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Old 05-31-2014   #1
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Default How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?
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Selecting Jadeveon Clowney with the first overall pick of the 2014 NFL draft not only gave the Houston Texans a generational prospect, but also gave J.J. Watt the kind of complementary piece he has never had during his time in the NFL.
...
By bringing in Clowney, the Texans should be able to not only get more pressure upfront, but make it more difficult for defenses to gameplan for each individual pass rusher.

Having multiple high-quality pass rushers in today's NFL is massively important for the success of any defense. While there are some teams who can work around a lack of quality upfront, Football Outsiders metric that measures defensive efficiency suggests it's easier to be effective with that kind of pressure upfront.

Code:
DVOA Rank	 Team	  Rank v Pass	Pass Rushers with 7.5+ Sacks
1.	Seattle Seahawks	1	Michael Bennett, Cliff Avril
2.	Arizona Cardinals	5	John Abraham, Calais Campbell
3.	Carolina Panthers	3	Greg Hardy, Charles Johnson
4.	Buffalo Bills	        2	Mario Williams, Kyle Williams, Jerry Hughes, Marcell Dareus
5.	Cincinnati Bengals	4	Carlos Dunlap, Wallace Gilberry
6.	New York Giants	        8	Justin Tuck
7.	Baltimore Ravens	9	Terrell Suggs, Elvis Dumervil
8.	Tampa Bay Buccaneers	11	Gerald McCoy
9.	Kansas City Chiefs	7	Tamba Hali, Justin Houston
10.	New Orleans Saints	6	Cameron Jordan, Junior Galette
Watt and Clowney together alone won't make the Texans defense a top 10 caliber unit, but defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel can make them the foundation of a defense with the potential to be great over the coming seasons.

Even though Clowney will likely play outside linebacker for the Texans, Crennel can move him around and ask him to line up in different spots. When Crennel had Tamba Hali and Justin Houston in 2012, he only asked Hali to drop into coverage on eight percent of his snaps.

Clowney was a phenomenal prospect, but he is also...

Crennel has many options with his defensive front moving forward.

Four Man Front Combinations: Stunting

Although Watt is primarily thought of as a 3-4 defensive lineman, he is so talented that he transcends through the limitations of assignments and schemes.

Watt got to the quarterback 11 times during the 2013 season for 10.5 official sacks. Six of those sacks came on plays when he lined up in a 4-3 defense...

Pocket Collapsing: Coming off the edges

Concentrating the strength of the pass rush in one area can be an effective way of intimidating the offense before the snap and limiting what they can do after the snap. Similar effects can be created with more traditional lineups though.

On the Texans depth chart come the start of the season, Watt will likely be listed as the starting left defensive end and Clowney will likely be listed as the starting right outside linebacker.

Even though Watt is technically an...



Attacking the Interior: The Clowney, Nix, Watt 3-4 front

While the Texans got the best prospect in the draft, they may have also got the best value when they selected Louis Nix in the third round.

Nix is a nose tackle who starred on Notre Dame's 2012 team that reached the National Championship. After that season, he...

Stressing Space: Clowney, Watt and Blitzing from the other side

Having a pair of high-quality individual pass rushers will make the Texans reluctant to blitz. They will expect to get pressure by just rushing four and dropping the rest of the defense into coverage. However, there will be times when Crennel needs to send more than four after the quarterback.

In 3rd-and-Long situations, the Texans should get creative...


The above image diagrams a blitz that would make it very difficult for the offense to double team both Clowney and Watt without limiting the number of receivers they can send out in routes. The offense can try to handle this blitz in a variety of ways.


With this protection call, the running back helps the left tackle while the center and left guard slide to the left.

This means that both Clowney and Watt are double-teamed on the quarterback's blindside. However, this leaves the other three players rushing the passer one-on-one in space. Furthermore, the defense has six players in coverage to cover a maximum of three receivers.

Teams with better left tackles won't be intimidated by Clowney during his rookie season.



Instead, they will leave their left tackle alone with Clowney, while double teaming Watt. On these plays, the offense will be able to release another receiver into a route, but they will also leave four pass rushers working in one-on-one situations.

Only the bravest of offenses will leave both Clowney and Watt in one-on-one situations.



Even though the quarterback would have five options to read through in this situation, he likely wouldn't have the chance to do anything but get rid of the ball quickly. In any 3rd-and-Long situation, a quick pass or screen would work in the defenses favour.

Similarly, if the offense decided to roll the pocket away from Clowney and Watt, it would take away half of the field for the quarterback and his receivers.

This is a simple blitz concept. It doesn't feature any stunts or delayed rushes. It doesn't even feature any second-level rushes or disguises. It shows the offense what is coming and relies on the talent of two specific players to shift the number balance in the defense's favour.

3rd-and-Longs always play into the defense's favour, but using Clowney and Watt correctly could push the advantage even further towards the Texans.
snipped, read the full analysis: http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2...deveon-clowney

Last edited by Playoffs; 05-31-2014 at 09:40 PM.
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Old 05-31-2014   #2
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

The Seattle Seahawks were the only team on that top 10 with a chance to win the Super Bowl. Prior to 2013, no one thought the Seahawks were going to beat San Francisco... who isn't even on that list.

This, to me, is kinda like the "A short QB can win the Super Bowl" argument.

That list (especially considering Buffalo had four pass rushers with more than 7.5 sacks) says as much.
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Old 05-31-2014   #3
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

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The Seattle Seahawks were the only team on that top 10 with a chance to win the Super Bowl. Prior to 2013, no one thought the Seahawks were going to beat San Francisco... who isn't even on that list.

This, to me, is kinda like the "A short QB can win the Super Bowl" argument.

That list (especially considering Buffalo had four pass rushers with more than 7.5 sacks) says as much.
I don't see where you are coming from. The whole point of the article is that having these two should give us a really good defense especially against the pass.
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Old 05-31-2014   #4
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

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This, to me, is kinda like the...
The article is about Watt/Clowney startegies, but...

What won the Super Bowl? The better defense or the best offense? 'Nuff said.
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Old 05-31-2014   #5
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

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Originally Posted by Playoffs View Post
The article is about Watt/Clowney startegies, but...

What won the Super Bowl? The better defense or the best offense? 'Nuff said.
The better defense. The "LEGION OF BOOM" , and the others ABUSED I repeat ABUSED the Broncos offense
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Old 06-01-2014   #6
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

Does anyone know how often Crennel likes to blitz? I know Wade blitzed a lot but I think our biggest advantage with Clowney/Watt will be to drop more players in coverage.
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Old 06-01-2014   #7
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

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Does anyone know how often Crennel likes to blitz? I know Wade blitzed a lot but I think our biggest advantage with Clowney/Watt will be to drop more players in coverage.
He is on the low blitz side of the spectrum.
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Old 06-01-2014   #8
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The best thing the Texans can do to maximize the impact of watt and clowney is to keep them off the field and therefore keep them fresh.
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Old 06-01-2014   #9
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

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Does anyone know how often Crennel likes to blitz? I know Wade blitzed a lot but I think our biggest advantage with Clowney/Watt will be to drop more players in coverage.
Like Cak said low. He's more of a my guy vs guy kinda coach
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Old 06-01-2014   #10
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

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The best thing the Texans can do to maximize the impact of watt and clowney is to keep them off the field and therefore keep them fresh.
Agreed.

At the same time, the best thing the Texans can do to help it's QB corps, is get the ball back ASAP, & get us a short field.
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Old 06-01-2014   #11
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Agreed.

At the same time, the best thing the Texans can do to help it's QB corps, is get the ball back ASAP, & get us a short field.
Touche!
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Old 06-01-2014   #12
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

No team will change their line protections until can prove he can beat single blocks. Until then, watt will get doubled.
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Old 06-02-2014   #13
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

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No team will change their line protections until can prove he can beat single blocks. Until then, watt will get doubled.
Even after Clowney earns a double team, Jj will still get doubled. Most offenses can double two guys in a four man rush. Antonio pretty much demanded a double team on every play.

Our problem was that Antonio couldn't beat that double team with the same frequency as Jj & the other guys couldn't beat the man on man protection they faced.

It would be nice if Clowney can demand a double & Nix can demand a double. Then we'll have something like Buffalo where they have four guys with 7.5+ sacks.
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Old 06-02-2014   #14
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

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Even after Clowney earns a double team, Jj will still get doubled. Most offenses can double two guys in a four man rush. Antonio pretty much demanded a double team on every play.

Our problem was that Antonio couldn't beat that double team with the same frequency as Clowney & the other guys couldn't beat the man on man protection they faced.

It would be nice if Clowney can demand a double & Nix can demand a double. Then we'll have something like Buffalo where they have four guys with 7.5+ sacks.
I feel like people (not necessarily you) keep forgetting about Mercilus in this equation. I honestly believe that he will benefit the most from the plethora of talent we now have on this defensive front. He's shown the ability already to beat single blocks and he now has a full year of starting under his belt to go along with the year he rode the bench behind Barwin. After Mario's rookie season and then JJ's I feel like it takes at least a year, even for these guys who exude talent, to become dominant at rushing the passer at the next level. Mercilus is definitely in a better position to go for 10+ sacks this year than Clowney IMO.
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Old 06-02-2014   #15
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

I think we're also forgetting about Cushing. I can see him being that 5th guy over Brooks and bringing some havoc against a one-on-one block.
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Old 06-02-2014   #16
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

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I think we're also forgetting about Cushing. I can see him being that 5th guy over Brooks and bringing some havoc against a one-on-one block.
I dunno, but maybe it's best to go ahead and forget about Cushing and then if he can somehow remain healthy this season he'll be a very pleasant surprise contributor to the defense.
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Old 06-02-2014   #17
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

Maybe it's been mentioned upthread or elswhere and I missed it ,but where are they lining up JDC in OTA's? Strong side or weak?
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Old 06-02-2014   #18
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

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Originally Posted by thunderkyss View Post
Even after Clowney earns a double team, Jj will still get doubled. Most offenses can double two guys in a four man rush. Antonio pretty much demanded a double team on every play.

Our problem was that Antonio couldn't beat that double team with the same frequency as Jj & the other guys couldn't beat the man on man protection they faced.

It would be nice if Clowney can demand a double & Nix can demand a double. Then we'll have something like Buffalo where they have four guys with 7.5+ sacks.
If you double 2 guys you have 6 players locked up in blocking roles - and that does not include anyone picking up a blitz. So it already means you either have a TE or a HB in just for blocking purposes, and if a we get a well designed blitz, that blitzer is basically running free. I don`t think you can regularly double 2 players and I do believe we will regularly have 4 + 1 rushers (with either Mercilus, Cushing or Reed being the other rusher, at times maybe a CB or even a safety like Swearinger, plus there is a good chance Nix will occupy 2 guys as well). Having one player that can beat a double team is nice, having two is a game changer.

If Clowney turns out to be as dominant as a lot of people think he is, and if Watt excells in RCs system as he did in Wades - well then other teams will have trouble.
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Old 06-02-2014   #19
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

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Maybe it's been mentioned upthread or elswhere and I missed it ,but where are they lining up JDC in OTA's? Strong side or weak?
I believe he's lining up weakside BUT... the press is under strict orders to not talk about lineups and where guys are playing. So no one can tell us where he's lining up.

At least, that's my understanding.
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Old 06-02-2014   #20
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Default Re: How Can the Houston Texans Maximize Talent of J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney?

And then on the other hand, people are talking about Brooks Reed lining up in the middle.

So.

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