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View Full Version : What would it take to run a 3-4 defense?


Blake
10-06-2010, 01:16 PM
Not gonna happen. But for fun, lets say Cowher comes here in 2011 and wants to run a 3-4 defense.

Who would fit. Who would be out, and what would be needed to bring in?

With a strong linebackers core they should be able to transition fairly easily. The front 3 are the concern.

BigBull17
10-06-2010, 01:19 PM
You have to either have a huge fat ****, or make sure your 2 ends are beefy. I think we have the Lb's. You also have to have pretty solid secondary play to let you open it up.

rmartin65
10-06-2010, 01:22 PM
We dont have a NT.

But Mario and Smith on the Ends, with Okoye being a decent (maybe) backup.

LB- Cushing and Barwin on the outside, Diles and Ryans in the middle.

I could live with this, actually it is more exciting than our 4-3. But a NT is needed in a bad way.

Goldensilence
10-06-2010, 01:24 PM
Not gonna happen. But for fun, lets say Cowher comes here in 2011 and wants to run a 3-4 defense.

Who would fit. Who would be out, and what would be needed to bring in?

With a strong linebackers core they should be able to transition fairly easily. The front 3 are the concern.

Well you need a OLB that is more built to blitz, I think Barwin fits the bill nicely when healthy. You need Lbers that can cover the middle. I think we have a strong 4-3 LBing corps but, a weak 3-4 LBing corps. I think like Cushing, Ryans, and Sharpton and Adibi battling for the final spot as our starters along with Barwin. Much as I like Diles as a 3-4 Lber you got to have sideline to sideline speed, he just doesn't have it.

Also would have to have one big body in the middle, DelJuan might fit that role. Smith and Williams would make good 3-4 DEs, but if you ask me I think Mario is a much better fit as a 4-3 DE. We'd also have to get bigger at DE behind those two.

I wouldn't see a huge change in how the secondary is composed.

BigBull17
10-06-2010, 01:24 PM
We dont have a NT.

But Mario and Smith on the Ends, with Okoye being a decent (maybe) backup.

LB- Cushing and Barwin on the outside, Diles and Ryans in the middle.

I could live with this, actually it is more exciting than our 4-3. But a NT is needed in a bad way.

Cushing and Barwin would be pretty good at OLB.

gtexan02
10-06-2010, 01:25 PM
We're 3-1 and talking about getting a new head coach and a complete overhaul of our entire defensive system?

Oh no!

But seriously, I dont want us to transition to a 3-4 because I feel it wastes a lot of Marios potential. Hes your perfect 4-3 DE.

The Pencil Neck
10-06-2010, 01:26 PM
Not gonna happen. But for fun, lets say Cowher comes here in 2011 and wants to run a 3-4 defense.

Who would fit. Who would be out, and what would be needed to bring in?

With a strong linebackers core they should be able to transition fairly easily. The front 3 are the concern.

Antonio - ???? - Mario

Cush - Sharpton - Demeco - Diles/Adibi/Bing/Barwin

The biggest problem would be the NT. We don't have someone that can really play that spot. Okam would probably be closest but he doesn't play well enough.

There would be a dogfight for the other outside LB spot opposite Cush. Right now, it would go to Diles but when Bing and Barwin come back from IR, they'd be pushing for that spot because they'd be better rushing the passer, I think.

I think Cody, Okoye, and Mitchell would have problems fitting in.

TimeKiller
10-06-2010, 01:38 PM
I think you'd need to draft or sign another rush type OLB. Cushing would work but he/Ryans would be a lethal combo protecting the middle with someone more like Barwin outside. Frankly that's all you would need. Between Mario and Smith there isn't a lack of size without a 350+ NT, so Okoye/Cody/Okam would be fine as a rotation. There especially wouldn't be a lack of size if you add Cush/Barwin/possibly the other drafted OLB in this hypothetical.

So you have something like this:
ASmith - Okoye - Mario
OLB - Cushing - Ryans - Barwin
Jackson - Pollard - Nolan :) - Quin

And you would need a coach who knew what to do with all that talent.

Actually, the Texans ran a bit of 3/4 with Barwin really giving them an element of surprise. They ran it effectively in the preseason lining up like this:

ASmith - Cody - Okoye
Barwin - Cushing - Ryans - Mario
Jackson - Pollard - Wilson - Quin

dream_team
10-06-2010, 01:39 PM
Like everyone else is saying, we'd first need to get a big ass NT. Cody or Okam may fill in, but they wouldn't be a permanent solution.

You can expect Mario to demand a trade. He's a prototypical 4-3 DE. Remember how Kampman didn't like the transition in GB and wanted out? Expect the same thing.

I actually think Okoye would be a good 3-4 DE. Smith would do good as well.

Like others have mentioned, I'd like to see Barwin as the 4th LB that rushes the passer.

Ryan
10-06-2010, 01:47 PM
Hypothetically, do any of you think Mario could transfer to a 3-4 OLB? He might have to drop a couple pounds but i honestly couldn't see him being a 3-4 DE.

BigBull17
10-06-2010, 01:52 PM
I think you'd need to draft or sign another rush type OLB. Cushing would work but he/Ryans would be a lethal combo protecting the middle with someone more like Barwin outside. Frankly that's all you would need. Between Mario and Smith there isn't a lack of size without a 350+ NT, so Okoye/Cody/Okam would be fine as a rotation. There especially wouldn't be a lack of size if you add Cush/Barwin/possibly the other drafted OLB in this hypothetical.

So you have something like this:
ASmith - Okoye - Mario
OLB - Cushing - Ryans - Barwin
Jackson - Pollard - Nolan :) - Quin

And you would need a coach who knew what to do with all that talent.

Actually, the Texans ran a bit of 3/4 with Barwin really giving them an element of surprise. They ran it effectively in the preseason lining up like this:

ASmith - Cody - Okoye
Barwin - Cushing - Ryans - Mario
Jackson - Pollard - Wilson - Quin

Yeah, Cushing would be a Mike LB if we didn't have Demeco. He is a leader, smart, and a tough cookie. Mario would be ok at times as an OLB, but he is a little too big. Smith didn't fit as a 3-4 end.

C Madd
10-06-2010, 01:55 PM
Hypothetically, do any of you think Mario could transfer to a 3-4 OLB? He might have to drop a couple pounds but i honestly couldn't see him being a 3-4 DE.

I couldn't see him as a 3-4 DE either and I think it'd be a huge waste of his ability. I think you'd almost HAVE to stand him up and have him play OLB. Maybe Okoye and Mitchell as the 3-4 DEs and bring in some huge fat ass run stopper for the DT.

I think Houston is pretty well built to run 4-3, though, and would hate to see it change any time soon.

TimeKiller
10-06-2010, 01:57 PM
Yeah, Cushing would be a Mike LB if we didn't have Demeco. He is a leader, smart, and a tough cookie. Mario would be ok at times as an OLB, but he is a little too big. Smith didn't fit as a 3-4 end.

I don't believe Mario's size is what hampers his ability as a 3/4 guy. It's his coverage skills (or lack of). He would be asked to drop more than he does now which is maybe once or twice a game MAYBE. Honestly, I think he has the capability to do it, he's just worked so long on being a hand down guy. He works standing up pretty well, he just doesn't do it much.

Smith would be a pretty awesome 3/4 end if you ask me. He and Okoye (and COdy as the biggin' NT) are the front when they flash a 3/4 out there.

BIG TORO
10-06-2010, 02:10 PM
All we would need is this guy:
http://ts1.mm.bing.net/images/thumbnail.aspx?q=273859151132&id=4bdc00199ff7c8b674b28a1920b0ab1d
He loves the 3-4 D!
:jk:

IDEXAN
10-06-2010, 02:23 PM
We're 3-1 and talking about getting a new head coach and a complete overhaul of our entire defensive system?

Oh no!

But seriously, I dont want us to transition to a 3-4 because I feel it wastes a lot of Marios potential. Hes your perfect 4-3 DE.
Well said !
Things are going well, actually I guess they're going better than ever given
the Texans have never been at 3-1 before. So why on earth would somebody want to even speculate about bringing in another coach and changing the defensive/offensive system right now ?
For Christ's sake, lets give Kubiak the benefit of the doubt atleast for the time being. I think he's earned it.

BigBull17
10-06-2010, 02:25 PM
I don't believe Mario's size is what hampers his ability as a 3/4 guy. It's his coverage skills (or lack of). He would be asked to drop more than he does now which is maybe once or twice a game MAYBE. Honestly, I think he has the capability to do it, he's just worked so long on being a hand down guy. He works standing up pretty well, he just doesn't do it much.

Smith would be a pretty awesome 3/4 end if you ask me. He and Okoye (and COdy as the biggin' NT) are the front when they flash a 3/4 out there.

I thought Smith left Zona cause he was ill suited for a 3-4. I think Mario would be pretty good in a 3-4. either as a lb or an end. He is decent in coverage, no worse than Diles...

Big Lou
10-06-2010, 03:11 PM
More than 4 healthy Line Backers!!!!!

BigBull17
10-06-2010, 03:23 PM
I kind of like the whole 4-3 and 3-4 combo. Gives different looks to worry about.

m5kwatts
10-06-2010, 03:25 PM
5-techniques would be Okoye, Antonio, Nading, & Mario (when Barwin rushes)

0-techniques would be Okam, Cody and on 3rd downs Okoye and Mitchell

The SAM OLB would be Cush every down

The inside MIKE would be Demeco and the inside WILL would be Diles

The WILL or blindside rush OLB would be Mario primarily & Barwin (Mario to 3 tech)

I don't know why Cowher needs to be here, Bush isn't married to the 4-3 we already run a lot of this.

Blake
10-06-2010, 03:29 PM
NOTICE: For those that are getting their panties in a wad. I am not saying lets do it. I said this is just for fun. Something to talk about in the middle of a loooong week.

So it sounds like the front 3 are the problem with only A. Smith fitting in at DE. But I do think Mario is pretty good against the run and double teams, so I think he would fit too. Everyone else isnt a fit, or isnt good enough to start.

Probably would set the org back a year or 2 as we draft the right players. While hoping our offense can just outscore everyone ala the Packers of the past couple of years. A couple of these guys could get the ball rolling.

Allen Bailey, DE/DT, Miami
Jared Crick, DE/DT, Nebraska
Jerrell Powe, NT, Ole Miss
Akeem Ayers, DE/OLB, UCLA

Dread-Head
10-06-2010, 04:12 PM
...two words baby... "BILL & ME!" Yo Bill...suit up. We're back in the game!

Dread-Head
10-06-2010, 04:14 PM
All we would need is this guy:
http://ts1.mm.bing.net/images/thumbnail.aspx?q=273859151132&id=4bdc00199ff7c8b674b28a1920b0ab1d
He loves the 3-4 D!
:jk:

...and fried chicken, pizza, lasagne, deep fried EVERYTHING, chocolate covered lard balls, chilli doughnuts and FLAN BABY! FLAN!

TimeKiller
10-06-2010, 05:35 PM
I thought Smith left Zona cause he was ill suited for a 3-4. I think Mario would be pretty good in a 3-4. either as a lb or an end. He is decent in coverage, no worse than Diles...

I figured it was :money:

I mean, we have Bush (from Arizona) running the same sort of hybrid 3/4 4/3 mixer thang. And since he got his big payday out of there I'd say he wasn't exactly sucking.

and lol at Mario>Diles. It's funny because it's true.

Texan_Bill
10-06-2010, 05:39 PM
...two words baby... "BILL & ME!" Yo Bill...suit up. We're back in the game!

Okay, lemme put my cane up.

hobie
10-06-2010, 05:42 PM
Okay, lemme put my cane up.

Yeah, is that what you want to call it?? Please, it's not :thisbig:

JB
10-06-2010, 06:44 PM
Okay, lemme put my cane up.

Yeah, is that what you want to call it?? Please, it's not :thisbig:


:lol:

And you would know this how??? :hobie:

Texan_Bill
10-06-2010, 06:49 PM
Yeah, is that what you want to call it?? Please, it's not :thisbig:

:foottap: Why is everything phallic to you?? :hobie:

Texan_Bill
10-06-2010, 06:50 PM
Back to topic:

Re: What would it take to run a 3-4 defense?


Jason Babin! :francis:


:hides:

CretorFrigg
10-06-2010, 07:06 PM
Like everyone's saying, we would need a dominant NT in order to switch to a 3-4 defense. Okoye isn't strong enough to be the "space-filler" that is required of a NT. I'd also be curious to see how effective Mario would be as a 3-4 DE. His role would certainly change as he'll primarily be responsible for stopping the run and essentially be a DT in our 4-3 defense. I could see Barwin moving to OLB -- mostly as a pass rusher and occasionally dropping into coverage; much like what he's doing now except standing up as a LB.

It seems like every other team in the league now is switching over to the 3-4 though. What's the advantage?

JB
10-06-2010, 07:21 PM
Back to topic:




Jason Babin! :francis:


:hides:

:foottap:

Like everyone's saying, we would need a dominant NT in order to switch to a 3-4 defense. Okoye isn't strong enough to be the "space-filler" that is required of a NT. I'd also be curious to see how effective Mario would be as a 3-4 DE. His role would certainly change as he'll primarily be responsible for stopping the run and essentially be a DT in our 4-3 defense. I could see Barwin moving to OLB -- mostly as a pass rusher and occasionally dropping into coverage; much like what he's doing now except standing up as a LB.

It seems like every other team in the league now is switching over to the 3-4 though. What's the advantage?


Using Mario as a 3-4 DE would be a waste.

CretorFrigg
10-06-2010, 07:22 PM
Using Mario as a 3-4 DE would be a waste.

Not advocating switching at all. Purely speculation. :kitten:

TimeKiller
10-06-2010, 07:30 PM
It seems like every other team in the league now is switching over to the 3-4 though. What's the advantage?

Finding the players that fit the physical mold is easier, save NT. Mario Williams/Julius Peppers types aren't common. Real big guys are hard to find. Real big guys who can move are even more rare.

The D is supposed to be fast, so short passes/outside runs aren't as effective (hence why the Texans possibly have so much difficulty).

Reading a 3-4 D is harder because picking up who is blitzing is more of a guessing game. 4-3 it's going to be the 4 DL consistently with a LB or CB for extra blitz. 3-4 you don't really know which of the 4 LB will blitz/drop until the play which is why you see 3-4 teams be more aggressive blitzing. More often and with more blitzers usually.

JB
10-06-2010, 07:31 PM
Not advocating switching at all. Purely speculation. :kitten:

Understand. But Mario would not be a DE in a 3-4. He would be an OLB, while Barwin would be the rush OLB. Cushing and Ryans could man the middle.

None of whom would be an ideal fit. Though Cushing would make a very good rush OLB.

Rey
10-06-2010, 07:32 PM
Understand. But Mario would not be a DE in a 3-4. He would be an OLB, while Barwin would be the rush OLB. Cushing and Ryans could man the middle.

None of whom would be an ideal fit. Though Cushing would make a very good rush OLB.

I think that Mario would be a DE...

Cushing and Barwin would be your OLB's and Ryans and Diles would be your ILB's.

JB
10-06-2010, 07:35 PM
I think that Mario would be a DE...

Cushing and Barwin would be your OLB's and Ryans and Diles would be your ILB's.

Maybe. But in a 3-4, the DE's are like DT's in a 4-3. They are expected to set the edge and stop the run. Might as well trade Mario.

Rey
10-06-2010, 07:37 PM
I am glad that we are not switching to a 3-4 but just for fun this would be my line-up if we were forced to do it with this exact team:

Corners and safeties stay the same.

OLB's: Cushing and Barwin

ILB's: Ryans and Diles

DE's: Amobi and Smith

NT: Mario and Okam

That's pretty ugly, but if I had to do it, that's what I'd do...

Rey
10-06-2010, 07:40 PM
Maybe. But in a 3-4, the DE's are like DT's in a 4-3. They are expected to set the edge and stop the run. Might as well trade Mario.

understood...

CretorFrigg
10-06-2010, 07:42 PM
I am glad that we are not switching to a 3-4 but just for fun this would be my line-up if we were forced to do it with this exact team:

Corners and safeties stay the same.

OLB's: Cushing and Barwin

ILB's: Ryans and Diles

DE's: Amobi and Smith

NT: Mario and Okam

That's pretty ugly, but if I had to do it, that's what I'd do...

I'd switch Mario and Amobi. I don't think Mario would be an effective NT at all.

JB
10-06-2010, 07:43 PM
I am glad that we are not switching to a 3-4 but just for fun this would be my line-up if we were forced to do it with this exact team:

Corners and safeties stay the same.

OLB's: Cushing and Barwin

ILB's: Ryans and Diles

DE's: Amobi and Smith

NT: Mario and Okam

That's pretty ugly, but if I had to do it, that's what I'd do...

Mario at the NT is pretty interesting. He would certainly cause problems for guards and centers there with his speed. And he has as much power as anyone on the team.

JB
10-06-2010, 07:44 PM
I'd switch Mario and Amobi. I don't think Mario would be an effective NT at all.

Mario would probably be better than Amobi.

Rey
10-06-2010, 07:45 PM
I'd switch Mario and Amobi. I don't think Mario would be an effective NT at all.

Why not?

Ratliff for the cowboys is pretty good right there...

I'd think Mario could at least be as effective as he is, no?

DBCooper
10-06-2010, 07:47 PM
Make a trade for Palamalu, Harrison, a couple of corners and a big NT and we might have the beginnings of a crappy experiment

Texan_Bill
10-06-2010, 08:17 PM
Mario at the NT is pretty interesting. He would certainly cause problems for guards and centers there with his speed. And he has as much power as anyone on the team.

Why would you waste his athleticism. Nose tackles in the 3-4 need to be big space eaters (think Kris Jenkins). Mario? Think Greg Lloyd.

PHAROAH
10-06-2010, 08:33 PM
Here are my starters in the 3-4 front seven.

DE - Antonio Smith
NT - 2011 Draft
DE - Amobe Okoye or Earl Mitchell
SOLB - Mario Williams - Use him like Demarcus Ware.
SILB - Demeco Ryans
WILB - Zach Diles
WOLB - Brian Cushing

Rey
10-06-2010, 08:36 PM
Why would you waste his athleticism. Nose tackles in the 3-4 need to be big space eaters (think Kris Jenkins). Mario? Think Greg Lloyd.

Ratliff for the Girls isn't a space eater and he is probably more effective than a lot of those guys...

JB
10-06-2010, 09:46 PM
Why would you waste his athleticism. Nose tackles in the 3-4 need to be big space eaters (think Kris Jenkins). Mario? Think Greg Lloyd.

Did you read the post I was quoting? I didn't say that I would use him there. Just that it was an interesting idea. Personally, I think if we tried to go to a 3-4 predominant defense, we would be taking a step or two backwards and reducing Mario's effectiveness (greatly). It's ok as a different look, just like the 5-2 and 3-3 are.

Mario is one of the top 4-3 DE in the league, if not the best. For my money, he is the best overall DE in the league, though Peppers is right there also.

infantrycak
10-06-2010, 09:48 PM
A new coaching staff.

JB
10-06-2010, 09:50 PM
A new coaching staff.

That was the premise of the OP...

Not gonna happen. But for fun, lets say Cowher comes here in 2011 and wants to run a 3-4 defense.

gary
10-07-2010, 10:35 AM
The D has the talent to play just fine the way it is but Frank has to get them to play inspired for every game.

Wolf6151
10-07-2010, 02:18 PM
The heart of any 3-4 defense is a big nasty NT to take up at least 2 blockers, clog the middle, and collapse the pocket if possible. We don't have anyone on the team like that so we'd have to get one from FA, or the draft. The really good ones go high in the draft or are very expensive in FA. As for DE, Okoye could probably be one and either Cody, Mitchell, or Robinson could be the other for the time being til we found somebody better. At LB we'd be pretty good with Ryans, and Diles on the inside, and Cushing and Barwin on the outside. There might be some growing pains for these guys til they got the hang of the new positions and responsibilities but I think they'd learn and could handle the job. Mario might be able to handle one of the DE spots but he's just not built for that job. He is what he is, a 4-3 DE and really isn't suited for the 3-4. I don't think he could handle coverage responsibilities as an OLB. He may need to be traded for a top NT and/or top draft picks. I think we'd also have to add some better players in the secondary but we need that anyway.