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Old 09-07-2004   #1
ledzeppelin229
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Default 2002 D vs 2004 D

How does everyone think the 2004 version of the defense stacks up against our 2002 version?

We have significant changes to all three levels of the D:
Robaire added to the DL
Babin taking that OLB spot that's always been in question
Coleman moving to FS
Robinson takes over MC's old RCB position.

*** An entire season WITHOUT Matt Stevens in the secondary ***

Payne is still a ? mark for now until he's at full strength to really compare the two versions.

The 2002 D wasn't anything to laugh at, the question is what are people's expectations this year? Overall the unit seems upgraded all around but there will definitely be some growing pains with the two rookies starting.

Anyway...have at it
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Old 09-07-2004   #2
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On paper it looks like an improvement, but... The dline gets beat up in 3-4 & I am not convinced Payne and Walker will be around for 16 games. Coleman seems to be doing OK & will be improvement but it is a new position. I would play Eric Brown mid range to support Robinson and stop a dink type pass when outside backer rushes QB. Shade Coleman closer to Dunte side of field as Glenn should handle his side.

The big key to this defense is linebackers. I still seen no reason to think we will get more than 3 from Peek or Babin. Boy, I hope I am wrong! Keep in mind that in 2002 a lot of teams underestimated H town and I do not think that will happen this season.
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Old 09-07-2004   #3
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Default Edge to 2002

I think we will be close to 2002, but I don't think we can stay as heathly as we were that year. Payne and Walker 2 years older and coming off injuries + 2 rookies outweigh even the play of Stevens (believe or not). Next Year we will be a lot better. This year we will be way above 2003 though.
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Old 09-07-2004   #4
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Matt Stevens is gone so that is a HUGE imporvement.
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Old 09-07-2004   #5
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One advantage the 2004 defense has is two years of experience in the system. Few of the players in 2002 had any experience playing the 3-4 defense but now most of them have been here for two years.

Anothter advantage the 2004 defense has is the 2004 offense. The offense should be able to move the ball and score more points, taking pressure off the defense to shut out the opposing team and giving the defense more time to rest between series.

Also, the 2004 version has depth. Deloach has started 32 games. Sears started most of last year. Ioane started a few games. Those are the backups for the D-line. Peek has a year of experience on the outside, and Wong is ready to move inside if Sharper or Foreman go down. McCree started last year, and now he is backing up both safety spots. Faggins and Wright are backing up the CB spots.

The only disadvantage I see is the injury factor. The 2002 defense was extremely fortunate in only having one starter miss one game (Eric Brown). If Walker and Payne can stay healthy this defense will definitely end up being better because of the above reasons.
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Old 09-07-2004   #6
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I don't think the 2002 defense was as good as generally believed. The fact that they stayed healthy and the starters helped mask their shortcomings.

My proposition is that teams didn't challenge the Texans 2002 defense as much as other teams, because of the inadequate Texans' offense. For example, in a third and short situation, teams could try to run for the first down (not risky). If they didn't get a first down, it helped the Texans' defensive statistics, but it didn't hurt the opposing team. Not infrequently, the Texans' offense would go three and out, might even lose yards and give the ball back anyway. Why take a change and press the Texans' 2002 defense?

Just a thought.
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Old 09-07-2004   #7
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The guys on D who lined up against Dallas on 9-8-02 were:

Walker
Payne
DeLoach
Wong
Foreman
Sharper
Posey
Glenn
Coleman
Brown
Stevens

Looks familiar doesn't it. It's pretty much the same group of guys we have now. Nice upgrade at FS.

Yes, two years in the system helps, but two years in age (and in some cases recovery from significant injury) hinders. I like the fact that we've injected some young blood into the starting D this year. They will make mistakes but they will also make plays. It was needed.

Last edited by aj.; 09-07-2004 at 07:59 PM.
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Old 09-07-2004   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aj.
The guys on D who lined up against Dallas on 9-8-02 were ... Looks familiar doesn't it. It's pretty much the same group of guys we have now. Nice upgrade at FS ... I like the fact that we've injected some young blood into the starting D this year. They will make mistakes but they will also make plays. It was needed.
I agree with your conclusion, that injecting youth helps. It was needed. I feel, though, that the changes 2004 from 2002 are significant.

Adding The Baire improves two positions, starting RDE (the Baire) and first spare (DeLoach);

Adding Robinson improves (hopefully) two positions, starting RCB (Robinson) and FS (Coleman) (also McCree as a second cover safety provides flexibility;

Adding Babin and Peek improves (hopefully) two positions, OLB and first spare.

Some is familiar, but a lot is different.
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Old 09-07-2004   #9
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Lot's of hope in there. Eight of 11 are the same guys, although two are upgrading different positions. There have been improvements but Payne, Walker and Glenn coming off serious injuries is also significant.
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Old 09-07-2004   #10
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I can't disagree.
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Old 09-07-2004   #11
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Well the Preseason didn't give me any reason to believe we will be like the 02 Defense. I really hope I am wrong. The Dallas game we looked like the 02 Defense but then pretty much stunk it up from there on out except for the goal line stance against Tampa.

To be honest, we looked strangly familiar as the 03 defense looked in the preseason and that is what scares me. We did however turn out some good performances in the season and for the most part we were playing some hard ball for the first 6 quarters of last season until Payne's injury.

I just hope we are ready to go against San Diego because this is the NFL and just because a team did bad last season doesn't mean they will always repeat. I hope for our sake just because our D did bad last season, don't mean we will this season.

I've always said if our D played like they did in 02, we would be a deep playoff team.
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Old 09-07-2004   #12
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Agree with most of the points, but think the loss of Posey is being underestimated. Not only did Posey have 8 sacks, but quite a few of those were Clutch plays in 3rd and crucial situations.

I hope that Peek or Babin is able to able to bring that critical QB pressure to our defense, but until they do so over the course of a season we're still in the red at one of the most critical spots in the 3-4.
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Old 09-07-2004   #13
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It should be interesting. If Walker/Payne stay healthy(and can get close to the playing level they were), I think our defense will seem better than the one in 2002. Basically because we do have some kind of offense and a running game,so the defense should stay off the field more than they did in 2002.

I think Posey was ok and with a healthy D-line .. our LB's should be able to be free to roam.. If so I hope this is the year Jamie Sharper FINALLY gets recognized and goes to the probowl... He is the Rodney Dangerfield of linebackers ( to the voting america of the probowl) and a few more wins and a little more notoriety . I think he goes.
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Old 09-09-2004   #14
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got rid of matt stevens ... +
robaire over deloach ....... +
babin instead of posey .... +
robinson in for coleman .... - (so far)
coleman starting fs ......... +
wong on the right side .... +
depth across the board ... + (deloach, sears, faggins, wright, peek, bell, mccree, etc)
expansion vs 3rd year ..... +

yeah, i think we're significantly better now than in 02 ... and 02 wasnt bad. all of course assuming we stay fairly healthy, but again that's where the added depth comes in.
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Old 09-09-2004   #15
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I think we have seen glimmers of what the offense can do and I think right now most of us don't have too many concerns about it. However, while on Paper the defense looks alright we just haven't seen much in the preseason. In fact, if anything, we have seen some real bad things. Walker and Payne have been essentially missing from the mix. It looks like that will continue. Without those players we are in trouble. I think the defense has more to show than the offense. I hope we do well against SD, but I think Smith is going to have to show much more than he has shown in preseason. I believe he has been basically a no show up to now. Babin and Robinson have been on the injured list lately, so again another negative. We may have to win a lot of games offensively this year in a shoot out. I think this year is going to be the opposite of 02 in that the offense becomes our primary weapon despite Capers coaching ability. I think last years injuries took a large toll and we have yet recovered from it.
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Old 09-09-2004   #16
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For some reason I have this feeling that after the first game against Dallas, they slowed down the D so they wouldn't reveal too much. Of course it helped that the QBs were Henson and Romo...

In any case I expect the D to impress people this year, or atleast knock down those "worst in the league" expectations everyone outside Houston seems to have.
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Old 09-10-2004   #17
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texans will be better than the 03 D but not 02. Why? Robaire is solid but he will need about 8 games to adjust to the 3-4. Babin is a rook, he will need time too. Glenn is older, Coleman is now a Safety and Dunta is a rook. Our division has two MVP QB's with great offenses. The texans have to stop the run first before they can do much. if not the jags will be hard to beat. CBrown gives the titans a dimension they have not had in 4 yrs and Edge looks like he is going to be a load. I think the texans will be statisically better but the DL is still a huge question mark and depth is poor in my opinion. The pass D has a chance to be very good, but i think the D will be solid come week 8-16. There are too many questions right now and mcnair and manning are very very good. they have to be stopped 4 times. that is a tough job for any D without questions, just see NE last night. they had all they could handle with the colts.
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