Welcome to PatsFans.com

3-4 Convert vs. Keith Rivers

Discussion in 'Patriots Draft Talk' started by jays52, Apr 14, 2008.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. jays52

    jays52 Rookie

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    Messages:
    2,956
    Likes Received:
    43
    Ratings:
    +76 / 0 / -0

    #91 Jersey

    There seems to be many people here infatuated with taking one of the three top OLB converts available. Be it Gholston, Groves or Long. I understand the logic in additon to how impressive those three players are. However, when you consider the value of one of the converts at seven versus Rivers, I think taking Rivers is the more logical selection.

    Consider the depth with 3-4 convert ends this year. First, there's a better than good shot both Gholston and Long will be gone at seven. While I certainly think that Groves will be a special player, I believe that Rivers is more valuable to the Patriots. I say this because I see Rivers as a blend of all the things the Pat's ILB's are missing.

    First, he's explosive. While AD is fast, I don't he is overly explosive or quick. Other than AD, there isn't much team speed in the front 7. The defense reaches the ball, but they don't swarm. They flush the passer and collapse the pocket, but they don't finish. I think AD's skills are best suited for blanketing tight ends or holding the edge. I don't think he has enough first-step quickness to play inside.

    Second, he plays hard. Obviously you like to see that in any player, but the way he plays is conducive to the scheme. When I saw him play, the thing that really stood out to me was how he engaged guards or other blockers while scraping or filling. He dropped his hips, exploded from the trunk and delivered a solid arm pop to full lock out. He stood guys up and got off the blocker very quickly. Several times, I saw him drive guards into the gap and make the play without the boxscore credit for it.

    Third, I think he's pretty bright. Please don't refute this with a wonderlic score. He plays intensely but controlled within his scheme. He makes smart post-snap decisions and seems to have excellent awareness of where his teamates are. He makes the kind of plays that are indicative of pretty decent intelligence.

    Fourth, he wears 55. You can't be a scrub and wear that number at his school.

    Anyone have any thoughts towards this end? Agree? Disagree?
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2008
  2. KontradictioN

    KontradictioN Do you even lift? PatsFans.com Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2006
    Messages:
    27,039
    Likes Received:
    499
    Ratings:
    +1,362 / 26 / -47

    No Jersey Selected

    I'd rather have Groves... heart condition or not.
  3. The Hurricane

    The Hurricane Rookie

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2007
    Messages:
    119
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0 / -0

    He has poor tackling skills and will never be a stud. He is a much better athlete than he is a player and he definitely benefited from the talented players around him. Also, players get number 55 when they enter the program not when they leave it, so 55 is more of a testament to how good they THOUGHT he was going to be and not how good he IS.

    Don't get me wrong, I think he lived up to the number in college, I just think he won't be very special in the pros.
  4. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2004
    Messages:
    11,609
    Likes Received:
    317
    Ratings:
    +772 / 8 / -1

    #11 Jersey

    Well, can I refute it with reports that he struggles in the classroom, or nfldraftscout's comment that he "might have problems digesting a complicated playbook"? I know that book smarts doesn't equal football smarts, but ILB is one of the positions where book smarts matter most -- and where the intellectual demands of the position will be far, far beyond what he had to handle in college.

    Rivers seems to me like a terrific player, and a lousy fit for the Pats ILB position. Here's what I look for:

    - Strength stacking and shedding blockers
    - Sifting through trash
    - Reading the play/finding the ball quickly
    - Intelligence

    Here are some excerpts on Rivers:
    "will struggle to shed vs. the bigger blockers"
    "will lose sight of the ball in a crowd and must do a better job sifting through trash"
    "Needs to have a clear path to the quarterback, as he has been exposed for strength issues when trying to shoot the gaps"
    "Does not read keys all the time, but will move and close once he sees the play develop"
    "will get fooled by play-action and pump fakes"

    I agree completely that Rivers is explosive and works and plays hard, but his strengths seem more like an OLB, and he's smaller than I'd like for that position.
  5. My2Cents

    My2Cents Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2007
    Messages:
    209
    Likes Received:
    2
    Ratings:
    +3 / 0 / -0

    #54 Jersey

    I repeat, ...I would NOT take one [DE converts]. ...because the Patriots would be asking him to do something that at which he's inexperienced and unproven. Namely, playing OLB. Generally, the Patriots bring in players BECAUSE they are experienced and proven at what they're asked to do.

    I might add that if it comes down to taking Gholston or Keith Rivers, the pick is most likely Rivers. However, I have a hard time ruling out DB Mike Jenkins.
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2008
  6. My2Cents

    My2Cents Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2007
    Messages:
    209
    Likes Received:
    2
    Ratings:
    +3 / 0 / -0

    #54 Jersey

    Let me say, also, that I see Rivers as an upgrade over Colvin. Remember the reason that they brought him [Colvin] in was due to his rare athleticism and his even rarer ability to drop into coverage well, both of which are Rivers' strongest selling point(s). Seems a no-brainer to me. :cool:
  7. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

    Joined:
    Sep 13, 2004
    Messages:
    11,609
    Likes Received:
    317
    Ratings:
    +772 / 8 / -1

    #11 Jersey

    You know, reading over the original post I realized I'm not clear -- are you proposing Rivers as an ILB or OLB?
  8. Brady'sButtBoy

    Brady'sButtBoy Rookie

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2005
    Messages:
    1,767
    Likes Received:
    6
    Ratings:
    +13 / 3 / -1

    #12 Jersey

    I can honestly say I've never been "emphatuated" with anyone, least of all a guy named Gholston! Now, I don't think she plays football, but I probably was infatuated with Julia Ormond right after Legends Of The Fall came out; or with Rachel McAdams after Wedding Crashers: or with the Barbie Twins after...uh, forget that one. :eek:

    BTW, myspace.com is not a dictionary site, dude! :rocker:
  9. jays52

    jays52 Rookie

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    Messages:
    2,956
    Likes Received:
    43
    Ratings:
    +76 / 0 / -0

    #91 Jersey

    You got it right the first time, I see the fit to be better inside. To be completely honest, I really disagree with some of the scouting reports out there about how he can't disengage blockers. I think he's pretty good at that.

    More so, he's listed at ballpark 240(?) at 6'2. Which is pretty small for a pretty big frame. The underlying theme was that we're looking at a kid who's going to take a year or two to develop into a solid starter regardless of who we take. I think that in a pro training regimen, with the schematic demands in mind, he can get up to 255-260 without losing his speed and quickness. There is no questioning his playing intensity, nor his technique. I think most of his problems on the scouting sheet come from the relative lack of bulk for his size.
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2008
  10. jays52

    jays52 Rookie

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    Messages:
    2,956
    Likes Received:
    43
    Ratings:
    +76 / 0 / -0

    #91 Jersey

    Woah. What a dick. That was pretty hardcore for a poorly spelled word. Correction noted, appreciated and unintentionally hilarious.

    Anything of value you would care to contribute, holmes?
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2008
  11. Brady'sButtBoy

    Brady'sButtBoy Rookie

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2005
    Messages:
    1,767
    Likes Received:
    6
    Ratings:
    +13 / 3 / -1

    #12 Jersey

    No, too elementary for me, Watson. BTW, it was meant to be funny and my friends call me Richard. :singing:
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2008
  12. cstjohn17

    cstjohn17 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Messages:
    5,031
    Likes Received:
    23
    Ratings:
    +39 / 11 / -4

    #54 Jersey

    I disagree, some recent converts.
    Wilfork - played a one gap, attack style defense in college, he was not a NT
    A. Thomas - was an OLB they played him inside until Colvin went down
    Vrabel - was a DE converted to OLB
    Meriweather - was a FS, played nickel corner
    Wilson - was a CB, played FS
    Bruschi - DE, now ILB
    Mankins - OT, plays guard
    Seymour - was a DT, now plays 3-4 end
    Sanders - was a SS, now plays FS

    Thats all I can think of but I think you see a trend. The Patriots try to take good football players, good football players can adapt to new positions.

    To the original question, I would take Long, Gholston or Harvey before Rivers, maybe even a couple CBs. If Rivers was really 245 I might feel differently, but he can't seem to hold his weight (241 combine, 232 pro day).
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2008
  13. MrBigglesWorth

    MrBigglesWorth Rookie

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2006
    Messages:
    8,338
    Likes Received:
    16
    Ratings:
    +16 / 0 / -0

    I would be happy trading down 3-5 spots and taking a LB. and using that trade value to trade up in the second round and get another good player.

    I just want a LB in the first round.
  14. jays52

    jays52 Rookie

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2007
    Messages:
    2,956
    Likes Received:
    43
    Ratings:
    +76 / 0 / -0

    #91 Jersey


    I think that weight needs to be taken with a grain of salt. It's fairly well known that speed is leg strength in relation to weight. If I had a combine that determined $5 million of lifetime income, I too would try to shed 10 lbs of playing weight and lift only legs and hips. Most football players go into combines having trained specifically for times and measurables. For some, it's consideration for a starting spot, for others its a few million.

    I think he will play at a much higher weight than listed. That is, unless he plans on playing for Indy.
  15. sebman2112

    sebman2112 Rookie

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2007
    Messages:
    4,535
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ratings:
    +0 / 0 / -0

    I'm not disagreeing, but some of this is slightly incorrect.

    AD played both ILB and OLB with the Ravens. He actually got a lot of time at ILB when Ray Lewis went down with injury. OLB is his more natural position though.

    Meriweather played FS, SS, and CB in college. He held his own against some good receivers, too. He also got some time at Safety in 2007, not just nickel.

    Sanders did make that switch, but he actually seems better at SS.

    I also kind of agree that taking a DE to OLB convert with the 7th overall pick could be somewhat risky, especially since the Patriots aren't running a 1 gap 34, and their OLB have more coverage duties.
  16. My2Cents

    My2Cents Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2007
    Messages:
    209
    Likes Received:
    2
    Ratings:
    +3 / 0 / -0

    #54 Jersey

    No, sir! You are wrong! The gap scheme doesn't matter. He was both a 3-technique tackle at Miami and a 1-technique! Meaning, he lined up directly over Center.
    In other words, he was a NT at Miami, plain and simple.

    Wrong, again. Inside or outside is irrelevant. We're talking about
    the experience of playing LB versus the experience of playing DE and trying to make the switch. Big difference. Wether one is best suited inside or out is beside the point. Just to slam home my point, Thomas was considered the ultimate utility player in Baltimore: ST, Safety, OLB, ILB, DE...You name it!
    Furthermore, Thomas was actually signed as an ILB (see PFW, for example).

    Wrong, yet again. Vrabel spent his first four seasons at LB in Pitt.

    Blah, blah, blah, blah... Lets just call it a day and say I've just handed you your ass, my friend. :rocker: It's enough to say that the point I'm making is that the Pats tend to bring in players who already can do what they need them to, not that they never project a player at another position or see what else he can do for us, because, of course, they do! 'Nuff said! ;)
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2008
  17. Deus Irae

    Deus Irae PatsFans.com Retired Jersey Club PatsFans.com Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 10, 2006
    Messages:
    41,862
    Likes Received:
    389
    Ratings:
    +1,130 / 52 / -64

    Disable Jersey

    If Miami wasn't playing a 3-4, he wasn't a nose tackle.

    Vrabel was a defensive end in college who was converted to linebacker upon his entry into the NFL.


    Monty Beisel, Tedi Bruschi, Eugene Wilson.... these players, among many others, say "hello".

    It wasn't cstjohn17 who's ass was getting handed to him. You need to look into a mirror to see who was the recipient.
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2008
  18. My2Cents

    My2Cents Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2007
    Messages:
    209
    Likes Received:
    2
    Ratings:
    +3 / 0 / -0

    #54 Jersey

    Oh, too, funny! :rofl:You don't know football if you think I got my ass handed to me. That's an ass backward view. :snob:

    Let me clue you in a bit. Of course Wilfork played Nose Tackle in college, and, get this, he did it in a 4-3 scheme, not a 3-4! Yes, that's right.

    Both 4-3 and 3-4 defenses have a Nose Tackle! Why? Because "Nose" simply means you line up across from Center. Exactly where (note: "where" not "how") you line up is further explained by the "technique".

    In a 4-3, the NT (like Wilfork at Miami and in some Patriots packages) is one of 2 DT's. He plays the 1-technique, which is over Center and weakside OG.

    In a 3-4, the NT is more directly across from Center but still must occupy the Center and OG, except now it's the strongside OG. That's called 0-technique.

    So Wilfork not only had experience at what the Pats wanted him to do, play Nose Tackle, but had experience with 1-technique and was capable of 0-technique. How you can think I'm wrong about any of this is beyond me.

    As for Vrabel, that's exactly what I said. What he played in college (DE) was never in question. I know that! What was in question was whether or not he had experience doing what the Pats needed him to do, which is play some LB (and maybe more). To that, I said, yes! He played 4 years at OLB in Pitt. :rolleyes:

    Well...I don't have time for this. :cool:
  19. KontradictioN

    KontradictioN Do you even lift? PatsFans.com Supporter

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2006
    Messages:
    27,039
    Likes Received:
    499
    Ratings:
    +1,362 / 26 / -47

    No Jersey Selected

    Don't mind Deus. He scours the forums looking for arguments to get into like Mad Max scours the Earth for gasoline.
  20. Ochmed Jones

    Ochmed Jones Rookie

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2004
    Messages:
    5,750
    Likes Received:
    9
    Ratings:
    +14 / 2 / -0

    #12 Jersey

    I watched Rivers closely at the senior bowl and he tended to take on OL guys with his shoulder and did not use his hands, which is technically superior.

    If Rivers was at ILB in our defense, provided he could learn the playbook before turning 50, and he attacked NFL OL guys with his shoulders, he would be on injured reserve by the end of the second quarter.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page

unset ($sidebar_block_show); ?>