an article posted yesterday @ denverbroncos.com sounds vaguely familiar:
Broncos Know New NFL Reality
In today's NFL, pass rush and pass coverage are the highest priorities. The nickel package has essentially become the base defense.
“You look at last year: 65 percent of the plays of our defense were in nickel situations,” Executive Vice President of Football Operations John Elway told approximately 5,000 season-ticket holders on a conference call Tuesday.
It's time to stop referring to the 4-3 as the "base package." In effect, nickel is the new base.
The depth chart also won't reveal how one of the three linebacker slots has taken a back seat. In the nickel, one of the linebackers must go. For a time last year, that meant moving Miller from the strong side to defensive end, and leaving then-middle linebacker Keith Brooking and weak-side linebacker Wesley Woodyard on the field for long stretches. But eventually, the nickel package saw Woodyard paired with rookie Danny Trevathan or veteran D.J. Williams, who was cut in March.
And the message sent by adding Phillips and Smith was the same as the one conveyed by the arrivals of Rodgers-Cromartie and Webster: it's a different game in 2013, and the Broncos must build a defense with a different composition than they've ever known. Pass rush and pass coverage have never been higher priorities than they are now.
“Adapt or die,” Oakland A's General Manager Billy Beane said in the film adaptation of Moneyball. The Broncos' offseason moves demonstrate that they have chosen the former.