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Fireside Chat About the Defense

 
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LuckyNumber11


Joined: 01 Aug 2011
Posts: 5236
Location: Nebraska
PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2014 2:26 pm    Post subject: Fireside Chat About the Defense Reply with quote



Gather round the bonfire everybody, gather round. Everybody cause I've got something I've gotta say

So we all know that we will not have Daryl Washington this year, I know I know, arguably the best player on our defense, but I am going to give you the argument as to why it will not affect our defense as much as the common man may think.

For starters let's look at the men that will be replacing him, Kevin Minter, Larry Foote, Lorenzo Alexander, and Ernie Sims. None of them really stand out, but I'm going back to what Daryl has that these men all lack and that is speed, closing speed to get to the QB/Ball carrier, that sideline to sideline speed that they lack is going to be missed no doubt. And we are looking to make up for 197 combined tackles, 9.5 sacks, 6 interception, and 1 forced fumble from Daryl and Dansby's departure. So here is how we will find that

Before I say anything else, we all know that Todd Bowles can manufacture a pass rush with the best of them

We really don't know the production we will get out of Minter, he really is the dark horse, could he play to the level that maybe Dansby did or will he play to the level that Jasper Brinkley did we don't know. I'm going to assume that he plays a around league average 85 combined tackles 4 sacks and 1 interception and 1 forced fumble, similar to what Dansby posted in 2005 his second year in the league

Larry Foote last season had no impact. Mainly because he was benched. (Unless if there was an injury correct me if I'm wrong please) Now Larry has never been that big of a difference maker on defense, only twice in his career has he put up 100+ tackles but wait. The last time he did was in 2012 prior to him getting benched in 2013. His benching could not have been due to his lack of production because he had produced in 2012, it had to be due to a younger player in the wings that was ready to start. I will estimate 90 combined tackles 4 sacks 0 interceptions 1 forced fumble.

Now Ernie and Lorenzo I don't expect to see the field a whole lot so I am going to combine their estimates and say 15 tackles 1 sack from the two of them

That puts me at 190 combined tacks 9 sacks 1 interception and 2 forced fumbles. But wait I still have more

Many will argue that those 9 sacks are simply not going to happen due to all four of these players lack of speed, but here is how it will happen. .5-3 seconds. That half of a second to three seconds is going to be given to the pass rush because of our improved secondary, Antonio Cromartie will be putting a blanket over another receiver in addition to the blanket that is Patrick Peterson. Options 1 and 2 on routes taken out of he play as well as 3 by Tyrann Mathieu and possible 4 depending on the development of Deone Bucannon. And the holes to get to the QB will be there, we know that Todd Bowles can open those holes for Minter, Foote & Co.

The argument I'm trying to make here is, yes the loss of Daryl and Dansby hurts, it hurts us a lot. But I believe the addition of Antonio Cromartie if he can return to his original form will neutralize some of the damages done for this defense
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TheMachONE


Joined: 13 Jan 2014
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2014 3:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

First off Larry Foote got injured during Week 1 of last season.
http://www.cbssports.com/nfl/eye-on-football/23544120/maurkice-pouncey-larry-foote-facing-surgery-could-be-lost-for-season

Now, I still think the loss of D Wash will have a big impact on our defense. It's easy for you to say on paper that our ILBs collectively could get somewhere close to Dansby and D Wash. Will that happen? I doubt it. Will they be that far off? Probably not. But here's the thing we are going to miss the most from D Wash. Speed. Mark my words when I say Russell Wilson and Kapernick are gonna run all over our defense this year. D Wash was so great at having the speed to cover the whole field. Whenever Russell or Kaep wanted to get out the pocker, D Wash was there and either forced them to throw the ball away, tackled them for a loss, or prevented them from a big gain. So next season Russell is gonna roll out of the pocket, Minter is going to do his best to break off of his coverage and get him but he lacks the speed and instincts to get to him quickly. So Minter gets to Russell eventually but not after Russell breaks loose for a 15 yd game. But that tackles looks the same as D Wash's tackles on Russell for a 2 yd game on paper. So I mean sure our ILBs may get a similar # of tackles but on the field there will be a drastic difference. Same thing goes with running plays. I'm not too worried about our run D struggling this season but D Wash will tackle the HB after only a gain of 3 yds because he has the speed and instincts to get there but Minter and Foote on the other hand may recognize the play just as quickly but don't get to the HB until after a gain of 5.

And also on the subject of manufacturing pressure, Bowles may be able to manufacture some sacks from our ILBs but it will never compare to the impact Washington had on the field. I doubt we'll see a lot of inside blitz from either of our ILBs because their just not that fast but Bowles may be forced to blitz 5 now in order to get to the QB rather than just 4 because D Wash had the talent and speed to get to the QB so fast. You see what I am saying? We're gonna have to bring in more people in on a blitz and because of that we're probably going to have opposing offenses have more explosive plays (20+ yd plays).
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holeman1


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2014 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't think its the stats that matter much, its reputation and crunchtime playmaking ability. I think Minter can be a guy that can blitz and run-defend effectively, he was a consistent 100 tackle 5 sack guy at LSU:



here Minter makes a tackle on a bruiser back even with a 280 pound lineman blocking him



i fully expect a 5 sack, 110 tackle season from Minter because run defense and pass-rushing are his only elite traits in the NFL, Bowles should be aware of this and put him up front for a heavy majority of down. the thing I don't expect from minter is good pass-coverage, standing only at 6'0" and barley running under a 4.8, he cannon replace Washington in the regard of getting in the backfield and assisting in guarding TE's, and I don't see Foote being nearly as effective as Wash either in terms of pass coverage. however we did get Bucannon which is definitely going to be a upgrade over Bell in the backfield and could move up to LB in some situations due to his "come at me bro" playstyle and hard-hitting ability, so I think in some package situations we can have Bucannon move up and play a Washington role while put Jefferson in the backfield.
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love2theOLINE


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 12, 2014 7:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

They are talking Tony Jefferson up a lot, I can see a lot of in the box safeties this season. They seem to have 4 guys they really like after Mathieu gets back.
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mtdowner


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PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2014 1:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice write up, man.

I think we'll get above average to good production out of our ILB's this year. Problem is we were getting elite production out of the position last year. I think our front 3 and D-coordinator had a little to do with it, but a lot of it just had to do with having two very talented players in DWash and Dansby.

Our defense has made improvements in other areas i.e. CB and SS. But I'm still concerned our defense won't play at the same elite level it did last year.
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LuckyNumber11


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2014 12:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The point that I guess I'm making here, isn't that we aren't going to miss DWash, because we will. The argument I'm making is that because of the upgrades that Cromartie gives us over Powers, and the upgrade that Deone gives us over Bell, those two upgrades will improve our secondary immensely (And I haven't even mentioned how much I love TJ) and the improvement of the secondary will neutralize the damages done by the loss of our ILBs therefor giving us a defense with a different concept but the same caliber of last years
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TheMachONE


Joined: 13 Jan 2014
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2014 1:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

LuckyNumber11 wrote:
The point that I guess I'm making here, isn't that we aren't going to miss DWash, because we will. The argument I'm making is that because of the upgrades that Cromartie gives us over Powers, and the upgrade that Deone gives us over Bell, those two upgrades will improve our secondary immensely (And I haven't even mentioned how much I love TJ) and the improvement of the secondary will neutralize the damages done by the loss of our ILBs therefor giving us a defense with a different concept but the same caliber of last years

That's pushing it. How could you say we will miss D Wash but still be at the same calliber. It doesn't work that way.
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LuckyNumber11


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2014 1:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

TheMachONE wrote:
LuckyNumber11 wrote:
The point that I guess I'm making here, isn't that we aren't going to miss DWash, because we will. The argument I'm making is that because of the upgrades that Cromartie gives us over Powers, and the upgrade that Deone gives us over Bell, those two upgrades will improve our secondary immensely (And I haven't even mentioned how much I love TJ) and the improvement of the secondary will neutralize the damages done by the loss of our ILBs therefor giving us a defense with a different concept but the same caliber of last years

That's pushing it. How could you say we will miss D Wash but still be at the same calliber. It doesn't work that way.


Because of how much of an impact Cro will have on our secondary. Look we aren't going to be the same team pass rushing wise but this year I full expect our secondary to be much much better than last years to the point where it neutralizes the effects of DWash's suspension will have. Plus I feel that Foote and Minter are both very capable replacements.

This isn't last years defense at all, it's not even close to the same defense. It's a new look, but there's new talent that I think we might be underestimating. If Cro is 100% we have two top 10 corners in this league as well as one of the best nickel corners in the game. That's called a No Fly Zone
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khodder


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 18, 2014 3:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The big worry I have about this defense is now how easily could teams run on us.

We are all big on Bucannan, but forget that Yeremiah Bell was one of the best run stopping safeties in the league, and given Bucannan's propensity for bad angles and missed tackles we are going to lose out there.

We are going to miss the fact that our CB's were not asked to defend the run much because of the range our ILB's had, that is not going to be the case this year with Washington and Dansby replaced by Foote and Minter. Then add in the fact that we have arguably the two worst run defending corners in the league slated to start on the outside, I could see teams like San Fran and Seattle attacking those corners in the ground game knowing that as a defense we have no LB's that are capable of beating those backs to the corner.

I think, that despite the upgrades in the secondary against the pass, we have got significantly weaker in that same area against the run. Teams are going to attack us differently because there is a weakness there. Especially if a guy like Mathieu is not going to be available until week 5 at the earliest.

And it has been bought up before, but it also bears repeating. We play in the same division as Wilson and Kaepernick and we also have RGIII on the roster. Quarterbacks with the ball in hand are going to be dangerous. If we have to dedicate a player to spying him it takes one player away from us that we would have otherwise been able to use as a chess piece. Then you have to look far and wide to find a guy who is even capable of being a spy on those guys and I'm coming up blank apart from Mathieu, and are we really willing to take that chess peice out of play to have him spy the QB?

I have questions about this defense. Todd Bowles is going to have his work cut out week to week game planning for the ways that teams are going to look to attack us.

Last year we were pretty simple. Attacking the run on first and second down then play aggressive pass defense on 3rd and medium to long.

Bottom Line - I think teams are going to be able to run the ball well on us. If teams can run the ball well on us we are not going to be putting ourselves in favorable downs and distances that will allow our secondary to flourish and play as well as they can as a unit. If we can maintain the top quality run defense we had last season without three of the major cogs in the run defense then we should be fine.
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mtdowner


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 18, 2014 4:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Khodder,

Do you disagree that our front 3 (Ta'amu as well)+Shaughnessy did a good job occupying blockers/clogging holes allowing our ILBs to make plays? Stopping the run starts up front and I think we owe a lot of our run stopping ability to the big boys.
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LuckyNumber11


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 18, 2014 4:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If I understand what you're saying, you aren't as much worried about our A and B gaps as much as you are worried about C gap and beyond. Which my argument with the C gap outcome be one will be sealed off with Shaughnessy who I feel is an excellent run defender. (Although PFF disagrees and says he's average) that leaves just one hole left which I am willing to venture to guess that will be the side in which Deone and TJ are helping out on as well. While it will take a hit I don't see it being as significant as you think.

As far as spying the QB goes too, it's just something that's going to have to be dealt with every year no matter how good the defense is
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khodder


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 18, 2014 8:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

LuckyNumber11 wrote:
If I understand what you're saying, you aren't as much worried about our A and B gaps as much as you are worried about C gap and beyond. Which my argument with the C gap outcome be one will be sealed off with Shaughnessy who I feel is an excellent run defender. (Although PFF disagrees and says he's average) that leaves just one hole left which I am willing to venture to guess that will be the side in which Deone and TJ are helping out on as well. While it will take a hit I don't see it being as significant as you think.

As far as spying the QB goes too, it's just something that's going to have to be dealt with every year no matter how good the defense is


1; I'm not a fan of Deone being relied on in run support.
2; We were lucky this year that we didn't have to spy QBs we could rely on the athleticism of our defense to make plays and rally to the ball carrier.

Take that athleticism away and you have to change your game plan.

I don't think we will be as good up the middle against the run, but we are going to hurt if teams run outside against us.
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LuckyNumber11


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 19, 2014 12:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

khodder wrote:
LuckyNumber11 wrote:
If I understand what you're saying, you aren't as much worried about our A and B gaps as much as you are worried about C gap and beyond. Which my argument with the C gap outcome be one will be sealed off with Shaughnessy who I feel is an excellent run defender. (Although PFF disagrees and says he's average) that leaves just one hole left which I am willing to venture to guess that will be the side in which Deone and TJ are helping out on as well. While it will take a hit I don't see it being as significant as you think.

As far as spying the QB goes too, it's just something that's going to have to be dealt with every year no matter how good the defense is


1; I'm not a fan of Deone being relied on in run support.
2; We were lucky this year that we didn't have to spy QBs we could rely on the athleticism of our defense to make plays and rally to the ball carrier.

Take that athleticism away and you have to change your game plan.

I don't think we will be as good up the middle against the run, but we are going to hurt if teams run outside against us.



Ok I understand where you're coming from. The athleticism on this defense is clearly lower than last years, no question. Our run defense will not be as good, no question. I think I'm confident in Minter's abilities especially in stopping the run though as that was his forte at LSU, so I think that he has his gaps on the inside covered. Foote I'm confident in as well but I'm not certain what the production we get from him is.

All run defense boils down to (IMO) is how smart your defense is. Gap discipline obviously needs to be preached and was very well last year and I'm confident Bowles will do that. (Now we do still have to make a play but the defense just has to swarm to the ball carrier, gang tackle)

As far as how we will do versus the scrambling QBs, I honestly don't know because that doesn't happen with football IQ that's moreso awareness. It'll be interesting to see what we do, that's for sure.
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