I think that this is right. Crable needed to be either one of the top three OLB's or a top special teamer. He was neither. In the end, perhaps this was more about the perceived success of Banta-Cain, Ninkovich and Cunningham at OLB.
Mayo, Spikes and Guyton have the inside spots locked up.
Fletcher is the all-around backup, the #7 LB. Crable was unable to beat out Fletcher for this spot.
In the end, that's all the position linembacker we need; seven is plenty, especiall at this point in the year. Any others absolutely are special teamers first and linebackers second. Woods and White fit that mold perfectly.
And it does help that Woods can play pretty decently against the run. He is actually an ASSET on the field against the run. As a top STer, he will always be active, and be available for run situations as required.
Personally, as was the case with many others, I wanted Woods on the original 53, with Fletcher on the Practice Squad. No other team wanted Woods, so now we have both. Welcome back Pierre Woods!
Belichick has succeeded in having a reasonably competent, young, inexpensive linebacking corps. This is a huge accomplishment. One top DE/OLB stud will complete the "rebuilding" of the front seven. And we are one corner away from a top secondary.
Whouda think it? There were so many holes going into the season. The defense was so aweful against Cleveland. There will still be awful days, but the transformation has been amazing.
Originally Posted by PatsWickedPissah
The Crab failed to learn the longevity lesson that BB values ST contribution highly and that it's a gateway to buy time to develop as a regular.