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Old 05-07-2011   #1
awtysst
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Default How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

I have seen countless posters opining that Mario will need to lose "significant weight" in order to be able to perform as a 3-4OLB. Various people have thrown out target weights, but many seem to have come to 250 being the size Mario needs to be. I think this is based on the perpetuated belief that the 3-4 OLB usually is in the 240-250lb range.

I thought it would be interesting to look at the numbers. Is is true that most of the top 3-4 OLBs are in fact in the 240-250lb range? Many people seem to believe this theory. The best way to test the theory is to go to the numbers.

Here were the top 15 3-4 OLBs in terms of sacks last year:

1. Demarcus Ware, Dallas: 6'4 260lbs
2. Tambi Hali, Kansas City : 6'3 270lbs
3. Cameron Wake, Miami : 6'3 250 lbs
4. Clay Matthews III, Green Bay, 6'3 255lbs
5. Terrell Suggs, Baltimore, 6'3 260 lbs
6. Shaun Phillips, San Diego, 6'3 250 lbs
7. James Harirson, Pittsburgh, 6'0 243 lbs
8. LeMarr Woodley, Pittsburgh, 6'2 265 lbs
9. Brian Orakpo, Washington 6'4 255 lbs
10. James Farrior, Pittsburgh 6'4 243
11. Bryan Thomas, NYJ 6'4 260lbs
12. Calvin Pace, NYJ, 6'4 265
13. Jason Taylor NYJ, 6'6 250
14. Mario Hagan, Denver 6'3 267
15. Tully Banta-Cain, New England 6'2 250lbs.

Conclusions
1) Of the top 15 3-4 OLB last year 8 weighed more than 250 lbs while 7 weighed less than 250. Clearly the notion that the 3-4 OLB is usually in the 240-250 lbs range is discredited. It would be morwe accruate to say the 3-4 OLB is in the 240-265lb range.

2. Another result which is not as clearcut is the that taller players are heavier. While generally the trend holds, the tallest in the group Jason Tayler is not the heaviest. Tambi Hali, is the heaviest at 270 and only 6'3.

3. So what should Mario's ideal weight be? There is no nice neat formula. Remember Mario is taller, leaner, and more msucular than most of the other OLBs on this list. I think its pretty clear he will not be able to play OLB at 290lbs. I would say if he was in the 270s he will probably be fine. Given his size he should be able to carry the weight well.

4. I see Mario as playing the elephant in Wade's 1 gap 3-4. He will be moved around bit. Other 3-4 elephants include Charles Haley, Terrell Suggs, Julian Peterson, and Jason Taylor.
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Old 05-07-2011   #2
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

Thanks, appreciate the research.

Williams is an athlete. If he has the athleticism and skill to do the job, I don't care about him not being some particular height, weight or BMI. He is a rare species of athlete.
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Old 05-07-2011   #3
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

Mario has been known as a strong, very fast DE. Move him back a few steps and I just don't see how he loses anything. What I see is SMith, NT, Watt collapsing or at least tying up four blockers. An RB trying to block a charging Rhino in Maro (HAHAHAHA) and still the QB will have to watch for other LBs or maybe just maybe a blitzing corner or FS?
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Old 05-07-2011   #4
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

The average of the weights you posted is 256. I dont think its fair to say clearly the notion that the 3-4 OLB is usually in the 250 range is discredited.. 250 seems to be about right.

I also agree with MojoX. If he can move around effectively (his 40 time, cone, and shuttle drills seem to indicate he'll do just fine) I think he'll be awesome wherever he is on the field.


It will certainly be interesting to see where he fits in
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Old 05-07-2011   #5
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MojoX View Post
Thanks, appreciate the research.

Williams is an athlete. If he has the athleticism and skill to do the job, I don't care about him not being some particular height, weight or BMI. He is a rare species of athlete.
My pleasure. I agree. Weight is one component.
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Old 05-07-2011   #6
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

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Originally Posted by badboy View Post
Mario has been known as a strong, very fast DE. Move him back a few steps and I just don't see how he loses anything. What I see is SMith, NT, Watt collapsing or at least tying up four blockers. An RB trying to block a charging Rhino in Maro (HAHAHAHA) and still the QB will have to watch for other LBs or maybe just maybe a blitzing corner or FS?
Agreed. Mario is a special body type: fast, strong, and agile.
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Old 05-07-2011   #7
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

Quote:
Originally Posted by gtexan02 View Post
The average of the weights you posted is 256. I dont think its fair to say clearly the notion that the 3-4 OLB is usually in the 250 range is discredited.. 250 seems to be about right.

I also agree with MojoX. I could care less what his weight or height is if he can move around effectively. His 40 time, cone, and shuttle drills seem to indicate he'll do just fine
Well I was saying the 240-250lb range belief is discredited. Also I was just trying to show that 8 of the top 15 OLB were over 250 and 7 were under.

I agree with you: Height/weight may be irrelevant, his initial burst, cone, and shuttle times are important. However, for him, what will be most important is correcting his footwork. Remember Phillips saying he took a false step, he will need to correct that. Height/weight have no bearing on that issue
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Old 05-07-2011   #8
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

I dont ? MW's ability to play in any defense.

I ? his desire to put in the work it will take to become an impact player on an every down basis. regardless of whatever scheme Wade puts him in.

This comes down to MW"s willingness to do the offseason traing it will take to improve his explosiveness off the edge and stay healthy. I just dont see the desire is there. Of course this is a contract yr and MW probably will do the work necessary to have a great yr. Then he will go back to being the same old MW.

BoB should treat MW like the Tacks did Haynesworth and make him play on a yr to yr basis. So that the Texans get the best out of MW. It's on MW to prove the skeptics like me wrong. Stay healthy all yr and produce at an elite level or move on.

It's crap or get off the pot time for MW. I hope this works out well for BoB. But I wouldn't count on it. Especially when you look at MW's track record in college and the pros.
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Old 05-07-2011   #9
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

I don't believe weight is the factor, but speed, and agility. I'd prefer that comparison, though now sure how you chart agility.
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Old 05-07-2011   #10
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

I think that without an ultra strong or big and wide NT (neither which type we presently have) to create (along with the other OLBs) holes, Mario's potential success independent of his weight will be hindered, since he doesn't tend to plow holes himself.
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Old 05-08-2011   #11
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

Quote:
Originally Posted by steelbtexan View Post
BoB should treat MW like the Tacks did Haynesworth and make him play on a yr to yr basis. So that the Texans get the best out of MW. It's on MW to prove the skeptics like me wrong. Stay healthy all yr and produce at an elite level or move on.
Yeah we should definitely model our organization after the Titans, because when it comes to getting rid of players, Bud Adams is certainly on point as to when is a good time to show them the door.

I'll believe all this crap about Mario not putting in the work when there are actual examples of other players on the Texans out-working him. The only player on defense who puts in more work/productivity than M-dub is Ryans and he's a ****ing LB.
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Old 05-08-2011   #12
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Default

I don't understand people being so sure about Mario making the transition. No one really knows how it will play out over the course of a season.

Lots of factors at play. Way more than just weight.
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Old 05-08-2011   #13
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

At 6'6", 290lbs., MW has a lot more mass than those other guys. That mass will not want to change direction easily, putting a lot of stress on his knees and ankles.
6'6", 290lbs is too big. I hope Phillips is pulling a late April Fools prank or something.
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Old 05-08-2011   #14
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

Quote:
Originally Posted by steelbtexan View Post
I dont ? MW's ability to play in any defense.

I ? his desire to put in the work it will take to become an impact player on an every down basis. regardless of whatever scheme Wade puts him in.

This comes down to MW"s willingness to do the offseason traing it will take to improve his explosiveness off the edge and stay healthy. I just dont see the desire is there. Of course this is a contract yr and MW probably will do the work necessary to have a great yr. Then he will go back to being the same old MW.

BoB should treat MW like the Tacks did Haynesworth and make him play on a yr to yr basis. So that the Texans get the best out of MW. It's on MW to prove the skeptics like me wrong. Stay healthy all yr and produce at an elite level or move on.

It's crap or get off the pot time for MW. I hope this works out well for BoB. But I wouldn't count on it. Especially when you look at MW's track record in college and the pros.
pure bullshit. comparing mario to fat albert shows pure cluelessness.

mario is one of the most consistent players in the league. by my quick research, since 2007 only ware has more sacks & none of the other top passrushers play the run as well as mario. considering the generally shitty D's mario has been on compared to ware & other top guys (which allows them get...gasp....coverage sacks), id say thats quite an achievement

the only reason mario doesnt play as well in some games as in others is for one singular reason- injury. the last 2 yrs his production & play tailed off at the end of both yrs because of this. it has nothing to do with his motor
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Old 05-08-2011   #15
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

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pure bullshit. comparing mario to fat albert shows pure cluelessness.

mario is one of the most consistent players in the league. by my quick research, since 2007 only ware has more sacks & none of the other top passrushers play the run as well as mario. considering the generally shitty D's mario has been on compared to ware & other top guys (which allows them get...gasp....coverage sacks), id say thats quite an achievement

the only reason mario doesnt play as well in some games as in others is for one singular reason- injury. the last 2 yrs his production & play tailed off at the end of both yrs because of this. it has nothing to do with his motor
Good Points.

As to this 'coverage sack' phenomenon, can you talk more about this fabled creature?
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Old 05-08-2011   #16
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

Even on a big frame that towers 6'6" to 6'7", 290 lbs is probably too big, but
I'm confidant Mario can get to a more desirable weight, which would probably be somewhere under 280 lbs.
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Old 05-08-2011   #17
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

Mario is a player - 260, 270 or 280 - Mario will be where he needs to be to be dominant. I truely believe he can be a rush linebacker. Training camp (I still have hope) and preseason will show if he can - if not, well then back to DE.

I think, in the end Wade will move him around. Outside on some plays, at DE on others. We have several players that can play multiple positions and Wade should take advantage of that.

The one thing that I really like about Mario in the 3-4: no matter where he plays, he will have a serious pass rushing thread besides him (whether it is an OLB like Reed or Barwin or a DE like Watt or Smith) - that alone will be a nightmare for opposing teams.
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Old 05-08-2011   #18
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

Quote:
Originally Posted by steelbtexan View Post
I dont ? MW's ability to play in any defense.

I ? his desire to put in the work it will take to become an impact player on an every down basis. regardless of whatever scheme Wade puts him in.
Mario has gone on record saying he really likes this move and is excited about it. I think this might help - knowing that he wants to try this might make him work harder at it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DocBar
6'6", 290lbs is too big. I hope Phillips is pulling a late April Fools prank or something.
I believe I read somewhere that Wade said Mario isn't naturally 290, he had bulked up a bit too big. He said that when he got a chance to meet with him, he was already down near 282. I don't think it is crazy to believe we could see Mario near 275 or maybe even 270. I think Mario is quick enough that he could be effective at this weight.

What I worry more about than anything is that this transition will take some time. Wade will need to work with his footwork and timing to make him successful, and depending on what happens with the lockout, it could be hard to find enough time to get him anywhere near where he should be for the start of the season.
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Old 05-08-2011   #19
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

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Even on a big frame that towers 6'6" to 6'7", 290 lbs is probably too big, but
I'm confidant Mario can get to a more desirable weight, which would probably be somewhere under 280 lbs.
JMO........

Mario is big, strong, and fast. That is what allows him to do his job.

If you make him lose weight.... he will lose strength. He has nothing to lose but muscle, kid doesn't have an ounce of fat on him.

Then Mario will be big & fast....

If he was a mean sunuvagun, like Sapp... maybe that would be good enough. At DE/OLB, I don't think so.

Mario is going to have to play at 290. Which isn't a big deal if he is going to play like Ware does in Dallas. Going after the QB 95% of the time. If we were talking about one of those 3-4s where you don't know where the rush is coming from (ala NYJ) then yeah, we got a problem. If you're expecting Mario to do some fancy foot-work to trip up OTs like CMIII, then yeah, ain't gonna happen.

But giving him some space to work with.... lining another big guy right in front of that OT.... can't do anything but help him in the pass rush area.

But I personally think it's a waste to take him off the DL.
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Old 05-08-2011   #20
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Default Re: How big is too big for Mario at 3-4 OLB?

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Originally Posted by dinkatoid View Post

I believe I read somewhere that Wade said Mario isn't naturally 290, he had bulked up a bit too big. He said that when he got a chance to meet with him, he was already down near 282. I don't think it is crazy to believe we could see Mario near 275 or maybe even 270. I think Mario is quick enough that he could be effective at this weight.
At 6'6, 270lbs he'll look like a pretzel.
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