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Thread: Anyone Wanna Discuss the Defense?

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chadman View Post
    Not too worried about the Defense. The Steelers took a few necessary steps in redefining the Defense in the offseason & moving away from a run-stopping, safe defense to move towards a more explosive, big play defense. Gone are Hampton & Lewis. In are McLendon, Cortez & to a degree Jarvis Jones. Chadman expects the Steelers will have more trouble stopping the run (Hampton is/was much better than McLendon for that) but should get an upgrade in pass rush through McLendon & spot duty work for Jones.

    Lewis, for all the love shown him in here, was an Ike Taylor clone in waiting- solid, but not 'big plays'. The NFL today needs big plays- sacks & turnovers- otherwise these strong passing teams will just keep taking chances on you. So Allen, who has shown some ability to take the ball away, and Shamarko, who looks like he can not only cover but also lay out a hit to create turnovers, might give the opposing QB's some pause when deciding to go pass-happy.

    In the end, Chadman expects our D to play different this year- probably giving a more exciting look, but not being as 'safe' as in the past few years.
    I really like the secondary, especially when Cortez is back. When I was at camp, Thomas and Golden were both playing so well, I started to wonder if we could put them both in the nickle with one of them covering the slot and the other playing FS. They both look significantly better in coverage than Gay and Clark. Thomas has looked really good in the slot and Golden has gotten at lot of reps at FS with the 1st team D. I would consider swapping them because Thomas has a Troy like burst and I think he'd be able to make more plays as a safety and Golden has done fine covering the slot. Whatever they do, I think those 5 would be the best set of players on passing downs.

    I also am in love with Jarvis. He's a ball hunter. He's gonna create a lot of turnovers. He has a different mentality than every other player always thinking about the strip. Woodley's as trim as he's ever been. And I expect with Troy back, Timmy will get to play more in the box where he's an even bigger difference maker. Foote is solid and I still have super high hopes for Spence if he can return. And I also like Worilds and Robinson if we could get them in the mix as situational pass rushers.

    But the Dline still concerns me. I know we're changing things up a bit to allow these guys to attack more and try to generate pressure. And that's gonna make us less effective against the run. And that's ok if we can get pressure. I just don't see any pressure during these first 2 preseason games. During our last couple of SuperBowl runs, I thought the DLine was the strength of the the Steelers D. Having the best 3-4 DLine in the game made everyone else's job easier and made the team better. Now it's starting to feel like that unit might be the weak link. I'm just a little concerned that this unit can't be the weak link if the 3-4 is gonna work. Keisel's still Keisel, but I worry about McClendon and Hood.

    In time, maybe it becomes a senseless concern. But for now I'm cautiously optimistic til I see more.

  2. #12
    Another thing I liked last night was Timmons' pursuit of Kirk Cousins. Cousins had just picked up a first down pulling it down and running with it. This time, he was a little too casual in getting to the sidelines. It reminded me of that scene in Jaws where the two old guys got pulled off of the fishing dock at night. One was back on the dock yelling at the other guy who was swimming towards the dock with the shark in pursuit. "Don't look behind you!!!" Timmons looked like that shark tracking him down.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Oviedo;568415[COLOR=#00ff00
    ].............The problem on defense was the same as we have seen all to often recently---not enough pressure on the QB and not enough take aways or "splash plays" at the right time.

    Cousins was clearly following the script that causes us so many problems--quick short passes mixed in with the run[/COLOR].
    Hold on a minute, that kind of offense doesnt work in the modern NFL according to posters on this board........ downfield passing is the only way to run an offense.

  4. #14
    Hall of Famer DukieBoy's Avatar
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    I am also not worried about the defense. I think this will be a top 5 defense in the league. There is alot of talent on that side of the ball. And experience.
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  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by steelsnis View Post
    Another thing I liked last night was Timmons' pursuit of Kirk Cousins. Cousins had just picked up a first down pulling it down and running with it. This time, he was a little too casual in getting to the sidelines. It reminded me of that scene in Jaws where the two old guys got pulled off of the fishing dock at night. One was back on the dock yelling at the other guy who was swimming towards the dock with the shark in pursuit. "Don't look behind you!!!" Timmons looked like that shark tracking him down.
    Timmons is by far our best defensive player. IMO let him blitz more and he will get more results than Woodley.
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  6. #16
    A few of my thoughts/observations:

    I think all of Worild's snaps were at LOLB (after replacing Woodley).

    Just based on two preseason games, our best performing dlinemen are Woods and Arnfelt.

    Curtis Brown does not look good at CB. He's a special teams guy only.

    I don't know the actual numbers, but it seemed like JJones dropped into coverage about 75% of the time on pass plays. (I doubt it's that high of a percentage, but it seemed like he dropped into coverage alot.)

    Shamarko Thomas looks like a big play safety.

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by NorthCoast View Post
    Hold on a minute, that kind of offense doesnt work in the modern NFL according to posters on this board........ downfield passing is the only way to run an offense.
    nice try... everyone knows that is the offense best suited to attack our D.

  8. #18
    Hall of Famer ikestops85's Avatar
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    I thought the defense (starters) played pretty well. It was nice to see McClendon chase a running back out of bounds at the line of scrimmage. When was the last time we saw Casey do that? You could also tell that our D linemen were playing more of an attacking defense. The problem with that is it creates a lot of seams for a running back to take advantage of. I think we saw that on some of the Redskins longer runs. One lineman penetrates and the back cuts it up right through the hole that lineman just opened up.

    I was really impressed with how well Jarvis held the edge on rushing plays. I thought that might be a big weakness but he didn't do bad at all. I absolutely loved the way Sharknado attacks the run. Damn, that guy can hit. I thought he broke the Redskin running back's arm on the play he caused a fumble.

    On the down side what was Ike doing standing flat footed when that receiver was running right by him? At least he was smart enough to grab him but it looked like he wasn't even ready for the play. As an aside did anybody see the stat they posted about us having the most interference calls against us that were greater than 20 yards? I think it was 20 or 22. I can't remember the exact number but that is horrible. Lake needs to do something about that.
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  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by ikestops85 View Post
    I thought the defense (starters) played pretty well. It was nice to see McClendon chase a running back out of bounds at the line of scrimmage. When was the last time we saw Casey do that? You could also tell that our D linemen were playing more of an attacking defense. The problem with that is it creates a lot of seams for a running back to take advantage of. I think we saw that on some of the Redskins longer runs. One lineman penetrates and the back cuts it up right through the hole that lineman just opened up.

    I was really impressed with how well Jarvis held the edge on rushing plays. I thought that might be a big weakness but he didn't do bad at all. I absolutely loved the way Sharknado attacks the run. Damn, that guy can hit. I thought he broke the Redskin running back's arm on the play he caused a fumble.

    On the down side what was Ike doing standing flat footed when that receiver was running right by him? At least he was smart enough to grab him but it looked like he wasn't even ready for the play. As an aside did anybody see the stat they posted about us having the most interference calls against us that were greater than 20 yards? I think it was 20 or 22. I can't remember the exact number but that is horrible. Lake needs to do something about that.
    The DLine was playing different for sure. But they didn't seem to be getting pressure as a result. With the new style of play, it makes me wonder if Nick Williams is a better long term prospect for this system than either Hood or Heyward because of his athleticism?

    I'm in love with Shark. I've thought he'd be the perfect long term replacement for Troy in the draft and am stoked we got him. Now that I've seen him practice and play, I'd love to see him and Troy playing side by side. If Clark goes down for some reason, we could have the most dynamic set of safeties in the game. Although Golden may be the next man up. And he looks really good too.

    Re: Ike, I thought he bit on the WRs initial move and couldn't recover so he grabbed the guy. I'd expect the interference numbers to go up if Shark's playing in the nickle. He's more physical at the LOS than Ike. Allen's got some good size/athleticism and I'd expect him to play more physical than Lewis. At the end of the day, even with the PIs, we still had the best passing D in the league with minimal pressure from the front 7. So I can live with that.

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by flippy View Post
    I really like the secondary, especially when Cortez is back. When I was at camp, Thomas and Golden were both playing so well, I started to wonder if we could put them both in the nickle with one of them covering the slot and the other playing FS. They both look significantly better in coverage than Gay and Clark. Thomas has looked really good in the slot and Golden has gotten at lot of reps at FS with the 1st team D. I would consider swapping them because Thomas has a Troy like burst and I think he'd be able to make more plays as a safety and Golden has done fine covering the slot. Whatever they do, I think those 5 would be the best set of players on passing downs.
    Shark seemed to play more slot corner against the Giants, and more traditional safety against the Skins. His ability to do both is what impressed the Steelers (see Carnell Lake talking about him covering USC's Robert Woods man-to-man all over the field last season for Syracuse; Former Syracuse head coach and current Buffalo Bills head coach Doug Marrone thought enough of Woods that he selected him in the second round of the draft, by the way). When Cortez is back healthy, our starting secondary will obviously be Taylor-Allen-Polamalu-Clark. But in the nickel, instead of automatically inserting Gay into his usual slot corner spot, Thomas may be giving the coach's pause...if he's the nickel back, they can do a lot more with him out there than with Gay (everyone knows where Gay is going to line up, but they could theoretically line the Shark up anywhere). However, the only time that I wouldn't consider this is if we are playing a team with an elite TE like a healthy Gronkowski or a Jimmy Graham type. Cortez showed that he can face off against a healthy Gronk with success, so in a case like that, if they want to move Cortez inside in the nickel to handle an elite TE, then they'd want a nickel DB who can play outside corner like Gay over someone like Shark.

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