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edo783
02-07-2006, 10:33 PM
This is from NFL.com by Gregg Easterbrook. We should pay attention:

Why are the Pittsburgh and Seattle offensive lines so good? One reason is seven of the 10 were originally drafted by their teams. Four of five players on both offensive lines have been starting together for four years, meaning they know each other's moves. Offensive line moves are more important than spectators realize: think of Tobeck turning the wrong way. Teams seeking success ought to follow the Pittsburgh and Seattle offensive line model -- invest draft choices in blockers, then keep them together as a unit for an extended period.

Scooter
02-08-2006, 08:03 AM
jeff hartings - rd 1, pick 23 (detroit)
alan faneca - rd 1, pick 26 (pitt)
marvel smith - rd 2, pick 38 (pitt)
max starks - rd 3, pick 75 (pitt)
kendall simmons - rd 1, pick 30 (pitt)

steve hutchinson - rd 1, pick 17 (seattle)
walter jones - rd 1, pick 6 (seattle)
chris gray - rd 5, pick 132 (miami)
robbie tobeck - undrafted (signed by atlanta)
sean locklear - rd 3, pick 84 (seattle)


i hope we learn to draft like that one of these days. "weapons" & "game breakers" are nice, but they dont do anything without the big uglies winning their battle. between both teams, only two offensive skill position players have been taken in the first round ... sean alexander & ben roethlisberger. i read somewhere (probably that article) that alan faneca should've been front runner for MVP and i find it hard to disagree. draft linemen first, load up on defense, and mix in a few skill position guys as needed. unless of course we'd rather be the lions, drafting the "best player EVER!!!!!" year after year.

Kaiser Toro
02-08-2006, 08:49 AM
Good stuff Edo and Scooter. These threads that make sense usually do not get a lot of attention.

The Preacher
02-08-2006, 09:46 AM
jeff hartings - rd 1, pick 23 (detroit)
alan faneca - rd 1, pick 26 (pitt)
marvel smith - rd 2, pick 38 (pitt)
max starks - rd 3, pick 75 (pitt)
kendall simmons - rd 1, pick 30 (pitt)

steve hutchinson - rd 1, pick 17 (seattle)
walter jones - rd 1, pick 6 (seattle)
chris gray - rd 5, pick 132 (miami)
robbie tobeck - undrafted (signed by atlanta)
sean locklear - rd 3, pick 84 (seattle)


i hope we learn to draft like that one of these days. "weapons" & "game breakers" are nice, but they dont do anything without the big uglies winning their battle. between both teams, only two offensive skill position players have been taken in the first round ... sean alexander & ben roethlisberger. i read somewhere (probably that article) that alan faneca should've been front runner for MVP and i find it hard to disagree. draft linemen first, load up on defense, and mix in a few skill position guys as needed. unless of course we'd rather be the lions, drafting the "best player EVER!!!!!" year after year.

But dude don't you know all of Denver's line was taken after the 165th pick overall except one 1st rounder and since Kubes ids coming here, we won't need to spend our first day picks on linemen.

My first day
1)Reggie Bush-DD won't take all the punishment
2)Sinorice Moss-the #2 we've been waiting for
3A)Dominique Byrd-Finally a play making TE
3B)Skyler Green-A steal at this point the man can flat out fly

We really don't need any linemen since FA has some decent guys plus I am sure we are about to gel.

4)Michael Robinson-falls to second day can play WR,QB,RB,CB,S and return if Mathis gets hurt. Keeps Green and Mathis on top of their forty.
5)Reggie Mcneal-flier QB also can do reverses with Robinson ala Randel El/Ward
6)Fastest Man available-hopefully a slash type to prototype next year's talent
7)Scott Frost-grab him before he heads to Canada I firmly believe he is a true QB/S convert he essentially revolutionized this theory.

Now imagine the possibilities we could control the clock with 20-25 second trick plays that allow close to 45-50 minutes of the clock control to assure we don't need to draft defense either.

cadahnic
02-08-2006, 09:49 AM
Wow the fact that you did not put the sarcasm sign on this almost threw me off till you got to the end. Nice you had me going there preach. Denver will also be looking for some top OLs though in this draft, because as many Broncos fans have stated they run well, but dont pass block overly well.

Kaiser Toro
02-08-2006, 09:57 AM
because as many Broncos fans have stated they run well, but dont pass block overly well.

Brings up a question. How many zone blocking teams have been in the top 10 in the passing game? I ask because size does matter with blocking schemes.

I do not know the answer, just looking for thoughts.

cadahnic
02-08-2006, 10:02 AM
Well the Broncos were during the Elway years were up there I am pretty sure, but other than that I cannot really remember any. I know the Packers used it for a bit as did the Chargers, but I dont think either of them were up there when they used it, and they both switched back to the traditional blocking schemes. I would have to ask Coach C. because he knows more on this kinda crap, AJ or Infantry may know some also, If Vinny's seasoned wisdom would get on he may be able to shed some light.

Texans Horror
02-08-2006, 10:05 AM
Who are the best five offensive lines in the NFL?

People talk about the Colts/Broncos/Steelers lines and how good they are. Are they the best lines in the NFL? I tried looking this up, and the whole things is kind of opaque. There are some "guidelines" (number of sacks, penalties, how well the running game goes, etc.), but I'm not seeing anything that provides a definitive ranking of lines. If anyone knows, I would love to see that info.

infantrycak
02-08-2006, 10:11 AM
Here (http://www.footballoutsiders.com/stats/ol.php) is Football Outsiders' attempt to rank OL's by their system which orders them on adjusted line yards and adjusted sack rate. Take it FWIW. They do a lot of stat manipulation which IMO has lead to some pretty odd conclusions which make me question their methodology, but it is interesting.

Sportsfan
02-08-2006, 10:13 AM
Someone email this to Casserly and Kubiak immediately.

Kaiser Toro
02-08-2006, 10:19 AM
Here (http://www.footballoutsiders.com/stats/ol.php) is Football Outsiders' attempt to rank OL's by their system which orders them on adjusted line yards and adjusted sack rate. Take it FWIW. They do a lot of stat manipulation which IMO has lead to some pretty odd conclusions which make me question their methodology, but it is interesting.

Thanks.

Another link off the site for eductational purposes:
Zone Blocking vs. Man Blocking
http://www.footballoutsiders.com/2005/03/31/ramblings/stat-analysis/2484/

Runner
02-08-2006, 10:29 AM
Here (http://www.footballoutsiders.com/stats/ol.php) is Football Outsiders' attempt to rank OL's by their system which orders them on adjusted line yards and adjusted sack rate. Take it FWIW. They do a lot of stat manipulation which IMO has lead to some pretty odd conclusions which make me question their methodology, but it is interesting.

So this shows that Denver was 2nd in run blocking and 7th in pass protection for 2005. It also shows Denver was 8th in run and 3rd in pass protection in 2004.

As you said, take it FWIW according to their methodology.

Kaiser Toro
02-08-2006, 10:46 AM
When you break it down, just to a statistical level in this methodology, there has been quite a delta between the pass and run blocking for Atlanta and Houston that is not evident with the Broncos in 2004-2005.

infantrycak
02-08-2006, 10:49 AM
Thanks.

Another link off the site for eductational purposes:
Zone Blocking vs. Man Blocking
http://www.footballoutsiders.com/2005/03/31/ramblings/stat-analysis/2484/

When this article 1st came out, I thought these comments were telling:

For the record, Joe Pendry claims that his zone blocking scheme doesnít rely on cut blocks. Given Davisís performance, he might want to reconsider that stance.

Third, it is possible that Davis might have had a better year if Pendry had used cut-blocking to Davisís advantage ó his distribution of runs is similar between the two years with the exception of his lack of long runs.

I would assume/hope at this point that Pendry's reluctance to implement the entirety of the Denver/Atlanta scheme exited with his departure.

thunderkyss
02-08-2006, 11:28 AM
This is from NFL.com by Gregg Easterbrook. We should pay attention:

Why are the Pittsburgh and Seattle offensive lines so good? One reason is seven of the 10 were originally drafted by their teams. Four of five players on both offensive lines have been starting together for four years, meaning they know each other's moves. Offensive line moves are more important than spectators realize: think of Tobeck turning the wrong way. Teams seeking success ought to follow the Pittsburgh and Seattle offensive line model -- invest draft choices in blockers, then keep them together as a unit for an extended period.


I wonder how true this would be, if you look at the Championship teams. Denver/Pitts, Seattle/Carolina.... I wonder if those lines have more of their own picks on their line than Indy/Kansas city have on theirs.

I also wonder if this was also true for last year's SB teams, the pat's and the Eagles...

I mean just because it looks true this year, does that necessarily mean it is true??

I mean I could say both teams come from the northern part of the country. Does that mean we need to move the team to Nebraska??

HJam72
02-08-2006, 12:37 PM
Does that mean we need to move the team to Nebraska??

NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :brickwall


Don't even joke about moving the team. :)

So, when we FINALLY get a complete O-line together, they'll need to stay together for 4 years to see their real potential. :cool:

JohnGalt
02-08-2006, 12:38 PM
I wonder how true this would be, if you look at the Championship teams. Denver/Pitts, Seattle/Carolina.... I wonder if those lines have more of their own picks on their line than Indy/Kansas city have on theirs.

I also wonder if this was also true for last year's SB teams, the pat's and the Eagles...

I mean just because it looks true this year, does that necessarily mean it is true??

I mean I could say both teams come from the northern part of the country. Does that mean we need to move the team to Nebraska??
You really need to read the whole article to get where Easterbrook is going with this.

So what did the Super Bowl prove -- that defense trumps offense? That roughneck football trumps finesse? That a team that loses three defensive starters during a game will fade in the fourth quarter? Yours truly thinks the larger lesson of this Super Bowl is that the team that starts the most originally drafted players usually wins. Pittsburgh started 17 players that it drafted and Seattle started 10.

Sports fanatics obsess over the top of the draft -- should No. 1 be Reggie Bush, Matt Leinart or Vince Young? -- yet it is the sum of a team's drafted players that matters. Being winners, Super Bowl teams normally start a high number of originally drafted players. On Sunday, 27 of 44 starters were originally drafted by Pittsburgh or Seattle. Last February when New England beat Philadelphia in the Super Bowl, 26 of 44 starters were originally draftees of the Pats or Eagles. Pick a game between weak teams and the equation is often different. This season when Oakland played Cleveland, 15 of 44 starters were original draftees.


At first blush, starting originally drafted players may seem only to mean that a team is not wasting its draft picks -- no small consideration. But other factors are at work, including time commitments and salary-cap management. Most draftees sign for at least three years, and a three-year rookie contract is really a four-year commitment owing to the "restricted free agent" rule governing the fourth year. Restricted freedom -- what a postmodern concept! Four-year commitments mean a drafted player will be with his team a substantial chunk of time, long enough to learn the coach's system and worldview. Established veterans who move as true free agents often sign agreements that are announced as long-term deals but actually last a couple years at most. Coaches strongly prefer players committed to the team for a long period, and such commitments correlate with winning. In turn, the fact that the player knows he is committed to the team for four years gives him incentive to be team-spirited and get along with others, unlike mercenaries of the Terrell Owens ilk. And through the four years of an NFL rookie commitment, the player knows he is building up to the day he becomes a true free agent and can sign with whoever offers the largest bonus. Players working their way toward their first chance at true free agency are highly motivated.

The next reason it's important to have lots of originally drafted players is the cap. First-round choices cost a bundle, but other draftees are quite affordable in cap terms. Let me offer examples from last year's Super Bowl, because the 2005 season is not yet in the USA Today sports pay database. Last year's Super Bowl starting center for New England, Dan Koppen, a fifth-round choice, earned $340,000, well below the Patriots' median of $660,000. Having low-drafted, moderately paid but successful players such as Koppen enabled the Patriots to free up salary cap space for the $2.1 million earned by Rosevelt Colvin or the $1.7 million paid to Corey Dillon, two stars. Today the fourth- or fifth-round draft choice who starts is worth his weight in gold, because his relatively modest pay keeps the salary cap under control.

This leads to the next point, that it's successful choices from any round, not necessarily the glamorous first round, that matter. The Steelers started six originally drafted first-rounders -- plus two second-round choices, four three-round picks, four fourth-round choices and a fifth-round choice. Strong drafting below the first round was essential to Pittsburgh's success, including a Super Bowl MVP, Hines Wards, who went in the third round. But then, only three of the last 11 Super Bowl MVPs have been first-round draftees.

JohnGalt
02-08-2006, 12:58 PM
It's not just about drafting the O-Line, it's about the value of your picks and using your young players so you have cash for a few big money FA's that can put you over the top.

TheOgre
02-08-2006, 01:03 PM
It seems to correlate well. I like the logic behind it, although I am not sure of the total degree of correlation.

thunderkyss
02-08-2006, 01:18 PM
IT's a good read.... he may very well have a point, but some of his argument was based on a belief that may/maynot always be the case.... that a player is more team oriented knowing he is locked in for the term of a 4 year contract, then he says that same player is working his but off, for the big payday that is coming after the 4 years......... I just don't think those are necessarily givens. Some folks just want to win.

nunusguy
02-08-2006, 01:46 PM
Very interesting analysis. The number of first day picks, not to mention first
rounders, selected by Pitt and Seattle is surprising to me. Especially when the info is contrasted with what a team like Denver has commited to Draft
resources for OL players. Could the Broncos zone blocking scheme be such
a superior system that less talented players can compete comparitively to
better lineman in other blocking schemes ? Doesn't make any sense.
I dunno....FWIW, Casserly said on the radio awhile back that some teams invest heavily in the tackles (Draft & FA) and stress developement and retention, but their guards and centers are very expendable and turnover of players at the interior of the OL is not a big concern to these teams.
I guess its all in the philosophy of a given team ?

Texas
02-08-2006, 02:06 PM
I like this topic. Our line is what we do lack a great deal. I beleive we should start looking into drafting a better line. That could handle our problem that everyone seems to have with Carr and make DD look even better.

Maddict5
02-08-2006, 02:41 PM
Who are the best five offensive lines in the NFL?


IMO the 5 best lines are-in no order
Bengals,Steelers,Seattle,Bears,Eagles(arent brilliant run blockers)/Skins(not brilliant pass blockers),KC,Denver sd arent far off(hell the afc west is a great division), colts

ok thats more than 5 but they're all good if i had to put them in order:
1-Seattle
2-Bengals
3-Pittsburgh
4-Bears
5-KC

but none of the others are far away

Maddict5
02-08-2006, 02:44 PM
Here (http://www.footballoutsiders.com/stats/ol.php) is Football Outsiders' attempt to rank OL's by their system which orders them on adjusted line yards and adjusted sack rate. Take it FWIW. They do a lot of stat manipulation which IMO has lead to some pretty odd conclusions which make me question their methodology, but it is interesting.

i cant believe that source-it lost all credibility when they said we were the worst pass blockers :rolleyes:

Double Barrel
02-08-2006, 02:48 PM
Four of five players on both offensive lines have been starting together for four years, meaning they know each other's moves. Offensive line moves are more important than spectators realize: think of Tobeck turning the wrong way. Teams seeking success ought to follow the Pittsburgh and Seattle offensive line model -- invest draft choices in blockers, then keep them together as a unit for an extended period.

Great thread, edo. :thumbup

Solid, consistent offensive lines are the hardest unit to put together on a football team, and by far takes the longest to develop into a cohesive unit. This seems to be Football 101, and even casual fans understand the wisdom of this plan of action.

So it's not lost on the fans...but why has it been so hard to develop with the Texans? We had two offensive line coaches, but still struggled. We've got a lot of money tied up in linemen, but were dead last in pass protection. Things just aren't adding up. I'm sure coaching has a significant part to play in the o-line's failure, but talent has to be scrutinized, as well. In addition, the light should be shed on who, exactly, evaluates and picks the talent.

The more you study winning teams, the more likely you are to come to the conclusion that games are won in the trenches. With that understanding, the Texans FO has to focus getting our lines beefed up before any other concerns. RB & VY are nothing if they have no protection. Same on the defensive side of the ball, too.

Big B Texan Fan
02-08-2006, 02:55 PM
I like this topic. Our line is what we do lack a great deal. I beleive we should start looking into drafting a better line. That could handle our problem that everyone seems to have with Carr and make DD look even better.
Operative word there is could.
We do need to draft O-line but this is somethng we should've already been doing. Last years draft would've been a perfect opportunity. I would've much rather had taken Kalif Barnes over TJ when we moved down in last years draft. 2 years ago would've been a perfect time as well but dumb-o Casserly gave away the farm for a small school product to play a position he had never played before (Babin). Going back to last years draft, the 2nd and 3rd we gave up for the CB (P-Buch) who Cass admittedly confessed to only watching 3-4 games worth of film on (probably his hi-lite reel sent out by his agent) would've been perfect opportunities as well to get our hands on some O-Line help.

Speaking on O-line quality play anyways, the same O-line that got Bledsoe rushed to the ER with bleeding in his chest as well as a 1-4 start to the season and the loss of his starting position is the same O-line that got Brady and the RB by commitee to the Super Bowl.

Texans Horror
02-08-2006, 03:39 PM
Experience together creates cohesiveness on the line, but our line does have cohesion. Going into this season, we returned four starters. Wade, Wiegert, McKinney, and Pitts were all playing the same positions they had the year before. The arguement has been made before, and I think it has validity, that the only change between this year and last was the LT. Wand was pulled. If you look at it from the standpoint of cohesion, it doesn't really explain the line's problems going into the 2005 season. I think coaching techniques had more to do with it. However, as soon as linemen starting dropping out like flies (bringing in Weary, Hodgdon, etc.), removing Riley, and playing a basic game of musical chairs - well, yeah, that was a total breakdown of cohesion. That's one of the reasons I don't think the Texans are far away from banking it as most people.

At this point, IMO, the line is going to become a decent line with Kubiak at the helm. Using the chance to insert an "upgraded" lineman can really jumpstart this team. However, I hope we do not forget that we have four players who already have cohesion working together and can probably greatly improve their game with a little coaching - which is a much smaller cap hit than completely overhauling the line.

zeplin
02-08-2006, 03:50 PM
This is from NFL.com by Gregg Easterbrook. We should pay attention:

Why are the Pittsburgh and Seattle offensive lines so good? One reason is seven of the 10 were originally drafted by their teams. Four of five players on both offensive lines have been starting together for four years, meaning they know each other's moves. Offensive line moves are more important than spectators realize: think of Tobeck turning the wrong way. Teams seeking success ought to follow the Pittsburgh and Seattle offensive line model -- invest draft choices in blockers, then keep them together as a unit for an extended period.

This is absolutley true. I believe that the centerpoint of a good offense is the men in the trenches. OL,OL,OL. Screw the VY RB mentality. If we go that route we will just be crappy next year too.

Scooter
02-08-2006, 04:56 PM
what the article really focuses on, more than just drafting linemen, is drafting well overall. this is something we've yet to accomplish. sure, we've had a couple big picks (robinson, DD, pitts, and possibly mathis), but look at the whole group of 4 years drafting ... it's entirely pathetic. this team was supposed to be different. we were supposed to do it right and build our team from the draft as opposed to free agency or trading ... unlike the other recent expansions (two of which seem to be perennial playoff contenders after dom capers leaves). and in our 5th year we're back at square 1 hoping for the same. 7 of last years starters on defense were not drafted by the texans, and 6 on offense. granted, we're still new, but after 4 years we should've found better talent than that. look at pittsburgh, they drafted dang near the whole offense. including their backfield who went undrafted, 10 of their 11 starters have only played in pittsburgh (might as well throw the bus in there as another).

as far as how to fix it, learn from our mistakes. we've built our offense backwards. if we do draft "you know who" at runningback, we'll have successfully wasted a top 3 pick on every "skill position" on offense, and are still trying to building our line through free agency & gambling on late rounders. 4 out 5 of last years' starters on the offensive line were acquired through free agency/trade. follow the logic ... quality linemen almost never hit the market because they're too valuable, therefor the only FA linemen out there arent very talented, our line is built through FA.

given good enough blocking, anyone on these forums could be a threat to "take one to the house" at any time. imagine what carr & dd could do. here's hoping for a BIG draft (as in several 300lb'ers).

Kaiser Toro
02-08-2006, 05:32 PM
Preach on Scooter. Good stuff.

SESupergenius
02-08-2006, 05:37 PM
That is fuel for the trade down argument, very good thoughts Scooter. I would like to add too that this isn't just an all of the sudden eye opener, you could go through these boards and if you were around long enough you could see the angst that fellow board members felt when we didn't address the lines early on.

stevo3883
02-08-2006, 06:12 PM
That is fuel for the trade down argument, very good thoughts Scooter. I would like to add too that this isn't just an all of the sudden eye opener, you could go through these boards and if you were around long enough you could see the angst that fellow board members felt when we didn't address the lines early on.


oh come on! everyone knows the line just needs some time to GEL!

SESupergenius
02-08-2006, 06:19 PM
oh come on! everyone knows the line just needs some time to GEL!
Actually that wouldn't be a bad thing either, we've had a lot of musical chairs with this team on almost all fronts.

Maddict5
02-09-2006, 10:17 AM
oh come on! everyone knows the line just needs some time to GEL!

i think you'll also find talent is a small ingredient which is also required

HoustonFrog
02-09-2006, 10:33 AM
Sorry if this is a repeat or something but I have been gone for a couple of days. Our new O-ccordinator was on 610 the other day and he talked about how Denver took smaller, scrappier guys who love to play the game and put them into the zone blocking scheme. He did say he wants to fit the guys we have into the right places but all in all we would have the Broncos offense being put in. Their O-line is one first rounder which was the 20th pick, a rookie free agent, 2 fourth rounders and a 7th rounder. Obviously Denver picked lower but I doubt we would take a guy with a Top 5 pick for our O-line when this is one of the deepest drafts for O-lineman. We can do both skill and lineman in this draft if they scout like they did in Denver. He said that they mold guys into their system. That could be the guys we have now or ones we draft with our second pick or below.

Scooter
02-09-2006, 12:22 PM
Sorry if this is a repeat or something but I have been gone for a couple of days. Our new O-ccordinator was on 610 the other day and he talked about how Denver took smaller, scrappier guys who love to play the game and put them into the zone blocking scheme. He did say he wants to fit the guys we have into the right places but all in all we would have the Broncos offense being put in. Their O-line is one first rounder which was the 20th pick, a rookie free agent, 2 fourth rounders and a 7th rounder. Obviously Denver picked lower but I doubt we would take a guy with a Top 5 pick for our O-line when this is one of the deepest drafts for O-lineman. We can do both skill and lineman in this draft if they scout like they did in Denver. He said that they mold guys into their system. That could be the guys we have now or ones we draft with our second pick or below.

you bring up a good point frog. what's failed to mention though is that denver isnt drafting rb or qb's very high either. denver hasnt drafted a qb in the first round since 83, and i cant find them drafting a rb in the first. ron dayne & jake plummer were traded for after they were deemed "busts", and then there's anderson (6th round) and tatum bell (2nd). denver is tough to emulate however because they seem to build though free agency. they've got one of the best coaching staffs (who turn busts like plummer into pro-bowlers), and an outstanding scouting department. they load up on mid-draft picks, and address holes through free agency. a typical denver draft it seems involves going defense first, either by drafting defense or trading picks for defensive players. atleast 7 of the starters on defense were first rounders, but atleast 6 starters were drafted outside of denver. last year they were concerned with their defense so they sign 4 linemen from the browns and draft 3 cb's with their first 3 picks. such a talented coaching staff has made denver a bit of an offseason oddity.

HoustonFrog
02-09-2006, 12:36 PM
you bring up a good point frog. what's failed to mention though is that denver isnt drafting rb or qb's very high either. denver hasnt drafted a qb in the first round since 83, and i cant find them drafting a rb in the first. ron dayne & jake plummer were traded for after they were deemed "busts", and then there's anderson (6th round) and tatum bell (2nd). denver is tough to emulate however because they seem to build though free agency. they've got one of the best coaching staffs (who turn busts like plummer into pro-bowlers), and an outstanding scouting department. they load up on mid-draft picks, and address holes through free agency. a typical denver draft it seems involves going defense first, either by drafting defense or trading picks for defensive players. atleast 7 of the starters on defense were first rounders, but atleast 6 starters were drafted outside of denver. last year they were concerned with their defense so they sign 4 linemen from the browns and draft 3 cb's with their first 3 picks. such a talented coaching staff has made denver a bit of an offseason oddity.

Good points. When I looked at their drafts I noticed alot of Dbs lately. If he thinks he can get it done with our guys and wants to move down to get D and picks I'm fine with that. I just was never good with moving down to take a Top 5 pick O-lineman when they seem to have success with guys a but further down the ladder. I'm sure there are O-lineman that fit their mold too. He even made reference to smaller and scrappy.