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Old 05-16-2012   #1
Tailgate
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Default Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

Bored at work and I was doing some digging for fun. Our D had the luxury of facing the Jags, Colts, and Titans offenses 2 xs each last year. They had the #21st, 28th, and 28th ranked scoring teams in NFL last year according to NFL.com.

The good news is we get to face those same offenses next year, but they are working to improve just like everyone else. When looking back we faced an average of the 19th ranked scoring teams over 16 games last year.

The best offenses we faced in 2011 (weighted in ppg):
#2 New Orleans - 34.2 ppg / 467 ypg - We allowed 40 pts / 454 yards
#5 Carolina - 25.4 ppg / 389 ypg - We allowed 28 /316 yards
#7 Atlanta - 25.1 ppg / 376 ypg - We allowed 10 pts / 337 yards
#12 Baltimore - 23.6 ppg / 338 ypg - We allowed 29 & 20 / 402 and 227 yds
#16 Oakland - 22.4 ppg / 380 ypg - We allowed 25 / 278 yards

The most balanced offenses we faced were Balt, Oak, and Carolina. *All 3 were losses in the regular season.

Analysis: We did a very fine job of limiting NO until Brees became unstoppable. Carolina, was it just one of those days? Atlanta, one of our best defensive games.... but how much of a threat was Atl anyway? Baltimore, much better the second time around and proved we can take a punch, keep standing, and hit em right back; was our truly earned respect game imo. Oakland was a FG fest by them and a fluke win if you ask me.

2012:
I know its not ideal to compare 2011 scoring stats and forecast the next season. We are scheduled to face the 17th ranked scoring teams in the NFL over 16 games next year. But when looking at the top 5 offenses we will face, its a safe assumption these guys will certainly be gunning again and appears to be a much more potent lineup for us overall.

#1 Green Bay - # 3 passing attack
#3 New England - # 2 passing attack
#4 Detroit - # 4 passing attack
#12 Baltimore - # 19 passing attack
#13 NY Jets - # 21 passing attack

Other notables:
Denver - Top rushing attack from last year, added Manning
Minnesota - Adrian Peterson/ # 4 rushing attack. Nuff Said
Chicago - Top 10 rushing attack.
Tenn - CJ? Locker? Britt? How improved will they be?
Indy - Get them 2 of last 3 games with Luck having almost full season at this point.

Side note: We really dont face a true balanced offense such as our selves all year according to last years stats. Either a top passing or a top rushing offense. Hard to find a true balanced offense in the lineup.


That is 3 top 5 passing attacks, and 3 top 10 rushing attacks we will face in 2012. Note: We also faced 3 top 10 rushing attacks last year.

SO! How much of a drop off can we expect in our ranking if any? Was the leap to a top defense in the NFL greatly helped by the overall schedule we played? Will we be able to stay in the top 10 this year? Going to be a very very interesting season for us, on this side of the ball alone.
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Old 05-16-2012   #2
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

With a full camp and a year in Wade's system under their belts, the defense will only improve.

Look for a #1 ranked defense this year.
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Old 05-16-2012   #3
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

Yes, I think we regress some. Offenses will adjust, too. Should still be top third.

Rep for your work.
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Old 05-16-2012   #4
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

i think we can stay in top ten. that would be fine considering the schedule
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Old 05-16-2012   #5
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

It would be silly to think that there is no chance whatsoever of regression.
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Old 05-16-2012   #6
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tailgate View Post
Bored at work and I was doing some digging for fun. Our D had the luxury of facing the Jags, Colts, and Titans offenses 2 xs each last year. They had the #21st, 28th, and 28th ranked scoring teams in NFL last year according to NFL.com.

The good news is we get to face those same offenses next year, but they are working to improve just like everyone else. When looking back we faced an average of the 19th ranked scoring teams over 16 games last year.

The best offenses we faced in 2011 (weighted in ppg):
#2 New Orleans - 34.2 ppg / 467 ypg - We allowed 40 pts / 454 yards
#5 Carolina - 25.4 ppg / 389 ypg - We allowed 28 /316 yards
#7 Atlanta - 25.1 ppg / 376 ypg - We allowed 10 pts / 337 yards
#12 Baltimore - 23.6 ppg / 338 ypg - We allowed 29 & 20 / 402 and 227 yds
#16 Oakland - 22.4 ppg / 380 ypg - We allowed 25 / 278 yards

The most balanced offenses we faced were Balt, Oak, and Carolina. *All 3 were losses in the regular season.

Analysis: We did a very fine job of limiting NO until Brees became unstoppable. Carolina, was it just one of those days? Atlanta, one of our best defensive games.... but how much of a threat was Atl anyway? Baltimore, much better the second time around and proved we can take a punch, keep standing, and hit em right back; was our truly earned respect game imo. Oakland was a FG fest by them and a fluke win if you ask me.

2012:
I know its not ideal to compare 2011 scoring stats and forecast the next season. We are scheduled to face the 17th ranked scoring teams in the NFL over 16 games next year. But when looking at the top 5 offenses we will face, its a safe assumption these guys will certainly be gunning again and appears to be a much more potent lineup for us overall.

#1 Green Bay - # 3 passing attack
#3 New England - # 2 passing attack
#4 Detroit - # 4 passing attack
#12 Baltimore - # 19 passing attack
#13 NY Jets - # 21 passing attack

Other notables:
Denver - Top rushing attack from last year, added Manning
Minnesota - Adrian Peterson/ # 4 rushing attack. Nuff Said
Chicago - Top 10 rushing attack.
Tenn - CJ? Locker? Britt? How improved will they be?
Indy - Get them 2 of last 3 games with Luck having almost full season at this point.

Side note: We really dont face a true balanced offense such as our selves all year according to last years stats. Either a top passing or a top rushing offense. Hard to find a true balanced offense in the lineup.


That is 3 top 5 passing attacks, and 3 top 10 rushing attacks we will face in 2012. Note: We also faced 3 top 10 rushing attacks last year.

SO! How much of a drop off can we expect in our ranking if any? Was the leap to a top defense in the NFL greatly helped by the overall schedule we played? Will we be able to stay in the top 10 this year? Going to be a very very interesting season for us, on this side of the ball alone.
One thing that should remain in the back of your head is the noted drop off in production in Wade's defense in year two as well. Im not saying thats going to happen to us but statisically, it happens EVERY 2nd year for Wade when it comes to his defensive production drop off.

Why it drops off is anyones guess??? Could it be he tries to repeat the same exact gameplans and is to predictable? Is it because he loses tools on the defense? Could it be because offensive coordinators have a seasons worth of tape (of Wade with current team) to acclimate their gameplan to him?

Or could it be purely a coincedence?

Not sure but I would be lying if I said I wasnt watching out for it this season.

I think the tools are there for him and if he is going to break that trend, it will be this year.
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Old 05-16-2012   #7
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

Doesn't Wade usually have a bad track record the season after taking over a new defense and taking it to the top?
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Old 05-16-2012   #8
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

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Doesn't Wade usually have a bad track record the season after taking over a new defense and taking it to the top?
Not really. That's kind of a myth that's been circulating. It has happened a couple of times but if you look at those cases, there were lots of injuries to players who'd been important to the defense the previous year. IIRC, one year his defense finished at a lower ranking but statistically was better: gave up fewer yards/points or something.

He's had several instances where the defense was as good or better the second year in the system.
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Old 05-16-2012   #9
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Default

I think well be better actually. I think if someone beats out keo the safety depth will be better. I expect Harris to develop. I think the d line will be talented and deeper. I think reed will be better and i think barwin is going to have a better year.

I look for us being just as good as the low mark. I look for that unit to be improved.
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Old 05-16-2012   #10
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

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Originally Posted by b0ng View Post
It would be silly to think that there is no chance whatsoever of regression.
Correct. At the same time, I still fully expect the defense to kick ass. Maybe not end up being the statistical 2nd defense in the league again, but there is no way on this planet our defense ends up being as historically bad as it used to be pre-Wade.
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Old 05-16-2012   #11
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

I pretty much believe they will be in the top 10. They do take on some more explosive offensive teams, but I still think barring major injuries, they will hold it together.

Fortunately, we don't have to have the second coming of the 2000 Ravens defense to win the majority of our games.
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Old 05-16-2012   #12
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

Pretty sure we'll be better but it won't show up in the statistics/rankings. I'll be surprised if we end up in the top 5 of defenses with this schedule.

Good work OP
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Old 05-16-2012   #13
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

With OTA's, and a full training camp, I think they may get better. If they do regress, I dont think it will be a dramatic drop off though. This team has too many good players on D to just completely collapse.
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Old 05-16-2012   #14
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

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Originally Posted by Rey View Post
I think well be better actually. I think if someone beats out keo the safety depth will be better. I expect Harris to develop. I think the d line will be talented and deeper. I think reed will be better and i think barwin is going to have a better year.

I look for us being just as good as the low mark. I look for that unit to be improved.
I agree. Our defense can be better and still not ranked as high. I will be focusing more on W/Ls rather than stats this season and as always player performance. The offense will definitely play a role in defense's productivity imo. A healthy Matt, better play from OGs and hopefully a WR2 should give D more time on sidelines. I am very interested in how Casey will perform as TE. I'd like to see him take a role at something and excell at it.
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Old 05-16-2012   #15
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

Something to consider, though I haven't backed this up: Wade takes a middling team with a middling schedule to the playoffs. After the playoffs, the team plays significantly better teams in the second year. Every time.

Just something to think about.
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Old 05-16-2012   #16
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

Honestly, I am not worried about the defense. I doubt they drop out of a top 10 ranking at worst. They added some nice pieces in the draft and definitely got better in depth.

What does concern me is the other side of the ball. There's really only two spots that have no questions going into the season: our two headed RB monster and D. Brown at LT.

what could put this defense in trouble is if the offense struggles and puts them in bad spots.
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Old 05-16-2012   #17
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

Couple of factors come to mind:

A. We'll face better offenses

B. Our running game wont be as domminant as in years past. The defense will be on the field longer and that means a statistical impact even if the offense and the defense are actually better.

We will not be a top 5 defense next year.
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Old 05-16-2012   #18
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

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Originally Posted by powda View Post
Couple of factors come to mind:

A. We'll face better offenses

B. Our running game wont be as domminant as in years past. The defense will be on the field longer and that means a statistical impact even if the offense and the defense are actually better.

We will not be a top 5 defense next year.
Thats a good thread debate in itself... Replacing right side of O-line vs having a healthy Schaub (plenty of threads on him), Foster, and AJ on the field at the same time for more than like a half a game next year. Which is more important and will the O see the field less as a result?
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Old 05-16-2012   #19
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

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Originally Posted by b0ng View Post
It would be silly to think that there is no chance whatsoever of regression.
And regression doesn't necessarly mean the D will be bad. They could "regress" to 7th or so.
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Old 05-16-2012   #20
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Default Re: Will the Defense take a step back in 2012?

Anything is possible and nothing is guaranteed.
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