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View Full Version : Cushing at OLB next year. What do you think?


Rey
10-22-2013, 07:19 PM
I've thought about this some and I think playing Cushing at olb more next year could be very beneficial to the defense. Cushing was playing well this year, but his mobility wasn't the same. With this injury I think it might get a little worse. I don't know, but even if it doesn't, I think this could still be a viable move.

Ilb requires better wheels. More change of direction, more guys coming right at you taking your legs out...more coverage responsibilities.


I was thinking maybe we could sign or draft a good ilb and slide Cushing to the edges more. He could still play in the middle some, but I think he could be a beast on the edges pressuring qb's more often. And like I said it'd be easier on his legs. Our edge pass rush has not been great and I know Cushing would be a force out there. Plus he'd be more versatile because he can drop into all kinds of coverages.


Come, discus with me.

WolverineFan
10-22-2013, 07:28 PM
No. He was one of the best ILB's in the league until he got hurt and was at the top of the league in TFL. You need a tackling machine in the middle and moving him outside takes away his greatest asset.

amazing80
10-22-2013, 07:34 PM
No. He was one of the best ILB's in the league until he got hurt and was at the top of the league in TFL. You need a tackling machine in the middle and moving him outside takes away his greatest asset.

while i dont disagree, we BETTER still draft an ILB high, because frankly Cushing was a shell of his former coverage self.....he def. did not regain his ability to run in space IMO...but shifting through the trash, he is still great at

Rey
10-22-2013, 07:41 PM
No. He was one of the best ILB's in the league until he got hurt and was at the top of the league in TFL. You need a tackling machine in the middle and moving him outside takes away his greatest asset.

Disagree. I think it's easier to find a good LB that can play in the middle and make a lot of tackles. We've actually rarely been without one. Almost every team has at least one good ilb that can make a bunch of tackles. I think that part if cushing's game would be the easiest to replace. His pass rushing and pass coverage are what I'd be worried about.

That said, I saw Cushing struggle some out in space this year. He usually hadn't done that. Coming off another season ending knee injury it could get worse.

Meanwhile I believe he could be a huge asset on the outside and make a big impact immediately upon his return. He has experience on the edges and he's a good pass rusher. I think he could make a huge impact for this defense on the edge.



If I'm the texans I'd seriously be thinking about this.

WolverineFan
10-22-2013, 07:44 PM
while i dont disagree, we BETTER still draft an ILB high, because frankly Cushing was a shell of his former coverage self.....he def. did not regain his ability to run in space IMO...but shifting through the trash, he is still great at

Which is why he should stay in the middle. Playing on the outside means a lot more playing in space.

And yes, we absolutely need to upgrade ILB regardless of where Cush is playing.

infantrycak
10-22-2013, 09:01 PM
Wade moved him from OLB to ILB. Might reconsider this when he is no longer DC.

CloakNNNdagger
10-22-2013, 09:19 PM
while i dont disagree, we BETTER still draft an ILB high, because frankly Cushing was a shell of his former coverage self.....he def. did not regain his ability to run in space IMO...but shifting through the trash, he is still great at

Cushing has lost lateral movement due to his ACL. He now functions within a more straight ahead confined space.

Playoffs
10-22-2013, 09:26 PM
Yeah, these injuries are reducing his lateral quickness/mobility.

Rey
10-22-2013, 10:09 PM
Which is why he should stay in the middle. Playing on the outside means a lot more playing in space.

And yes, we absolutely need to upgrade ILB regardless of where Cush is playing.

Nope.

That's why you routinely see DE's placed at 34 olb.

34 mlb need to far more agility than the OLB's.

Rey
10-22-2013, 10:13 PM
Wade moved him from OLB to ILB. Might reconsider this when he is no longer DC.

That's true, but wade has shown a willingness to move guys around....try things...

Brandon harris at safety, crick at nose, reed at ilb, Montgomery doing whatever he was doing...tuggle moving back and forth.

76Texan
10-22-2013, 10:21 PM
That's true, but wade has shown a willingness to move guys around....try things...

Brandon harris at safety, crick at nose, reed at ilb, Montgomery doing whatever he was doing...tuggle moving back and forth.

It wouldn't hurt to see if a switch Cushing/Reed would work or not.
Playing OLB would reduce the chance of getting cut down as Cushing tend to be super aggressive.

DocBar
10-22-2013, 10:26 PM
I don't mind this idea at all. In fact, I'd probably make Cushing the WOLB and let him rush the passer. He's always been a good blitzer and he could just cut loose on the QB.

Rey
10-22-2013, 10:41 PM
I don't mind this idea at all. In fact, I'd probably make Cushing the WOLB and let him rush the passer. He's always been a good blitzer and he could just cut loose on the QB.

Yeah...and I wouldn't even see it as a demotion. He'd still be the best LB on the field likely. Tons of OLB's have been the best lb's on their team and made huge impacts.

I really believe it could be a good move. Draft a young ilb high in the draft bring in a solid vet or two, try reed there or let him and merciless compete for the other olb spot.

texanhead08
10-22-2013, 10:45 PM
It usually takes a good year and a half to be back at 100% after a ACL injury. Its barely been 12months and he got hurt again. I feel bad for the guy.

IDEXAN
10-22-2013, 10:47 PM
We may possibly be in new regime next year which runs a 4-3 meaning Cushing could return to the original SAM position he was drafted to play in the Texas 4-3 back then in 2009 right out of USC.

76Texan
10-22-2013, 11:01 PM
We may possibly be in new regime next year which runs a 4-3 meaning Cushing could return to the original SAM position he was drafted to play in the Texas 4-3 back then in 2009 right out of USC.

In that SAM position, Cushing was on the line very often; not much different than a 34 OLB.

WolverineFan
10-22-2013, 11:06 PM
Nope.

That's why you routinely see DE's placed at 34 olb.

34 mlb need to far more agility than the OLB's.

The DE's that are placed at 3-4 OLB are guys that can really athletic and can rush the passer, but are not big or strong enough to play with their hand down. Some guys, like Sam Montgomery, do not have the agility or athleticism to do so. That's why 3-4 teams stay away from them. Other guys, like Aldon Smith or Demarcus Ware, have that agility and can play on the edge and rush the passer while still being able to drop into coverage.

OLB's have to play on the edge, rush the passer, and set leverage. This means playing in space. 3-4 ILB's go downhill and fill gaps. Instincts and tackling ability are much more important than agility for an ILB.

nero THE zero
10-22-2013, 11:11 PM
Cushing seemed to struggle shedding blocks compared to he play in previous years.

Moving to the outside might allow him to pursue down the line more than taking things head-on.

I like the idea.

Should be interesting to see what happens with the team coach-wise and, consequently, scheme-wise, during the offseason.

wolf123
10-23-2013, 12:29 AM
He would be a average player on the edge. In fact I bet he would look exactly like Brooks Reed. Reed is better suited in the inside and so is Cushing. Both are below average pass rushers and can't disengage from blocks well.

When wade first got here he said Cushings best attribute was his ability to set the edge. The same thing he always says about Brooks Reed.

Texan in Japan
10-23-2013, 12:41 AM
Yeah...and I wouldn't even see it as a demotion. He'd still be the best LB on the field likely. Tons of OLB's have been the best lb's on their team and made huge impacts.

I really believe it could be a good move. Draft a young ilb high in the draft bring in a solid vet or two, try reed there or let him and merciless compete for the other olb spot.

I was thinking this after the latest injury. Gives him a chance to protect himself a bit more and use his pass rush ability.

76Texan
10-23-2013, 12:51 AM
He would be a average player on the edge. In fact I bet he would look exactly like Brooks Reed. Reed is better suited in the inside and so is Cushing. Both are below average pass rushers and can't disengage from blocks well.

When wade first got here he said Cushings best attribute was his ability to set the edge. The same thing he always says about Brooks Reed.

Cushing is a load for TEs to handle, more so than Reed.
I believe (or in my opinion), Wade moved Cushing inside so he can create havoc.
If the opponent keep a RB back to block, the Cush would overwhelm him.
Unfortunately, if we want to avoid his being cut block, it's probably a good idea to move him back outside.

We can find a big body inside and move Mitchell to DE (while backing up the big body at NT). These guys can be found in the third round of the draft, or even later.

b0ng
10-23-2013, 12:57 AM
I think our OLB production has been sorely lacking, but with his two knee injuries you just don't know what he will be capable of when he comes back. I will say that over the last 6 games his game had declined a little bit (probably still recovering from injury and regaining confidence in his knee) and this is a truly devastating blow.

I think we wait right now, and see what we can do about making our OLB's currently be more consistent contributors.

WolverineFan
10-23-2013, 01:04 AM
Cushing is a load for TEs to handle, more so than Reed.
I believe (or in my opinion), Wade moved Cushing inside so he can create havoc.
If the opponent keep a RB back to block, the Cush would overwhelm him.
Unfortunately, if we want to avoid his being cut block, it's probably a good idea to move him back outside.

We can find a big body inside and move Mitchell to DE (while backing up the big body at NT). These guys can be found in the third round of the draft, or even later.

OLB's get cut as well. Actually more so because they rush the passer more often.

76Texan
10-23-2013, 02:52 AM
OLB's get cut as well. Actually more so because they rush the passer more often.

Yes, but not from full-ahead steam.
F=m*a

Wolf6151
10-23-2013, 03:30 AM
I don't think Cushing has the speed for OLB productivity. I'd like him to stay at ILB.

Rey
10-23-2013, 08:20 AM
OLB's get cut as well. Actually more so because they rush the passer more often.

No they don't.

Both of cushing's injuries came on cut blocks. 34 ilb's are cut all the time. And they are constantly blocked...especially in this defense without a big NT to slow the OL down from getting to the second level.

Rey
10-23-2013, 08:28 AM
I'll lay it out like this. If Cushing is going to stay inside, then we need another 3down ILB and Cushing may need to be the guy coming off on passing downs. Cushing was not as good as he had been moving around in space this year. He was not moving as well going from sideline to sideline. He was not as good in pass coverage. We just paid him a lot of money and I think it could be beneficial to both us and Cushing. He could still be an effective 3 down player and would likely take less of a beating on the edge.

As far as him not being effective out there, well I just disagree with that. I think he'd be far superior than anything we have out there now.

IDEXAN
10-23-2013, 08:37 AM
He would be a average player on the edge.
Not so in 2009 when he was a Pro-Bowler and the Defensive-Rookie-of-the-Year in the NFL when playing the elephant position @ SAM in the Texans' 4-3 under defense. Of course Cushing did perhaps have a "little help from his friend".

Rey
10-23-2013, 08:38 AM
The DE's that are placed at 3-4 OLB are guys that can really athletic and can rush the passer, but are not big or strong enough to play with their hand down. Some guys, like Sam Montgomery, do not have the agility or athleticism to do so. That's why 3-4 teams stay away from them. Other guys, like Aldon Smith or Demarcus Ware, have that agility and can play on the edge and rush the passer while still being able to drop into coverage.

OLB's have to play on the edge, rush the passer, and set leverage. This means playing in space. 3-4 ILB's go downhill and fill gaps. Instincts and tackling ability are much more important than agility for an ILB.

Jmo, but you don't seem to have a good grasp on the different types of athleticism from an edge player and an ilb.

This is why Sam Montgomery was tried at olb until he couldn't get his weight down. It's why Mario was able to play OLB here and it's why brooks Reed is able to play outside.

Olb is more of a straight ahead athleticism with short space agility. At ilb you need more in space agility and the ability to cover distances.

It's also part of the reason demeco wasn't playing as much here towards then end.

Uncle Rico
10-23-2013, 09:03 AM
He wasn't that great on the outside prior to the major knee reconstruction, doubt he will be much more than a plodding run stuffer after the latest round of injury. His days in the league are numbered. Never has been able to avoid injury after the steroids.

Bulls on Parade
10-23-2013, 09:44 AM
I'd love to draft C.J. Mosley out of Alabama with our first-round pick. Either way, we need more talent at inside linebacker if this 3-4 defense is going to continue to be successful. We do not have the personnel to run a proper 3-4 defense as I type this.

I almost feel like we should be playing a 4-3 defense right now given the lack of talent we currently have in our front seven. Until we add that beast nose tackle and several quality linebackers like we used to have in Wade Phillips' first season here, we're going to struggle at times defensively.

Rey
10-23-2013, 09:48 AM
He wasn't that great on the outside prior to the major knee reconstruction.

Except that time he won rookie of the year.....twice.

He's never played olb in a 34 though. Different animal.

Bulls on Parade
10-23-2013, 09:54 AM
He wasn't that great on the outside prior to the major knee reconstruction, doubt he will be much more than a plodding run stuffer after the latest round of injury. His days in the league are numbered. Never has been able to avoid injury after the steroids.
Just two seasons ago I felt like we had the best linebackers in the league with Mario Williams, Brian Cushing, DeMeco Ryans and Connor Barwin. We no longer have any of those guys on the field. Long term wise, I am not banking on Brian Cushing making a full recovery and being an All Pro like he was in 2011. It's the same knee he suffered a second major injury on in about a one year time frame.

We have to start making plans come draft day, and bulking up at inside linebacker with one and maybe two new starters in mind. Just in case Brian Cushing isn't ready to play by Week 1 in 2014, or if he has yet another major knee injury next season, which at that point, you have to fear it could be career ending if he damages the same knee three seasons in a row.

WolverineFan
10-23-2013, 10:18 AM
Jmo, but you don't seem to have a good grasp on the different types of athleticism from an edge player and an ilb.

This is why Sam Montgomery was tried at olb until he couldn't get his weight down. It's why Mario was able to play OLB here and it's why brooks Reed is able to play outside.

Olb is more of a straight ahead athleticism with short space agility. At ilb you need more in space agility and the ability to cover distances.

It's also part of the reason demeco wasn't playing as much here towards then end.

I know exactly what I'm talking about. Suggesting that Cushing would be a better OLB than ILB at this point is something that I don't agree with. He has lost most of his movement skills, but is still great at reading plays and going downhill.

3-4 teams shied away from Montgomery because he played stiff and with poor balance. He also ran the shuttle and 3-cone drills like a 3-4 DE. He was purely a 4-3 WDE, but the Texans saw him fall to the end of the 3rd and took a flier on him. Which was stupid because, like many on this board have said, he had no fit on the defense.

Mario was able to play OLB because he's a freak. Remember Alec Ogletree (rookie from Georiga). He ran some pretty good times at the combine. Mario ran pretty much the same exact times while posting a higher vertical, bench press, and a faster 10 yd dash. All this while being 50 lbs heavier. He's still a better 3-4 DE though because of his power and long arms (ala Watt). As seen by his numbers in Buffalo.

And DeMeco wasn't playing much toward the end because he was our 2-down LB. Someone had to come off the field in Nickel and it wasn't going to be Cushing. DeMeco had lost most of his agility. Which is why you have a Mike like Cushing who runs the field and makes plays to pair with your 2-down thumper. He's doing just fine in Philadelphia paired with Mychal Kendricks. The reason DeMeco was traded was because his salary was not justified by his role on the field.

This is why I think we should draft a guy like Yawin Smallwood this year. He can run sideline to sideline, make plays across the field, and drop into coverage while Cushing is making plays at the line of scrimmage. It would basically be what happened with Cushing/Ryans.

wolf123
10-23-2013, 10:29 AM
Not so in 2009 when he was a Pro-Bowler and the Defensive-Rookie-of-the-Year in the NFL when playing the elephant position @ SAM in the Texans' 4-3 under defense. Of course Cushing did perhaps have a "little help from his friend".

What he was asked to do in the 4-3 was completely different then what he would be required to do in the 3-4.

He is not a pass rusher period. Him and reed both are inside players in 3-4.

Uncle Rico
10-23-2013, 10:30 AM
Question: do you take Clowney if you end up picking top 5 and he's still available? He's the best LB I've seen in college in a while or is QB still the route you take? So many holes on the team U MUST hit on the first 3 picks to turn this around by next year.

WolverineFan
10-23-2013, 10:58 AM
Question: do you take Clowney if you end up picking top 5 and he's still available? He's the best LB I've seen in college in a while or is QB still the route you take? So many holes on the team U MUST hit on the first 3 picks to turn this around by next year.

Clowney is a DE. And honestly, I think I take Anthony Barr. Premiere pass rushing OLB's can change a defense.

wolf123
10-23-2013, 10:59 AM
Question: do you take Clowney if you end up picking top 5 and he's still available? He's the best LB I've seen in college in a while or is QB still the route you take? So many holes on the team U MUST hit on the first 3 picks to turn this around by next year.

Absolutely. This defense isn't nearly as impact full without an elite OLB rushing the passer. Reed shouldn't be at OLB, And whitney mercilous is best as the 2nd pass rusher.

disaacks3
10-23-2013, 11:03 AM
Until / unless Cushing becomes less of a liability in coverage (which he is post-injury) - I'd keep him in the middle.

As Cloak and I discussed on Sunday, his lateral movement has noticeably deteriorated. He's no longer the sideline-to-sideline guy he used to be. Another knee injury isn't going to help that.

Rey
10-23-2013, 11:04 AM
What he was asked to do in the 4-3 was completely different then what he would be required to do in the 3-4.

He is not a pass rusher period. Him and reed both are inside players in 3-4.

Completely disagree. Reed would be a below average full time MLB.

Rey
10-23-2013, 11:06 AM
Until / unless Cushing becomes less of a liability in coverage (which he is post-injury) - I'd keep him in the middle.

As Cloak and I discussed on Sunday, his lateral movement has noticeably deteriorated. He's no longer the sideline-to-sideline guy he used to be. Another knee injury isn't going to help that.

That's exactly why he shouldn't be in the middle where being a sideline to sideline guy is most important.

Rey
10-23-2013, 11:13 AM
I know exactly what I'm talking about. Suggesting that Cushing would be a better OLB than ILB at this point is something that I don't agree with.

Yeah....I don't agree with anything you're saying...

There's a reason you routinely see de 'a playing 34 olb and not many going to ilb. The movement skills and instincts are completely different.

If I'm the texans I'd consider Cushing outside and consider letting reed compete with Mercilus. Draft a big NT. Get a sideline to sideline 3 down mlb or two.

HOU-TEX
10-23-2013, 11:26 AM
Personally, I'd leave him inside until he shows he's incapable of being the Cush we're used to seeing. We were only a few games into the season. I think he was getting better every game. Considering his ACL was intact I think he'll be back well before TC and be full go when TC begins.

Double Barrel
10-23-2013, 11:30 AM
I like the idea of moving Cushing to ILB, especially when you think of the nightmare offenses would face if Watt and Cush were coming from the same side. Move Cushing to the other side, opposite Watt, and offenses would have to worry about two great players coming from both directions.

Would you suggest just playing Cushing from one side only? Or move him from one side to the other as situations dictate?

Hopefully this is a conversation with merit because he's back next season. Just kills me that we've lost him twice within a 12 month period. Just sucks all the way around.

wolf123
10-23-2013, 11:42 AM
Completely disagree. Reed would be a below average full time MLB.

People thought the same thing about cushing. Both coaches have said that Reed would be the 2nd best ILB on the team behind cushing. Reason he's playing outside is we have zero players behind him and he can set the edge. He has next to zero pass rushing skills.

wolf123
10-23-2013, 11:44 AM
Yeah....I don't agree with anything you're saying...

There's a reason you routinely see de 'a playing 34 olb and not many going to ilb. The movement skills and instincts are completely different.

If I'm the texans I'd consider Cushing outside and consider letting reed compete with Mercilus. Draft a big NT. Get a sideline to sideline 3 down mlb or two.

So now you have huge holes at MLB and only one pass rusher at OLB? Cushing is not a pass rusher.

Vinny
10-23-2013, 12:46 PM
Cushing is a better blitzer than pass rusher. To me he is in his perfect role. Putting him out on the edge against 330LB Tackles all day would diminish all that he brings to the club as the guy controlling the middle of the field. I don't think he would fare all that well on the edge consistently, or at least not impact the defense like he does in the middle of the field chasing plays from sideline to sideline.

disaacks3
10-23-2013, 01:19 PM
That's exactly why he shouldn't be in the middle where being a sideline to sideline guy is most important. He's not having to cover as much in the middle. On the edge, he will be exposed. He can't rush every play. This is the same issue we're having with Reed currently.

76Texan
10-23-2013, 02:35 PM
He's not having to cover as much in the middle. On the edge, he will be exposed. He can't rush every play. This is the same issue we're having with Reed currently.

So we're not losing anything there; on the other hand, I think Cushing can be more physical with the TE, knocking him off his route a little stronger than Reed.

Reed isn't a guy that can run the arc explosively; I don't know if there's a drop-off with Cushing. On the plus side, I think Cushing can be stronger when he rushes to the inside of the TE or the OT.

We can protect Cushing from being cut down ferociously.
He's more aggressive than Reed.

We just need to find a big NT to help Reed in the middle on running play; this type of part-time player can be found in the third or later.
Such an example is John Jenkins that the Saints took in the third (one among those I considered for the Texans), and he's showing some impact for them already.

Reed isn't an animal like Cushing in nature, but his numbers from the combine suggest that he can be a sideline to sideline player (the 20SS and the 3-cone).

I think it's quite doable. It should help to keep both of them on the field.

HOU-TEX
10-23-2013, 02:42 PM
Just saw this Tweet from PFF. My original thought of leaving him in the middle and that he was getting better every game remains the same

Pro Football Focus ‏@PFF 4h
18.1% of Brian Cushings run defense snaps saw him make defensive stop. Most of any player. 2nd Sean Lee (17.3) & 3rd Brandon Spikes (17.2)

76Texan
10-23-2013, 03:00 PM
Just saw this Tweet from PFF. My original thought of leaving him in the middle and that he was getting better every game remains the same

Oh, I adopted his move to ILB, but the draw back is that his aggressiveness can result in injury.

Rey
10-23-2013, 03:20 PM
He's not having to cover as much in the middle. On the edge, he will be exposed. He can't rush every play. This is the same issue we're having with Reed currently.

Reed isn't nearly as talented as a healthy Cushing so I don't understand those comparisons. They are two vastly different players.

And MLB's are expected to cover much more ground that OLB's in the 34. Especially Wades 34.

Teams aren't running up the middle all day.

The problem we're having with Reed is that he's not all that talented. He's an average player.

Rey
10-23-2013, 03:27 PM
Just saw this Tweet from PFF. My original thought of leaving him in the middle and that he was getting better every game remains the same

He's by far the best LB on the team. No one else is close. To me that mostly says that Cushing was playing well against the run and he likely wasn't getting a lot of help from other LB's.

I didn't start this thread to say Cushing sucked in the middle this year. But projecting the future of the team I do believe that a move to the outside should be entertained.

Rey
10-23-2013, 03:40 PM
I like the idea of moving Cushing to ILB, especially when you think of the nightmare offenses would face if Watt and Cush were coming from the same side. Move Cushing to the other side, opposite Watt, and offenses would have to worry about two great players coming from both directions.

Would you suggest just playing Cushing from one side only? Or move him from one side to the other as situations dictate?

Hopefully this is a conversation with merit because he's back next season. Just kills me that we've lost him twice within a 12 month period. Just sucks all the way around.

I'd play him on both sides and still in the middle at times. We don't have a LB close to Cushing and we don't have a big DLine to protect them. Cushing rushed the passer a lot in college. He was an edge player. When he first got here he was an olb. I rember a lot of people freaking out when he went inside that one year demeco was hurt. The team ended up nixing that.

When wade was coming on there was a lot of discussion on where he's play. Those threads are probably around here somewhere.

With these last two injuries, I think it's wise to start thinking about ways to use him to keep him extremely effective.

badboy
10-23-2013, 03:58 PM
I would like to see what a swap of Reed and Cush would bring especially with my new mock of NT Nix and ILB Smallwood. Nix would allow OLBs to be more effective. Also this is last contract year for both Mitchell and McClain (RFA).

disaacks3
10-23-2013, 04:26 PM
Reed isn't nearly as talented as a healthy Cushing so I don't understand those comparisons. They are two vastly different players.

And MLB's are expected to cover much more ground that OLB's in the 34. Especially Wades 34.

Teams aren't running up the middle all day.

The problem we're having with Reed is that he's not all that talented. He's an average player.
:wadepalm:

When was the last time we saw a healthy Cushing? If you think he'll return to early 2012 levels after this injury, you're not watching games closely.

Cushing's go-forward issue isn't talent or heart, but injuries that will affect his physical ability to make plays. It was already apparent this year.

A banged-up Cushing is still better than 70% of the LBs in the league, but if you force him to cover TEs or follow a slant across the field, he'll be several steps behind.

Sure, if you dedicate him to the pass rush and coverage only to the near sideline, it could work. It's all hyperbole until he recovers though.

Rey
10-23-2013, 04:55 PM
:wadepalm:

When was the last time we saw a healthy Cushing? If you think he'll return to early 2012 levels after this injury, you're not watching games closely.

Cushing's go-forward issue isn't talent or heart, but injuries that will affect his physical ability to make plays. It was already apparent this year.

A banged-up Cushing is still better than 70% of the LBs in the league, but if you force him to cover TEs or follow a slant across the field, he'll be several steps behind.

Sure, if you dedicate him to the pass rush and coverage only to the near sideline, it could work. It's all hyperbole until he recovers though.


Way to focus on one statement and blow it out if proportion. Talk about hyperbole.

When I say healthy, I mean able to play. I didn't put any percentage on it, you did.

But really that's not even relevant. You're comparing two players who are no where near the same talent wise. You used reeds struggles as an example as to why Cushing would struggle. "That's the problem we're having with reed"

No, the problem with Reed is that he's a limited player. No matter where he plays he's a two down player. That he's 0 to do with Cushing.

Rey
10-23-2013, 04:58 PM
:wadepalm:

When was the last time we saw a healthy Cushing? If you think he'll return to early 2012 levels after this injury, you're not watching games closely.

Cushing's go-forward issue isn't talent or heart, but injuries that will affect his physical ability to make plays. It was already apparent this year.

A banged-up Cushing is still better than 70% of the LBs in the league, but if you force him to cover TEs or follow a slant across the field, he'll be several steps behind.

Sure, if you dedicate him to the pass rush and coverage only to the near sideline, it could work. It's all hyperbole until he recovers though.


And btw, how many slants across the field have you seen reed and Mercilus cover? How many TE's have you seen them go man to man on?

You don't know what you're talking about. The ilb's on this team have more coverage responsibilities. Wade has outlined this several times. When he's asked about our OLB's in coverage he's explained that most of the time it's simple flats type zones they go in.

What image do you guys have of our OLB's? We don't have Von miller, dion Jordan type OLB's. These guys are more like hybrid de's in a 52. They mostly set the edge, chase down the line and rush the passer. The strong side guy covers more than the weak side guy but he's still not man to man very often and he's definitely not running across the field covering slants very often if at all.


Your bolded is exactly the point except for some reason people think that the OLB's in this defense need more athleticism than a 3 down mlb in this defense. His potential loss of range and sideline to sideline ability and quick change of direction is EXACTLY why I started the thread.

HOU-TEX
10-23-2013, 05:11 PM
He's by far the best LB on the team. No one else is close. To me that mostly says that Cushing was playing well against the run and he likely wasn't getting a lot of help from other LB's.

I didn't start this thread to say Cushing sucked in the middle this year. But projecting the future of the team I do believe that a move to the outside should be entertained.

Understandable. I do realize we have a major issue at OLB. This is the 2nd year in a row where we've seen next to nothing.

What I'd like to do is this, experiment by moving Reed and Trevardo inside during the offseason to see if one of them can stick. Whichever one looks the best, prolong the experiment into TC to see how they do next to Cush. The OLB position must be upgraded by FA and the draft.

Rey
10-23-2013, 05:17 PM
Understandable. I do realize we have a major issue at OLB. This is the 2nd year in a row where we've seen next to nothing.

What I'd like to do is this, experiment by moving Reed and Trevardo inside during the offseason to see if one of them can stick. Whichever one looks the best, prolong the experiment into TC to see how they do next to Cush. The OLB position must be upgraded by FA and the draft.

LoL...not laughing at you, but every time I think of trevardo the image from pre season of him getting bullied 15 yards down field like a kid pops into my head. I literally have to hold back laughter.

Dude has his work cut out for him.

HOU-TEX
10-23-2013, 05:20 PM
LoL...not laughing at you, but every time I think of trevardo the image from pre season of him getting bullied 15 yards down field like a kid pops into my head. I literally have to hold back laughter.

Dude has his work cut out for him.

Yes, he does. Wouldn't hurt trying him inside before getting rid of him. He and Reed both are worthless outside

IDEXAN
10-23-2013, 05:28 PM
What he was asked to do in the 4-3 was completely different then what he would be required to do in the 3-4.

As I said, Cushing played the "elephant" position in the 4-3 when he first came to play in Houston in 2009, though technically that's the SAM or strong-side 4-3 postion it's really more of a hybrid 4-3 SAM/DE position. So of course it's very different than a 3-4 ILB.