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Old 09-19-2010, 10:08 PM   #1
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Default Our defensive woes: Any ideas?

O.K... I already posted my upbeat about the future thread, and I am really jacked about this team.

But, let's talk about this defense.

Why does the middle of our line look so bad? Has anyone had time to analyze Williams' play? We really should have upgraded personnel at the front 3, and it just looks like teams can run up the gut on us, at-will.

Then, there's the pass-rush. Now, I've been crying about Doom being out non-stop around here. So, I know his absence is the primary problem.

But, are we just not going to bring extra pressure this year? It also looks to me like when we do... we STILL can't get close to the QB.

This thread isn't really meant to be a b****-session, so much as to ask why... and what do you think we can do in the short-term to fix these problems?
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Old 09-19-2010, 10:11 PM   #2
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2011 draft
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Old 09-19-2010, 10:15 PM   #3
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Dumervil get healthy and better defensive line play.
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Old 09-19-2010, 10:19 PM   #4
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3 picks in the first 2 rounds of the draft.

Use all 3 on defense please.
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Old 09-19-2010, 10:20 PM   #5
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I noticed today that Bannan and others got blown off their feet along the line. That equates to the LB's not having a clear path and they get caught in the wash of the play.

Moss is a fast aggressive player who is quick to run into the OL and get negated. Ayers has flashes but now he may be hurt.

I am thinking that this Defense will be middle of the road and will be bend but don't break. I like our secondary and the rookies made some plays as well.
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Old 09-19-2010, 10:22 PM   #6
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2011 draft
This.

There's a need for a serious infusion of talent in the front seven and there aren't gonna be any quick fixes for it.
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Old 09-19-2010, 10:30 PM   #7
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Heavy drafting on the front seven in the NFL Draft.

We're set up with four picks in the first three rounds (1, 2A, 2B, 3) -- Three of those first four should go towards that area. Defensive end, another nose tackle and a linebacker. Heck, two linebackers perhaps.

DL: Clayborn, Heyward, Jordan, McPhee, Powe

Greg Jones would be killer at ILB.

Throw in Von Miller too.

Yeah.
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Old 09-19-2010, 10:32 PM   #8
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Any ideas for the rest of this season?
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Old 09-19-2010, 10:33 PM   #9
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Not sure how we are going to solve the problem on the DL this year. The first issue is that McBean is not NFL starter material. Seriously, this guy would start on maybe 5 teams in the whole league. That might be we saw a little bit of Marcus Thomas in this game, but he too isn't starter material in this league, especially at 3-4 DE.

At the other two spots, the staff took a gamble that Jamal Williams would return to pre-injury form after a year off, but its become obvious that he's definitely in clear decline. It was not an unreasonable venture, though, given that 1) we had very little in terms of legitimate young prospects at the position, 2) Fields had been partially exposed by the end of last year and 3) the contract was only a short term one. Nonetheless, it hasn't quite turned out the way I had hoped. He isn't commanding double teams and isn't eating both of the A gaps for lunch. Bannan has been kind of hot and cold. He too has probably slightly underperformed, but he's not horrible. The bottom line is that Williams and Bannan at this point would be halfway decent in a rotation of other talented DL, but if you want them to carry the front consistently, its not going to happen and as a result, the LB's are going to have blockers in their laps a second after the snap (as we saw today).

In the last two years we have invested a single draft choice in the front seven in the first two rounds and that choice was not even at DL. If we keep the first and the two seconds next year (and we should, no more being cute in the war room), I think 2 of these 3 selections should be devoted to the DL: 1 NT and 1 DE. We've got to build a young foundation on the line at some point. When Doom comes back, we'll be fine at LB, with 3 of the 4 spots being filled with good NFL starters, but we need to address the line early and often.

There's not too much we can do at this point in the season, except for heavy blitzing.
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Old 09-19-2010, 10:33 PM   #10
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It seems to me that

1. Either Williams has indeed lost a few steps or since he didn't play all last year nor in the pre-season really and this is the first two games with a new team and perhaps he just hasn't gotten in sync with Bannen and Facemask.

2. Or it also could be that Wink has the front three trying to mainly lock up the Olinemen rather push the line and tackle the runner in the backfield and prevent the Oline from getting to our linebackers who are suppose to take down the run game?? ( if so they need more work on it!)

3. Orrrrr, it could be all an elaborate slight of hand where Josh figured we could beat both the Jagwads (wrong guess) and Seahags (right on the money) without tipping our hand and thus he is saving the unleashing of the Hounds of Hell on said Payton Manning and the NFL next week. :-)

As much as I'm hoping the answer is behind door number 3, I suspect its some combination of doors 1 and 2.

I do think they will improve ( injuries allowing) as hte season goes on but I do'nt suspect the run defense is going to be really solved until we revamp the front 7.

Which MUST be our number one priority in both FA and the draft the next two years. On offense the next two years at most we may need to add a new RT prospect another TE and RB but nothing more. We have more than enough bodies to develop the erst of the O starters and depth.

On D we need a big injection of youth and talent in the from 7 to go along with Doom, Ayers, Hunter ...and dare I say Moss. Also, another stud safety and one more killer corner. Assuming Cox, Squid and Vaughn will all develop into stud starters for us in the years ahead.

Another factor in addition to doors 1 and 2 could be that Wink needs more time to grow into this job? After all it would be rare for a first time DC to suddenly perform at top flight form with no growing pains.

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Old 09-19-2010, 10:47 PM   #11
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Another thing, I do hope the improvement in the run game for the front 7 (front 3 in particular) parallels that of our Oline ... both in quality as well as time ( meaning ASAP!!)

I do think the oline and our run game will improve substantially when Harris Kupe and Clady are all up to speed and its great we are getting a lot of invaluable experince for Walton, Beadles, Baptiste and Daniels now. That is going to pay off big time as the year progresses as well as for long term Oline depth.

Did you see Walton destroy the Seahags DT and linebacker on the Buckhalter score Just picked the guy up and dumped him on the other one knocking them both on their ass and Buck waltzed in for seven.

Buck made a point of giving Walton a big bear hug :-)

Also look at how much our Oline pass protection improved in one game??! The Seachickens gave SF fits with their rush last week and yet hardly touched Orton today.. Perhaps these young rookies will make similar big gains in the run game too with a little more experience and with Harris and Kuper back too...

But I suspect that even though I hope and trust real improvements in our overall D as the season goes on ... I also suspect that our best defense this year is going to be an increasingly dominant offense spearheaded by a top flight passing attack augmented with an improving run game as well.

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Old 09-19-2010, 10:58 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCalBronco View Post
Not sure how we are going to solve the problem on the DL this year. The first issue is that McBean is not NFL starter material. Seriously, this guy would start on maybe 5 teams in the whole league. That might be we saw a little bit of Marcus Thomas in this game, but he too isn't starter material in this league, especially at 3-4 DE.

At the other two spots, the staff took a gamble that Jamal Williams would return to pre-injury form after a year off, but its become obvious that he's definitely in clear decline. It was not an unreasonable venture, though, given that 1) we had very little in terms of legitimate young prospects at the position, 2) Fields had been partially exposed by the end of last year and 3) the contract was only a short term one. Nonetheless, it hasn't quite turned out the way I had hoped. He isn't commanding double teams and isn't eating both of the A gaps for lunch. Bannan has been kind of hot and cold. He too has probably slightly underperformed, but he's not horrible. The bottom line is that Williams and Bannan at this point would be halfway decent in a rotation of other talented DL, but if you want them to carry the front consistently, its not going to happen and as a result, the LB's are going to have blockers in their laps a second after the snap (as we saw today).

In the last two years we have invested a single draft choice in the front seven in the first two rounds and that choice was not even at DL. If we keep the first and the two seconds next year (and we should, no more being cute in the war room), I think 2 of these 3 selections should be devoted to the DL: 1 NT and 1 DE. We've got to build a young foundation on the line at some point. When Doom comes back, we'll be fine at LB, with 3 of the 4 spots being filled with good NFL starters, but we need to address the line early and often.


There's not too much we can do at this point in the season, except for heavy blitzing.
Bingo! But if we can spring Franklin from SF at NT then spend two of the first three on DE's and the third on either an ILB or Safety. Grab a couple more FA for improved front 7 depth and we should be oke. Still leaves room to take a flyer on a later round RB and possible TE or back up corner?

I'm looking for Cassius to develop fast into what we all hoped Fonze could be .. a stud #2 corner opposite Cox in the years ahead, but faster and bigger than Smith and w/out the primadonna factor. Squid can play nickleback

Last edited by Hulamau; 09-19-2010 at 11:07 PM..
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Old 09-19-2010, 10:59 PM   #13
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SoCal is right on the money.
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Old 09-19-2010, 11:10 PM   #14
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Any ideas for the rest of this season?
Not much they can do but play with what they have. Blitzing galore isn't the answer, IMO. Unless they can start blitzing effectively, of course.
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Old 09-19-2010, 11:18 PM   #15
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Poor coordinator work. Nbd, he's learning on the fly. He should get better.

For example: Nolan ran a lot of slant fronts last year over the left A gap to help keep DJ clean. It allowed him to make a lot of plays up front and at the LOS. That's one fun little gimmick that we haven't really seen yet.
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Old 09-20-2010, 12:22 AM   #16
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Good takes all around.

I'm re-watching the first half right now... and trying to figure out how much Williams is actually playing. I swear it doesn't seem like he's out there much.

Btw, I guess we held Seattle to 109 total yards rushing. Not as bad as I thought, but they were in pass-mode after being down so far, so it's hard to say.
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Old 09-20-2010, 12:24 AM   #17
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1. Cameron Heyward, DE Ohio State- Very impressed by his work vs. our OL last week. Alternate selection(s): Marcel Dareus is also an option here depending on where we are drafting, if he comes out (I anticipate around 12th or so). DEN has an outside chance to nab one of these guys if there is a flood of juniors that declare.
2a. Jerrell Powe, NT Ole Miss- Has the girth required and has posted impressive TFL stats last year. Has overcome some adversity in the past.
2b. Chris Galippo, LB USC- Good SILB prospect. Kind of shaky in pass coverage, but has solid NFL ability. Alternate selection(s): Colin McCarthy, LB Miami- He's football smart, although he has struggled a bit this year at 4-3 MLB. Is a very good 4-3 SLB. Unproven in a 3-4 system. Probably closer to 3rd round value than 2nd round value. Needs some work on wrapping guys up.
3. Noel Devine, RB West Virginia- DEN needs a pure speed burner to go with Moreno. Devine has a checkered past, but he can fly.
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Old 09-20-2010, 12:29 AM   #18
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Quote:
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1. Cameron Heyward, DE Ohio State- Very impressed by his work vs. our OL last week. Alternate selection(s): Marcel Dareus is also an option here depending on where we are drafting, if he comes out (I anticipate around 12th or so). DEN has an outside chance to nab one of these guys if there is a flood of juniors that declare.
2a. Jerrell Powe, NT Ole Miss- Has the girth required and has posted impressive TFL stats last year. Has overcome some adversity in the past.
2b. Chris Galippo, LB USC- Good SILB prospect. Kind of shaky in pass coverage, but has solid NFL ability. Alternate selection(s): Colin McCarthy, LB Miami- He's football smart, although he has struggled a bit this year at 4-3 MLB. Is a very good 4-3 SLB. Unproven in a 3-4 system. Probably closer to 3rd round value than 2nd round value. Needs some work on wrapping guys up.
3. Noel Devine, RB West Virginia- DEN needs a pure speed burner to go with Moreno. Devine has a checkered past, but he can fly.
Kelvin Sheppard from LSU. Slow enough to linger to the 3rd round possibly and big enough to bring the wood and take on blockers and play in traffic at a high level.
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Old 09-20-2010, 12:45 AM   #19
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We'll be better when Doom comes back. Ayers can get pressure on the other side. Our DL is below average at best.
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Old 09-20-2010, 01:10 AM   #20
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All we can really do is concede the run and cover well. Play to our strengths and hope it holds in the red zone. Not exactly optimistic, but that's what happens when you don't have a play maker in the front seven. Hopefully Ayers gets better as the season goes along.
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Old 09-20-2010, 01:14 AM   #21
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I still have hopes for Jarvis. The guy has a cast on his hand and wrist, but still seems to be doing well.
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Old 09-20-2010, 01:22 AM   #22
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There is no direct quick fix for the defensive front seven outside of new talent. We need to win the field position battle on special teams, and get healthy on the offensive line. We were beaten like a drum on special teams again today. Luckily we had a decisive lead at that point.
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Old 09-20-2010, 05:29 AM   #23
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This thread isn't really meant to be a b****-session, so much as to ask why... and what do you think we can do in the short-term to fix these problems?
You pretty much nailed it already. Its all about the line play.

I think part of it is scheme, Martindale was trying to get cute with some two man fronts and the like early yesterday if I recall.

Part of it is obvious rust on the part of Jamal Williams, along with the fact that he is not an every down player.

McBean is showing promise but he's had some inconsistencies to start the year, he needs to play smarter.

Bannan is what he is, a very solid gap filler who won't make plays for you, but can free guys up to make a play if they have the ability to do so.

Thomas shows some great potential as a situational DE/NT with some penetration skills, probably the only guy on the line with real pass rush skills, but he's still raw in the 3-4 front and misses plays, like the big run Forsett took by him up the guy late in the game.

I'd like to see Fields get more involved. He's a solid DE/NT type who should play better than last year now that he isn't going to be called on to play every down at NT.

Going forward though? We need Vickerson and Jeff Stehle to pick up the system and show some ability to contribute, fast. Especially Vickerson, since like Thomas he can play both DE and NT.

Haggan is a solid two down ILB, DJ is a borderline pro-bowler. Ayers (if he's healthy) is really coming into his own and already looks to be an above average starter. Hunter and Moss are actually doing a solid job in combination on the opposite side. The LBs look solid and with Doom back next year they'll look real good.

The secondary has a great combination of savvy vets starting and young, athletic depth behind him. But we need McBath back ASAP, or for Bruton to step it up in coverage. We're getting exposed by receiving TEs because Dawkins can't consistently run step for step with them if he's one on one. There have also been some mis-communication issues in the secondary. Overall though this is our best unit and I'd like it if Martindale made better use of it. He tries to cover 3 WR sets or 2 WR, 2 TE sets with a good pass catching TE with the base defense too often. You can't ask Hunter, Moss, Haggan, or even Ayers to cover a TE for prolonged stretches of time and it also takes away from our pass rush when we commit those guys to coverage.

Overall Martindale needs to improve, the execution needs to improve, and we need some depth to step up and help carry some of the load.
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Old 09-20-2010, 05:30 AM   #24
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The fix for our defense, this year, is for the offense to put a lot of points on the board. Beyond that we still need more talent in the front 7. I'm no DJ Williams fan either and I think we should look at trading him and drafting a replacement.
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Old 09-20-2010, 05:32 AM   #25
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I did see some improvement.

Our nickel defense didn't get run over all the time like it did in Week 1.
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