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Is a 3-4 defense more cost efficient?

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Schmo, Mar 6, 2010.

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  1. Schmo

    Schmo Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    With the Wilfork signing, I thought $8 million/year was a very, very reasonable price, until I saw that it made him the highest paid NOSE tackle in the league. Haynesworth came to mind right away (7 years, $100mil - 14mil/year), but he is a 4-3 DT... and then came the Peppers signing (6 years $91 million - 15 mil/year). Of course, elite 3-4 players are pricey - Ware (7 years, 78 million - 11 mil/year), Kris Jenkins (5 years, 30.5 million - 6 mil/year), Seymour (franchised, so is now considered a 4-3 DE or DT?) but it seems like elite 4-3 players are more coveted and get a better payday than 3-4 players. Is it possible that 3-4 players, though harder to find, end up being easier on a team's salary?

    I only provided a few examples, so anyone with more insight, please correct me. Just thought it may be an interesting way that BB and the Pats distribute money evenly across the whole team.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2010
  2. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Well, there's a report the Redskins intend to use a 3-4 defense, which might create some competition for the highest paid NT.

    As for Vince...last season he played 3-4 NT, 3-4 DE, and 4-3 DT, was a team captain, and is a locker room leader - let's see Albert match that.
     
  3. bigfandan

    bigfandan Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    This is a thoughtful quetion; numbers wise, you are replacing an interior DL man with an interior LB. I would guessed that a star LB costs more than an star interior DL. But everything else are not equal. A 4-3 DE may cost more than a 3-4 DE (see Peppers, Freeney). And 3-4 NT seems to cost more than a 4-3 DT in general.

    Interesting question.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2010
  4. Miguel

    Miguel Patriots Salary Cap Guru PatsFans.com Supporter

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  5. bigfandan

    bigfandan Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    The answer seems to be a yes based on the top 10 list, that is, if you are building an all pro roster, it costs more to go 4-3. If middle level players' comp follows the same pattern, then yes, 3-4 is cheaper.

     
  6. Bring Back Antowain!

    Bring Back Antowain! Practice Squad Player

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    Well I think the 3-4 is more cost efficient along the defensive line because those d-lineman aren't really "skill" guys. They don't pick up sacks and make big plays all that often. Look at Ty Warren for example. He's a premier 3-4 DE. But on the open market, he wouldn't get anything close to these 4-3 ends. He would probably get paid something like a mid-level 4-3 tackle. Along the defensive line, there's no glamour. And that's part of what I love about the 3-4.
     
  7. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    You need to count all seven positions in a 3-4 two gap defense. Pro-bowl OLB's not inexpensive.
     
  8. Schmo

    Schmo Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    Exactly what I was thinking... but the OLB(s?) in a 3-4 are potentially the only glamour positions in that defense. In a 4-3, it seems to me that both DE's, the DT (not nose) and MLB (Urlacher at 8.7 mil, but Ray Lewis at 6.4??????) all come at a significantly higher price than their 3-4 counterparts.

    Is it a question of glamour costing more, or a case of supply/demand (which would mean that, against popular opinion, quality 3-4 players are actually easier to find)?
     
  9. VJCPatriot

    VJCPatriot Pro Bowl Player

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    In the 3-4, you can focus your money on the DL and probably skimp a bit on the linebackers, as long as your linebackers are all competent. Look at TBC, he racked up 10 sacks in our defense. Does anybody REALLY think that he's a passrushing terror? I think the system makes him look better than he is.

    So with a 3-4 defense you don't really need superstar linebackers to make it work as long as your DL are all high quality. And seeing how much 3-4 DL get paid, the 3-4 appears to be the most cost effective defense currently.
     
  10. patsfan-1982

    patsfan-1982 In the Starting Line-Up

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    at one time it was cheaper to run a 3-4 and it was eazier. to put together. a 3-4

    but now that hafl the team in the NFL are runing a 3-4 the price went up and at one time it was harder to find a 4-3 DE then it was to get 3-4 OLB it's kinda the other way around now.
     
  11. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Are you suggesting that our linebackers were effective last year?

     
  12. VJCPatriot

    VJCPatriot Pro Bowl Player

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    I'm saying that you can get away with merely competent linebackers in a 3-4 defense. The 3-4 scheme helped make TBC look better than he is, allowing him to rack up 10 sacks in 2009. Perhaps that has been the reason that BB hasn't prioritized drafting linebackers over the past decade, because he knows that the DL are the true 'beef' in the 3-4 scheme.
     
  13. emoney_33

    emoney_33 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    I don't get your point, the same thing you say about TBC can be said for any 4-3 pass rushing DE.

    I think the DL is always the most important part of a defense.
     
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