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Apollo Stallion


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:05 pm    Post subject: Texans Secondary Reply with quote

Okay folks, we've had the morning to relish in the greatness of the greatest comeback in Texans history. One last deep breath to soak it in and a final pat on the back...so....

It should also be painfully obvious to anyone who watched that first half (namely because Trent Dilfer must have said it a dozen times along with the graphic), that we HAVE NOT solved the core problem that will inhibit us from taking the next step - our inability to stop the good QBs from finding the open target and picking us apart (Manning, Brady, Rodgers, Stafford, and Luck referenced I believe).

Before I get into it, I will offer two caveats that Dilfer failed to offer in our "defense." Ed Reed was brought in specifically with this in mind, and the d-line was operating without it's vital instigator of chaos, Antonio Smith. I have always said that Antonio's importance to the overall scheme was understated and I think you saw why as Antonio is the primary weapon of deception in the line which frees up Watt and the WLB to cause the damage as unlike Crick, Antonio has to be accounted for as he causes damage himself. Reed's job is drawn up to use his instincts to shut down the most vulnerable areas and punish QBs who go to the well too often (such as Rivers picking on McCain who clearly couldn't hang with a 3rd rate talent like Eddie Royal.

Frankly, I was actually expecting WORSE as I figured with the slow and short Keo as the last line of defense deep, that we'd give up multiple long TDs deep which we generally avoided aside from the 47 yarder to Floyd which was just a pretty good football play by them. I predicted that they would find a way to abuse Brice McCain and they certainly did and frankly we likely lose if he doesn't totally choke on an easy conversion. Rivers clearly lost his mojo in the 2nd half which is so typical of teams who take their foot off the gas with a lead which is something the great teams simply don't do. There was no mercy from Manning on Thursday and I don't see the Ravens, Seahawks, 49ers, Colts, Cardinals, Patriots, or Broncos letting the air out of the ball the way the Chargers did and some of those teams can actually run the ball as well.
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Pastor Dillon


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

looking back, we did only give up 183 yards passing and Phillip Rivers finished with a QBR of 36.2

and like you mention thats without our leader on D the Ninja, Ed Reed was brought in to stop lone passes, which we surprisingly didnt really give up many, just 2 that went over 20 yards

a big thing to note: Cushing and Watt were not in game shape, it was painfully obvious in the first half, both guys were rusty. Having Smith out does a lot more to Watt than people think. Smith is a relentless force in both the pass game and the run game, he has to be accounted for. With a D-Line of Mitchell and Crick, JJ was the focus of the offensive line. He will be better when he gets in game condition and has to Bash Brother back again

there was a bright spot in the secondary. Manning played well as he normally does. JJoe was pretty good in coverage. He gave up that long pass play, but he was there and had a hand in between the WRs arms. That was just a great catch against great coverage....a guy who was notably absent last night was Kareem Jackson....when was the last time nobody noticed him? The best i can recall he only gave up 1 catch and it was on a quick slant while we brought the house. Jackson was much improved. Keo even played decent for us

the problems we had in the passing game werent really related to our starters in the Secondary. Brice McCain has been garbage since he got here, and will have 5 horrible games and then we a shut down corner for 1 week and keep his job. Swearinger was getting worked over as well but was asked to cover Gates.

Believe it or not, we only gave up 6 catches to a WR, and Rivers was less than 50% passing.

our problems were when we had linebackers covering RBs or when Brice McCain was covering anyone

Mercilus and Reed are not cover guys. Maybe Reed can cover a slow TE or FB, but he cant run with a RB.

We also missed a lot of tackles last night, which led to first downs.

I don't know who was covering Floyd for the game but besides that amazing catch against JJoe, he had 1 catch on 5 targets

bottom line for me, we didn't have a problem in skill, we had a problem in scheme.
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ServantofYHWH


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's using 3 and 4 wide receiver sets that are gonna kill us. I don't think Reed can mask our 3rd 4th and 5th CBs
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mse326


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think we can judge the secondary from this game (though I've been worried since last year so obviously I still am).

The only 2 that got abused yesterday were McCain and Swearinger. Swearinger

I'm willing to give a bit of a pass. 1. He really was never meant to be a cover guy, 2. It's his first game, 3. It was against a healthy Antonio Gates who is still among the best in that state (he just hasn't been in that state recently). I'm not particularly concerned where he starts as much as where he finishes. If he keeps improving I'm happy.

Our NCB situation is something we all said was terrifying and they did nothing to correct it. That will be our downfall. The truth is McCain is far and away the best option we currently have at that position. And as yesterday showed that is a big problem because he is what I like to call, god awful. I'm not normally a fan of in season trades, but we have to look closely at this option for a NCB. Because right now we are in serious trouble.

At the same time while Joseph and Jackson didn't give up much of anything that's because they were never really targeted. I'm not gonna say that they had nothing to do with that, but it was much more the play of McCain leaving his guy open that made picking on him the clear choice. They also don't exactly have great receivers. But as far as the secondary, or more specifically the pass defense, is concerned they are the least of my worries.
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Apollo Stallion


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 4:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So with that set up, here's my take:

I've been saying for 2 years now, #3 CB needs to be viewed as a STARTING position in the AFC where the route to the Super Bowl goes thru Manning & Brady & I suspect Luck sooner than later. We can't just throw away games against the NFC elite either as we need to be shooting for home field throughout the playoffs to avoid having to go to Mile High, Foxboro, or Indy to get to the promised land and that's going to require 13-14 wins with such a soft conference.

I don't think our vulnerability is so much about not being able to win against the elite QBs, as we beat Manning and Flacco last year, as well as Cutler and Dalton who aren't elite, but are at least in the middle tier. We beat Ryan and Big Ben in 2011, but Brees destroyed us.

So if you take that all together, it's not so much a vulnerability to elite QBs, it's a clear vulnerability against teams that effectively incorporate a 3rd receiver & especially speed out of the slot. We generally have succeeded in shutting down the primary targets but it's the slot guys like Lance Moore, Brandon Stokely, Randall Cobb, Ryan Broyles, Wes Welker, and TY Hilton that have torn us up. Some of those guys are pretty good, but throw in the 3rd rate guys like Donte Stallworth, Eddie Royal, and Jarius Wright inflicting damage and I think this is much more about the lack of talent the Texans have beyond our #1/#2 CB AND Wade Phillips not adjusting his scheme to account for the talent gap. I will also propose that the Texans weak receiving core beyond #1 (and now maybe #2) lulls us into a false sense of security and weak practice prep as stopping Keshawn Martin in practice does not mean we are ready for Welker or Hilton. All of our other guys have been slow as mold, so Brandan Harris can get away with things in practice that he can't recover from even against a scrub like Stallworth.

I think it all really comes down to not being willing to admit we just "missed" on Brandan Harris and Roc and not doing anything to remedy it. When we picked them, I thought it made a lot of sense as Harris presented as a guy who probably lacked the speed to hang with the burners deep, but had "quickness" and coverage skills to help shut down teams extending drives by eating us alive in 10 yard increments (like Brees did vs. Kareem). Roc had the deep speed to hang with the speedsters that rarely go short (like Devery Henderson). I was okay with McCain/McManus as dime zone types, but they have no business manned up on anyone. Problem is, Brandon is an undisciplined mess with no awareness, Roc was even more clueless, so we are back to McCain being asked to man up slot receivers which is a recipe for disaster.

Beyond the top teams on the schedule, we need to be making adjustments now on how we are going to stop Tavon Austin, Kendall Wright, Ace Sanders, Malcolm Floyd as Eddie Royal is about the worst #3 we're going to face and we have a tendency to host coming out parties for young talent.
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Apollo Stallion


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 4:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Clearly, we're not going to wake up tomorrow with Chris Harris playing nickel for us, but there are better options than McCain who will never be the answer and we don't need a 5th season to see how the story ends:

Sheldon Brown is a guy that I always thought would be a good fit for us. He's pretty poor against the run which tends to sully his name, but he would instantly be the 3rd best cover corner on the team if not the 2nd best, depending on your opinion of Kareem.

I don't know why Antoine Winfield hung up his cleats, but he was probably better than both JJoe and Kareem last year. Sure, he's slipped a bit, but he's always struck me as Dunta Robinson BEFORE the injury as a hard nosed player who could probably make up for some declining skills by bringing the awareness Brandon lacks or at worst scaring the heck out of smallish slot receivers with some of his trademark hits.

Jason Allen was nobodies favorite player around here, but he was the 2nd best corner on this roster in 2010. I never understood why we platooned him and Kareem instead of pushing Kareem inside to cover the slot, but the knock on him has always been tackling, not coverage. He's got wheels too.

Absent those options, why not go ahead and give AJ Bouye a shot. Chris Harris was a UDFA too, so there are some diamonds in the rough out there and he showed more in one preseason than Harris, Carmichael, McManus, or Molden ever did.
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amazingandre


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 8:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

We definitely need to consider a trade. The ego of our coaching staff thinking they can get McCain or Harris to improve is crazy. Its stupid and foolish to think they will magically improve. If they really want to be super bowl contenders, make a trade or bring in a vet off the street. (I prefer trade because the guy will/should be in game shape already).

Any got time to find solid slot corners on bad teams we might be able to trade for?
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ServantofYHWH


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 10, 2013 10:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

^^Jason Allen was definetly one of my favorite players back then. I didn't like us getting rid of him.
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Apollo Stallion


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2013 1:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

While Locker doesn't fit the profile of one of the QBs we're talking about that can pick the secondary apart by finding the targets left open by our nickel corner or safeties, but it's worth mentioning that the Texans seemed much better this week in this aspect. The slot was still the weak point with Kendall Wright the only receiver who did any damage, but we can live with a 7 / 54 / 1 line. As usual, the Titans failed to feature any passing to TE's or RBs so the safeties and LBs weren't exposed in coverage and Kenny Britt is just a fundamental mess which makes life easier against them. Not looking for this week to be much different as the Ravens are completely devoid of weapons aside from Torrey Smith who Joseph has owned.
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Apollo Stallion


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 17, 2013 3:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think it's going to be pretty interesting to watch the evolution of this defense once Ed Reed gets in there, which you have to expect will be this week considering the opponent. Swearinger & Keo may technically be dbacks, but I think they will operate much more like linebackers and also ideal "spies" when we draw Wilson and Kaepernick back to back. Call me crazy, but the team that scares me more than them offensively is the Rams as I don't think we have great answers for Givens and Austin and Cook is going to keep Manning very busy.

I also hope someone on the Texans advance scouting staff is tearing apart the TY Hilton tape as I simply hate our matchups with the Colts. I suspect we do what we did vs. the Ravens (Boldin/Smith matchup) and put Kjax on the slower but savvy Wayne and sick Joseph on Hilton, but DHB is exactly the type of WR that has career days vs. us exploiting the mismatch with McCain deep for a quick strike or two. Again, here's hoping Reed is back there to see the deep stuff coming and react better than Quin/Demps used to.

BTW - That Bengals team I saw last night will be a much tougher out than the past 2 years. Joseph has contained AJ Green for the most part with the pass rush not giving Dalton time to find any other outlets. When you add Bernard and Eifert to the mix along with Gresham, Sanu, and Marvin Jones and they can actually win when Green gets shut down. Still not totally sold on their o-line and Dalton is far from elite, but given how bad their division is shaping up as, they are a legit threat for a top seed.
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jch1911


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2013 10:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Eagles signed CB Roc Carmichael off the Texans practice squad.
A fourth-round pick in 2011, Carmichael missed his entire rookie year due to a shoulder injury and never recovered. He'll add depth to the Eagles secondary with Brandon Hughes (hamstring) on short-term IR and can help on special teams.
per rotoworld
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Texans02


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2013 1:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

jch1911 wrote:
Quote:
Eagles signed CB Roc Carmichael off the Texans practice squad.
A fourth-round pick in 2011, Carmichael missed his entire rookie year due to a shoulder injury and never recovered. He'll add depth to the Eagles secondary with Brandon Hughes (hamstring) on short-term IR and can help on special teams.
per rotoworld


He lost his roster spot to a UDFA. Harris and McCain actually see the field for us. If he couldn't take a spot away from Harris, McCain and Bouye, I'm not concerned about another team snatching him off the PS. In his 3rd year.
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Apollo Stallion


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2013 2:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Texans02 wrote:
jch1911 wrote:
Quote:
Eagles signed CB Roc Carmichael off the Texans practice squad.
A fourth-round pick in 2011, Carmichael missed his entire rookie year due to a shoulder injury and never recovered. He'll add depth to the Eagles secondary with Brandon Hughes (hamstring) on short-term IR and can help on special teams.
per rotoworld


He lost his roster spot to a UDFA. Harris and McCain actually see the field for us. If he couldn't take a spot away from Harris, McCain and Bouye, I'm not concerned about another team snatching him off the PS. In his 3rd year.


Won't miss him, but it is getting a bit annoying that the Eagles and Browns keep poaching our practice squad. I think we need to poach one of their pet projects to discourage the practice - 6' 7" Oregon DE, Brandon Bair or 6' 8" 340 lb T, Michael Bamiro. Montgomery isn't seeing the field this season and could easily be shifted to the IR at this point.
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