see Fields as anything but a body to throw in there.
A 310-315 pound NT is bigger than 9/10ths of the interior OLs he'd face. Fields is a 315 guy by official weight, Marcus Thomas weighed about that much when he weighed in at the combine coming out of college, and Powell is listed at 300 from his rookie season and I believe there has been some info to indicate him having put on some weight himself.

Marcus Thomas to me doesn't have an ideal NT skill set, and that will keep him from being a standout there, not his size. Fields doesn't have the talent needed for being more than a solid rotational DL in the 3-4, again being limited by something other than his size. Powell is the only guy that I see the raw talent in the right areas to profile well as a traditional every down 3-4 NT. He might be limited by his size, but we have no idea where he is at physically at this point. He might be 320 and cut like granite, or he might be down to 290 and soft like fluff. We won't know until training camp and/or pre-season just what we have there.

Even still though, I think we'll play a very different style of front that will use guys like Dumervil and Ayers on or very near the line to allow us to avoid putting Thomas, Fields, etc. in roles that don't suit their talents, while at the same time trying to develop guys like Baker, Davis, Pelescalaux (sp?) and the like into traditional 3-4 types.


The Nolan 3-4 is a read and react defense.

Used to be, but we've got no idea what his plans are now.

bowtown
05-15-2009, 09:19 AM
It is the Patriots way, the HC does the talking.

Ummm... it's the Almost Every Team in the NFL way.

Punisher
05-15-2009, 09:40 AM
Sounds like everyones having fun with this Defense.

azbroncfan
05-15-2009, 11:27 AM
Used to be, but we've got no idea what his plans are now.


Yep now he is going to TURN the DL loose.

footstepsfrom#27
05-15-2009, 11:46 AM
A 310-315 pound NT is bigger than 9/10ths of the interior OLs he'd face. Fields is a 315 guy by official weight, Marcus Thomas weighed about that much when he weighed in at the combine coming out of college, and Powell is listed at 300 from his rookie season and I believe there has been some info to indicate him having put on some weight himself.
Here's a list of the interior offensive linemen we'll face this year:

1) Cincy- 319, 335, NA
2) Cleveland- 320, 310, 295
3) Oakland- 325, 300, 315
4) Dallas- 316, 353, 322
5) NE- 296, 305, 310
6) SD- 302, 295, 302
7) Balt- 309, 315, 305
8) Pitt- 312, 344, 324
9) Wash- 296, 308, 326
10) NY- 303, 310, 317
11) KC- 320, 303, 311
12) Indy- 301, 295, 295
13) Philly- 321, 330, 345

I count 17 names on this list that are bigger than 315, or 43.5%, leaving 56.5% that aren't...which is a long way from 90%. There's no way around the fact that we're small, inexperienced and lacking proven talent or depth at this position.

Popps
05-15-2009, 12:16 PM
Ummm... it's the Almost Every Team in the NFL way.

Seriously.

Are we really getting upset that our DC isn't taking enough interviews?
Was Bob Slowik the voice of the franchise and I missed it?

Head coaches answer questions. Head coaches are who interviewers want to talk to, not DCs and position coaches.

montrose
05-18-2009, 01:31 PM
Pretty good article from the Broncos official site with some comments from Jarvis Moss, Marcus Thomas, Ronald Fields and Wesley Woodyard. Of note, Moss says many teams projected him as a 3-4 OLB coming out in the draft and he's excited for a fresh start with the new staff. Thomas says he has gained weight to fill the NT position, he also says he's looking forward to the freedom of playing 2-gap.

http://www.denverbroncos.com/page.php?id=334&storyID=9067


MODS - I MISSED THE ORIGINAL THREAD, PLEASE MERGE - http://www.orangemane.com/BB/showthread.php?t=80566

Popps
05-18-2009, 01:34 PM
Read this a couple days ago and also found that interesting. My only issue with Moss is that he just didn't have many moves coming out of college. He ran buy guys with speed, and that was about it. It's hard to say what kind of real football instincts he has, where as Dumervil is clearly a died in the wool football player.

It can't hurt, though. Clearly Moss has no business as a down linemen.

montrose
05-18-2009, 01:38 PM
Read this a couple days ago and also found that interesting. My only issue with Moss is that he just didn't have many moves coming out of college. He ran buy guys with speed, and that was about it. It's hard to say what kind of real football instincts he has, where as Dumervil is clearly a died in the wool football player.

It can't hurt, though. Clearly Moss has no business as a down linemen.

My hope is rooted in this vastly improved assistant coaching staff who've been regarded as strong teachers of the game. I never had confidence in Shanahan's staff to individually develop players on defense. In every TC practice I ever attended, I never saw Burney working on individual moves with Moss, Crowder or any other DL. If Martindale and Phifer are the teachers I hope they are - we could see some real development from these guys.

Paladin
05-18-2009, 01:40 PM
Thomas at NT? He is quick enough to give some people problems, but I thought he might have a shot at DE......

Beantown Bronco
05-18-2009, 01:48 PM
I like a little more peanut butter with my fluff

http://www.orangemane.com/BB/showthread.php?t=80566

fdf
05-18-2009, 01:50 PM
Read this a couple days ago and also found that interesting. My only issue with Moss is that he just didn't have many moves coming out of college. He ran buy guys with speed, and that was about it. It's hard to say what kind of real football instincts he has, where as Dumervil is clearly a died in the wool football player.

It can't hurt, though. Clearly Moss has no business as a down linemen.

This article was pretty much offseason fluff imho. Hope the excitement transfers to better play. But I think it's going to take a solid two years with coaching and player continuity to right what was a broken defense. If we get up to barely mediocre by the end of next season, it will be a huge improvement. They were really really bad last year and going downhill.

One interesting thing in the article was Thomas talking about being a "penetrating" NT. That's not a traditional 3-4 NT. That would suggest that Raji was the only serious NT in the draft (without big personal problems) who fit what Nolan is planning to do. I really had not thought Raji was a decent NT candidate for us for that reason. Raji is a penetrator. In retrospect, I guess maybe I misunderstood what Nolan was planning. Too bad Raji went so high.

It also explains taking a flier on Baker in UDFA. He's as physically talented as Raji and plays a similar style (at least if my opinion about the game tapes I've seen means anything). If he turns out to be a thug, we haven't spent a lot on him. If he gets his life together, we could have a gem--assuming Nolan wants a penetrator in the center and this article isn't soley offseason fluff.

montrose
05-18-2009, 01:51 PM
I like a little more peanut butter with my fluff

http://www.orangemane.com/BB/showthread.php?t=80566

Whoops, missed that thread - moderators please merge.

barryr
05-18-2009, 01:53 PM
If these guys provide anything, then you know the previous coaching they got wasn't very good. Not that I need this to happen to think the previous coaching stunk.

azbroncfan
05-18-2009, 02:34 PM
Nolan doesn't really play a 2 gap scheme anyway and is really more of a 4-3under with 3-4 personel or a 30 front which isn't the traditional 3-4 2 gap scheme.

rastaman
05-18-2009, 09:01 PM
Louie Kelcher played NT at 285 in the mid-70's and was considered massive at the time...now we've got LB's starting to show up at that weight. How long before we see 300 pounders at ILB?

Actually, how long before we see an increase in heart attacks b/c these guys are too big (fat) to play with all this weight.

Beantown Bronco
05-19-2009, 07:28 AM
Actually, how long before we see an increase in heart attacks b/c these guys are too big (fat) to play with all this weight.

How long? They already knew this and had the facts over 15 years ago, when players were even "smaller" on average than they are now.

A 1994 study of 7,000 former players by the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health found linemen had a 52 percent greater risk of dying from heart disease than the general population. While U.S. life expectancy is 77.6 years, recent studies suggest the average for NFL players is 55, 52 for linemen.

http://www.sptimes.com/2006/01/29/Sports/A_huge_problem.shtml

barryr
05-19-2009, 08:14 AM
Of course the better DC's adjust their schemes to match their personnel, so you can't simply assume Nolan will do this or that because of what he did somewhere else.

A big key will be the players actually knowing their basic responsibilities, which has not been the case for a few years at least.

How many times, the last few years especially, has the Bronco defense left guys WIIIIIDDEEE open and the only problem for the QB is to pick which open guy to throw to? Plus, since usually having all day to throw, pretty easy completions.

Just the players knowing their basic responsibilities from game to game will improve the defense.

But no question the key will be putting more heat on QB's and not just letting them step up and have wide open lanes to throw the ball to all the time. There are too many good QB's and offenses to allow that every gam and this has been a theme for the Bronco defense.

Not to mention not able to cause turnovers. Putting more heat and getting teams in more 3rd and long situations will help cause more turnovers.

Beantown Bronco
05-19-2009, 08:30 AM
Of course the better DC's adjust their schemes to match their personnel, so you can't simply assume Nolan will do this or that because of what he did somewhere else.

Jim Bates, widely regarded by many here as a "top DC", did the opposite.

Bob Slowik, widely regarded by many here as one of the worst, did just what you suggest.

Talk about ironic.