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Old 10-08-2008   #1
dalemurphy
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Default Texans: top 10 defense.

I'm so encouraged by the play of the defense on Sunday. Not just because they played well but also because I think changes were made that will continue to positively effect the unit the rest of the season. Below are two lists... The first is a list of the areas we will be very good at through the last 12 games... The second are the reasons why I think the defense has/will suddenly make rather dramatic improvements.

1. top 10 in Yards allowed
2. top 10 in PPG
3. top 10 in Rush Yards allowed
4. top 10 in interceptions

Here's why I think we're so much better going forward.
1. Schedule
2. Found an identity: pressure with 4 man line... limit interior stunts, rotate Okoye on passing downs, keep everyone fresh with a heavy rotation... I even saw Cochran rotate in as NT late in the game- which seemed to work well in passing situations.
3. Weaver is playing solid ball at DE the past 2 weeks- he's being used on run downs and moved out on passing downs.
4. Dunta coming back
5. Unspectacular but solid CB play with a lot of depth.. We're 5 deep upon Dunta's return with CBs that can hang with 80% of NFL receivers.
6. Safeties that can cover and be helpful over the top in some cover 2, which we'll be playing more often. Brandon Harrison is something we haven't had since McCree- a safety that can cover.
7. Mario is a monster! and his presence on the field alone is going to create a lot of havoc for opposing offenses. Still the defense was able to get him one on one with a RB and a TE for his two sacks.
8. The LBs in coverage all of a sudden seemed to be in position to make plays. They ran more underneath man coverages and other things to make it less predictable... It paid off with a Diles INT.
9. Realization that TJ isn't a NT and the use of different schemes to compensate for it and the improvement of Okam in the NT role, of which he is suited.
10. Infusion of highly athletic players as the season continues: Dunta, Molden, BHarrison, Okam, Adibi (maybe)
11. Good health.
12. an offense that can run the ball and control the clock and score enough to pressure the opposing team to take risks.
13. Despite the lack of sacks, every game this season the front 4 has regularly collapsed the pocket and limited the QBs time to throw... Now that the middle of the field isn't wide open, the sacks will come as will the forced throws. The injury to CCBrown may have been the catalyst for a lot of improvement in pass coverage- Harrison and Wilson can even man up on the slot receiver.. that sure is a change from what we've had at safety.


That's it! No more silly, telegraphed blitzes. Get ready for a hybrid of the Tampa 2. Safeties in coverage, corners pressing, and a 4 man rush most of the time.
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Old 10-08-2008   #2
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

I really appreciate the optimism. However i really dont think that we'll be able to stop that wildcat offense that the Phins are running......
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Old 10-08-2008   #3
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

I sure hope so..
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Old 10-08-2008   #4
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

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Originally Posted by RipTraxx View Post
I really appreciate the optimism. However i really dont think that we'll be able to stop that wildcat offense that the Phins are running......
we are going to win sunday.
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Old 10-09-2008   #5
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

I really liked what I saw from the defense against Indy but I still can't tell if that was us improving or if it was displaying just how much Indy is struggling as of late.
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Old 10-09-2008   #6
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

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Originally Posted by Jackie Chiles View Post
I really liked what I saw from the defense against Indy but I still can't tell if that was us improving or if it was displaying just how much Indy is struggling as of late.
I'd go w/ the latter unfortunately
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Old 10-09-2008   #7
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

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Originally Posted by Jackie Chiles View Post
I really liked what I saw from the defense against Indy but I still can't tell if that was us improving or if it was displaying just how much Indy is struggling as of late.
I think we are somthing like 11th best pass defense and 22nd in run.

I wanna see adibi and molden in there.
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Old 10-09-2008   #8
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

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Originally Posted by dalemurphy View Post
4. Dunta coming back
i truely believe that we'd be no less than 2-2 with dunta in the lineup. dunta's not only a vastly superior defender to reeves, he's also our shell. he strengthens our holes at ROLB and safety where as reeves opens that side of the field even further. opponents are free to choose the side of the field they want to exploit on major downs because we've got weakness on our right and inexperience on the left. dunta allows us to shift our focus towards bennett and cutoff targets.

plus he hits like a truck and has shown himself to be a strong and excitable leader on the field which we definitely need.
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Old 10-09-2008   #9
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

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Originally Posted by Scooter View Post
i truely believe that we'd be no less than 2-2 with dunta in the lineup. dunta's not only a vastly superior defender to reeves, he's also our shell. he strengthens our holes at ROLB and safety where as reeves opens that side of the field even further. opponents are free to choose the side of the field they want to exploit on major downs because we've got weakness on our right and inexperience on the left. dunta allows us to shift our focus towards bennett and cutoff targets.

plus he hits like a truck and has shown himself to be a strong and excitable leader on the field which we definitely need.
I hear you on this. Dunta does make our team better defensively. I also really look at our rivals and see how we could very easily be 2-2 and Jville and Indy could be 0-4. It's called protecting the ball. We do that and we win alot of the remaining 12 games.
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Old 10-09-2008   #10
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

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Originally Posted by WesmanTexanfan View Post
I think we are somthing like 11th best pass defense and 22nd in run.

I wanna see adibi and molden in there.
It depends on how you measure stuff.

If you look at YPG, the Texans are 26th against the run and 12th against the pass. The passing stat is particularly misleading given that, for example, Big Ben didn't have the throw the ball for very many yards but did very effectively.

I'm not sure that the Texans should even think about being a top 10 defense until they even get mediocre in most meaningful defensive categories.

They are 18th for average yards per game given up.
They are 29th in sacks, with Mario getting 4 out of the 5.
They are 30th in points allowed.
Taking into account games played, they are 30th in total points
They are tied for 19th for forced fumbles
They are 23rd in interception

The good news is that if the offense shows more signs of life and the quarterbacks stop giving away the ball, the defense can improve to some degree. Sacks are easier to get if you get leads on the other team because it forces them to pass. (Personally, I don't like seeing teams forced to pass, because it so often leads to slant route, slant route touchdown).

The bad news is that the defense is performing worst than league average on a per play basis. See this entry here.

Ultimately rankings and stats are just something that are kind of interesting. The defense needs to make meaningful stops. They have problems on 3rd and 4th downs, and if you can't stop teams on that down, you are going to have a long day.
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Old 10-09-2008   #11
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

I'm not going to lie. I do see encouraging signs from this defense last week. I'm still going to look out for pitfalls and the timing in Indy's offense just isn't there yet. It will be though and they will get more dangerous as the season goes forward.

I think some of the positive signs we saw last week were just importantly on offense. If Steve Slaton keeps doing what he's doing he should be hands down rookie of the year not just based on production but for what he's doing for the team as a whole. He helps give the QBs time because you can't just key on the passing game and gives an explosive dump down pass if nothing is up field. Duane Brown really has been solid for the most part and I have to say has exceeded most of my expectations by a long shot. The inside of the line still bothers me some but I think as the season goes on under Gibbs they can/will get better. Jury is out on Schaub still and perhaps the questions about him staying on the field are now starting to look fair.

All of that really helps what the defense has to do. With the offense picking up I don't think they now feel the need to have to make a play everytime because the other side of the ball is struggling. Mario is starting to play like a man among boys and if we can get consistent pressure outside of him then the front four will look good. I think I'm starting to see Ray Rhodes' effect on this defense especially on our secondary. If Reeves can keep getting his head turned in coverage to find the ball we're solid. I'm still waiting on seeing IF Dunta makes it back and how close is he to going 100%. I just have a hard time believing after an injury like that he's going to come back after the PUP period like the old Dunta we all know and love.
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Old 10-09-2008   #12
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

I couldn't help think of Dunta during the last MNF game between the Vikings and Saints because of the play of Antoine Winfield. They are so similar its scary. Can not wait to get him back in the lineup. Its too bad we couldn't get Antoine when he was a FA, I remember we came pretty close on him and Pat Williams as well. Ouch.
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Old 10-09-2008   #13
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dalemurphy View Post
I'm so encouraged by the play of the defense on Sunday. Not just because they played well but also because I think changes were made that will continue to positively effect the unit the rest of the season. Below are two lists... The first is a list of the areas we will be very good at through the last 12 games... The second are the reasons why I think the defense has/will suddenly make rather dramatic improvements.

1. top 10 in Yards allowed
2. top 10 in PPG
3. top 10 in Rush Yards allowed
4. top 10 in interceptions

Here's why I think we're so much better going forward.
1. Schedule
2. Found an identity: pressure with 4 man line... limit interior stunts, rotate Okoye on passing downs, keep everyone fresh with a heavy rotation... I even saw Cochran rotate in as NT late in the game- which seemed to work well in passing situations.
3. Weaver is playing solid ball at DE the past 2 weeks- he's being used on run downs and moved out on passing downs.
4. Dunta coming back
5. Unspectacular but solid CB play with a lot of depth.. We're 5 deep upon Dunta's return with CBs that can hang with 80% of NFL receivers.
6. Safeties that can cover and be helpful over the top in some cover 2, which we'll be playing more often. Brandon Harrison is something we haven't had since McCree- a safety that can cover.
7. Mario is a monster! and his presence on the field alone is going to create a lot of havoc for opposing offenses. Still the defense was able to get him one on one with a RB and a TE for his two sacks.
8. The LBs in coverage all of a sudden seemed to be in position to make plays. They ran more underneath man coverages and other things to make it less predictable... It paid off with a Diles INT.
9. Realization that TJ isn't a NT and the use of different schemes to compensate for it and the improvement of Okam in the NT role, of which he is suited.
10. Infusion of highly athletic players as the season continues: Dunta, Molden, BHarrison, Okam, Adibi (maybe)
11. Good health.
12. an offense that can run the ball and control the clock and score enough to pressure the opposing team to take risks.
13. Despite the lack of sacks, every game this season the front 4 has regularly collapsed the pocket and limited the QBs time to throw... Now that the middle of the field isn't wide open, the sacks will come as will the forced throws. The injury to CCBrown may have been the catalyst for a lot of improvement in pass coverage- Harrison and Wilson can even man up on the slot receiver.. that sure is a change from what we've had at safety.


That's it! No more silly, telegraphed blitzes. Get ready for a hybrid of the Tampa 2. Safeties in coverage, corners pressing, and a 4 man rush most of the time.

Wow.... I thought the koolaid had made me delusional...
You forgot to mention that they defense has given up 30+ points in the last four games. (two offensive turnovers for tds I know)

The defense has been the weakest link in the Texans side this year. Until they can make stops on 3rd and 4th downs....yeah I am not gonna toot the defense as being tops in the league. Mario top player.....maybe top defense noooooooooo waaaaaaay in heck.
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Old 10-09-2008   #14
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

Murph, I sure hope you're right on this one. I know the Defense is improving, but I'm not sure they will be top 10 this year. Although getting Dunta back next week should help, I still think overall they are too young and need more time to develop. But, I agree they are taking steps in the right direction, and time will tell just how much they are improving. JMHO!
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Old 10-09-2008   #15
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

Well it is certainly putup or shutup time, that is for sure. (It would do so much good for the team and the fans to have a W after this week.)
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Old 10-09-2008   #16
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

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Originally Posted by Insideop View Post
Murph, I sure hope you're right on this one. I know the Defense is improving, but I'm not sure they will be top 10 this year. Although getting Dunta back next week should help, I still think overall they are too young and need more time to develop. But, I agree they are taking steps in the right direction, and time will tell just how much they are improving. JMHO!
I'm suggesting the top 10 in those categories over the final 12 games, not cumulative for the season... We already created that hole.
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Old 10-09-2008   #17
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dalemurphy View Post
I'm so encouraged by the play of the defense on Sunday. Not just because they played well but also because I think changes were made that will continue to positively effect the unit the rest of the season. Below are two lists... The first is a list of the areas we will be very good at through the last 12 games... The second are the reasons why I think the defense has/will suddenly make rather dramatic improvements.

1. top 10 in Yards allowed
2. top 10 in PPG
3. top 10 in Rush Yards allowed
4. top 10 in interceptions

Here's why I think we're so much better going forward.
1. Schedule
2. Found an identity: pressure with 4 man line... limit interior stunts, rotate Okoye on passing downs, keep everyone fresh with a heavy rotation... I even saw Cochran rotate in as NT late in the game- which seemed to work well in passing situations.
3. Weaver is playing solid ball at DE the past 2 weeks- he's being used on run downs and moved out on passing downs.
4. Dunta coming back
5. Unspectacular but solid CB play with a lot of depth.. We're 5 deep upon Dunta's return with CBs that can hang with 80% of NFL receivers.
6. Safeties that can cover and be helpful over the top in some cover 2, which we'll be playing more often. Brandon Harrison is something we haven't had since McCree- a safety that can cover.
7. Mario is a monster! and his presence on the field alone is going to create a lot of havoc for opposing offenses. Still the defense was able to get him one on one with a RB and a TE for his two sacks.
8. The LBs in coverage all of a sudden seemed to be in position to make plays. They ran more underneath man coverages and other things to make it less predictable... It paid off with a Diles INT.
9. Realization that TJ isn't a NT and the use of different schemes to compensate for it and the improvement of Okam in the NT role, of which he is suited.
10. Infusion of highly athletic players as the season continues: Dunta, Molden, BHarrison, Okam, Adibi (maybe)
11. Good health.
12. an offense that can run the ball and control the clock and score enough to pressure the opposing team to take risks.
13. Despite the lack of sacks, every game this season the front 4 has regularly collapsed the pocket and limited the QBs time to throw... Now that the middle of the field isn't wide open, the sacks will come as will the forced throws. The injury to CCBrown may have been the catalyst for a lot of improvement in pass coverage- Harrison and Wilson can even man up on the slot receiver.. that sure is a change from what we've had at safety.


That's it! No more silly, telegraphed blitzes. Get ready for a hybrid of the Tampa 2. Safeties in coverage, corners pressing, and a 4 man rush most of the time.
You're out of your mind on this. Our defense collectively this year has been atrocious. We had one decent game out of 4 and that is it. And in the end of game 4 our D still wasn't able to hold them out of the end zone. You can wish all you want, but this defense is going to be pretty bad all year long most likely.
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Old 10-09-2008   #18
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

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Originally Posted by Texecutioner View Post
You're out of your mind on this. Our defense collectively this year has been atrocious. We had one decent game out of 4 and that is it. And in the end of game 4 our D still wasn't able to hold them out of the end zone. You can wish all you want, but this defense is going to be pretty bad all year long most likely.
I don't think so!
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Old 10-09-2008   #19
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

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Originally Posted by dalemurphy View Post
I don't think so!
Yeah, well I hope you're right!!
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Old 10-10-2008   #20
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Default Re: Texans: top 10 defense.

The only stat I care about is wins/losses. Right now it is 0-4. If they don't win Sunday, you'll be able to hear a pin drop the following week in the stadium.
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