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Early thoughts: 3-4 Against Pittsburgh?

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Ice_Ice_Brady, Oct 17, 2011.

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  1. Ice_Ice_Brady

    Ice_Ice_Brady In the Starting Line-Up

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    This is one of the few games where you're hoping for the Patriots defense of old to show up; not the Patriots of their Super Bowl years, but rather, the Patriots defense from '05 to last year. The Pats have really been able to confuse and shut down Roethlisberger.

    Although the Pats offense has had success against the Steelers, it's really been the defense that has dominated, allowing the offense to keep on rolling.

    Roethliberger's stats have been decent, but in the games from '05, '07, and '10, the Pats have made him their female dog. Even in '09, they had BR in check until the second half.

    So, should the Patriots play the majority of their snaps in 3-4, similar to what's worked so well in the recent past?
     
  2. BradyManny

    BradyManny Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    I'm less concerned with the 34 vs 43 as I am the personnel - and the general philosophy on D. BB is letting guys like Spikes, Haynesworth, Carter & Wilfork go into attack mode - and it paid huge dividends yesterday. I think whether they are 34 or 43, and sometimes its just semantics if we're talking about whether that 4th DL has his hand in the dirt or not - I think they can confuse Roethlisberger.

    The thing with Big Ben is he's more dangerous out of the pocket, so we might see a more conservative approach coming out of the bye. Keep him in the pocket and force him to make a mistake - which he will.
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2011
  3. D-Money

    D-Money In the Starting Line-Up

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    I am sure they remember the game from last year.The steelers offensive line is ok not great.Gotta get pressure on Ben.
     
  4. PATRIOTSFANINPA

    PATRIOTSFANINPA Pro Bowl Player

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    If the Pats defense is improving,I don't see why you would revert back to something else.

    If it ain't broken these days,don't try and fix it,continuity is always the best way to go.

    Besides,Pittsburgh is a shell of a team it was last year and years before,They are struggling and almost got beat by perhaps the worst team in the league in Jax yesterday,Thier offensive line is close to the Jets OL,maybe worse.

    Not to mention thier best player Harrison is out for awhile and Polamalu may miss a game or two due to a concussion.

    I really don't think we need any major adjusting on offense or defense to beat the Steelers,Brady has mastered his game against them before.
     
  5. Deus Irae

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

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    Anderson/Wilfork/Haynesworth/Carter



    Let's see the Steelers O-line trying to stop that front four + some blitzers.
     
  6. NinjaZX6R

    NinjaZX6R In the Starting Line-Up

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    Let's hope Guyton has another amazing game vs the Steelers.
     
  7. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    That's my take too. Despite Ben's mobility and the fact that he's attempted a relatively small number of passes, he's been sacked 18 times in 6 games. That OL is vulnerable.
     
  8. PATRIOTSFANINPA

    PATRIOTSFANINPA Pro Bowl Player

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    My stepson is a HUGE Sh!tsburgh fan and he hates Mendenhall,he wants them to keep Redman as starter and Mendenhall cut
     
  9. Urgent

    Urgent In the Starting Line-Up

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    So the question is: what is continuity?

    A look at the actual defense from Sunday shows the following, per Reiss:

    146 snaps for DT - or 2.0 per play
    119 snaps for DE - or 1.6 per play
    216 snaps for LB - or 2.9 per play
    148 snaps for S - or 2.0 per play
    187 snaps for CB - or 2.5 per play

    To summarize:
    DL - 3.6
    LB - 2.9
    DB - 4.5

    So, the Pats played about half the game with a 4-man front and about half the game in a 3-3-5 nickel.

    Now what's interesting is that Belichick had said they opened in a 4-3 because they usually play a 4-man front on passing/sub downs, and given the shortened off-season, only wanted to install a single defense over the summer. 4-man front on sub, which is like 50%, and a 3-man base was the approach the last 10 years or so.

    But what we saw yesterday was a 3-down lineman front on almost half the plays. Ninkovich normally stood up on the right side in a LB role. Spikes or Guyton occasionally stood up over the center, and usually dropped again in a LB role.

    Carter was often down on the right, with Ninkovich to his right. Warren or Wilfork (or occasionally Ellis) could act like a 3-4 LDE on the other side of Love.

    Interesting. It looked like Belichick was incorporating a lot more 3-4 into the system than the prior games. I wouldn't be surprised to see more of it against Pittsburgh.
     
  10. NinjaZX6R

    NinjaZX6R In the Starting Line-Up

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    You are correct. I did see a few 34 looks. Sometimes the D line shifted and Carter placed his hands on the ground. Sometimes it was a pure 34 look.
     
  11. VJCPatriot

    VJCPatriot Pro Bowl Player

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    Actually, there have been years during the Dynasty, that the Pats played more of a 4-3 front than 3-4. It really depends on the personnel they have available. The Pats have played more 4-3 looks this season and nickel because of situations and personnel.

    BB will use whatever is more effective. Consider that if we goto the 3-4, that would take Andre Carter, our best passrusher off the field. Therefore I think we're still going to see more 4-3 looks from the D. But I wont be surprised if we switch it up a few times in the game just to try to confuse Big Ben. Dowling's return, if he makes it back in time will help boost our secondary even more.

     
  12. patchick

    patchick Moderatrix Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Hey, something a Steelers fan and I have in common! :) IMO Mendenhall is just a poor man's Green-Ellis, I've never understood the hype.
     
  13. Urgent

    Urgent In the Starting Line-Up

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    Well, they seemed to use a lot of 3-4 base yesterday, and Carter was on for 68 of 74 snaps. If the Pats used a three-man front 40% of the time, and Carter was on 92% of the time, they are not removing Carter for the 3-4.

    In fact, he was lined up multiple times as RDE with two other down linemen and Ninkovich to his right.

    So it seems they can switch between 4-3 and 3-4 while keeping Carter at DE.

    Anderson, however, played a lot less given this approach.
     
  14. VJCPatriot

    VJCPatriot Pro Bowl Player

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    Interesting, thanks for the update! Hmm, Carter at RDE in the 3-4. Pretty crazy thought, but as long as it works!! Who were our 4 backers then? I'd think Ninkovich, Spikes, Guyton, and ... ?
     
  15. Sciz

    Sciz PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    3-4 vs 4-3 is irrelevant. But blitzing is important, as is attacking as opposed to 2-gapping. It's a great time to pull out those blitzes Mayo was doing all preseason and for Spikes to keep doing what he was doing yesterday.
     
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