Larry Foote Says Players Donít Trust LeBeau
Steelers Foote Says Players Donít Trust LeBeau
Sep 26th, 2012 by Craig Gottschalk
Steelers linebacker Larry Foote said on Wednesday:
"Sometimes, you can get caught up in just trying to play hard and aggressive, but youíre not trusting the defense. Not the other players, but the defense. And that canít happen. The bottom line is that we have to make a play when we get a chance."
WaitÖ. what? Youíre telling me that even your players now donít trust the defensive system? Itís one thing that fans, pundits, and bloggers who think they know it all rip Dick LeBeau and his system apart week to week when the team loses. But when the players Ė one of your own defensive leaders Ė admits that when they step on the field and doubt whatís being calledÖ now thatís a problem.
Itís harsh words from Foote, but whether it comes from a place of truth or more of an excuse for not executing and making plays when they (or just Foote) need to is inconsequential. The bottom line for fans, coaches and players is that the defense needs to make plays. And that, they are not doing.
Thereís is where LeBeauís stubbornness really is beginning to hurt the team. The predictability of play calling Ė based on things Carson Palmer did during the game and said after Ė is starting to shred this defense that is banged up, bleeding, and looking for any type of relief. The absence of Polamalu and Harrison are greatly hurting the team. Young players are far from stepping up and filling their shoes. You canít call the same plays you would for your stars and starters when average Joes are on the field and expect to get the results. The defensive schemes need to change in order to accomodate for Cris Carterís inability to clear the edge like Harrison does.The middle of the field needs help with coverage to accomodate for Ryan Mundyís inability to play tight up front and then escape downfield if someone goes deep. The list goes on.
In addition, were any of these guys to have an off night Ė the rest of the system falls apart. Thereís no arguing that LeBeauís system is sheer brilliance. But it is catastrophic to have a system in place that is completely dependent upon each and every player working within the realm of perfection. That is a flawed system.
And, with the aging defense and the increased risks of players becoming injured, opposing offenses will continue to shred this defense. That you can trust.
I think that may be a stretch of his words. Larry Foote has been around long enough and is respectful enough not to say that of Lebeau.
In my opinion, what he meant was that he couldn't always trust the defense as a unit to make the stop...not that he couldn't trust any one player, but everyone collectively.
Lebeau is not above criticism. He has been giving up leads since in Cincy in the 80's. He needs to press at the line.
Yeah, I think that is definitely taking his words out of context.
Originally Posted by D Rock
On the Steelers: Defense has problems, and predictability is one of them
By Ed Bouchette / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
It's not so much that the Steelers defense is old and slow, now they are predictable?
Some Oakland Raiders made that claim Sunday, including wide receiver Derek Hagan, who credited quarterback Carson Palmer for diagramming Dick LeBeau's defense for his teammates and then picking it apart.
"They pretty much did the same thing that they did six, seven years ago when he was playing with Cincinnati," Hagan said of the former Bengals quarterback. "Obviously, they've got a legendary D-coordinator over there. He's been running certain things that other teams have seen, that we've seen. We knew their tendencies and we were able to hit them with some big plays when it really counted."
Predictable? Guilty as charged said Steelers safety Ryan Clark.
"Sometimes, when you speed up the offense, you can call the same plays and kind of get stuck in the same plays," Clark said of defending Oakland's no-huddle offense Sunday.
"We really haven't been that hard to figure out the last seven years I've been here. We've been running the same things, we call the same things. It's not about being predictable, it's about executing.
"Coach LeBeau puts us in a call, we have to execute the right way. It doesn't matter if you know what we're doing if you can stop it."
Here are the adjustments Clark suggests:
"That's what we have to get back to doing, no matter what the call is, the guys across from us, kicking his butt and getting to the ball."
That defense usually becomes a little less predictable when a healthy Troy Polamalu and James Harrison join it, which is what both did Tuesday in practice. Harrison missed the first three regular-season games with his bothersome knee, and Polamalu missed the past two with a calf injury. Polamalu intends to play when the Steelers face Philadelphia at home Oct. 7 after their off week. Harrison's participation will depend, again, on how his knee responds between now and then.
"It'll help," linebacker LaMarr Woodley said. "Those are key guys back, that definitely makes a big difference on this defense. So having them back would definitely be great for this defense."
Perhaps surprisingly, that defense ranks among the best in the NFL in yards allowed. It ranks fifth against the pass (190.3 yards permitted per game) and seventh overall (291.3) in a league that leans more and more to offense.
Still, it's not what the Steelers are accustomed to doing. They finished first in the NFL last season in fewest yards allowed, passing yards allowed and points allowed. Yet they have continued another trend from 2011 in that they are also producing fewer turnovers and sacks.
Woodley has two of his team's five sacks, which are tied for 22nd in the NFL. They have produced only two turnovers, and their three as a team (one fumble recovery on a muffed punt return) is tied for 24th.
Last season, they managed a 21-year low of 35 sacks and 16 turnovers.
Forget their rankings, the Steelers realize they are not playing good defense.
"It stinks," Clark said of the way they've played. "It's not the way we play defense. It's not the way we train and work all week to come out and play. But coach LeBeau says sometimes you get the bear, sometimes the bear gets you.
"They scored a lot of points, and we didn't stop them. We can't point fingers at anybody, we have to use our thumbs and point them at ourselves and be better."
Said Woodley, "Even if we won the game on Sunday, we still played bad on defense."
Clark suggested it's not necessarily the "old" guys.
"I think what you lose, you lose chemistry sometimes when guys go out. We have to work together and fit together properly, that more than anything. It's not that guys aren't talented enough, we're not fitting the defense like coach LeBeau wants us to do."
Ironic that when everybody was waiting for Ben Roethlisberger and Todd Haley to have an explosion on the sidelines, the defense imploded on the field.
Pittsburgh, PA: City of Champions.
Holy crap, Craig Gottschalk!!
How about reading what Larry Foote actually says?
The defense doesn't trust each other...which is probably worse than not trusting LeBeau...
LeBeau too stubborn to change? Who would have ever thought let alone said that??????????????????? Fairly obvious to anyone who wants to see it because he don't think his "baby" could ever be ugly.
- Charles Harris-OLB, Missouri
- Rasul Douglas-CB, West Virginia
- Chris Godwin-WR, Penn State
- John Johnson-S, Boston College
- James Conner-RB, Pitt
- Nazair Jones-DT, North Carolina
- Garrett Sickels, DE/OLB, Penn State
Oviedo I'm beginning to see your point.
Other teams have figured us out on defense.
If we have the players in there that can be perfect on every play then we succeed, but if one player is out of position the D folds like a house of cards.
Right now we dont have the players to make Lebeaus defense work so he needs to adjust like he did during the Jets game.
In Oakland the stubborn old guy was back.
The new guys don't know their assignments.
The defense HAS worked and these current kids can't get it done, so it is getting exposed. Lebeau can't do anything special because the new players don't know the basics of his defense. The results of sub-par backups playing too much is not surprising. Blame Lebeau if you need, but that's really ridiculous. Players need to prove they can handle his system and they haven't.