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Question Regarding Defensive Philosophy

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Bucs' McCoy: 'Rules are shaky,' NFL is getting 'soft'


FOX Sports

NOV 19, 2013 7:36p ET


NOV 19, 2013 7:36p ET


Kim Klement / USA TODAY Sports

Buccaneers defensive tackle Gerald McCoy is in his third season in the NFL.


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Updated NOV 20, 2013 11:34a ET

Buccaneers defensive lineman Gerald McCoy believes player safety rules significantly put defensive players at a disadvantage, both schematically and physically.

"I think the rules are shaky," McCoy said on The Peter Schrager Podcast Tuesday. "I think they're making the NFL a little soft now, you know? I'm all for protecting the players. I don't want anybody to ever play this game to get hurt. That's not the reality because people are going to get hurt. It's too physical of a game. Me, personally, I don't want to see anybody get hurt.

"But the way the game is played now, it's like you can't do anything. I got a personal foul Sunday. I hit Matt Ryan square in his numbers, the helmet was to the side of his number. When I slowed it down, my helmet didn't even hit him in the chest. My helmet was to the side, but they said I ducked my head, so that's a personal foul."

McCoy's concerns validate the notion that defensive players are letting up to avoid being penalized or fined. Buccaneers safety Dashon Goldson, who was suspended a game for illegal helmet-to-helmet contact, has also been the subject of a $100,000 fine for a Week 2 hit.

"Guys are trying not to use their helmet," McCoy said. "Honestly man, a lot of tackles are being missed because guys are slowing down. You look at the numbers of tackles being missed by people, a lot of the tackles missed are going up by the year because everybody is nervous about this or nervous about that. They don't want to get fined."


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While the NFL has been taking proper precautions to make the game safer for offensive players, McCoy believes the rules leave some defensive players vulnerable.

"They want to protect the players, but as a defensive lineman there are certain blocks I feel are [illegal]," McCoy said. "I got put out of the game in Seattle because of a cut block that I felt was illegal, but it wasn't. It was legal.

"What about when Jamaal Charles cut Brian Cushing when he was blitzing? He tore his ACL on a cut block, you know? But it was a perfectly legal block."

In light of DeCouds latest Tweet and after reading this article, it is apparent why we suck azz so bad with tackling on defense. Mike Smith -or- Nolan does not want the team to draw unnecessary penalties on personal fouls by leading with the helmet. I believe this has been coached into our scheme since the competition committee made it a rule years ago. Wonder if your boy McKay has some say in the scheme since he is a Chairman for the committee. Do you think that Blank has made McKay's say in scheme just as important as Smitty's due to "insider knowledge"? We know that Smitty does not want the boys to draw penalties, but one could argue this is one of the reasons we do not tackle well on defense. Does the hits that Robinson put on Jackson and Maclin stand out in Smitty or McKay's mind? I just find it hard to believe a defensive minded coach would constantly stand idle and watch some players no wrap up. Thoughts?

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I have said time and time again that Mike Smith has taken the aggressiveness out of the players by being so stern with them if they make a mistake. The players play it safe, just like our coach coaches.

I never believed this until he ripped Asante for the celebration after an int last year....I was like " Are your freaking serious Mike Smith?"

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