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Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by AndyJohnson, Nov 27, 2006.

  1. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    This year may be the best defense of the BB era.
    No matter who is out, the D plays well, because it is a TEAM defense.
    I think what has made it better include the following:
    Warren and Wilforks continued improvement.
    The corners being more comfortable in the system (see notes below re pass D)
    Colvin is playing better this season than any OLb has in one season since BB arrived.
    While our depth may not be name players, guy like Wright, TBC, Sanders, Hawkins, simply do their job. They dont do anything great, but dont have to. The only D problems we have ever had under BB (outside of 2000 when no one understood what they were doing) was when players coming off the bench were liabilities. When we bring in a sub, and he is a 'neutral' we are always fine.

    D FACTS:

    -We are 6th in total defense. Our scheme says thats about as good as we could ever be, since we are above all ocnservative.
    -We are #3 vs the run. 83 yards a game and 3.4 a carry. Those are close to if not the best ever by a BB D.
    -We have given up more than 17 points ONE time.
    -We have allowed 13 defensive TDs in 11 games. That is incredible.
    -Wehave only allowed ONE run all year of 20+ yards.
    -Suddenly, after problems forcing turovers last year we are 8th in Ints. and 6th in total takeaways.

    Notes about pass D.

    Invariably, we hear the commentary about bad QBs 'doing well' against us. But this has been happening for years, and it always happens the same way. EARLY in the game, these weaker QBs complete a lot of passes against us. (Harrington comes specifically to mind) Then as the game wears on all of a sudden they cannot complete them, and many times begin throwing Ints.
    THIS IS A CORE BB PHILOSOPHY, and one of the reasons young QBs always struggle vs his D. Early in the game they see coverages they can understand, and since they are NFL caliber arms they complete some passes. As the game wears on what they think they see isnt what we are playing. The confidence they develop early in the game (I can see it happening during some games, the QB thinking this isnt so hard, that D isnt so complicated) then the schemes change and they look pathetic.
    I am CERTAIN that in the first quarter yesterday there we tons of Pat fans whining about the coverage, and how Grossman was completing all those crossing patterns, and the coverage seemed 'soft'. As the game wore on what he was doing early was no longer working because the schemes changed (and were disguised) but he kept trying to do the same thing.

    Its not as if BB lets them succeed early. But, there are many ways to play defense. BB prefers to play a concept early in the game that says what you see is what you get, come beat it, and his defenders must make good plays in a scheme without disguise. As the game wears on he disguises and changes the schemes, and now the opposing QB is lulled into confusion, and the scheme sets up the players.
     
  2. Sean Pa Patriot

    Sean Pa Patriot Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    #12 Jersey

    Your right, and Ty Warren might be the most underated player on the Pats...
     
  3. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I think he isnt underate by Pats fans who see him play. He certainly belongs in the probowl, but probably only one of he and Seymor will get the honor. By the way, the ant-seymour talk lately is crap. I've watched him closely the last few games and he is the same guy.
    I said early in his career that I have never in my life seen a DL hustle more than Seymour. I still see the same thing.

    Maybe Samuel and Hobbs are equally as underate as Warren too?
     
  4. njpatsfan

    njpatsfan Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    Great post.

    I was surprised that we have been keeping up the good run D stats with Rodney out. I'm not sure that this will last with our other ex-Charger out of the rotation.

    R
     
  5. SeanBruschi54

    SeanBruschi54 In the Starting Line-Up

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    #24 Jersey

    What a good post. I love to look at stats and you are right this team looks amazing.

    6th in Total Defense
    15th in Passing Defense (if you remember about 3-4 wekks ago we were 23-26th range for a while)
    3rd in Rushing Defense
    11th in Receiving Defense (a very underated stat)
    2nd Scoring Defense
    3rd in Punting Defense
    20th in Kickoff Defense
    18th in Punting Defense
    4th in Field Goal Defense
    13th in Turnover Defense ( We should be higher but our offensive giveaways drag it down a bit)
     
  6. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Seau made some plays, but I dont think he was key to the run D. He is kind of a 'gambler' in run defense. Vrable will be as good inside vs the run, the question is how TBC holds up when he is in their in the base.
    Id say in order, the most important people in our run D have been:

    Warren
    Colvin (many do not realize how strong he has been vs the run)
    Seymour
    Bruschi
    Wilfork
    Vrabel
    Seau

    The secondary has been good, but there job has always been to stop 8 yard runs from becoming 15,20,40,50.
     
  7. PonyExpress

    PonyExpress In the Starting Line-Up

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    Despite the stats, I believe the 2003 D was superior, picking up steam as the season wore on and proving its mettle against top opponents (except Carolina, under extenuating circumstances: STEROIDS). I still believe to this day that the 2003 Tennessee Titans were the best team the Pats have faced in the playoffs in their entire SB run. That Patriot team had all-pro caliber playmakers in their prime at every level of the D: Harrison, Law, McGinest, Bruschi, Vrabel, Seymour, Washington even Hamilton was an outstanding run defender. The current D lacks IMO that playmaking ability, especially at LBer and in the current injury riddled secondary. The best measure of D IMO is defensive passer rating, 3rd down %, Yards per rush allowed and total turnovers created. The 2003 team had a better Defensive passer rating, a better 3rd down %, and more turnovers created. Once Ted Washington returned from his injury the yards per rush likely became superior as well. The true test is still to come, of course.
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2006
  8. 5 Rings for Brady!!

    5 Rings for Brady!! In the Starting Line-Up

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    Yeah, the Seymour talk after his injury has been very chicken little, and very overdone. He has one good arm, and is doing the best he can currently.

    Samuels has made big strides and Hobbs has silenced all but one critic around here, for doing the best he can with one arm. Hobbs has shown that he is going to stay on the field whenever he can, and that trumps a lot of things in the game of football.

    I would like to see our team not skip a beat after the Seau loss. Also, I would rather have somebody other than Troy Brown in the secondary, although it is starting to be a natural position for him. :D

    We have played three teams with winning records, so I can't say for sure how tested we really are on defense, but it is a situation where the stats have been really positive.

    Turning over the ball on offense has been our biggest problem this year!
     
  9. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I would agree that the 2003 D was our best, but opinion aside, this one is outperforming it.
    Remember in 2003, we allowed a ton of points in regular season wins vs Tennessee and Indy.
    This D has had one game that it was less than excellent, at least on the scoreboard.
    Even the games where we gave up some points, there were some fluky plays.
    This D has been better vs the run than 2003, b utnot as good vs the pass.
    The 2003 D was INCREDIBLE in the 2 playoff games. Had it played that way in the SB it may go down in the argument of the best defenses ever.

    This one can still get in that category, but sincewe measure success with rings, the next 5 rs, then 2 playoff games and SB will be its legacy.
     
  10. 5 Rings for Brady!!

    5 Rings for Brady!! In the Starting Line-Up

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    I was tempted to say the same thing but visions of Klecko playing nose tackle made me go for a more conservative posting. But you are right, it will take a hell of a lot to dethrone that defense. And they played a tougher schedule.
     
  11. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The 2003 Pats, IMO, rank among the best TEAMS ever.
    IIRC, we beat 10 10+ win teams.
    We were 14-2, won 15 straight to end the season, and played the toughest schedule ever for a SB Champ.
    The playoff run, beatign co-MVP (and teams that were both 13-3 (IIRC) back to back was legendary. Had the 2003 SB opponent been the 01 Rams or 04 Eagles it may well be the best season ever, but the Panthers didnt have quite the resume of a great SB opponent.
     
  12. 5 Rings for Brady!!

    5 Rings for Brady!! In the Starting Line-Up

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    That's why I said we ain't tested yet this year! 2003 will always have a magical feel to me on defense, and 2006 doesn't feel that way yet. Not enough tough games and big plays on defense. Asante seems to be doing his part in that area, however.
     
  13. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Well, we are tested by 11 games.
    We can only play who shows up.

    The playoff run could go along way to cementing this Ds legacy.
    Hypothetically, they could go through SD and Indy 2 excellent Os to get to the SB. I dont know if there is an O to put them against in the SB that would be too impressive though.
     
  14. PatsFanInVa

    PatsFanInVa PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Chicken-littled a tad on Seymour myself recently. After the Bears game, I think it's safe to say he's at 100%.

    PFnV
     
  15. primetime

    primetime Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    #18 Jersey

    I think what's interesting is Warren is beginning to draw the double teams that Seymour used to, as he becomes the focal point of the Patriots defensive line. Despite this, he has still managed to post good statistics, something Seymour never did. Not that it's any real indication of a 3-4 DE's worth, but I still think Seymour is only the third best DL on the team behind Warren and Wilfork.
     
  16. 5 Rings for Brady!!

    5 Rings for Brady!! In the Starting Line-Up

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    I can see that people like Warren better, that is almost a matter of subjective preference. We are not experts after all. But Wilfork? I don't agree with that at all. Seymour can do Wilfork's job, and has. Wilfork can't help us in the same way Seymour does.
     
  17. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Double teams are only based on where the play is going. Arguably the guy drawing the double team isnt the better player because they are choosing to run at him. True double teams are rare in the NFL anyway. You have 5 OL a TE and a RB to block 7 DL/LBs. If you double one guy someone else is unblocked and you wont gain any yards. Who do you see double teaming Warren? Can be the G because the ILB wouldnt get blocked. Cant be the TE because the OLB wouldnt get blocked. Rather than doubleteaming, mostly OL will combo block hitting one defender on the way to their true assignment.

    No way Setymour is anything but the best DL on this team, and probably in the league.
    I love the way Warren is playing, but Seymour is a cut above.
     
  18. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Welcome stranger, who are you masked man? :D


     
  19. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Hey.
    I've been real busy. New startup company, and its been as expected, consuming.
    I have had time to read, but not to post. I also have not been able to rewatch a taped Pat game yet this year in slomo like i used to.
    I was all fired up and ready to post a couple of weeks ago when the e-sky was falling in here, but a couple of wins an normalcy returns.
     
  20. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Nice to have another voice of sanity to counter the Vine and cheese crowd! Best wishes with the new company, remember your buddies here when you buy out Bob Kraft! :cool:
     

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