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Old 02-02-2010, 01:05 PM   #1
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Default Offseason spotlight: Outside linebackers

February 2nd, 2010 posted by Frank Schwab


The next position to break down is outside linebackers, where the Broncos have plenty of questions to answer this offseason:

Will Elvis Dumervil return? The short answer would appear to be yes. There's much more debate about fellow free agent Brandon Marshall, given Marshall's off-field problems and the 2009 distractions, and one could even argue about his true worth if you believe that catches are an overrated statistic. But Dumervil is a perfect player to invest in. When he was asked to move to outside linebacker he did so without complaining and worked extremely hard to master the position. He has not caused the Broncos any awkward moments off the field and has been a model teammate in the locker room. In fact, he won the Darrent Williams Good Guy Award for his cooperation with the media this season. And he was the top playmaker on the defense. He was dominant on third down and almost all of his league-leading 17 sacks were key plays. Dumervil didn't put up great tackle numbers - the outside linebacker position in the defense wasn't asked to make tackles, however - but if you can't rush the quarterback in the NFL your defense will struggle. Denver had 40 sacks this season: 17 from Dumervil and 23 from everyone else. Dumervil's pressure is also a major reason the Broncos didn't give up many long pass plays.

So there doesn't seem to be any reason for the Broncos to sign Dumervil to a long-term deal. Although former Broncos defensive coordinator Mike Nolan would surely like to sign Dumervil in Miami, the Broncos don't have to let Dumervil go. He is restricted unless there's a new collective-bargaining agreement. If he is unrestricted, the franchise and transition numbers for linebackers will be $9.68 million or $8.373 million, according to the Star Ledger. That's a reasonable rate for a player as good as Dumervil.

What to make of Ayers? For the record, 384 NFL players had at least half of a sack in 2009. So any Broncos fan who claims Robert Ayers had a good rookie season and made an immediate impact can't see past their orange and blue tinted glasses. Ayers played just about every snap in the Broncos nickel defense in 2009 and didn't have a sack. While some of that had to do with his role and setting the edge while DUmervil rushed the passer, the fact that he didn't get a sack all season is not a great sign. He has a lot of room to improve, which Josh McDaniels alluded to after the season.

"He did a lot of things that we asked him to do," McDaniels said. "He certainly wants to be more productive and we want him to be as productive as he can possibly be, but he has to take the competition to them. You can’t just hand a guy the job because he walks in the door. He’s got to earn it and he’s got to do the most with his opportunities and take advantage of those. He knows that he’s no longer a rookie, so we will look for bigger things from him next year."

Ayers did show some explosiveness in training camp and made a few plays during the season. Some players don't look like they belong from their first rookie minicamp - Ayers does not appear to be one of those players. He needs to learn and gain experience, but he still has a chance to be a good player for the Broncos. However, if he doesn't win a starting job going into the 2010 season, that isn't a very good sign.

Will the Broncos add anyone? Assuming Dumervil returns, there doesn't appear to be much reason to invest in an outside linebacker. Mario Haggan was solid and Darrell Reid played well in a reserve role. The Broncos have to assume Ayers will be more productive in his second season. So unless Dumervil isn't brought back, this position appears to be pretty well set.


http://gazettebroncos.freedombloggin...ebackers/2283/
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Old 02-02-2010, 01:20 PM   #2
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I'd love to keep Doom and Ayers. I think both will continue to improve in their new roles.
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Old 02-02-2010, 01:51 PM   #3
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Oh Moss, what a complete waste of a 1st and 3rd round pick.....
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Old 02-02-2010, 02:01 PM   #4
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I'd go so far as to say that Moss was a very big reason for Shanahan's fall. Moss and Crowder both screwed the pooch, an dthere was no D in Denver. Imagine, iof you will, what could have happened oif those guys had been successful picks.....

One or two bodies doing better on the Dline, and a LG and a C, and this team iwould be so much improved.

But then something else would just break down.....
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Old 02-02-2010, 02:07 PM   #5
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Oh Moss, what a complete waste of a 1st and 3rd round pick.....
I held out as long as I could, but man...I think it's time to turn the page on him. Maybe an agressive 4-3 team like the Eagles or the Rams could get some use out of him on 3rd and longs. Maybe.
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Old 02-02-2010, 02:26 PM   #6
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being that the franchise number for Doom's position is 9.68 million, it seems very unlikely that we won't be able to keep him. I mean that is a very reasonable price for an elite pass rusher.
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Old 02-02-2010, 03:14 PM   #7
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"He did a lot of things that we asked him to do," McDaniels said. "He certainly wants to be more productive and we want him to be as productive as he can possibly be, but he has to take the competition to them. You can’t just hand a guy the job because he walks in the door. He’s got to earn it and he’s got to do the most with his opportunities and take advantage of those. He knows that he’s no longer a rookie, so we will look for bigger things from him next year."

As I've said before, we've seen many examples of McDaniels being willing to sit or criticize his own guys. He's an equal opportunity coach. If you're a current or former regime player... go out and earn your ****ing job.

Ayers has a way to go, but he was well-known as a guy who would take time. I saw some good things out of him last season. He just had spells where he would disappear. He's got to figure it all out.
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Old 02-02-2010, 03:15 PM   #8
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I think its just ridiculous that Moss made like 10x what Doom made this year. Blech.
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Old 02-02-2010, 03:50 PM   #9
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Pretty upset over the fact that we have two developmental guys at OLB. Ayers has alot to prove. Moss is gone.

I hope we go Dan Williams Cam Thomas Jason Ordrick T Cody Lupati in the draft.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:02 PM   #10
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Worst case if we lose Doom to the Phins I would to see us get Joey Porter back in return.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:13 PM   #11
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Worst case if we lose Doom to the Phins I would to see us get Joey Porter back in return.
Lol just in case Marshall ran out of reasons to leave. His old nemesis Peezy.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:14 PM   #12
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We need to lock up Elvis. I will say, his sack numbers might not be directly correlated to his value. But, unfortunately... that's basically how guys are paid at his position. (Rushing DE or OLB.)

He's worth a big contract, though. He's young, he's proven he can make the transition and he did a better job at showing up in big games last season. He can work on being better against the run, but some more help up front will ease that process.

We need to keep him. I just think the CBA situation will complicate everything.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:21 PM   #13
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Lol just in case Marshall ran out of reasons to leave. His old nemesis Peezy.
Joey Porter already said he wants out of Miami if they are going to reduce is playing time. Should they sign Doom that pretty much seals the deal. Porter wouldn't be a long term answer but he would most certainly help out in the short run. I'm sure Marshall and Porter could work it out. I would rather have Porter tossed in the deal then some third round pick though.
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:30 PM   #14
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Joey Porter already said he wants out of Miami if they are going to reduce is playing time. Should they sign Doom that pretty much seals the deal. Porter wouldn't be a long term answer but he would most certainly help out in the short run. I'm sure Marshall and Porter could work it out. I would rather have Porter tossed in the deal then some third round pick though.
Uggh, they want to get rid of him because he repeatedly refused to come off the field when he was supposed to during games. Our D subs in and out like crazy, and our coach loves butting heads with people. It has disaster written all over it :S
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Old 02-02-2010, 04:35 PM   #15
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Uggh, they want to get rid of him because he repeatedly refused to come off the field when he was supposed to during games. Our D subs in and out like crazy, and our coach loves butting heads with people. It has disaster written all over it :S
That isn't what he said on Rome is burning. He said the Phins wanted him to rotate series with the younger players so they get playing time to develop.
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Old 02-02-2010, 05:45 PM   #16
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I think its just ridiculous that Moss made like 10x what Doom made this year. Blech.
You don't want to say that. The Moss homers will be here soon to defend this ridiculous statement.
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Old 02-02-2010, 05:55 PM   #17
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What to make of Ayers? For the record, 384 NFL players had at least half of a sack in 2009. So any Broncos fan who claims Robert Ayers had a good rookie season and made an immediate impact can't see past their orange and blue tinted glasses. Ayers played just about every snap in the Broncos nickel defense in 2009 and didn't have a sack. While some of that had to do with his role and setting the edge while DUmervil rushed the passer, the fact that he didn't get a sack all season is not a great sign. He has a lot of room to improve, which Josh McDaniels alluded to after the season.
Hello? He was never a sack guy ... he had 3 sacks as a senior, and 2 were against Vanderbilt .... just 9 his entire college career. He's just not a sack guy. Plus Mayock says he'll need a couple years to mature, that's good enough for me.
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Old 02-02-2010, 05:58 PM   #18
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Porter can't have much left in the tank.
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Old 02-02-2010, 07:52 PM   #19
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Porter can't have much left in the tank.
I think he has a couple years left in him. I bet he would have had more then the 9 sacks he had this year if they wouldn't have deactivated him for the Bucs game and kept taking him off the field. Like I said his he wouldn't be a long term answer, but he would atleast soften the blow should the Phins end up getting Doom from us. He would help out more then a third round pick in my opinion.
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Old 02-02-2010, 08:32 PM   #20
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Porter can't have much left in the tank.
He is running on empty as it is.


Dumervil has to be locked up, he is a real threat and a guy you have to plan for, we need that presence at OLB.
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Old 02-02-2010, 10:47 PM   #21
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lol Peezy! That name never gets old. But you have to get Doom signed up and I think denver will do that, but I would love to see Ayers as a DE and draft a OLB.
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