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Old 10-11-2004   #1
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Default Defensive hole!

Man, the game on sunday was painful and the fans got what their hard earned dollars paid for, but the defense has got to do better. For the first time in 3 years, we can really say the offense is keeping us in every game, with the defense failing to add anything to the pot. Did they have a few strong stops yesterday, yes, but if you don't get off the field on 3rd down, at least 50% of the time, it's going to be a long day. No team can play at the pace the TExans did on sunday, and the defense has to allow the offense time to control the clock. Come On! 18 total plays in the first half! That's 1st year stuff, because we were inadequate offensively, but the vikes had 42 plays, which put us behind the eight ball immediately! Safety continues to be where we struggle. I love Dante Robinson, and he's going to be our future shut-down corner, but I'm starting to doubt if we went in the wrong direction in the draft, solely on the "great safety experiment" not panning out! Take away the big heart-felt 101 yard interception return, and the guy has not made a solid transition. Coleman looks out of position on alot of plays and the secondary seems lost as a whole. If you know football, that is the safeties fault! He's the QB of the defense and it hasn't looked good! I'm going to be optimistic and say this team will rebound next week & after the bye week to make a run at the playoffs, but unless the safety play gets better, 7-9 or 8-8 is as high as we can go, solely on offensive shutouts!
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Old 10-11-2004   #2
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I know the D stopped the vikings first drive, and I'm pretty sure they stopped their first two drives. The Texans offense went 3 and out basically the entire first half, forcing our defense to stay out there for over 20 minutes. They get tired I'm sure when the offense can't sustain a drive and let them rest. Notice when the offense did better in the second half....so did the defense.
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Old 10-11-2004   #3
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Default true hit

I understand that, but the Texans are not getting help in the secondary on 3rd down. If you remember, the stops were on 3rd & 1, 3rd & 2, and so forth, but in long yardage situations, and this deflates the team, the fans, the stadium, everyone involved. If we make the big stop, you take the emotion out of the other team, and gain strong momentum!
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Old 10-11-2004   #4
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I know 510 yds given up looks like the D had a horrible day and yes we do need to stiffen up when we have the advantage in down and distance but yesterdays loss goes to the offences inability to sustain even one drive in the first half.I for one wasnt too dissapointed with the D as much as I was with the first half offence.
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Old 10-11-2004   #5
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I agree with Pittbull. Our defense has some real weakness in the secondary. we are not able to make consistant stops on third down, and break the momentum of the the other team. You can't give up long pass plays on 3-1, or even 3rd and long and expect to win many games. A strong defense is the heart of any good team.
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Old 10-11-2004   #6
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...no question about the lack of offense in the first half, but allowing
500 plus yards and 5 touch downs is not going to win many games...

another thought about the lack of offensive plays in the first half...
This is a direct result of 'playing not to lose.' If the offense had opened
up and used all their weapons, it is probable that the Texans would have
gained some first downs, which would translate into more offensive plays.
However, the inability of the defense to stop the Vikings in the first half
sure did not help, which is reflected in the time of possession disparity.

Finally, look at the 3rd dwn conversion stat--- 9/17 for the Vikings, 5/15 for
the Texans.
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Old 10-11-2004   #7
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I think the biggest problem lies in the lack of inside push in our pass rush, and not our secondary. You just can't ask cover men to stay with NFL WR's for more than a few seconds. We rarely blow up the pocket from the inside. Look at our own David Carr. Most of the time when he struggles with the rush is when the pocket is blown up from the inside and he has to move out to the sidelines to find a receiver. Right now our only rush is on the edge and with a blitz. Until we can start imploding some pockets from the inside we will continue to give up lots of long 3rd downs.
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Old 10-11-2004   #8
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One of the things that stands out in my mind when I think about the Vikings game is how many times Culpepper--he of the many "weapons"--was forced to run out of bounds, take a sack, scramble, etc...because nobody was open. The secondary gave up waaaaaaay too many big plays, but 1) they fought hard late and 2) they weren't exactly playing the Falcons here. Minnesota is a seriously GOOD passing team and, unlike Atlanta, has a QB who's living up to his hype.
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Old 10-11-2004   #9
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That's what happens when you play the #1 offense in football. They are going to get yards and they are going to make plays. That's why they are #1, plus the OT added some yards to thier stats. Now if JAX get 34 points and 500 yards we have a serious problem. But I say this weeks performance is more of thier good offense and not our sorry defense.
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Old 10-11-2004   #10
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I'll add to what Vinny is saying. I've noticed that we do not consistant blitz on 3rd and long, expecially up the middle. There have been countless times where a QB has had all day to spot an open reciever down field because of the lack of the blitz.
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Old 10-11-2004   #11
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Yesterday I noticed more pre-snap chaos in the secondary than ever before. Many times when the Vikes came to the line it seemed as if our guys were totally confused and winging it. I saw almost every DB at one point or another look back at Marcus as if say "what the hell are we supposed to be doing now." It's almost as if the Texans hadn't seen some of the looks on tape. The Vikes rarely run no-huddle and when they came out with that, I think it added to the confusion.
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Old 10-11-2004   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SESupergenius
I'll add to what Vinny is saying. I've noticed that we do not consistant blitz on 3rd and long, expecially up the middle. There have been countless times where a QB has had all day to spot an open reciever down field because of the lack of the blitz.
Yeah that was something I noticed too. I believe there was at least one 3rd and long where Culpepper had all day to throw, but the coverage was there so he just ran for the first down with only Robaire Smith chasing him. I also agree with what aj said about the chaos in the secondary. On the TD in OT there was no one over the top to help out in coverage even though the Vikes ran a very similar play shortly before that to Robinson and there was no over the top coverage then either. Robinson just dropped the ball, or he would have gone for 6 then. I did like what I saw of Robinson blitzing, and Babin had a great showing too. He showed the quickness and power that I'd been waiting to see from him all year. I hope this means he's getting more comfortable with his responsibilities, and will continue to improve.
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Old 10-11-2004   #13
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The Vikings do have a good offensive line, when they are healthy. Yesterday they played without their starting center and right tackle. They started a rookie at right tackle. Not to mention they were working with their fourth string running back.
So far this year we have given up more yards on the ground this year compared to last: 657 this year thru 5 games compared to 557 last year. We are giving up more rushing yards and we have added Smith, and are playing Walker and Payne. Last years injury depleted line was doing better against the run.
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Old 10-11-2004   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aj.
Yesterday I noticed more pre-snap chaos in the secondary than ever before...
I noticed this as well. I confess I assumed some of it was a function of playing a team coming of a bye week, although I offer nothing to substantiate this statement. The Vikings had the extra time to put a few new things in to their offense, or to do things they always do, but out of slightly didn't looks (formations). I would also add that the confusion is somewhat to be expected with a new free safety making the calls (Coleman), a rookie CB (Robinson) and the exotic coverages demanded because of Moss.

The confusion is devastating, because everyone hesitates when they aren't confident in the defense calls and there is no margin for hesitation in the secondary against a Culpepper and Moss. The good news is that this is precisely the kind of thing the Texans can hope to improve through practice and hard work. It also suggests that the Texans can improve as the season progresses.
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Old 10-12-2004   #15
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Minn has a good offense, and they are going to move the ball on everyone. The only play I was disappointed in the defenses play was the fourth TD. It was third and short, Moss went in motion toward the oline and then back out. Duante hit him on the fly down the right side. I knew and I think most people thought watch for Randy, and sure enough they hit him. Glen looked to get turned around and Marcus was late in getting over.

If we would have stoped that play, I think we would have won that game in regulation. We had the moe, and just scored three TD's, Vikings would have punted and I think we would have drove in for the winning score instead of the tieing score.
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Old 10-12-2004   #16
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I was at the vikings game and really enjoyed it and just being at Reliant Stadium. It was worth the drive up from Corpus Christi. I'll be at the Jaguars game as well but this time I'll be in the blue lot instead of the yellow.

Our defense could never adjust to those short slant passes. Their receivers were open all day long on those routes. But worst of all was letting their 4th string running back look like a top tier rb. All in all it was a great game even though we lost. We did have an opportunity to win in ot but Carr got sacked on third down. I was hoping at the time that they would roll him out because of all the pressure he was getting. I hope Palmer will turn our offense loose for an entire game now after he saw what we can do.
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Old 10-12-2004   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinny
I think the biggest problem lies in the lack of inside push in our pass rush, and not our secondary. You just can't ask cover men to stay with NFL WR's for more than a few seconds. We rarely blow up the pocket from the inside.
BINGO!! Well said, Vinny!

I think the key to having a dominating defense starts in the trenches. When you control the line-of-scrimmage, you stop the run and place more pressure on the opposing QB making plays. And when he is mentally pressing, along with being constantly harassed/sacked, you take their offense out of their element and they find no groove.

Besides, the Vikings do have the no. 1 offense in the NFL right now, and our D stopped them 6 out of 7 times at the end of the game! We even stopped them once in OT, and gave our offense a chance to WIN the game!
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Old 10-12-2004   #18
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Our defense DOES have weaknesses.. but they played AWESOME in the later part of the game. if we needed a stop.. they gave it to us. The only time that they didnt stop the vikings cold in the 4th quarter or overtime.. was when Marcus Robinson beat Dunta Robinson to win the game.

our run defense is suffering.. our secondary however.. is getting better. and that is because our Pass Rush has improved since we started tossing out blitz packages.

our defense is not broken yet. Give it a couple more weeks... we have been looking pretty good lately.

also remember that we just took the #1 offense lead by the #1 QB and the greatest receiver of his time, randy moss.. into overtime.. and almost beat them. Perhaps our defense isnt so bad afterall?

we are also ranked 16th in the league.. despite our shortcomings.
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Old 10-12-2004   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vinny
I think the biggest problem lies in the lack of inside push in our pass rush, and not our secondary. You just can't ask cover men to stay with NFL WR's for more than a few seconds. We rarely blow up the pocket from the inside. Look at our own David Carr. Most of the time when he struggles with the rush is when the pocket is blown up from the inside and he has to move out to the sidelines to find a receiver. Right now our only rush is on the edge and with a blitz. Until we can start imploding some pockets from the inside we will continue to give up lots of long 3rd downs.


Vinny can back me up on this when I say I wanted Vince Wilfork from the very beginning. Now we are seeing why. I still support D-Rob though so don't think I'm a hater or anything like that.
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Old 10-12-2004   #20
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Wilfork would be nice to have.. but you cant have every good player in the draft . I like how our two guys are turning out. What I like most about them is that they are both FAST.. and both have those nonstop motors that everyone is always talking about.

Besides.. isnt the draft a little deeper at defensive linemen this year?
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