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Should Pats Be Using Dont'a Hightower More As A Pass Rusher?

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by manxman2601, Feb 19, 2013.

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  1. manxman2601

    manxman2601 Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    #24 Jersey

    The numbers say he's pretty good at it.



    Von Miller: 86 total pressures on 436 pass rush attempts or a pressure every 5.06 pass rush attempts.

    Dont'a Hightower: 14 pressures on 65 attempts or a pressure every 4.6 attempts.


    Giving Hightower the same number of attempts as Von Miller would give him 93 pressures and 20 sacks for the season.


    Now I'm not saying that Hightower could ever be a better pass rusher than Von Miller and he clearly benefits from a small sample size but I do believe he's a better pass rusher than people think. He's got a very powerful Bull rush and has surprising closing speed when he blitzes.

    We absolutely need to get more pressure on the QB but I believe that rather than signing Freeney or drafting a rusher, we should look to see what we already have in house in Hightower.
     
  2. Marqui

    Marqui In the Starting Line-Up

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    Blitzing from the LB spot and rushing as a DE are 2 completely different things. Hightower is a very good blitzer but he's not a great pass rushing DE.
     
  3. signbabybrady

    signbabybrady Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Simple answer: Yes

    We need to start generating pass rush from everywhere in the front seven.

    I dont think he should ever be attacking at the rate of Miller for two reasons different scheme and different position.

    I think given that we had 2 big contributors in the front 7 as rookies probably limited some of the things they were willing to dial up.

    But Give both Hightower and Jones this offseason to get their bodies right for their roles and to continue to learn and there is no reason not to think that these guys will be better and get to the QB more next season.

    This is one of the reasons I would be OK with using most of the cap on retaining Talib and the others as this team can bank on vast improvement based on the number of key first, second, and third year players on this team that retention and continued continuity are more important than trying to plug a few holes.
     
  4. SwedishPat

    SwedishPat Banned

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    I would like to see how he does with some bull rushing up the middle. Right now we need more pressure up the middle, and if Hightower could use his strength there then that would be good. The problem right now though is that we are a bit short on coverage linebackers, if you rush Hightower then you need to trust Spikes even more in coverage and that is not perfect.
     
  5. manxman2601

    manxman2601 Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    I actually think Hightower would be an improvement on Ninkovich or Cunningham or Scott in the sub package. But even as a blitzer, we should be blitzing him more often.
     
  6. patsfan-1982

    patsfan-1982 In the Starting Line-Up

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    like others have said he's not a true pass rusher he's a good blitzer and he's pretty good in coverage...Hightower is what BB hoped he was geting when he sighed AD a few years ago a all around LB that is not great at one thing but pretty good at everything
     
  7. patsfaninpa

    patsfaninpa In the Starting Line-Up

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    He's not very good in coverage. In fact, he's a much better pass rusher than coverage linebacker. He doesn't play well in space. He's outstanding at the LOS and point of attack. I feel he's ideally suited for LDE. He's about 270lb. He ran mid 4.6 when he cut weight for the combine and doesn't play that fast.
     
  8. BradyManny

    BradyManny Pro Bowl Player

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    Yes, I thought so all year. He's effective as a pass rusher, including - but not limited to - blitzes.

    I'd like to see him, Mayo & Spikes all spend more time blitzing.

    Our nickel needs improvement, and it starts at safety (upgrade over Gregory) - but the next step is getting an LB that can cover. You hate to take two of your stud SEC LBs off the field in any situation, so maybe the answer might be using Hightower at DE in pass rush situations more often.
     
  9. signbabybrady

    signbabybrady Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    3/4ths of your DL including both DE spots are pretty well set in stone with Jones, Vince, and Ninko. Who what where do you move someone to put Hightower at DE?

    I am OK if you are suggesting using Hightower occasionally at DE to spell Jones and Ninko and/or as a gimmick shifting one and/or the other into DT for a play here there.

    But I think mixing in more traditional zone blitzes with Ninko and Jones dropping into coverage and the LBs blitzing should be something we do alot more as we have the athletic ends to play in space a little we should be playing off that.
     
  10. Sciz

    Sciz PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    He should rush move, but I don't think he's the kind of guy who can line up at DE and repeatedly beat an OT.
     
  11. patsfan-1982

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    that maybe the case and im sure BB will play him full time at LDE if he sees it that way but IMO i dont see him becomeing a star at any one position but being more of BB's all around guy that will line up all over the field
     
  12. Marqui

    Marqui In the Starting Line-Up

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    I'm sure Belichick would love to blitz more. But he has to have a good secondary to do it.
     
  13. Brady6

    Brady6 Pro Bowl Player

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    Should We Be Using Hightower More As A Pass Rusher?

    He did well in college..
     
  14. patsfan-1982

    patsfan-1982 In the Starting Line-Up

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    i agree and i also think the pats need a consistent pass rush up the middle geting in the QB's face a better pass rushing DT and more timed blitz up the middle
     
  15. Brady6

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    Should We Be Using Hightower More As A Pass Rusher?

    In a perfect world Hightower would develop this offseason and spend more time on the left side as a DE or rush linebacker in sub packages similar to Von Miller or to a lesser degree Aaron Brooks. Makes sense for us to find a way to keep Mayo, Spikes, Hightower, Jones and Wilfork all on the field as much as possible.
     
  16. manxman2601

    manxman2601 Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    We haven't got anyone "who can line up at DE and repeatedly beat an OT" mores the pity except Chandler Jones on a good day.
     
  17. Get it shawtaay

    Get it shawtaay Third String But Playing on Special Teams

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    Is that you Jon Gruden?
     
  18. SeymourTrophies

    SeymourTrophies Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

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    The difference between Chander Jones the All-Pro and Chandler Jones the average bear will be how he learns to handle getting put into a headlock 90% of the time he beats his man.

    I'm not saying we should have re-signed Mark Anderson, because we shouldn't have for that money, but we sorely missed a pass rush specialist this year. A smaller guy whose only business was rushing on passing downs because our front seven is a tad beefy.
     
  19. Badluck

    Badluck On the Game Day Roster

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    yes

    pretty much agree with what most said here

    he showed the ability at bama and think he should be moved around more taking on mismatches while (hopefully) teams are focused on chandler jones
     
  20. BradyManny

    BradyManny Pro Bowl Player

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    Right - I wouldn't put Hightower in at end in the base, obviously. Just in the nickel situationally -spell Ninko/Jones or move Jones inside as pass rusher next to Vince.

    Frankly, Jones' best rush moves are power, and a big hole on the defense is in our interior rush. He's bigger, faster and stronger than Cunningham who we used as an interior rush DT this season. I have to wonder if Ninko-Vince-Jones-Hightower + Mayo-Spikes + 5Bs is the best way to get our best 11 player out there on D in our nickel. And if we draft a capable coverage LB, swap Spikes for him. You can drop Hightower from there, or Ninko, rush Mayo/Spikes, or blitz a DB. You have a lot of versatility there.

    This might require Jones putting on some muscle. I'm surprised he's still listed at 260. Thought he was bigger than that as the year went on.

    Either way, I agree with your conclusion that we should be blitzing and dropping our ends more. We didn't tap into the versatility of our front 7 completely last season.
     
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