Monday, February 15, 2010

Random Stuff



Here is the depth chart as I'm comfortable with it:

RDE - Trent Cole
RDT - Brodrick Bunkley
LDT - Mike Patterson  --- Antonio Dixon
LDE - Juqua Parker

*Victor Abiamiri - I want him to take over the Darren Howard role this year as the primary DT pass rusher. 

That is 6 of 10 spots.  The other players each have to earn their way onto the roster as far as I'm concerned. 

*Trevor Laws - should get traded.  Just isn't a good fit.
*Darren Howard - production dropped from '08.  He will turn 34 at midseason.  Likely to be cut.
*Chris Clemons - hasn't lived up to potential.  Is versatile and plays on STs.  Could be worth keeping.
*Jason Babin - had 2.5 sacks in first 3 games.  Finished the year with 2.5 sacks.  Could be re-signed. 

I'm not looking to get rid of these guys in a bad way.  Laws is no longer a good fit so I would deal him for a pick.  We'll lose value, but I don't see Trevor developing into a 2-gap player. 

The DEs are all guys I like.  They are also all replaceable.  None of them did anything so great you must keep them.  Howard did have 6.5 sacks, but that is down from 2008.  A couple of those sacks were as much the design of the blitz as anything Darren did.  He still has a great spin move, but he's not a consistently disruptive force.  Actually, I'm fine with bringing everyone to Lehigh and letting them battle for jobs.  I like all the guys.  I just want the best players. 

Here is the way I'd like it to look on May 1st.  

RDE - Trent Cole -------- Jason Babin
RDT - Brodrick Bunkley - Rookie
LDT - Mike Patterson  --- Antonio Dixon -- Victor Abiamiri
LDE - Free Agent -------- Juqua Parker --- Rookie

RE:  Derrick Burgess

 I'm planning to write something about free agent DEs.  I'm watching tape of the guys so that I can offer something more than stats, highlights, and memories.  I did watch some of Derrick recently.  He's still a quality player.  He isn't Plan A, but I do have interest in him. 

RE:  Earl Thomas

I can't decide if Earl makes sense for us or not.  Watching him tackle Brandon Jacobs would be painful.  I doubt he'd do much better against Marion Barber or Clinton Portis.  At the same time, it would be nice to have a FS who is able to cover lots of ground and play the ball well.  Right now Reshad Jones is the guy I like best (aside from Eric Berry of course). 

RE:  big NTs for 4-3

The 3-4 has 4 LBs that can fly to the ball and make plays.  The 4-3 only has 3 LBs.  All D-linemen in the 4-3 need to be able to pursue so that on the play where that guy is free he can help out.  If a 4-3 team designates one guy as the NT all of the time they could get away with a massive guy.  It just isn't ideal. 

The 4-3 is a defense built on the line making the plays.  When you think of Gang Green you first think of Reggie, Clyde, and Jerome.  The 3-4 is built on LBs.  Think about the Steelers.  You have Harrison and Woodley making plays off the edge and James Farrior as the man in the inside.  The 3-4 needs a NT who can eat blocks.  He really doesn't have to make many plays.  The 4-3 likes a DT who can eat up blockers when needed, but who can also make plays in the backfield. 

Understand, when I refer to guys as big NTs I'm generally talking about guys that are 350+.  Those guys can effectively play in the 4-3, but they aren't ideal fits.  You'd rather have a guy that is 330 and can still run somewhat.  3-4 teams must have an anchor in the middle of the defense.  Girth/bulk isn't a bad thing when your job is to take on double teams 40-50 times a game. 

The Ravens were the last 4-3 team to win a title with mammoth DTs.  The game has changed since 2000.  Look at these numbers:

2000- 3 QBs with 4,000 yards...5 QBs with 25 or more TDs...10 RBs with more than 1,300 yards

2009- 10 QBs with 4K or more yds...12 QBs with 26 or more TDs...6 RBs with more than 1,300 yds

I think you can see how much more of a passing league this is now.  Hopefully this makes better sense. 


Cliff said...

Do you see a particular defense as being "better" over the other? Of you could start fresh and pick whoever you want for the Eagles, would you stay with the 4-3?

Tommy Lawlor said...

Tom Landry, one of my heroes, invented the 4-3. Buddy Ryan, another hero, ran the 4-3 and put together multiple great lines. God himself knows that the 4-3 is the way defense is supposed to be run.

Purple People Eaters = 4-3
Doomsday Defense = 4-3
Steel Curtain = 4-3
2000 Ravens = 4-3
Gang Green = 4-3
'85 Bears = 4-3
Bucs D = 4-3

The 3-4 should be outlawed. That defense is part of what is wrong with the world today. I can definitively say that most societal issues would go away if the 3-4 was banned.

I believe Gandhi said it best "if you love the human race, go with the 4-3." Words of wisdom, MG, words of wisdom.

Eddie said...

i believe the 3-4 helps defend the run more because the 2 outside linebackers usually blitz so that basically having 5 linemen, and only 2 LB going into coverage.while in the 4-3 you will have 3 LB in Coverage. I still prefer the 4-3

Edward said...

I'll be interested to see what you think of Kyle Vanden Bosch in your FA DE post Tommy, he hasn't been great the last two years but could be paired up with Trent Cole.

Cheers for the thoughts as always.

Crash said...

Do you think the Eagles will consider moving Gocong to LDE as Steve Steiner suggested. I am not sure any team is going to give up a high draft pick for him since he is a RFA. Do the Eagles keep him for depth?

Jason Paris said...

@ Crash -

I don't know if Gocong is going to be here next season.

Ideally I would sign him to a one year deal. Then trade Chris Gocong and a 3rd round pick and conditional late 2011 to the Jets for Kerry Rhodes.

Reasons for the Jets wanting this trade:

- The jets coveted Gocong coming out.

- Rhodes was benched and after watching an interview with him he said the right things, but his body language said the opposite

- The Jets are in the final 8, so this limits their ability to bring in new players. They also have a limited number of draft picks.

Reasons for the Eagles

- Rhodes is only 27 and is an instant upgrade at safety

- We have 6 picks in the first four rounds and AR has never been shy about making draft trades.

- It allows the team to move Macho to the nickel corner spot. Teams began to run on this team in our nickel D, so having a proven tackler in Macho over Hanson (whose play declined) is another upgrade.

Eddie said...

i would to have rhdoes but there have been many rumours about the jets cutting him so we couldn't have to give anyone up , just sign him to a contract.

Myron said...

Tommy: All of those 4-3 defenses you listed were dominant in an era when the run game was the most popular way to advance the ball and score points. You said it yourself - it's a passing league now, and those stifling run defenses wouldn't be nearly as dominant in today's league.

The one nice thing about the 3-4 is it allows you to disguise blitzes more effectively. And it basically just gives the DC alot more flexbility. I was re-watching Super Bowl XLIII last night and I was comparing the Steelers' defensive performance vs. Kurt Warner to the Eagles defensive effort vs Warner in the NFCCG, and what struck me was how much more confusing the Steelers' 3-4 was for Warner. Against our defense, he could beat the blitz every time because he knew how to pick apart the coverage mismatches. The Steelers did lots of interesting stuff like dropping James Harrison back into coverage when Warner expected him to blitz, which led to a game-changing interception in the red zone.

Also, one thing many people neglect to realize, I think, is that as the league becomes more of a passing league, the run-stopping strengths of the 4-3 are less valuable. The 3-4 has an advantage in a passing league because you can drop more guys into coverage effectively.

Finally, the strength of a good 4-3 is wholly dependent upon the existence of a good DE on the line. Good 4-3 DEs are much harder to obtain, and keep, than good 3-4 OLBs and DEs. A dominant 4-3 DE is one of the rarest and most valuable players in the game.

Crash said...

Tommy, I think you answered my Gocong question with your Mice and Men post on the Eagles website. Thanks. Just not ready to give up on the guy yet.

Mr_Boomy said...

How about Kyle Vanden Bosch, he's and UFA

Myron said...

Here's a well-written article that outlines why the 3-4 is arguably a more effective defense in the modern passing game:

Anders said...

One thing the article never mention is that the LBs in a 4-3 can also blitz. In that article he compares what 7 plays can do vs 4.

Take the double A gap blitz, its very tough to defend if you have good LBs and the RB dosnt get the right LB, this also frees up DEs from double teams. I belive Trent Cole got atleast 2 sacks blitzing from the A gap.