DirtyBirdDynasty Posted August 1, 2011 Share Posted August 1, 2011 The defense wasn't where it needed to be in our playoff loss. Are we ready now? Let's take a look.D LINEThe front 4 is the key to the 4-3 D. In the loss vs GB the front 4 couldn't get to the QB and when we blitzed we couldn't cover on the back end. This is a D line composed primarily of young players who are expected to improve.DEAbraham-Our best pass rusher is now 33 years old. The addition of Edwards means he and Biermann can line up as our base ends and Abe can come in exclusively on pass downs prolonging his career and keeping him fresh increasing his effectiveness. Hopefully he'll be around for years to come.Edwards-Our new DE is 6'5 268 26 years old with 5 years of NFL experience and the best is yet to come for him. A strong, athletic DE, he gets as many tackles for loss as he does sacks. He'll step in right away at the LE position he played in MIN and Abe will come in at the RE spot on pass downs to join him. This is a big time addition as DE was clearly our #1 need heading into FA and we got a good young one.Biermann-After he recorded 49 tackles and 5 sacks in his 2nd year we were surprised to see him only get 36 tackles and 3 sacks last year but he may have been overstreteched as one of our top DEs vs both the run and the pass and playing special teams as well. This year he can be the base RE with Edwards at LE and on clear pass downs Abe can come in for him at RE. Our top 3 DEs vs the pass will be Abe, Edwards and Biermann (as it stands now) and we'll see all the combinations of them at different times. This an athletic high motor DE only 25 years old. He has yet to produce at Edwards level in only 3 seasons but also makes as many run stuffs as sacks.Sidbury-I don't think he recorded a tackle last year and has 5 and 1 sack on his resume in 2 years. I expect him to see extensive playing time in the preseason and if he doesn't show up I'd expect to see him replaced with a vet FA like Andre Carter. Measurables are similiar to Biermann but the production hasn't been there.Matthews-A rookie who will also get a chance to show what he's got in the preseason. Overall we could be content to head into the preseason with this DE group as it stands and hope Sidbury and or Matthews turn out to be players but I would be in favor of signing a DE like Jacob Ford, Mark Anderson or Andre Carter to throw into the competition. We are definately better now at this position than we were last year.DTBabineaux-At 29 Babineaux is still in his prime but we might be wise to start saving him for pass downs like Abe because even though he's listed now at 296 he was listed before at 285 and has always been an undersized guy who wins with quickness. I think we have enough DT depth that we can save him and keep him fresh for getting after the QB instead of getting double teamed in the run game and worn out. Babineaux is exactly what we're looking for as a penetrator at UT in this scheme and is a disruptive player.Peters-Last season we were expecting Jerry to show up big but it was infact the rookie Peters who arrived with 33 tackles, a sack, a pass defensed and 2 run stuffs. At only 23 years old the arrow is definately pointing up for this kid.Jerry-It's kind of shocking to see that Jerry is 26 years old. He got injured early as a rookie and clearly wasn''t healthy last season notching only 9 tackles. But he did show flashes with 2 sacks and 2 run stuffs. We're definately counting on him to finally be healthy and make an impact, particularly as a pass rusher or as a standout UT on run downs.Walker-This kid is only 24 and tumbled in the draft. in limited snaps he has 29 tackles and 5 run stuffs in 2 seasons. We could certainly do worse for a 4th DT and like all of ours except Babineaux theres clear room and expectation for improvement.Lewis-He brings good size at 6'3 316 but has really struggled with durability never playing more than 9 games and missing a whole season in 08. He's 26 and should be able to help on run downs if healthy.I'm happy with this group maybe there's some competition for Lewis in preseason but we probably stick with this group. On pass downs we want Babineaux and Jerry primarily on the field as thus far they've shown to be the most explosive pass rushers, I guess Peters would be next on the list then Walker, maybe we'll even see Edwards line up at DT on some pass downs to get Abe and Biermann on the field at DE. On run downs Peters proved last year he's a player, if Walker or big body Lewis can earn playing time here it keeps Babs and Jerry fresh for pass downs.There's all kinds of DL combinations and it will be fun to watch.Next up LBs Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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