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The "pass-rushing OLB" myth

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Patspsycho, Apr 30, 2011.

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  1. eom

    eom Rookie

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    yeah, that's basically derrick burgess -- a 4-3 end.
    there's no reason they can't sign another.

    edit: and this is why I get sick of this crap about drafting an olb for PASSSSS RUUUUUSSSHHH!!!!!!!!!OMG!!!!!!!!!

    the guy's got to be big enough to seal the edge and not get run over, and he's got to be able to drop back into pass coverage -- this is not pittsburgh.
    the 4-3 end in sub is for rushing.

    converting from 4-3 college end to belichick's 3-4 olb is not anything that comes naturally to most players.
    Last edited: May 2, 2011
  2. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp Rookie

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    I'm confused. If it's easy to scheme to take out elite pass rushers (by sliding protection, etc.), how come elite pass rushers still end up with so many sacks and pressures?

    While the offense is scheming to take away your best pass rusher, you're scheming to find ways to free him up. Assuming both coaches are relatively equal scheme-designers, the elite pass rushers get their sacks and pressures because, you know, they're *great* at what they do.

    Sign me up for adding guys that are great at what they do.
  3. jukes

    jukes Rookie

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    If you can only rush the passer what good are you? If he's playing for me he's going to have to be doing alot more than rushing the passer to get on the field for me.

    Look at Rob he may not be the best hair on fire type of guy, but he does alot of things well and can also drop back and cover. I think we shouldnt give up on cunningham after 1 rookie year
  4. patsfaninpittsburgh

    patsfaninpittsburgh Banned

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    You miss the point.

    Who cares if you hammer 10 sacks against Carolina. What can you do against elite offenses?

    Did you watch the Super Bowl? Our Nov 2010 game in Pittsburgh?

    Elite pass rushers are useless against elite offenses.

    From my perspective, I would like to mimic the Giants and have four Dline that can bring pressure. Why people seem to think the Super Bowl translates into a OLB pass rush specialist is bizarre.

    However, pass rusher is a mental disease.
  5. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp Rookie

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    In the 2011 Super Bowl there were three "elite" pass rushers: Clay Matthews, James Harrison, and LaMarr Woodley. Among the three of them they got 2 sacks and 5 QB hits. I wouldn't say they were "useless".

    I agree with you that we don't necessarily need an OLB pass-rushing specialist. I was simply responding to the point that it's easy to take away a pass-rushing stud. It's not. You have to devote a lot of resources and adjust your game plan to take a guy like that out of the game. And when you do that, you have fewer resources available to block other guys.
  6. patsfaninpittsburgh

    patsfaninpittsburgh Banned

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    Did you watch the game?

    Yeah, it was kinda useless.

    The only time the Steelers "stopped" the Packers was when Packer receivers dropped passes. Eliminate unforced errors and the Packers score everytime.

    Again, everybody on this site can most likely agree that we want OLB's that rush the QB. Where the disconnenct comes in the importance of that pass rushing OLB against offenses and elite offenses.

    Add to this the differing concept of "pass rush" vs "pass rusher" and the concept is simple.

    Clay Matthews has more untouched sacks than anyone. Why? he's a great player complimenting a great secondary.

    I would also recommend reviewing the Steelers defense against great offenses or how they play without Polamalu. it's simply amazing that people are shocked at how poorly they played against the Packers or us or against New Orleans....

    Finally, if our defense was filled with only veteran players, I would support the pass rushers are desperately needed. With young players, that case is academic. We may or may not but I will trust the coach on this evaluation.

    I would also highly respect the opinion that we need more pressure guys based on the injuries to Wright, Pryor, and T Warren. The pressure problem in the playoffs was the result of having guys not on the field.

    That's different than saying there a no guys on the roster.
  7. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp Rookie

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    Yes, I watched the game. Pittsburgh didn't get to Rodgers a ton, and GB's offense is tough to stop under any circumstances. But the sack that Harrison got was important (Woodley's didn't turn out to be as relevant).

    Harrison's sack came with about 10 minute left in the 3rd quarter, with GB leading 21-17. The Steelers had cut a 21-3 deficit down to 21-17, and GB had 3rd and 7 at their own 21. Harrison dropped Rodgers for a 6 yard sack, and the ensuing punt gave Pittsburgh the ball at their own 40, with a ton of momentum. (They would drive down to GB's 29 before a missed FG ended the drive)

    That sack could have put the Steelers in position to take the lead in the game. It was a huge play at the time.

    I don't care if who gets sacks; I do care that the Pats get sacks (or at least a lot of pressure on the QB). The Pats were pretty good in the 2nd half of the year last year with sacks, even without a stud pass rusher.

    But I just don't get the argument that somehow it's not better to have a stud pass rusher.......
  8. eom

    eom Rookie

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    Nobody is making the case that we actively don't want a pass rusher- -- many ARE telling you that the olb on our team has other jobs to do besides collect sack stats, that not BAL of the guys you drool over would do well on the pats, that a lot of thai is scheme and philosophy related, and that the team has many more jobs to fill than simply OMGPAAAASSSSSRUUUUUSHEEEERRRRRRR
  9. patsfaninpittsburgh

    patsfaninpittsburgh Banned

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    That sack was a big play......because of all the drops earlier in the game.

    You seem to agree with coach.

    It's belief in resource allocation.

    If our coach says "You cannot have too many good CB's", it should be no suprise that he used very valuable and scarce high draft picks on CB's.

    That's different than using the same valuable resources to trade up for a "pass rusher".

    Based on past history and his commentary, I see us going to a second to none secondary with big Dline guys and flexible linebackers.

    That's different than having a gaggle of guys who pin their ears back and rush.

    Based on football the past decade, I agree that you can never have too many good CB's.

    Why

    Dallas has the stud pass rusher in Ware. Didn't seem to matter.
    Pittsburgh's defense is below average without Polamalu
    Freeney/Mathis didn't really help against New Orleans. Saints secondary was big.
    2010 Jets in playoffs
    The biggest bust rate is these pass rush specialists. Vernon, Aaron, Larry, Jerry, Anthony, Robert,..........


    I would love to have the option where we could get pressure with four guys. My interpretation is you can have four functional guys to do that. As such, I consider it more scheme related than "stud" related.

    Also, I don't agree with the idea we need to draft pass rushers with so many young guys.

    That's like saying you need to plow the field in July because you haven't seen any corn yet. If you want to plow because of factual evidence of blight or infestation, that's different. However, I have yet to see any satisfactory evidence our young guys will not develop.
  10. eom

    eom Rookie

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    And if there's one thing we can BAL relate to it's a farming analogy
    I've always said that guys in the locker room with a bad attitude are like boll weevils eating your crops away from the inside
  11. ivanvamp

    ivanvamp Rookie

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    I agree with that last statement. I'm not torn up over not drafting an OLB/DE. I just want the Pats to get better in every possible phase of the game. Including pass rush.

    Again, though, I don't understand why it's not a really good thing to have a stud pass-rusher. If they're not that important, if they're easily schemed for and it's easy to render them irrelevant, try to find out how much it would cost the Patriots to acquire Demarcus Ware from the Cowboys. I suggested back in the winter that the Pats should seek out a Mankins/Meriweather for Ware trade and got laughed off this board.

    Fair enough.

    But why is a trade whereby we give an all-pro OL in his prime and a 2-time pro-bowl safety not even yet in his prime years for one defensive player, at a spot that you think could easily be rendered irrelevant by good offenses, be a laughable proposition?

    Answer: It's laughable because almost everyone in the NFL would prefer to have that dominant pass rusher. It really is valuable.
  12. Patspsycho

    Patspsycho Rookie

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    It doesn't hurt, but it's also not the second coming.

    Not even the best pass-rusher can get to the QB if he decides to release on a quick pass such as an inside slant which is what happened on the 2nd TD against us, in the playoff game against the Jets.

    The 3rd down conversion rate was horrible, not because of our lack of pass-rushers, but because assignments in the backfield got screwed up, be it biting too hard on the QB (fake pump or reading his eyes), losing zone handoff, or just losing their man in general or late help over the top. A lot of the routes were double-moves which took advantage of the inexperience of the defense.
  13. patsfaninpittsburgh

    patsfaninpittsburgh Banned

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    to further add to psycho

    is recent draft history......

    Vernon Gholston
    Aaron Maybin
    Robert Ayers
    Larry English
    Everette Brown
    Anthony Spencer
    Graham in Philly
    Jerry Hughes

    All are high pick pass rush busts. It's simply amazing how pass rushers draftees become busts. Why? I don't know but if the coach isn't sold, I have zero problem passing.
  14. eom

    eom Rookie

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    I'll bet all those guys are available, too --- just imagine our 371T3 P4$$ RV$$$$$HHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!1111111
  15. AndyJohnson

    AndyJohnson PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    One nitpick. He does not just seal the edge he ALSO has responsibility for the off tackle gap. That increase the difficulty level exponentially. Just not getting turned inside is nothing compared to playing both sides of the blocker.

    And, in THAT role, they aren't really 'playmakers' they just do their job like everyone else.

    And this is their 'playmaker' role.
    Another nitpick, some do play a LB position in sub and drop into coverage.

    [qote]In an ideal world, you can get a Vrabel-type that can serve both roles. Even Vrabel eventually couldn't manage the sub role and was moved out (even though his play in the base was still above average). It would take an extraordinary player (not just an athlete) to be able to come in out of college and contribute as a base 3-4 OLB for the Pats. To his credit, Cunningham did a fine job last year.[/quote]
    Even more than that, it is as difficult or more difficult than any evaluation that must be made to take a college 43 DE, and assess his ability to make that transition because the skillset you described in the base are things you will see on film just about zero times.

    Agree here, however, since first, 3rd down is dictated by 1st and 2nd, its hard to spend a high pick on a guy who only plays in the sub.
    We had something like 200 3rd downs last year.
    I suspect that one of the reasons we play sub so much is that we have versatile LBs who allow us to play a pass D formation without getting it run down our throat.

    Agree with the exception of (B) value. Value is not only dependant on that player but what else is available. In other words, when we drafted Vereen, there may have been players that were 'selectable' at OLB with that spot and would have had value, but not as much value as Vereen.


    If you take a step back and survey the needs, espcially factoring in the developing players we have recently drafted, IMO, a few things jump right out.

    Once you get past, say the top 70-100 or so, there are very few positions where there was a guy who would likely be better than what we already have.

    We had urgent need at T and RB because we lost players. Light must be considered gone when planning 2011, BJGE close to it, because he is restricted and who knows what kind of offer he could get.
    G is right behind, but we had the 'luxury' of using 3 starters last year so Neal retiring left less of a hole.
    OLB is the position that says need, not based upon giong backward from last year, but because of quality.
    Corner was an overall weakness last year, especially depth.

    We have a young defense and an experienced offense.
    It wold make sense that the offensive needs were focussed on with the draft, and the defensive in free agency, starting already with Stroud added to the DE spot to shore it up.

    So, yes I expect OLB, or at least the sub package DE part of the job to be a FA focus.


    Because our system is unique (even though more teams play 34, the 2gap nature is unique) the roles played by DE/OLB players are very different. Some players (Johnson) will certainly struggle to get as many sacks in our system because we do not preach turn it loose and rush, while others (Lawson) would be a better pass rusher in our system by getting more opportuinities to rush. The sack stats alone are fools gold in trying to project a player from another team into our system.
    Overall, the question I have asked the Chicken Littles (and still have no response) is given all I said above, if we signed a starting OLB and G in free agency what is there to complain about?
    If I can see it from here, I imagine BB didn't miss it.
  16. patsoxfan

    patsoxfan Rookie

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    How many times did we pressure Snatchez in the playoffs?
  17. eom

    eom Rookie

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    All those sack numbers are entirely pointless.

    People just keep cherry picking whatever number they find to Support their pov- -- small sample size stats are useless.
    nobody ever talks about hits or pressures.

    I think some guy broke sacks down between first and last 8 games- --- in game 9 they had 5 sacks against that sorry pitt line with Ben holding the ball all day- --- I guess they drank some vitamin water that week.

    Then they get another 5 sacks vs GB with the back up QB- ---- those 2 games accounted for nearly half their much improved second half total of 23, or whatever it was.
  18. Sciz

    Sciz PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Wright was out
    TWarren was out
    Bodden was out
    Brace was out
    Pryor was limited
    Cunningham was limited
    Deaderick was just unsuspended
    Ninkovich left the game due to injury

    And the pass rush still wasn't one of the top-3 concerns in that game.
  19. robertweathers

    robertweathers Rookie

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    Really?

    Sanchez: 25 passing attempts, 3 TD passes, 64% comp, 127 rating, 5-7 passing on 3rd down w/ 4 1st downs made.

    Pats defense: 0 sacks. 0 hurries. 28 points allowed.
  20. Sciz

    Sciz PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    If Brady didn't throw that pick or Chung didn't fumble the fake punt, then none of that matters. The pass rush didn't lose that game. Multiple uncharacteristic mistakes did.
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