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Wolf
08-29-2011, 07:22 PM
You're hearing it already.

It's the criticism being thrown Mario Williams' way because after playing 17 snaps Saturday night at San Francisco, his name didn't show up in the official stat sheet.

That's right. Seventeen snaps for our new weakside outside linebacker conversion project and he recorded (officially) no tackles, no assists, no sacks, no tackles for loss, no quarterback hurries, no interceptions, no passes defended, no forced fumbles and no fumble recoveries.

Zip. Nada. Zilch.

But before you go all crazy and cram the airwaves with 'trade Mario' talk (again), consider that there might be more going on than the what the stat sheet is telling you.

I've tried to stay out of the Mario debate, mainly because he is learning a new position that's way out of his comfort zone.

The height of my criticism has been to say that "he's struggling" (which I think he is to a large extent) and this post on my Twitter feed after the New Orleans game last weekend where I said: "Maybe its just me but I didn't see Mario take a "big step forward" last night as Kubiak says. Live or on DVR."
So while I admit that I remain skeptical of this project, I sense the criticism out there is gaining momentum, to the point where it's somewhat unfair.

Let me say this. Just because Mario's name didn't show up in the stat sheet last night doesn't mean he didn't make any plays.

This afternoon, I re-watched every Texans defensive play in the first half of their game against the 49ers and came to the conclusion that Mario's perfformance was something a little bit better than he's "not making plays" - even though his name's not in the stat sheet.

Here's what I saw on my re-watch:



http://www.examiner.com/houston-texans-in-houston/on-mario-and-stat-sheets

Rey
08-29-2011, 07:43 PM
I didn't see anything in there that I didn't already see watching the game live.

I have not re-watched a game yet, but I plan on recording this last game and going over the film because I really want to get a good read on some of the back-ups/ potential back-ups we'll have.

buddyboy
08-29-2011, 07:48 PM
I really love these play by play breakdowns. It's just SO easy for us couch GMs to watch the game and make blanket statements like "Mario's struggling" and "Connor Barwin is invisible". And sometimes these statements have merit.

But watch the game play by play and really key in on one player, watching the situation on each play to see if he did the right thing or wrong thing, THEN I'll really listen. And people don't do that nearly enough, since talking straight out of your behind is just so much easier.

thunderkyss
08-29-2011, 07:55 PM
Should we really have to work so hard?

I'm starting to feel like a Saints fan, perturbed that no one understands the importance of a decoy.

thunderkyss
08-29-2011, 07:56 PM
Damn droid.

80tothezone
08-29-2011, 08:11 PM
Why don't they bring him from the blind side very much .... maybe a shift that needs to happen...

Sent from my DROID X2 using Tapatalk

drunkcookie
08-29-2011, 08:42 PM
Pretty good review of things...

I've liked the progress I've seen, just have to hope the progress continues...

To me, it's not that the guy's playing a new position, it's that his new position requires him to come off the ball in a two-point stance...

Naturally, no matter if it's a four, three or two point stance a player is coming out of, their body is going to want to rise up... For a 6'6"/6'7" guy going up against mostly 6'3"-6'5" TEs/OTs and even shorter FBs, staying low is very important...

Coming out of a three-point stance, staying low wasn't a problem for Mario... His stance was so low that he could afford to rise and still be at least even with the TE/OT... But out of a two-point, he cannot afford to rise any... He's got to burst with the same speed and power as if he were in a three-point, but straight out of a two...

Add to it that he went all through college and his first five years in the league coming off the ball in a three and the guy really has to retrain his body...

1st quarter in the 34 against the Jets he looked high, slow and got taken advantage of at contact... 2nd and 3rd qts in the 34 against the Saints he looked lower and faster, but still didn't have that power at the point of contact... This last game against the Nines? He looked quick off the ball, low, fast and looked like he's learning to use that power coming off the ball level...

There's still improvement to be had, no doubt about it, but he looks as if he is getting comfortable with it, and finally conditioning his body to act correctly off the ball from a two-point stance...

DocBar
08-29-2011, 08:53 PM
Twist it and turn how ya want to, MW isn't cutting it as a WOLB. If this (http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2011082756/2011/PRE3/texans@49ers/recap#recap:recap/tab:watch) is evidence of a "pass rush", I'll kiss your ass. At 1:24 (http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2011082756/2011/PRE3/texans@49ers/recap#recap:recap/tab:watch), is that really a QB pressure by MW or a case of him not running a fly route past the QB? Progress? Hardly. At 1:30, (http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/2011082756/2011/PRE3/texans@49ers/recap#recap:recap/tab:watch) they can say MW legitimately pressured the QB and ALMOST got a sack. At the 1:58 mark (http://www.texanstalk.com/forums/newreply.php?do=newreply&noquote=1&p=1763067), is that where homers were saying MW was double/triple teamed? :rofl:

Pantherstang84
08-29-2011, 09:23 PM
And yet another Mario thread. I wish they would trade him just so people would shut up about him.

Wolf
08-29-2011, 09:59 PM
And yet another Mario thread. I wish they would trade him just so people would shut up about him.

there is always a whipping boy, it would go to the next player (cushing?)

Perki-Perk
08-29-2011, 10:03 PM
I really love these play by play breakdowns. It's just SO easy for us couch GMs to watch the game and make blanket statements like "Mario's struggling" and "Connor Barwin is invisible". And sometimes these statements have merit.

But watch the game play by play and really key in on one player, watching the situation on each play to see if he did the right thing or wrong thing, THEN I'll really listen. And people don't do that nearly enough, since talking straight out of your behind is just so much easier.

Where's a gif of Jim Carrey from Ace Ventura when you need it?

Pantherstang84
08-29-2011, 10:18 PM
there is always a whipping boy, it would go to the next player (cushing?)

You're probably right.

pirbroke
08-29-2011, 10:34 PM
As for as stats go for last game Cody led all texans with 3 tk. While San Fran had a few players with 6 or 5 tk. So by that reasoning San Fran must of had a hell of a lot better defense than the texans? Stop looking at stats and watch the game people. If the texans defense has a lot of 3 and out this year and the offense continues to control the clock some of the stats are going to look bad on paper. Thats a good thing.

DocBar
08-29-2011, 11:12 PM
[QUOTE=pirbroke;1763180]Never mind what I originally posted.

ObsiWan
08-30-2011, 12:11 AM
As for as stats go for last game Cody led all texans with 3 tk. While San Fran had a few players with 6 or 5 tk. So by that reasoning San Fran must of had a hell of a lot better defense than the texans? Stop looking at stats and watch the game people. If the texans defense has a lot of 3 and out this year and the offense continues to control the clock some of the stats are going to look bad on paper. Thats a good thing.

Thank you.

Our 1's shut down their 1's.
Convincingly.
Mario and Cushing and Kareem Jackson are all part of a defense - OUR defense - that pitched a shutout. Apparently they did their jobs well enough not to screw the pooch and cost the rest of the defense points ...or even a significant number of yards.

Are we so conditioned to failure that even when the defense appears to be headed in the right direction, we just have to find something to whine about?

And all this "$14milliondollar man" stuff is rather silly. If you're mad at the fact that MW is due $14M this year, don't be mad at MW. Be mad at the guy who decided draw up that rookie contract. Because I don't recall Mario walking out (like Andre Johnson did) or having "pay me" on his shoes (you know who) or demanding an extension or clowning in any fashion whatsoever to get his deal. In fact, didn't Mario sign BEFORE the draft? And from the looks of this contract, looks to me like they back-loaded the contract for the benefit of the team. McNair stuck this "balloon payment" in the final year of Mario's contract. You want to blame someone for the $13.8 mil due this year, talk to Bob McNair.
Contract info (http://www.spotrac.com/nfl/houston-texans/mario-williams/)

aussie_texan
08-30-2011, 03:10 AM
maybe wade is hiding mario this pre-season so teams don't know whats coming. just a thought

otisbean
08-30-2011, 07:03 AM
Thank you.

Our 1's shut down their 1's.
Convincingly.
Mario and Cushing and Kareem Jackson are all part of a defense - OUR defense - that pitched a shutout. Apparently they did their jobs well enough not to screw the pooch and cost the rest of the defense points ...or even a significant number of yards.

Are we so conditioned to failure that even when the defense appears to be headed in the right direction, we just have to find something to whine about?

And all this "$14milliondollar man" stuff is rather silly. If you're mad at the fact that MW is due $14M this year, don't be mad at MW. Be mad at the guy who decided draw up that rookie contract. Because I don't recall Mario walking out (like Andre Johnson did) or having "pay me" on his shoes (you know who) or demanding an extension or clowning in any fashion whatsoever to get his deal. In fact, didn't Mario sign BEFORE the draft? And from the looks of this contract, looks to me like they back-loaded the contract for the benefit of the team. McNair stuck this "balloon payment" in the final year of Mario's contract. You want to blame someone for the $13.8 mil due this year, talk to Bob McNair.
Contract info (http://www.spotrac.com/nfl/houston-texans/mario-williams/)

I understand where you're coming from, but honestly it's no one's fault. His contract was the result of the previous CBA. Under that agreement 1st rounders simply made too much money. It's ridiculous for an unproven player to get that kind of coin.

otisbean
08-30-2011, 07:07 AM
maybe wade is hiding mario this pre-season so teams don't know whats coming. just a thought

They might be letting Mario practice some of the elements that are more foreign to now to gain experience. Let's face it, we all know MW can rush with his hand on the ground. I have a feeling during the season you'll see more plays where MW has his hand on ground.

Admittedly, I'm not a Cowboys fan, but i don't remember Ware being in a 2 pt stance all the often, I could be wrong though.

mugrakers
08-30-2011, 07:31 AM
honestly he's only in a 2 point stance on first and second down... on third down both Barwin and Mario pin their ears back and get down in a 3 point stance. This shouldn't be a big deal in a few weeks.

b0ng
08-30-2011, 09:30 AM
individual preseason stats somehow matter less than the team W-L record for these games.

thunderkyss
08-30-2011, 12:17 PM
honestly he's only in a 2 point stance on first and second down... on third down both Barwin and Mario pin their ears back and get down in a 3 point stance. This shouldn't be a big deal in a few weeks.

& that depends. If they're at 1st & 20 (holding call) or 2nd & 15.... he'll have his hand in the dirt.

alphajoker
08-30-2011, 12:28 PM
Just throwing this out there but one thing I've noticed with Mario in regards to his comfort level with the new position, is that he has been getting lower in his stance since
the Jets game. During the Jets game he stood fairly high but in the 49ers game, you could see he is bending his knees more and is looking like he's understanding how to be more balanced at the line of scrimmage. Anyone else see this?

b0ng
08-30-2011, 12:43 PM
Just throwing this out there but one thing I've noticed with Mario in regards to his comfort level with the new position, is that he has been getting lower in his stance since
the Jets game. During the Jets game he stood fairly high but in the 49ers game, you could see he is bending his knees more and is looking like he's understanding how to be more balanced at the line of scrimmage. Anyone else see this?

I want to say that somebody pointed out his pad level getting lower the more preseason goes on in the last day or so. I think our defense will pick up sacks from a lot of players this year.

ObsiWan
08-30-2011, 12:44 PM
I understand where you're coming from, but honestly it's no one's fault. His contract was the result of the previous CBA. Under that agreement 1st rounders simply made too much money. It's ridiculous for an unproven player to get that kind of coin.
Couldn't agree more. I was so glad when the new agreement took that nonsense out of the game I didn't know what to do. Now I think we'll see teams be more willing to cut first rounders that don't produce.

drunkcookie
08-30-2011, 12:53 PM
Just throwing this out there but one thing I've noticed with Mario in regards to his comfort level with the new position, is that he has been getting lower in his stance since
the Jets game. During the Jets game he stood fairly high but in the 49ers game, you could see he is bending his knees more and is looking like he's understanding how to be more balanced at the line of scrimmage. Anyone else see this?

Yah, the Jets game looked bad... Had he looked like that same Mario from the Jets game this past weekend, I'd say Mario at OLB is a failure, but he didn't.. Hell, even in his 2nd and 3rd quarters against the Saints he looked better... Against the Saints he was lower (still too high) and faster (still not fast enough), but seemed to still be lacking that power... But against the Niners he looked almost low enough, fast enough and looks a lot better at carrying his power out of a two-point stance...

Did I think the Mario we saw against the Niners is good enough to start at OLB for the Ravens etc...? No! But for the Texans? Maybe! Deal is there has been improvement by Mario made every outing, and if that improvement still hasn't met its peak, may be time to look the hell out...

The jury is still out, and I won't act like I know if the Mario OLB "experiment" will work or not, but until Mario stops showing improvement at this position I will not contribute my nail to its coffin...

TheCD
08-30-2011, 02:36 PM
honestly he's only in a 2 point stance on first and second down... on third down both Barwin and Mario pin their ears back and get down in a 3 point stance. This shouldn't be a big deal in a few weeks.

We also are supposed to be switching to a 4-2-5 in nickel situations, which means that when we play the Colts Mario will have his hand down most of the time.