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About conalthomas

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  1. If you only look at outcomes (sacks, points given up, Super Bowls won) you are looking at an aggregation of all kinds of things, including luck. This is potentially a very useful stat. I only say potentially because I don't really know how valid it is at measuring the thing it claims to measure - the rate at which the d-lineman beats the o-lineman - if accurate, it is really useful. AUTiger has the right of it, to my way of thinking, and winning the pass rush battle is only part of what determines the outcome (sacks, QB pressures, etc.). To my way of thinking, the better analogy is a pitcher with a high strikeout rate, but a high ERA due to play in front of a shoddy defense.
  2. I think I tend to agree with most of what you wrote here. I'm not sure if Ryan is just very good, or something more than that, because I've never felt like he's really had the support. Perhaps that means I'm making excuses for him, but I felt like in 2012 we were finally seeing what Ryan was capable of, and then it all sort of fell apart. I definitely agree with the importance of coaching. You cited the example of how the 49ers knew what was coming in the 2013 NFCCG, and the same thing happened with that interception in the 2015 Superbowl. A lot of people criticized Carroll for the pass play in that situation, but I think he explained his reasoning very well, and that it was a good call. The difference was that the Patriots read the play and played it just right. Butler said afterward that they had practiced for that very play, and was able to read and react quickly because he was prepared. That's good coaching (or else the Patriots know what's coming through some other method).
  3. I think this is a fair point.
  4. So, as to Brady elevating those around him, what happened to the Patriots when Brady went down? I'm not saying Brady isn't good, but he also plays in a superb system. I have no problem having Ryan ranked fourth, and I feel like the things said about him in the article were fair, possibly even generous, but the last two years he's been behind a makeshift line and playing on a team that couldn't get the ball back. It's hard to know what he would have accomplished in a different system, with different support. Most quarterbacks take a few years to develop, so the only years Ryan had a decent line, etc. were his first five years in the league. I think he is very, very good. Maybe fourth is about right, maybe a little lower or a tiny bit higher. It would have been interesting to see what Belichick would have done with Matt Ryan.
  5. I won't even pretend to get into an evaluation of available film - not that I'm opposed to people doing so and posting their opinions (in fact, I enjoy seeing what people have to say) - but Quinn is supposed to be an expert on defense, and pass rushers in particular. Even within the rarefied air of the NFL he is supposed to stand out in that regard, so I'm assuming that he knows a lot more about how to evaluate the draft class than I do, and that he is particularly well-suited to fix what is the Falcon's biggest issue. If he isn't, then yes, we are in big trouble.