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Will BB attempt to fix the pass rush?

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by R_T26, Jan 25, 2010.

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  1. R_T26

    R_T26 Banned

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    Seems like the lasy few years we wonder when were going to get a passrusher here.
    We look at all the draft prospects and wonder which one they will pick, but they never do.

    We hope they get one in free agency, which they did in 2007, signing AD coming off back to back double digit sack seasons. But instead of seeing him come off the edge he was turned into an ILB who stays in coverage. The one game he was let loose as a Patriot was the Super Bowl. Where he was the best pats player on the field (sans Welker). Yet 2008 was more of the same (remember what he did to favre week 2).

    Last offseason Vrabel is traded, and we were all on here saying BB is up to something and has a plan. Then FA went by (dont say BB signed Tully as the passrush fix), draft went by, abd most of training camp went by....and the answer
    to the passrush was trading a 3rd and 5th for a 31 year old whose sacks have steadily declined.
    Then turn around a week later and trade your best passrusher on the defensive line.
    So do you guys think BB will make passrush a priority this offseason?
    Or will we be here in august talking up woods and crable again.
  2. The Dynasty

    The Dynasty Rookie

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    I dont think this is even a question...

    It was quite obvious the biggest piece missing on this years team was the lack of a pass rush. BB and staff cannot and will not ignore this. It will definitely be addressed probably from the draft rather than from FA
  3. mayoclinic

    mayoclinic PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    BB is nothing if not a pragmatist. I think he understands that the lack of defensive pressure won't cut it, and that the only way to slow down offenses like Indy and New Orleans in today's NFL with it's passer-friendly rules is to get pressure on the QB.

    I think last offseason the priority was to upgrade the talent in the secondary. This has been done adequately, assuming we can keep Leigh Bodden. But no secondary can stop Brees, Rivers and Manning if they have all day to throw. The defensive priority this offseason has got to be the pass rush. And I expect BB to attack it with a vengeance.
  4. Patspsycho

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    Exactly.

    And don't bank on our savior being an OLB 3-4. That position is overrated as a pass-rusher. It might well be a monster DL.

    I am watching Pats vs. Colts on NFLN right now and the one thing that keeps striking me is how little pressure they put on Manning. I am now wondering how we lost by just one point.
  5. celticboy04

    celticboy04 Rookie

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    Greetings,
    Might have to live with that being a possibility.
    Shalom,
    Celticboy04
  6. patsfan-1982

    patsfan-1982 Rookie

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    i say yes but like psycho said i don't think it will be OLB im looking for a big upgrade at D line BB is to picky with he's LB's no way a rookies comes in here and makes a impact at OLB in this system. but it would be nice to see him take one of the many good looking OLB in the first or 2th round
  7. GoWhalers

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    I always took BB's basic philosophy to be as follows:

    Step 1) Stop the run. Force them into known passing downs. Get the ball back into your offense's hands.

    Step 2) When the offense has the ball, execute and score. Remember how effective the Patriots used to be on the first drive of the game? There was a crazy stat about how they scored TD or FG on like 95% of their first drives.

    Step 3) Once the other team is playing from behind and is one-dimensional, then you let loose with the pass rush.

    Clearly we never got to step 3 against a quality opponent. The Pats struggled alternately between steps 1 and 2. Sometimes they would get good stops, only to have the offense go 3 and out. Sometimes they would be scoring effectively, but then the defense would be sloppy.

    I don't think a BB-orchestrated pass rush is going to be highly visible unless the opponent is playing to the pace dictated by the Patriots. If the opponent is dictating tempo of the game, BB is going to spend his scheming trying to restore control at the line of scrimmage, not sending exotic blitzes.
  8. celticboy04

    celticboy04 Rookie

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    Greetings,
    Agreed. I think the other end position is a bigger need than OLB. Now I am not saying we don't need an uprgade there, I don't think singing one dominant OLB is going to be the biggest solution to the pass rush issues. Especially when you have a guy like Jarvis Green gets dominated by runningbacks when they block him. BTW isn't Guyton's natural position OLB?
    Shalom,
    Celticboy04
  9. jmt57

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    I don't know if Belichick completely ignored the pass rush last offseason; I think certain things didn't work out. For example we the Pats made a serious attempt to sign Jason Taylor, and while we don't know for sure, I'm guessing there were negotiations for Julius Peppers as well. Probably a few others that we'll never know about that the Pats made a run at too that would have been welcome additions. Unfortunately the Pats weren't in all that great of a cap position for free agency last year.

    Hopefully MacKenzie is fully recovered. If so I'll be curious to see how he'll be used. I recall reading that he was projected to play ILB and Guyton would be the backup, even though he was an OLB in college. I wonder if he is healthy if the Pats would move him back to the outside - or leave him inside with Guyton and make Mayo an OLB.

    As for Crable, I don't think anybody's expecting anything from him. If the team gets some production then great, that's a bonus. But realistically, how much faith do you put in someone making the team that has been out of football for two years with injuries?
  10. RyanP421

    RyanP421 Banned

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    Excellent post...Agreed 100%
  11. convertedpatsfan

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    #12 Jersey

    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    Obviously Burgess didn't play up to expectations, but let's not forget those expectations. The majority of this board was thrilled with the acquisition, and some even declared him the final piece. This isn't meant to mock those predictions, but to show that this acquisition wasn't just a free agent value signing; it was a big-time move.

    It didn't work out the way everyone hoped, but I'd like to see Burgess back at a reasonable rate. He was useless the first 10 games or so, but really started coming on as the season was ending. Maybe he had fresh legs from not doing anything the first 2/3 of the season :) But maybe he was finally getting a hang of the system, and his improved play was part of that. Even Albert Haynesworth, last season's huge FA signing, struggled in a new system in his first season.

    We definitely need to improve the pass rush, and I think we will, though this defense isn't designed to get a guy 15 or 17 sacks. It's not like in Minnesota where Jared Allen can take whatever route he wants to the QB and doesn't have to worry about any other responsibilities. Our guys have 2-gap responsibilities, and even with a switch to a 1-gap system, I doubt we'd ever let someone do whatever they want like Allen.
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2010
  12. mayoclinic

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    That's part of why I see us drafting the bigger DE/OLB guys like Carlos Dunlap, Jason Pierre-Paul, Everson Griffen or Austen Lane, compared with the smaller guys like Ricky Sapp and Sergio Kindle. The first set of guys can be used at DE right away while they're learning the intricacies of 2 gap 3-4 OLB.
  13. chevss454

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    A common denominator in the 4 teams in the CCG's is an aggressive defense that attempts to disrupt the passing game. The Vikings, the Colts, the Jets and even NO were aggressively attacking the qb. To keep up, it seems the Pats have to develop an effective pass rush whether by scheme (NO and Jets) or by personnel (Vikings Jared Allen; Colts Mathis and Freeney). A change to a 1-gap in the 4/3 would be required for the later.
    Could that be done with the addition of a Dunlap, JPP, etc.?
  14. Deus Irae

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    Given that the team had the Colts beaten this season, on the road, until a foolish 4th down decision was made, and that was with a depleted defensive line, why would you expect Belichick to learn this "lack of defensive pressure" argument when it's not really an accurate claim?
  15. patsfaninpittsburgh

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    This is the smartest post we have had in a long, long time and perfectly sums up the season.

    It's amazing the hysteria this site displays toward a pass rush. Most elite QB's don't get blitzed because elite QB's eat up the blitz.
  16. Nunchucks

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    I think the main problem the patriots have is that they can't get tot he QB, teams know this and most will just abandon the run and throw the ball 50 times a game.

    Sure, number 1 priority is to stop the run, but there are two ways to get a team to stop running the ball. The best way and the way we've seen the Patriots use the most is to score and put pressure on the opposing team to pass the ball.

    The problem is tha once the Patriots do that, the other team starts passing the ball and the Patriots cannot get any pressure. hence, the Pats losing so many games in the second half when the other team opens up their playbook.
  17. cavtroop

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    This is what I've been mulling about in my head. It used to be conventional wisdom said stop the run, you can win the game. I think the game has changed too much in the last 6-10 years though, and the run is becoming more of an afterthought, with all the rules in place to help the offenses.
  18. Sicilian

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    I'm in the camp that thinks they tried to address the pass rush this year, but several things contributed to it not working out:

    1) The loss of Seymour greatly weakened our d-line, which gives the linebackers fewer free looks to the QB. I still agree with the trade, but it's effect on this year is undeniable IMO.

    2) Adalius Thomas was just not very good. Even last year he was leading the team in sacks I think before his injury. Whether he never fully recovered from that, or got old fast, or just lost interest, or whatever the problem was, he SHOULD have been our best OLB, and just wasn't even close.

    3) Mayo's injury. Sure, he was only out for a handful of games, but I don't think he was 100% all season (or at least not until late). Besides limiting a threat of pass rush from the interior, this also probably forced them to be more conservative with their other LBs. Can't overcommit someone like Guyton if you don't think Mayo has the movement to cover two people's ground, for one example.

    4) Burgess wasn't as impactful as we thought he would be, though I think TBC exceeded expectations, so this was really a wash.

    5) Injuries to Crable and McKenzie, while maybe they wouldn't provided much (unproven as they are), they were still two options that were not at our disposal after camp that were in the plans before camp.

    Add to these the attempt to sign Taylor (and possible others), and it was just a snake bitten season for the Pats in regards to the pass rush. Not to give them excuses, because part of success is being able to absorb situations like this and keep plugging (which is why they try to build a roster 1-53 instead of making it top heavy), and this year they just weren't able to do it.
  19. patsfaninpittsburgh

    patsfaninpittsburgh Banned

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    Wow

    I am agreeing with Dues.

    Did anybody bother to watch the Colts game? If so what's up with projecting the preconceived fantasies on that game?

    There was around 3 minutes to go, the Pats are up by 13 with the defense limiting Goober to 7 points and two picks in the second half.

    The Colts throw deep, Butler makes a great play, gets flagged for a mysterious PI, Colts score from the 11 yard line.

    4th and two happens and they score from the 28 yard line.

    How did the "blitz happy" defenses work for the Giants and Steelers this year?
  20. mayoclinic

    mayoclinic PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    Because it is an accurate claim.

    Up in the 4th quarter, stupid PI call on Butler, bad playcalling, all of that doesn't negate the fact that our defense got no pass rush on Manning, and he carved us up in the 4th quarter. We got no pressure on Drew Brees 2 weeks later in New Orleans, and the game was essentially over by halftime. We got no pressure on Chad Henne, and he torched us, for Crissakes.

    Getting effective defensive pressure does not equate to running a blitz-happy, gambling offense, either. But if you think we got effective pressure this year, you need your eyes/head examined.
  21. mgteich

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    You will have continue to have many supporters who will blame the lack of a pass-rusher ro two for the failures in 2009. And you will ahve support in the lust to have our defense look like that of other teams.

    You might review your own posts throughout the season. We have a young defense. It is not as good as some from other teams. We do not need to have to have the best defense in the league to be in the Super Bowl.

    You have discussed wanting playmakers like Spiller and McClain or Dansby. You look for a McGinist replacement, as if there are lots of those out there.

    ========================================================
    Of course, the front seven needs to put more pressure on the defense. However, the need on a Belichick defense is not a "premier" pass rusher. The need is to improve pressure from the 3-4 DE. Wright is a HUGE downgrade from Seymour. And, yes we do indeed need better play from the ILB position.
    ======================================
    In the 3-4, defense starts in the middle, not in the outside flashy, risky "pass rush".
    ===============================================================
    MY BOTTOM LINE
    1) I agree with your position that we need improvement at ILB. Belichick drafted MacKenzie for that purpose. He can try again and have two possibilities for improvement.
    2) I do think that Belichick will draft a DE.
    3) I have little doubt that what was really needed was for Brady to play as well as Manning and Favre and for our wideouts to play as well as Manning's. Sure, it would have been great for a bunch of kids to become a great defense in this year of transition. The reality is that they did well enough to win.

    We were supposed to have a GREAT offense. What we had waas Moss and Welker and hope for rain (hope that they couldn't be covered). If they were taken out of the game, we were done. The colts would ahve lost to the jets without Garcon and Collie. That was our #1 deficiency.



  22. patsfaninpittsburgh

    patsfaninpittsburgh Banned

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    mayo

    You jumped the shark here, sorry. I love your posts but this is troublesome.

    I would urge you to WATCH the Indy game. The defense didn't get "carved up". With three minutes to go, the defense had given up 7 points and collected 2 picks in the second half. Then.....

    It's PI, TD from the 11 yard line, TD from the 30 yard line.

    Absent the bogus PI call, it's a 13 or 6 point win and the week is filled with "The Pats are back" stories with "Spygate" again the rage.

    Also, what's up with analysis in a vacuum?

    You need to review the Miami game again and then look at what Miami did at home against their other 7 opponents. I might add you need to review the tape of the Jets game.

    (Hint: the Dolphins pretty much took it to everyone in Miami)

    Your obsession with "the blitz" is interesting. Unfortunately, it clouds your ability to accurately and realistically evaluate this season's performance. You need a few things to come to grips with:

    The defense was 5th in scoring. It's just amazing that this site can't get a grip that this stat means something.

    Even "great" defenses will give up points. In today's pass friendly league, you have to keep scoring points (hint, hint ,hint... Jets, Denver, Miami...)

    The Dolphins in Miami are preety instructive. Three of the four teams that played Sunday, had games in South Florida. You need to look at the four games and see how great those "blitzing" defenses did and then try to figure out what the two victories had that the two losses didn't.
  23. mayoclinic

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    I'm not quite sure what you're saying, or what it is you think should be done to make the team better. Making the team better is my only goal - I don't have any agenda to "look" like another team, on either offense or defense. There are some gross characteristics which I may admire (the Saints' tendency to spread the ball around on offense and overwhelm teams with too many playmakers to cover, and to integrate the running and passing attack; the Jets, Ravens and Steelers tendency to be more physical and attacking on defense) but I'm not suggesting that we morph into any one of those teams.

    Here's my take on the defense, to be perfectly clear:

    1. I think the secondary is fine, assuming we re-sign Bodden. No, they're not all world. Yes, they need to continue to develop, as we have many young players. No, they aren't good enough to stop Manning or Brees if we don't get pressure. But we have plenty of talent, depth and playmaking capability in the secondary if we can get some pressure up front to put them in the position to make plays. I expect much more from Chung and Butler in 2010.

    2. I think a 3-4 line of Wright-Wilfork-Warren is adequate, assuming Wilfork stays for 2010. Wright is a huge downgrade from Seymour (when he's actually playing), but just about anyone would be. I think we need at least one developmental DE to replace Jarvis Green, who I doubt we keep. I DO NOT think we need to take a 3-4 DE in the first 4 picks, unless BB thinks one is too good to pass up. I don't see that player in this draft, personally. Possibly Corey Wootten, but I'm not convinced.

    3. I think we need to get stronger up the middle. We could do some of that on the DL by playing a "big" 4-3, or by geatting stronger at ILB. I thought Mayo played out of position and that he needs to revert to the WILL, and that we need a SILB. McKenzie may develop to be that player, but I'm not willing to put all my eggs on a rookie coming off an ACL injury. I believe that being stronger up the middle would help our outside pass rush tremendously, and I believe that many people are too focused on the outside pass rush and not focused enough on improving the defense up the middle.

    4. I am not content with Adalius Thomas, Derrick Burgess, Tully Banta-Cain, Rob Ninkovich, Shawn Crable and Pierre Woods as our outside rushers. I expect several of those guys to be gone, and I think we need an upgrade in talent. I'd like to see a natural strong side and weak side DE/OLB who can contribute at least situationally in 2010, and become a full time starter in 2011. I'm OK with Burgess and Banta-Cain as starters for 2010 because I don't see any guarantee of anything better, though I'm not opposed to bringing in a FA like Merriman or Kampman.

    I am NOT saying that we necessarily abandon the 3-4, or even a 2-gap 3-4 approach. I am not saying that we morph into a flashy blitz-oriented, outside pass rush oriented, speed rushing defense. I AM saying that we need to get stronger up the middle, more athletic on the outside, and more aggressive about generating effective pressure so that our secondary can make plays instead of being ripped apart.

    I would be happy to hear exactly what you think the needs are to improve our defense.

    I'll address the offense in separate post.
  24. mayoclinic

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    I have watched those games, more than once.

    Where did I mention the word "blitz"? I've never said anything about wanting a blitz-happy, gambling defense. I've said I want a more aggressive defense that can generate more effective pressure, from the middle as well as the outside.

    I've defended our defense all season. I've said repeatedly that our offense's inability to convert in the red zone and score 2nd half points cost us games more than our defense. I understand that in today's NFL every defense will give up points.

    But we gave up more 300 yard passing games this season than I can remember ever having done. I'll need to go back and look at the data from previous seasons.

    I believe that our defense has a solid foundation to build on. I've addressed in my previous post from this thread what I think the needs and areas to address are. I've also said elsewhere on this forum that I thought an interior playmaker like Rolando McClain could make a bigger difference to our defense than any pass rusher. But yes, I also think a more effective pass rush (NOT necessarily a blitz approach) is a critical element to our being more successful next season.
  25. patsfaninpittsburgh

    patsfaninpittsburgh Banned

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    Now this is the mayoclinic I admire.

    "Carved up in the 4th quarter" is a little strong for the Indy game.
  26. Deus Irae

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    What's troubling is that you're now playing the "move the goalposts" game. That's not your usual style. I didn't make any claim about what level of pass rush the Patriots got against any team. I pointed out that the Patriots were in position to win the Colts game "as is".

    By the way, is Tampa Bay's defense a formidable pressure defense? It shut down the Saints.

    The Jaguars played the Colts twice this season, making almost no attempt to get to Manning. They lost the two games by a total of 6 points, despite being woefully outclassed, talent-wise. Last year, it was a split of the two games, a 2 point win and a 7 point loss.

    Your claim is not accurate.
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2010
  27. mgteich

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    1. Agreed, although I do want us to bring in free agents to compete for a roster spot. I SUSPECT that our incumbants will win spots, but it seems quite possible that Wilhite or Wheatley could get beaten out, or Springs could get injured again.

    2. I agree that the DL is adequate. In ONE year, we've gone from one of the very best 3-4 defensive lines to ADEQUATE. That is simply not acceptable, given that we wave 2 firsts and a recent #40 pick, and lots of money, tied up in this DL. If we have gone from great to adequate in a year or two, then it seems that we need a 3-4 DE to replace Seymour, especially with Green leaving.

    3. I agree that we need a third ILB, someone to replace Guyton or to compete with him for reps. Mackenzie was Belichick's choice in 2009. Others here wanted various 4th round developmental picks. I would note that most poster focus on the need outside, as they did before the last draft.

    Obviously another DROY inside is what we need, but that is what every team needs. Of course, one can dream about signing all-pros and top 10 rookies who will immediately be stars. But that is the stuff of dreams. I expect Mayo to be back from his injury. I expect us to add a couple of free agents to compete inside. I would be pleasantly surprised with Dansby or McLain.

    4. Yes, we need an OLB to replace Thomas, since he is apparently going to be sent packing. We had the player with the talent. For whatever reason, he will be fired. He needs to be replaced. I have no doubt that a motivated Thomas and Banta-Cain would have been a fine set of passrushers, given an improvement at DE.
    ==========================

    BOTTOM LINE
    A) Our defense is young and improving.
    B) The first key to the 2010 defense is to re-sign or replace Wilfork and Bodden.
    C) The highest priorities are to replace and upgrade Green, Thomas and Seau (the run-stuffing ILB to play next to Mayo). I don't necessarily think that it is necessary for opur DROY to change positions, bu that is OK too. The key is to have another real starting quality ILB. I want that last year, but everyone was very high on Guyton and thought that we had our starter. I was a broken record with regard to drafting Laurinitis.

    Last edited: Jan 26, 2010
  28. Deus Irae

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    New England gave up 4 300 yard passing games this season (Broncos, Colts, Saints, Dolphins: all losses). Last year, it was 2 (Chargers, Dolphins: 1-1 record). In 2007, it was just 1, but A.J. Feeley was the one doing the carving.

    However, the mistake you're making is blaming scheme instead of talent.
  29. mgteich

    mgteich PatsFans.com Veteran PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    With you defending the defense, it doesn't need enemies.

    You have said that the defensive line is adequate, the secondary is fine, the passrush is terrible, and that we need much improvement at ILB asnd OLB.

  30. mayoclinic

    mayoclinic PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Re: Will BB attempt to fix the passrush?

    That seems a bit harsh.

    What do you want, polyanna admiration and blind adoration? The defense has some warts on it. It gave up over 200 yards rushing in our biggest game in almost 2 years; it gave up more 300 yard passing games than in the past 2 years combined; it looked like a deer in the headlights against Drew Brees; and it failed to stop Peyton Manning or Matt Schaub with big 4th quarter leads.

    In spite of which, I believe we had an above-average defense, and a great nucleus for the future. We have the best secondary we've had since 2003-2004, more speed on defense than I've ever seen us have, and a core group of emerging young playmakers. Our defense with all it's flaws would have been adequate for us to be an elite team if our offense had lived up to expectations. And our defense could easily be elite with a couple of key changes/additions.
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