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Old 08-25-2008   #121
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

First off amazingly great post. There are a few things I'd love to piggy back on


Quote:
Originally Posted by Texans_Chick View Post
Different defenses have different philosophies. You know what Tampa or the Colts defense is supposed to look like. Or the Eagles. Or the Panthers. Or the Titans. Or the Patriots. Or any number of team's defenses. They draft players to suit their defenses.




And that should make me feel comfortable that he can build a defense from scratch why?



Also from the Pro Football Prospectus: "Although the Texans ranked 23rd in Adjusted Sack Rate [in 2007], they ranked 30th in quarterback hurries per pass."

Ew.



He isn't going to dump his defensive coordinator in the grease, that's why. He will take responsibility for himself, and he will vaguely talk about coaching in general. I will say after the first three awful games of Smith's tenure, Kubiak said he was going to spend some more time with the coaching staff, which was probably not a great sign.

But yeah, this is on Kubiak. Richard Smith could get him fired if the defense doesn't get better soonishly.

The best thing that an offensive minded head coach can do is the find an awesome defensive coordinator and let him loose. I have little reason to believe that Smith is an awesome defensive coordinator.



* Our receiving group is Andre Johnson and a bunch of guys that no other teams really wanted. Andre Davis almost didn't make the team last year. Kevin Walter hardly got any playing time his first year. Jacoby Jones was the guy that everybody said we picked too high. David Anderson was on the nobody was likely going to draft him list. Those are guys that Kubiak figured would work for his offense, but nobody was beating down the doors to get those guys before we put them in our system. Last year's story was gee, why don't the Texans have a real #2 receiver? After AJ went down and there was only the Dayne train, people were stunned the Texans could still move the ball some.

* As for our quarterbacks, I think there is some promise there, but both of them were backups before they started working with Kubiak.

* Running backs--no one would want any of our running backs with the exception of Slaton. The offense seeks to make the running backs, ala Ron Dayne, better than they are.

* There's plenty of promise on the offensive line, but it's not like those guys are unearthly more athletic than any other line in the league, ala Pace in his prime. I think they are a well-coached unit, but not amazingly talented.

* Overall, I think the offense is well coached, and Kubiak has assembled players who play well in his system. I think a player like an Owen Daniels is succeeding for the Texans when he might not have been developed as well in some other team.

For all Polo has mentioned the larger quantity of guys who were high picks or FA name players. The bulk of those are on the defensive side of the ball. 3 #1s on the line, one at DB prior to injury, 1st pick of the second round on Demeco Ryans and it seems the bigger offseason spending is usually on defense.

Contrasting we spent a 1st on AJ and this year we spent a 1st on Brown. Pitts was a second, rounding out that is Matt Schaub. One way or another a high pick was going to be spent on QB post Carr. Way I see we spent one second for him. The rest of the squad is comprised of guys who work well in a system. Three years in Kubiak's offensive system and it's light years ahead of the defense using less talent.



Yeah, the coaching on the offensive side of the ball is better than on the defensive side of the ball. That is something that can be fixed.



Some of those guys are athletic and talented, and some of those guys are just good fits for the system we run.



Why can't you blame that on Richard Smith? There are players who have stunk whilst playing for the Texans, but played much better when they got into real defensive systems. Phillip Buchanon comes to mind immediately.

You get a defensive system you believe in, and coaches that believe in it, and you get the players who can excel in that system, and you put them in situations to succeed.

Just because you have an offensive minded head coach, doesn't mean that the defense is going to get short shrift. In fact, the Texans have gone out of their way to spend high draft picks on that side of the ball. I think if Smith said he needed cheeseburger eaters at DT, that's what he would get. Or more physical sizeable linebackers. (though I will say it is my understanding that it was the linebacker coach that begged for DeMeco Ryans even though that wasn't Smith's pick).


Richard Smith is the guy the Texans settled on because there weren't better coordinator candidates available at the time. And probably early season isn't the best time to can Smith. But if the defense continues to be way below average, I don't want to hear the excuse of young players because lots of teams depend on young players. I want a defensive coordinator that we can trust he knows what he is doing.

I understand from the other thread that your mind is made up on the issues involving Richard Smith. Personally, I don't understand that sort of thinking. I hope I'm completely misguided about Smith, and that his defense doesn't continue to be an albatross for this team. I think we discuss these things, not to prove that we are right, but to get us thinking about things we might not have thought of, and to give us stuff to look for on the field.



If the defense is getting even marginally better, it is because they were so awful in 2005. I am still very traumatized by marginal QBs moving the ball on these Smith coached Texans.



So you want to have a defense designed to stop them. Getting taller corners I understand is part of that. I'm not sure what their philosophy is up front other than gee, Mario is going to get double, tripled team, maybe the other guys can do something.



Does he want smallish DTs? I don't know. Before Okam, all the guys were mostly at 285-305. If he wanted a free agent body bigger than that, I think he could get it. Okam was drafted to give some weight to the front four. I don't know if this is a plan, or he was just BPA. Who knows what their plan is on defense.

Grady Jackson last year comes to my mind after the Falcons surprisingly cut him. He could've come here for a reasonable price and gave our run defense a big boost. Instead JAX signed him and he helped them out a fair bit.



The Colts have a very defined defensive philosophy that is much more than smallish defensive linemen. And they draft to suit that philosophy. I wonder if a Bob Sanders could succeed with our defense--I don't know.



Maybe not put Dunta Robinson in man coverage with no safety help in a game the Texans are trying to stop the Titans from scoring quickly.

Or the strange blitz call on the last play of first Vince Young-Texans game.

Or putting Petey Faggins on an island REPEATEDLY when Faggins had already been TD torched in the Bills game.

Or not having a defense that opposing teams call "vanilla" even before the team plays the Texans.

Or not have a defensive rotation that involves the linemen sprinting off the field to "rest." (I think they ended up fixing that, but it is an illustration of some extreme coaching cluelessness.)

A defense in the salary cap era needs to be 1. Easy to learn and execute; 2. Difficult to move the ball against; 3. Have a coach that talented free agents want to play for. I don't see Houston having any of that. The defense has often been confused by what Smith is trying to get them to do.

How long are you willing to see wretched defensive play before you want to see what a defensive coordinator with a track record of success could do with it? I'm not sure who that guy would be, but McNair is willing to spend some coin.
Ron Rivera is a guy that comes to mind. I'm not sure Lane Kiffin is still with the Raiders next year and if Al Davis decides his staff needs a complete overhaul We better be on the phone with Rob Ryan and his mullet.Jerry Grey is now a secondary coach for Washington. Mike Singletary is a guy i would make an argument for.
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Old 08-25-2008   #122
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

Bringing in a new DC, sets the defense back 3 years in my book.

At the moment the offense of this team is close to being good enough to get the team to the playoffs by itself.

Given this I say roll the dice after the season, make the change, and hope for the best, while the offense keeps us in games. Most of our team is young and will be at their best 3 years from now.
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Old 08-25-2008   #123
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Texan JBZ View Post
Polo, you make some valid points, but so do the rest of us that don't like Richard Smith's style of defense. Look at guys like Monte Kiffin, Jim Johnson, Gregg Williams, Dick Labeau, and even Wade Phillips. Yes, they've had good players at certain positions over the years, but not at every position on the field. And sometimes, they've taken average talent and turned them into stars. Take Kendrell Bell for instance. He gets drafted out of Georgia to the Steelers and sets the NFL on fire for a few years. He goes to the Kansas City Chiefs and is never heard from again. Look at guys like Jeremiah Trotter and Micheal Lewis from Philly. They're in the Pro Bowl when Jim Johnson is coaching them. Trotter goes to Washington and Lewis to San Fran and they're not the same players. Simeon Rice is good player for Arizona, goes to Tampa Bay and becomes a great player. Fred Smoot has Pro Bowl-caliber capability with the Skins, goes to the Vikings and is a very average player. More guys who played for these DCs and had productive careers with them: Dhani Jones, Corey Simon, Donnie Edwards, Dexter Jackson, Dwight Smith, Hugh Douglas, Darwin Walker, Jerome McDougle. None of these guys did anything with they're careers once they left these DCs. Gregg Williams took Washington's defense to new heights, now doing the same in J-Ville. The thing they have in common is they fit the talent they have available into an effective defensive philosophy and scheme. They are also very aggressive, risk-taking playcallers. Forget that vanilla crap with these guys. Did you see the Steelers game the other night? OMG, Lebeau blitzed all the time! I don't understand your defense of Richard Smith, but you don't get why I think he should be replaced. I guess that makes us even.
Something else that all those guys had in common was that when they played on teams with a lot of talent around them, they did well. When they got to teams with less talent, or into a situation that didn't fit their skills, they didn't do well.

Kendrell Bell did well in the Steelers system, at least his rookie year when he had 9 sacks. The next 3 years he plays in a total of 31 games and had 9 sacks. When he goes to KC, which runs a 4-3, of course he isn't going to have the same kind of success because he wasn't the same player he was in his rookie year and he wasn't in the same system with the same kind of talent around him.

Of course Simeon Rice was going to do better in Tampa Bay because he had so much more talent around him than he did in Arizona.

If you are so eager to bring in a coach that does a lot of blitzing, you will probably need to bring in another head coach. Whenever Kubiak addresses the lack of blitzing, he says that it wouldn't be effective with our DB's. It may not be Richard Smith's fault that there aren't more blitzes.
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Old 08-25-2008   #124
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by kiwitexansfan View Post
Bringing in a new DC, sets the defense back 3 years in my book.

At the moment the offense of this team is close to being good enough to get the team to the playoffs by itself.

Given this I say roll the dice after the season, make the change, and hope for the best, while the offense keeps us in games. Most of our team is young and will be at their best 3 years from now.
If we get the right DC, it doesn't set us back at all.

If we keep the DC we have and he's the wrong guy for the job, then we'll never get where we want to go. This year is a make or break year for Smith.
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Old 08-25-2008   #125
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Polo View Post
These guys are outstanding Defensive Co-ordinators.

Richard Smith is not.

Not sure why all of a sudden he has to be the second coming in order for us to field a defense cabable of allowing us to win games...

If we were loaded with talent I'd be right on board....I just think talented players generally make up defenses....

If you guys got someone that can come in and be a defensive guru please get them here...

So in other words, if we can get someone better than Smith, you are okay with him exiting? Me too.

Preferably a 4-3 guy so we don't have to start completely over.
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Old 08-25-2008   #126
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by dalemurphy View Post
I've gotta believe that conversations have been taking place between Kubiak, Rick Smith, and guys like: FBush, RRhodes, JHolland about the state of the defense.

The Ray Rhodes hiring, combined with the Kubiak's tone recently regarding the defense and the fact that Richard Smith wasn't Kubes' first choice all point to the fact that an in-house change will happen during the season if things don't go well. If the defense looks like it does now once the season gets going Richard won't survive the Bye week, IMO.
I seriously doubt if Ray Rhodes will ever be more than an assistant position coach....not even a full position coach....because of his health concerns. His position on this team is basically as a consultant. The hiring of Rhodes was essentially a classy move to help out a great coach and a great person by giving him a salary without a whole lot of responsibility.
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Old 08-25-2008   #127
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BornOrange View Post

If you are so eager to bring in a coach that does a lot of blitzing, you will probably need to bring in another head coach. Whenever Kubiak addresses the lack of blitzing, he says that it wouldn't be effective with our DB's. It may not be Richard Smith's fault that there aren't more blitzes.
But it's Richard Smith's job on the line if the defense doesn't improve. And when you say that Kubes says it wouldn't be effective with our DBs-THAT'S EXACTLY WHY THE PLAY-CALLING HAS TO BE AGGRESSIVE! We are not the NY Giants of last year. We're not the Titans. It's pretty much understood that our front four can't generate enough of a pass rush to cover up for the secondary. That's why RS has to blitz more. It's not a matter of wanting to, he has to. I'll admit, our LBs suck at blitzing. But he still has to try something.

Perfect example: The Girls had the ball in their territory right before halftime last Friday. Instead of going after the QB, the defense sits back in a soft zone and Romo picks them apart. Nobody in his face, all the time in the world to throw. Gets them down the field and into chip-shot field goal position. Made it look easy. And I don't want to hear this, "well, the Texans were playing the Cowboys who have a high-powered offense" line. Look at the schedule: Colts twice, Jags twice, Bengals, & Browns. And that doesn't include the offenses that will look better than they are against us, which always seems to happen. I'm just glad we have an offense that can keep up.
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Old 08-25-2008   #128
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Texans_Chick View Post
Preferably a 4-3 guy so we don't have to start completely over.
I understand the logic here, but I love me some 3-4 defense.
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Old 08-25-2008   #129
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

The D is missing a SLB, a CB, a FS, and a DE.

Other that not to bad.
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Old 08-25-2008   #130
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

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Originally Posted by kiwitexansfan View Post
I understand the logic here, but I love me some 3-4 defense.
The screwed up thing is if we went Okam at NT, Williams at DE, Amobi at DE, Ryans and Greewood at ILB, and X.A, and Diles at OLB we would have a pretty kick ass 34.
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Old 08-25-2008   #131
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Texan JBZ View Post
But it's Richard Smith's job on the line if the defense doesn't improve. And when you say that Kubes says it wouldn't be effective with our DBs-THAT'S EXACTLY WHY THE PLAY-CALLING HAS TO BE AGGRESSIVE! We are not the NY Giants of last year. We're not the Titans. It's pretty much understood that our front four can't generate enough of a pass rush to cover up for the secondary. That's why RS has to blitz more. It's not a matter of wanting to, he has to. I'll admit, our LBs suck at blitzing. But he still has to try something.

Perfect example: The Girls had the ball in their territory right before halftime last Friday. Instead of going after the QB, the defense sits back in a soft zone and Romo picks them apart. Nobody in his face, all the time in the world to throw. Gets them down the field and into chip-shot field goal position. Made it look easy. And I don't want to hear this, "well, the Texans were playing the Cowboys who have a high-powered offense" line. Look at the schedule: Colts twice, Jags twice, Bengals, & Browns. And that doesn't include the offenses that will look better than they are against us, which always seems to happen. I'm just glad we have an offense that can keep up.
But if Kubiak is telling him not to blitz, what is he to do?
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Old 08-25-2008   #132
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

Quote:
Originally Posted by BornOrange View Post
I seriously doubt if Ray Rhodes will ever be more than an assistant position coach....not even a full position coach....because of his health concerns. His position on this team is basically as a consultant. The hiring of Rhodes was essentially a classy move to help out a great coach and a great person by giving him a salary without a whole lot of responsibility.
I agree, but that's my point- that Rhodes will be used as a consultant and thos conversations could lead to a change- I didn't mean that Rhodes would be the one to take over, I would expect it to be Bush if it was during the season.
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Old 08-25-2008   #133
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

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Originally Posted by TEXANRED View Post
The screwed up thing is if we went Okam at NT, Williams at DE, Amobi at DE, Ryans and Greewood at ILB, and X.A, and Diles at OLB we would have a pretty kick ass 34.
I think we would have a pretty good 3-4.

The one piece we would be lacking is that killer outside LB in the Ware/Merriman mould, but those guys aren't easy to find.
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Old 08-26-2008   #134
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

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Originally Posted by kiwitexansfan View Post
I think we would have a pretty good 3-4.

The one piece we would be lacking is that killer outside LB in the Ware/Merriman mould, but those guys aren't easy to find.
Well, we sure the heck don't have the NT!
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Old 08-26-2008   #135
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

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Originally Posted by kiwitexansfan View Post
I think we would have a pretty good 3-4.

The one piece we would be lacking is that killer outside LB in the Ware/Merriman mould, but those guys aren't easy to find.
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Old 08-26-2008   #136
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

does scheme really matter both work for different reasons just depends how well its executed & right now the Texans don't look committed, arm tackles unaware of ball position or flying to the ball just isn't happening
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Old 08-26-2008   #137
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

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Originally Posted by Polo View Post
Are you implying that if our DB's played differently they'd be better ?

If so, I disagree.
My question was posed to illustrate who puts the defense in position to make plays. Does a DB decide individually whether he's going to jam a guy at the line or is that the D.C. call? If the D.C. is telling the CBs to play back off the WRs 5-7 yds, well any quick curls or outs the offense gets is on the D.C. isn't it? That call basically gives the offense a free 5 yds because well timed outs or curls will beat passive coverage like that EVERY TIME. And that call is on Richard Smith.
Maybe they wouldn't "play better" but could they be used smarter?

However, after thinking about your arguments, perhaps you're right; maybe Richard Smith is doing the best with what he has.

We all know that, without Dunta, we don't have anything close to a true shutdown CB let alone a set of two. Nor do we have a ball-hawking safety with great range. So perhaps we should have spent those 1st round picks on pro bowl potential cover guys instead of "stud" linemen. Maybe a DL full of Cochran and Bulman and Maddox types (with a Mario thrown in) could get to the QB if we have stud DBs who can cover for a full 3-4 seconds. Or maybe if we had stud CBs who could go step-for-step with the WRs and take away the hot routes our blitzes would be effective.

Maybe Smith is handicapped by lack of "stud" personnel. OTOH, I don't see any evidence where Smith is demanding guys with certain skill sets to fit his "scheme" either. Gibbs didn't waste anytime getting who he wanted. Richard Smith has been here 3 yrs. Can any of us point to any of our picks and say, "Richard Smith brought so-and-so in for his system"? Perhaps you can. I can't.

So all that to say, I'll partially concede your point; maybe getting more studs on defense is the answer.
I will concede that outside of Fletcher and Dunta, we don't have a single day-one DB. So if we're short of "studs" anywhere its there. gee, what are the odds that our sucky secondary is chock full of 2nd day picks and UDFAs.
Its just that part of me thinks he could be doing better with what he's got or making more of a stink about getting some upgrades.

Edit:
I know what bugs me about the "he needs more studs" argument.
It just sounds waaaay too much like the "If David Carr had a stud O-line, a stud RB, and someone besides Andre to throw, he'd be a better QB" argument.
Three 1st-rounders (5 if you count Dunta and Fletcher), two 2nd rounders (DeMeco, Weaver - 3 if you count Chaun Thompson), and a third rounder (Greenwood) ought to be enough talent to do something with. If Richard Smith can't motivate Weaver, et. al. to get off their duffs or puts them in a system that they can perform well in or won't recognize some of them have nothing left, then, again, that's on him.
...or Kubiak.

Last edited by ObsiWan; 08-26-2008 at 04:08 AM.
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Old 08-26-2008   #138
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

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Originally Posted by TEXANRED View Post
The screwed up thing is if we went Okam at NT, Williams at DE, Amobi at DE, Ryans and Greewood at ILB, and X.A, and Diles at OLB we would have a pretty kick ass 34.
If Okam pans out, he should make a decent NT in a 3/4.

We'd pretty much kill Mario's career, if we made him a DE in a 3/4, and pretty much wasted a #1 overall draft pick.

Don't get me wrong, Mario would be perfect for a 3/4 DE, but a 3/4 DE is not worth a #1 overall draft pick.

Amobi should never see a 3/4. he doesn't fit either position, just like TJ does not fit a 3/4...... at least not my vision of a 3/4. They've got the body to play NT, but the skills to play DE... more quick than strong.

Look at Spears, Canty, Castillo & Olshansky. That's what a 3/4 DE should look like. 6-4 and up, 300lbs or so.

Weaver would make a decent 3/4 DE. We don't expect him to rush the passer anyway. Just create pressure up the middle. Same thing with Cochran(a little smallish) & Tim Bullman.

Mario would have to be an OLB..... he may be athletic enough to pull it off.....
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Old 08-26-2008   #139
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

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Originally Posted by Texans_Chick View Post
So in other words, if we can get someone better than Smith, you are okay with him exiting? Me too.

Preferably a 4-3 guy so we don't have to start completely over.
Yes.

If there is someone out there that the organization feels like is an upgrade over Smith....by all means....get the guy...

Why would I be against that ?



That hasn't been my point though.....

My point is that Smith may not necessarily be teh suxxorz as a d-coordinator...
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Old 08-26-2008   #140
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Default Re: What is the Defense Missing?

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Originally Posted by dalemurphy View Post
Let's assume for a minute that our sacks and QB pressures are about where they were last year.
Why ?

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Do you think that a team with Mario Williams at DE along with two other first round draft picks should rank that low?
Amobi was a rookie last year.

TJ's hasn't lived up to his draft status.

I guess these things are Smith's fault too.

Quote:
I would think there are more than a handful of D.C.s that could come in and turn that unite into at least an average one.
If there is a co-ordinator that could have made Amobi play like a seasoned vet last year an make Travis Johnson play like a 1st rd. DT, I'd love to have them on board. If that same D-coordinator could have made Weaver not get hurt I'd be smitten.

Quote:
let's not forget that we've been poor against the run as well, and that's with Demeco Ryans playing Mike LB every one of the last 32 games.

The talent was so great on our team that people dubbed Frank Okam...a late rd. rookie pick with questions looming about his playing habits...as the immediate answer or atleast partial solution to our run stopping game...

Talk about distorted perceptions...
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