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State of the O-line

steelbtexan

King of the W. B. Club
Contributor's Club
Not directed at me - but :) I'm good with any strategy that addresses their top 5 to 6 needs. I don't think you can get locked into one particular mindset e.g. offense in the draft defense in FA since both are highly dependant on what other teams do.

They need;

at least two corners (one at least a serviceable CB1 - I don't care about a lockdown CB, it can't get much worse than last year - just two guys that fit the scheme, are willing tacklers and can give the pass rush another half a second and you would see the sacks increase)

Pass rush - yeah great to have Watt back but he isn't the old Watt, dude needs help - would be great to add at least one potential 10+ sack guy and another young guy with upside (preferably two) and Merci needs 7 or 8 sacks a year to justify that contract

Right Guard - really need to strengthen that side of the line and make it a run defenses nightmare - just a guy looking to crush someone

After that it's depth;

Think they have a few backup LB's that have been in the OK/MEH range and have had a few years to prove themselves (and haven't) maybe keep Cole and find another guy or two (I personally like the idea of finding a really good coverage LB - or just draft a big safety with coverage skills and tell him "hey kid, you're an LB now"

OL depth - would be nice to grab a young center with upside and move on from Martin next year if he doesn't play better this year (I think THEY like his smarts or what he brings to the locker room - I don't like the pretty continual 5 or 6 yards he gives up straight back on most pass plays) R Johnson might continue to improve and be a quality / decent swing tackle who can spot start - but would still like to see them add some competition

DL depth - if they don't sign Reader, add another big fella with a focus on pass rushing and rotate them with Dunn, Blackson, Charles O, etc.

So realistically they need to;

hit on 1 (preferably two) high priority FA's, 1 CB and 1 Pass rusher would be fan-frickin-tastic
add two mid-tier FA's (right guard here would be nice)
two draft picks - 1 that can be a solid starter (RG or CB potentially) and one that is a borderline starter and/or plays significant snaps per game
use the remaining picks on depth (OL, DL, ST, LB)
and scour the rest of the FA's, cap casualties, waiver wire for people that didn't fit their old team's system/style buy you think fits yours
I like this plan, I think they add Harris and re-sign Roby, plus add a CB in say the 4th rd.

Reader will be gone and using the $$$$ from Reader allows you to sign Harris. Roby's FA $$$$ comes from JJo leaving and you would have $$$$ left over from the existing cap to sign a DT. Suh or Linval Joseph who got cut yesterday would be a good replacement. Then adding a guy like Elliott or James Lynch in Rd. 2 and you would have a much improved CB/DL room. That would leave you needing a big nickle and this is where I would use my 3rd and the Texans 4th to try to trade up to the bottom of the 2nd/top of the 3rd if Dugger/Chinn fell.

The rest of the draft would be spent on WFV insurance/RG/RB.

I'm not saying my way is the only way to do things, but these moves would really help the defense.
 

steelbtexan

King of the W. B. Club
Contributor's Club
I guarantee that won't happen.

You're right, there's no reason it shouldn't. But it's never happened under BO'b. I'd be surprised if it starts now.
I bet it does, since they all had their positions set on the OL last yr. Tunsil if recovered from surgery should benefit greatly as well as the entire OL from having a TC to gain continuity together.
 

steelbtexan

King of the W. B. Club
Contributor's Club
I'm fine with Fulton at RG. Yes we can improve the position and I'd be happy if we did. I'm just saying that I'd rather improve our secondary and pass rush first and I'd even prioritize slot receiver above RG. If there's a way to get it all done, then fantastic. But I think it's more realistic that we aren't going to be able to address all of these positions and we're going to have to make due with what we have at some positions. The talent on the OLine should be good enough to have a more than adequate OLine even with Fulton imo.
Agreed about slot WR being the biggest hole, next to the WFV insurance. Duvernay at the top of the 4th helps solve the slot WR/KR/PR positions. I also like Bowden from Kentucky to fill this role. He's a very dynamic guy. Just get him the ball and good things will follow.
 

steelbtexan

King of the W. B. Club
Contributor's Club
Not quite sure what you're getting at? I don't think I said anything negative about Mercilus, said he needs 7-8 sacks a year to justify the contract like you said he had 7.5 - good job, keep it up but Watt and Mercilus aren't enough. Maybe we have something in Martin, maybe we don't - but regardless I think they still need to add more pass rushers. You're free to disagree, and I'm entitled to my opinion.
Agreed, but getting a better pass rush from the interior DL is high on what would be my list of priorities. It doesn't really matter where it comes from but Watt needs some help along the DL.

Watt/Sign Suh and draft Hamilton/Elliot or James Lynch and you would see much improvement on the defense.
 

Number19

Hall of Fame
I guarantee that won't happen.

You're right, there's no reason it shouldn't. But it's never happened under BO'b. I'd be surprised if it starts now.
There are calls on this forum for Martin and Fulton to be replaced. Would it be a negative if OB was considering this, also? But, how can you have continuity when there is also comments that Center and Right Guard need to be upgraded? You can't have both.
 

Number19

Hall of Fame
Agreed, but getting a better pass rush from the interior DL is high on what would be my list of priorities. It doesn't really matter where it comes from but Watt needs some help along the DL.

Watt/Sign Suh and draft Hamilton/Elliot or James Lynch and you would see much improvement on the defense.
Do you think Reader, and the interior linemen in general, possibly could have been under utilized by the defensive scheme and could Weaver get more out of Reader with different scheming?
 

Texansphan

All Pro
I remember the one game where he saw several snaps at the FB position, he was trucking fools.
I note at least one other team uses a FB quite effectively. Was it 49ers? Dude I am thinking of had a Polish/Slavic sounding last name.
I think Pats also used one on occasion.
Nothing wrong with trying a bulldozer near the goal line.
Oh for another Vonta Leach - man was a Kenworth in human disguise.
 
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austins23

Hall of Fame
Oh for another Vonta Leach - man was a Kenworth in human disguise.
Loved me some Vonta! Dude was just plain nasty. Like having an extra guard on the field, that could run!
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Willis didn't want anymore of that!
 

Texansphan

All Pro
Loved me some Vonta! Dude was just plain nasty. Like having an extra guard on the field, that could run!
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Willis didn't want anymore of that!
Great example. Had the respect of all defenders - and when you can pancake a guy like Patrick Willis, it's no small wonder.
 

Earl34

Veteran
He (the FB) got in on the tackle though!
What's funny about that play, that was the only play they used a FB. After the game, the Panthers' DB mentioned they saw that formation and play on tape. You would think before calling that play they would have run a couple of plays out of that formation to at least show something different or just don't call it against a heavy zone coverage team.
 
There are calls on this forum for Martin and Fulton to be replaced. Would it be a negative if OB was considering this, also? But, how can you have continuity when there is also comments that Center and Right Guard need to be upgraded? You can't have both.
I am a proponent of this and preferred the center to be the higher priority for replacement. Martin was extended but he can be cut after this season with a small cap hit compared to his full salary. For some reason Martin always seemed to be getting help. I wonder if that was based on scheme or due to limitations. Being able to step up into or maneuver in the pocket greatly depends on the interior OL and indirectly reduces the effectiveness of the pass rush coming off the edge.
 


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