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Old 01-25-2011, 01:32 AM   #1
The Joker
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Default MIKE Linebacker

With the hire of Allen as DC it now seems pretty much a foregone conclusion that we'll be switching back to a 4-3 defense over the coming offseason.

And with that, you can be assured that a genuine MIKE linebacker has just climbed very high on our list of offseason needs.

But where exactly are we going to get one?

Joe Mays is a 2-down ILB in a 3-4, nothing more. He doesn't have anywhere near the range needed to be a real MIKE, especially in a John Fox scheme which requires the LB's to be good cover guys.

DJ Williams is not a MIKE linebacker. If they put him back there I'll be very upset. Not only does he not have the instincts and cerebral skills to play the position in any way effectively, but he's also a quality WLB. Sticking him at MIKE would not only assure us of crappy play from that position, but it would also deprive us of a quality starter at the WLB spot.

Would love to hear the opinions of some of the draftnicks around here on MIKE prospects in the coming draft. There doesn't seem to be any real blue chip prospects at the position from what I've read. Will there be anyone worth looking at with one our 2nd round picks?

I'd love to see us come away from our first three picks with

Fairley/Bowers
MIKE LB
DE/DT (depending on whether we get Bowers or Fairley in round 1)

However at the same time I don't want to see us reach for players just for the sake of need. If we have to wait a year to get a player we really like at MIKE, then so be it.
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Old 01-25-2011, 02:34 AM   #2
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I thought there was someone pointing towards a DJ Williams trade (was this before or after the coach hire?)
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Old 01-25-2011, 02:39 AM   #3
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Why is it a foregone conclusion? Allen also worked under Wade Phillips. I don't think anything is set in stone.
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Old 01-25-2011, 02:53 AM   #4
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Why is it a foregone conclusion? Allen also worked under Wade Phillips. I don't think anything is set in stone.
Yeah I don't get that either.

Fox hasn't tied himself down to a 3-4 or 4-3 so I doubt he rules out an entire scheme based on the DC.

He's also said that he's going to sit down and evaluate the current roster and it's needs so depending on what he views as the strengths and weakenesses of our front 7, that's what's going to decide which way we go.

Ayers and Dumervil are our best players on the front 7 and they've had two years to develop as OLBs. You don't just throw that away because of the DC.
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Old 01-25-2011, 03:31 AM   #5
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the guy from michigan state is said to be dropping in draft status because of his height.
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Old 01-25-2011, 03:42 AM   #6
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If we do switch back to the 4-3, I'm hoping that we can somehow lure Jets ILB David Harris here in FA. That's all dependent on whom the Jets deem as priorities this offseason.
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Old 01-25-2011, 03:47 AM   #7
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Is it just me or do any of you also believe that the future of nfl defenses is hybrid 3-4, 4-3?
the way the rules favor the pass nowadays you are usually in nickle or dime more often than base anyways.
The base formations is to an extent obsolete as you are more often in those extra db formations thus making these formatiions really the base.
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Old 01-25-2011, 03:50 AM   #8
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If we do switch back to the 4-3, I'm hoping that we can somehow lure Jets ILB David Harris here in FA. That's all dependent on whom the Jets deem as priorities this offseason.
Lol pipe dream. If they dont resing him they'll be stupid.
I'll give you my pipe dream wish. Denver signs Harris and Whitner and drafts Fairly. Then you put the rest of your draft picks on defense unless there is a offensive BPA.
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Old 01-25-2011, 04:14 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by ✡✡ JOSHUA ✡✡ View Post
Why is it a foregone conclusion? Allen also worked under Wade Phillips. I don't think anything is set in stone.
Fox has always run a 4-3 to the best of my knowledge, and the other two serious candidates we seemed to look at (Mora and McDermott) were 4-3 guys also. I'd agree that nothing is set in stone, but I'd be absolutely stunned if we announced we were going with a 3-4.

The only drawback to switching to a 4-3 at this point is Dumervil then becomes less of an asset in the base defense. Still, with the amount of snaps teams play in the nickel these days you can afford to have a pass rush specialist on big money IMO. Build some quality depth at the DE spot so we don't need him in there every down and can keep him fresh.

Ayers has spent two years developing as an OLB, this is true. But honestly he does seem like his best fit is as a LDE to me. Should be no issue switching him back.

Harris won't get near FA I shouldn't think, Jets will sign him up in a flash.
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Old 01-25-2011, 04:26 AM   #10
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If the team does move back to a 4-3 (I'm expecting some sort of hybrid this year), the MLB is going to be such an imperative position. The reason Philly dealt Mays was he couldn't cover enough gound to be a 4-3 MLB - but he's a good fit in the 3-4. On the roster currently, Haggan's probably the closest thing to a 4-3 MLB but that could be a receipe for disaster. DJ would be back at his natural WLB position and I could see Haggan fitting in at SLB - or that's a position you can find a guy in free agency. But man that MLB spot will be tough to fill.

And for those worrying about Elvis - don't. IF he's healthy, I think you'll see him mighty productive in any defense. Fox always made the most of Julius Peppers and I expect he'll do the same with Doom.
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Old 01-25-2011, 04:52 AM   #11
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I am curious why people keep saying "if" about the 4-3 defense.

John Fox made it clear what we're running when he was hired. He drew on a whiteboard about his defense (it was a 4-3).
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Old 01-25-2011, 04:55 AM   #12
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If the team does move back to a 4-3 (I'm expecting some sort of hybrid this year), the MLB is going to be such an imperative position. The reason Philly dealt Mays was he couldn't cover enough gound to be a 4-3 MLB - but he's a good fit in the 3-4. On the roster currently, Haggan's probably the closest thing to a 4-3 MLB but that could be a receipe for disaster. DJ would be back at his natural WLB position and I could see Haggan fitting in at SLB - or that's a position you can find a guy in free agency. But man that MLB spot will be tough to fill.

And for those worrying about Elvis - don't. IF he's healthy, I think you'll see him mighty productive in any defense. Fox always made the most of Julius Peppers and I expect he'll do the same with Doom.
I wonder how the lineup will look with Ayers and Dumervil.

Are they going to cover the ends, a trade could be possible, maybe move one to linebacker?

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Old 01-25-2011, 05:13 AM   #13
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the guy from michigan state is said to be dropping in draft status because of his height.
that's Jones.....he's probably 230 but I like him if he is there with the 2nd 2 rounder.
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Old 01-25-2011, 05:26 AM   #14
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I don't think we'll be a pure 3-4 or 4-3 team. We really don't have the personnel to fill out either effectively. We'll be in some qasi-transitional state this year, with a bunch of rooks and young guys getting a chance to develop.
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Old 01-25-2011, 05:40 AM   #15
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MLB is absolutely critical in either 3-4 or 4-3. If you don't have a god backer in that slot nothing works. Speed, smarts, Agression. A couple of guys in the senior bowl this weekend Herzlich from B.C., and Moch from Nev, Miller from A&M, have impressed me.
Herzlich has been injured, Miller never played MLB, Moch don't no if he has the smarts, but physically they are all good, and they all show the attitude it takes to play the middle.
MIller is a first round pick anywhere from #8 to #15.
The other 2 are 3rd rounders.

Also the big safety from Neb. Hagg is playing he might be worth watching.

Last edited by driver; 01-25-2011 at 05:55 AM..
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Old 01-25-2011, 05:53 AM   #16
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If this team is going to improve on defense, they need a better presence inside than D.J. Williams. He's a great (yes, I said great) weak-side, and that's where he'd be best, is at weak-side in a 4-3.

Are Ayers and Dumervil good enough to go every down at DE in a 4-3? Dumervil can obviously rush the passer, but he's a liability in run stopping, and Denver doesn't have the linebackers to back him up right now.

A solid middle linebacker, that is the play caller and the leader of the defense would go a long ways in making this defense better. The Broncos have to find one, imo.
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Old 01-25-2011, 06:36 AM   #17
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I think we need to take a look at Greg Jones with one of our 2nd rounders.
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Old 01-25-2011, 06:37 AM   #18
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Old 01-25-2011, 06:40 AM   #19
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Notes from the senior bowl:

CASEY MATTHEWS is not the athlete his brother PACKERS/CLAY MATTHEWS is. In fact he may not have the size and/or athleticism to ever start in the NFL, but he値l play at the pro level. He has very quick feet, and good balance. He looked excellent in some of the LB drills that emphasize footwork. He finds the ball and is fearless going after it. I知 seeing him as a sub-package LB and a Special teams star, at the least.

http://www.pigskinpaul.com/Pigskin_P...TION_2011.html
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Old 01-25-2011, 06:44 AM   #20
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I think we need to take a look at Greg Jones with one of our 2nd rounders.
Agreed. I'm a big fan. He's a bit undersized, but a great playmaker.

In Free Agency I could see us going after a guy like Kirk Morrison to fill the position. Harris would be great too, but I don't think we'll pony up the cash to go after him with so many other needs.
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Old 01-25-2011, 06:47 AM   #21
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Orie Lemon from Okla St sounds like a stud who we could get in a later round cause he was injured last season. He did play in the East/West Shrine game and was dominate.

ORIE LEMON/ILB/OKLAHOMA STATE/6’1/245

LEMON is at the top of my list this season of guys who I see with strong football skills, but who get little or no love from most DRAFT analysts. He shows an uncanny ability to find the football and make plays. That includes a surprising skill at dropping into solid pass coverage over the short middle of the field. He is highly productive, if not an absolute tackling machine. He finished the 2010 season as the 3rd leading tackler in the country playing D1 ball, with 101 solo tackles. He also showed the ability to get into the backfield with 9 TFL, and 2 1/2 sacks. There is no way I can keep this guy out of my TOP 100 Prospect list. If you doubt his athleticism because of his weight, please keep in mind that he was a HS QB. He was once again all over the field making tackles in the ALAMO BOWL. If he can measure up to the bigger names in Indy he could surprise in the DRAFT. How about a bit bigger version of GRADY BRACKETT for some NFL team n 2011.

http://www.pigskinpaul.com/Pigskin_P..._EYE_2010.html
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Old 01-25-2011, 06:47 AM   #22
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Notes from the senior bowl:

CASEY MATTHEWS is not the athlete his brother PACKERS/CLAY MATTHEWS is. In fact he may not have the size and/or athleticism to ever start in the NFL, but he値l play at the pro level. He has very quick feet, and good balance. He looked excellent in some of the LB drills that emphasize footwork. He finds the ball and is fearless going after it. I知 seeing him as a sub-package LB and a Special teams star, at the least.

http://www.pigskinpaul.com/Pigskin_P...TION_2011.html
Is he in the mold of his brother, a blitzing-type playmaker in a 3-4, or could he play in a 4-3 in the NFL?

I didn't watch enough of Oregon to know what type of defense they played. In the NC it looked like they were in nickel and dime the whole game, so that's probably not a good judge of what Mathews would be in the NFL.

It doesn't look like its a great draft for MLB talent, anyway. Interesting...Greg Lloyd, Jr., from UConn...anyone know anything about him?
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Old 01-25-2011, 06:52 AM   #23
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I don't think DJ will be the mike. Remember this, he may be in line for a 4 game suspension due to his DUI.
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Old 01-25-2011, 06:55 AM   #24
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I think we need to take a look at Greg Jones with one of our 2nd rounders.
I agree about Jones, his ability and he will go in the 2nd rnd IMO,, but believe
we need to use our first 3 picks on 2 dt's and a rush end to get a line built.
I think we can get a mlb in the late 2nd or early 3rd rnds. we need more 2,3 rnd picks even a couple of 4th's would help, thats why I think we should trade back with that #2 overall and get more picks in lower rounds.
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Old 01-25-2011, 06:57 AM   #25
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Quote:
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Notes from the senior bowl:

CASEY MATTHEWS is not the athlete his brother PACKERS/CLAY MATTHEWS is. In fact he may not have the size and/or athleticism to ever start in the NFL, but he値l play at the pro level. He has very quick feet, and good balance. He looked excellent in some of the LB drills that emphasize footwork. He finds the ball and is fearless going after it. I知 seeing him as a sub-package LB and a Special teams star, at the least.

http://www.pigskinpaul.com/Pigskin_P...TION_2011.html
we also interviewed him yesterday at the Senior Bowl
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