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Thread: In Transition, Is Now Time for the 4-3?

  1. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by Vader View Post
    The problem with sitching to the 3-4 is that Woodley has never played with his hand down in the NFL. Foote is already slow and giving him more field to cover isn't good. Also noticed that some of the best defenses in the NFL were from the 3-4 including the Steelers who were #1 again this year. I don't understand the need to change something that is obviously working. Name a great 4-3 team with average talent along the front like we would have if Woodley, Hood, Heyward, and the beard were on the line.

    Also Tomlin did run the 4-3 but he was only a OC for one year. It isn't like he designed it or was even that good with it. He was a DB coach at Tampa not the OC. LeBeau has forgotten more about defense than Tomlin knows. His passing defense when he was the OC with the Vikings was the worst in the league. Is that really what the Steelers want here?
    It has nothing to do with what Tomlin wants or knows...it has to do with the personnel on the Steelers' roster...

    Again, with no Smith, Farrior, Hampton or Harrison, the Steelers (and LeBeau) need to evaluate if the 3-4 can continue to be effective without those guys...

    I'm sure whatever decision they come up with will be the right one...

    FYI, the Steelers practiced the 4-3 last season due to injuries...if it is to be done, it should be done in the offseason...

    http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/...he-4-3-659531/

    How would a 4-3 alignment look in 2013 if, say, Harrison, Hampton and Brett Keisel, who will be 34 next year, were no longer here?

    "We can do it," said Foote, who noted they have practiced the 4-3, especially last season when Harrison and Woodley were hurt. Just in case.
    He also noted that coordinator Dick LeBeau, linebackers coach Keith Butler (coordinator in waiting) and coach Mike Tomlin all have worked with 4-3 defenses.

    "We threw it in when our linebackers got hurt and we were down in numbers," Foote said. "... We had it to a point, we repped it and they were comfortable running it."

    Woodley said he prefers to play linebacker in the 3-4 because his duties are more varied than when he played end at Michigan and mostly rushed the quarterback.

    "Could we transition to it? Yeah, we can transition to it," Woodley said. "We have enough of everything to transition to it."

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vader View Post
    The problem with sitching to the 3-4 is that Woodley has never played with his hand down in the NFL. Foote is already slow and giving him more field to cover isn't good. Also noticed that some of the best defenses in the NFL were from the 3-4 including the Steelers who were #1 again this year. I don't understand the need to change something that is obviously working. Name a great 4-3 team with average talent along the front like we would have if Woodley, Hood, Heyward, and the beard were on the line.

    Also Tomlin did run the 4-3 but he was only a OC for one year. It isn't like he designed it or was even that good with it. He was a DB coach at Tampa not the OC. LeBeau has forgotten more about defense than Tomlin knows. His passing defense when he was the OC with the Vikings was the worst in the league. Is that really what the Steelers want here?
    Great first post, and welcome to the board.

  3. #13
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    I see no need to switch to the 4-3, and I think it is a mistake to build a defense that features very average players like Ziggy Hood, Steve McClendon and the rest of the Steelers defensive lineman. A few brief points:

    1) To those who complain about the conversion period, kindly point to a single piece of emperical data suggesting that there is a longer transition from college players coming into a 3-4 than there is for players coming to a 4-3. With the amount of statistical breakdown that is out there, than surely there must be statistical breakdowns demonstrating this to be the case. Moreover, if the 4-3 is so much more efficient, then why is it that at least half of the teams in the league run a 3-4 or some variety thereof? Don't you think that front office folks would have figured this out?

    Good teams throughout the league start veteran players. The 49ers did not have a starter with less than 6 years of experience.

    2) The franchise tag values bear out that it is more difficult to find a DE than an OLB. NFL player salaries are largely a function of scarcity and value. Franchise QBs are the most scare and most valuable and, thus, are paid the most. Kickers and Punters are considered generally fungible and are paid the least. The franchise tag value for DEs is the second highest figure. The point is not that you want to apply the tag; the point is that DEs are considered the second most valuable and most rare commodity, behind only QBs. Even with more teams playing a 3-4, it is easier to find a 3-4 OLB than it is to find a 4-3 DE.

    3) The biggest problem facing the Steelers is personnel, not scheme. Quite simply, you need to win one-on-one battles. The Steelers pass rushers didn't win enough of those battles last year. Whether standing or putting his hand in the dirt, Woodley needs to get to the QB. He's been quite effective in the 3-4, so it isn't a scheme problem; it's his own issue.

    4) Who is going to play LBer? Timmons is best suited as an OLB in the 4-3. Foote doesn't really fit as a 4-3 MLB anymore. Worilds is a DE in the 4-3. You would need a true MLB and another OLB. As it stands now, you can bring back Foote for at or near the vet minimum and add a developmental OLB behind Worilds. In a 4-3, you need 2 new starters.

  4. #14
    Hall of Famer Mister Pittsburgh's Avatar
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    All 3-4's aren't equal. Lebeau's 3-4 is often described as the most complex by his own players.
    @_Hellgrammite

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vader View Post
    The problem with sitching to the 3-4 is that Woodley has never played with his hand down in the NFL. Foote is already slow and giving him more field to cover isn't good. Also noticed that some of the best defenses in the NFL were from the 3-4 including the Steelers who were #1 again this year. I don't understand the need to change something that is obviously working. Name a great 4-3 team with average talent along the front like we would have if Woodley, Hood, Heyward, and the beard were on the line.

    Also Tomlin did run the 4-3 but he was only a OC for one year. It isn't like he designed it or was even that good with it. He was a DB coach at Tampa not the OC. LeBeau has forgotten more about defense than Tomlin knows. His passing defense when he was the OC with the Vikings was the worst in the league. Is that really what the Steelers want here?
    I guess you just happened to forget to mention that Tomlin's defense was eighth best in the NFL the year he was Def Coord and was #1 against the run.

    Maybe the "more" that LeBeau has forgotten is the part about sacking the QB and Intercepting the pass. The last two years would indicate he has in fact forgotten how to coach his players how to do that, although I'm sure it is all the fault of the players, Tomlin and Colbert.
    Playing Fantasy Football does not qualify you to be the in the front office or on the coaching staff of the Pittsburgh Steelers. They are professionals and you are not!

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  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mister Pittsburgh View Post
    We need help this year or next where guys are going to need to step in year one or two and start. One takes players 2 years to learn. One doesn't. Both systems work equally well.
    I agree, but this is all moot unless tricky Dick retires. And I don't think the Rooneys will make him out of loyalty. (And, contrary to Dick's claims, this is NOT a decision that will be made my Tomlin - no way).

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by lloydroid View Post
    I agree, but this is all moot unless tricky Dick retires. And I don't think the Rooneys will make him out of loyalty. (And, contrary to Dick's claims, this is NOT a decision that will be made my Tomlin - no way).
    I agree. Tomlin hasn't had a choice about who the Def Coord was since he's been here, but he is a good soldier and salutes and executes when the orders are issued.
    Playing Fantasy Football does not qualify you to be the in the front office or on the coaching staff of the Pittsburgh Steelers. They are professionals and you are not!

    2014 Draft

    1. Eric Ebron, TE
    2. Calvin Pryor, S
    3 (Comp). Jaylen Watkins, CB
    4. Justin Ellis, DT/NT
    5a. Brandon Coleman, WR
    5b. Brent Urban, DE
    6. Prince Shembo, OLB
    7a. Aaron Colvin, CB
    7b. Storm Johnson, RB

  8. #18
    Hall of Famer SteelCrazy's Avatar
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    for god's sake, NO! We have the best D almost every year. What the heck is the reason for a change? It's not broke, so dont fix it!

  9. #19
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    I think Ta'amu and McCelndon would both be best suited to play DT in a 4-3. Hood might be ok at DT. I guess you could try Heyward, Woodley, and Keisel at DE. And you just might have your LBs in Timmons, Spence, and Worilds already on the roster.

    But this year could be a big cluster. And you might end up throwing away a #1 ranked D and a couple of high draft picks in Hood, Heyward if they don't fit. And you're asking Timmons, Woodley who were 2 other high picks to learn a new position.

    At the end of the day, we have 3 first rounders and 2 2nd rounder in the front 7 that fit in a 3-4. After this draft, we might have another 1st and 2nd rounder that can fit in a 3-4.

    I'll defer this discussion until I see who we draft this year.

  10. #20
    tomlin has said many times that he values what DL brings to the table, but some people refuse to hear it.

    I'm constantly amazed that people on a message board think they know more than the steelers FO and coaching staff.

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