Originally Posted by Bmore Manning
I don't see this predominant two gapping from our three bigs...when you two gap it's a different technique.. How can I miss it like its that obvious.
That doesn't change the need to upgrade the DT position.
Interesting article. Not sure if Ted Bartlett is a definitive source, but I do agree with him here.
I do disagree that two gapping is obvious. It can be very nuanced. The game moves so fast, and these athletes are trained to read their keys so quickly, that the slightest hesitation at the snap is all you might be able to see. And the down, distance, and offensive tendency impacts when we play this scheme as well.
Anyway, moving on to the upgrading DT discussion...
Assuming we run the same scheme, which I think we will unless Del Rio leaves. We'll be in need of three DTs for our game day roster. One of those will absolutely be Mitch Unrein, whose game most resembles Kevin Vickerson's. Especially if Unrein continues to put on weight. If I'm a betting man, Vickerson is not likely brought back. Despite playing well, he's had his snaps decreased greatly the last three games (29, 16, 23), while Unrein's have increased (25, 19, 23). They are essentially even playing time now, while Unrein is a player that is ascending and cheap, Vickerson has peaked and is moderately expensive. And we didn't think overly highly of him entering the season when we demanded he take a pay cut.
I think we'll let him walk.
Bannan has been a stud this season, and he's from Colorado. He's still somewhat young at 34. The issue is he went from a 3 year deal with St. Louis for 8.5 million to a 1 year deal with Denver for 1 million. We'll have to see if he takes a hometown discount again. He's certainly good enough that he doesn't have to. Does Denver think he's worth 2.5-3 million per year for 25 snaps a game? There were rumors we did offer Bunkley that amount for essentially the same thing. He, of course, got 5 million per year, which seems to be the general market price for starting run defending DTs. And we won't pay Bannan close to that.
I hope we bring him back, but we do have Sealver Siliga developing and waiting in the wings. We do know the coaching staff is impressed with him and sees him as a future contributor. I think Siliga is definitely on the team next season, and he is a younger version of Bannan.
So, for me, we have room for three active DTs. Only three, because Wolfe and Malik Jackson can also slide inside if needed. I think Unrein replaces Vickerson as the all-around DT and will play 35 snaps a game. Bannan or Siliga will be the pure run stuffing DT playing 25 snaps a game. And I think there's a chance Jackson moves up to the Unrein role, he's played up to 20 snaps in a few games, mostly at DT.
So, that leaves room for zero to one DT by my count. If we keep Bannan and Siliga, there is no room except on the Practice Squad or game day inactive list, and that would be for a late round draft pick or UDFA. I'm not really interested in discussing either of those.
Thus, in order to be discussing an earlier round DT, we need both Bannan and Vickerson to walk. Now we need another DT to round out the trio with Unrein and Siliga. And remember here, with our defensive scheme, we are only looking for a DT to play 25-30 snaps in a set rotation. I doubt we use an early round draft pick on a 25 snap per game player. I could see us using a 3rd-5th round pick on such a player though, and we know that Del Rio prefers bigger DTs per history and his instruction to Vickerson to get to 320 for his scheme.
So, that would mean prospects such as:
- Jesse Williams, Brandon Williams
4th - 6th Round
- Cory Grissom, Everett Dawkins, Anthony McCloud, Montori Hughes
As for Seymour. He'd probably want too much money. Even at age 34, he could fit anywhere though. We'd use him as 35 snap per game DT, but unless he would settle for 2.5-3 million per season on a 1-2 year deal, I'm not sure he's an option. It depends on how badly he wants a chance to play for a Championship and how soft his market is. I don't think it will be all that soft.