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I'm Starting To Feel Like Willymo Might Be Our Fs


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Hear me out here -

I *THINK* our current plan is to groom Southward as a hybrid SS/FS to back-up Lowery and Moore. That being said - Southward's real position looks from all angles to be SS, not FS. He's a fast, hard hitting, tackling machine - not a ballhawk. WillyMo with some weight off him brings a good balance of hitting/ballhawking. If the Lowery FS WillyMo SS experiment doesn't work (or never begins) I could see our safety chart being this (and it would make sense):

SS: Southward (Backup: Motta)

FS: WillyMo (Backup: Lowery)

I like this much better than trying to stuff a hard-nosed run stopping SS like Southward in as a FS... but the kid has speed soo.... wacko.png

Edit: and before anyone shoots off about how WillyMo is a wood-laying SS... he played FS in college and has pretty great coverage ability.

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I like the thought, but not a snowball's chance. Moore is a prototypical strong safety.

I agree yes - but if Lowery doesn't pan out - I would feel MUCH more comfortable with Moore and Southward reversing roles. Southward looks like the PERFECT safety to run blitzes / chase down scat backs... WillyMo is a great coverage safety too. I dunno, I just feel stuck on my gut that Southward is a SS unless he steps up his coverage / ballhawking big time (to me a FS is a rangey ballhawk... it just is...)
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Did ppl not see William Moore vs Sproles.... I'm a William Moore fan... I was when ppl was calling him a bust after his rookie year... Saying that.. I think he can play some FS but he is a SS....

Southward has the tools you would want in FS... Its about how fast can he mentally get the game down....

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Did ppl not see William Moore vs Sproles.... I'm a William Moore fan... I was when ppl was calling him a bust after his rookie year... Saying that.. I think he can play some FS but he is a SS....

Southward has the tools you would want in FS... Its about how fast can he mentally get the game down....

Pretty much all these top 3 round players have all the physical tools. We do all this judging of players but can never judge their mental ability or football IQ. This is what the coaches see everyday. Southward will need to be in the right place EVERY time to be the starter, we already know he can run and tackle. Decoud was a starter and found himself out of place often, I don't think his football IQ was that high

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Southward has the tools to play SS responsibilities at times to confuse the QB. The doesn't mean you want him doing it all the time.

Disguising coverages and having guys that can play multiple roles without having to change personnel is what Nolan is after. You can't have a LB cover a TE like V. Davis all the time, but you let them do it some. Then the next time with the same formation and D package on the field and the O tries to go after the TE LB speed mismatch but you end up covering him with the FS out of the same defensive look.

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Southward has the tools to play SS responsibilities at times to confuse the QB. The doesn't mean you want him doing it all the time.

Disguising coverages and having guys that can play multiple roles without having to change personnel is what Nolan is after. You can't have a LB cover a TE like V. Davis all the time, but you let them do it some. Then the next time with the same formation and D package on the field and the O tries to go after the TE LB speed mismatch but you end up covering him with the FS out of the same defensive look.

Spot on. Just because someone is the FS or SS doesn't mean Nolan can't assign them to do whatever. People get too caught up in position. If you have good safeties they should both be able to swap assignments on the fly and be okay, at least for a play. Your FS should be able to make a tackle in the box and your SS should be able to break up a deep ball. A good QB will pick a part a defense where he knows exactly what each player will do each play because that's all that defender's ability allows him to do.

Look at Earl Thomas and Chancellor. Thomas will be the deep man 80+% of the time but he can still hold his own in the box at times (and other times Quizz puts him on his *** lol). And Chancellor is a boomer like Moore but he will still take advantage of the QB assuming he can't cover and make an INT. I was talking down on him all last season and playoffs and he shut me up big time with his coverage skills. They have their strengths but are just versatile enough and it makes for a killer combination.

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Pretty much all these top 3 round players have all the physical tools. We do all this judging of players but can never judge their mental ability or football IQ. This is what the coaches see everyday. Southward will need to be in the right place EVERY time to be the starter, we already know he can run and tackle. Decoud was a starter and found himself out of place often, I don't think his football IQ was that high

I think Southward smart guy ... We will see does that transfer on the field because i dont think you have to have a High FBI for every position but FS is one of those positions.

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Well I think obviously Moore will be making all the defensive back calls regardless of position. Lowery and Southward are both new in our system thus not as familiar.

2nd, I think we will continue to have the safeties interchangeable as we have done in the past. But I think more likely they will hide Southward as much as possible until he is comfortable playing centerfield in our scheme on obvious passing plays.

For example, Willymo will be in the box when the opponents are in obvious run looks and then Willymo will be the deep saftey against obvious pass looks. Southward will probably be asked to play more man than single high on those pass downs as well.

I can see us playing both in deep zone or in a three deep shell more often than leaving Southward as the single high safety until they feel comfortable with his recognition skills. He easily has the speed needed to cover ground, but needs to learn the nuances of the position.

They brought along DeCoud and Moore very similar to this as rookies. Letting the Vets take on the tougher roles until they were ready to play without thinking too much

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The coaching staff has already determined Southward position on this team and it aint Strong Safety!

I'm just throwing a scenario out there. Southward's highlights look great for a SS... he is good in coverage but by no means a ballhawk. I guess I can't shake wanting a ballhawk (who CAN tackle) at FS... even if the guy is a sub 4.4 runner
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Well I think obviously Moore will be making all the defensive back calls regardless of position. Lowery and Southward are both new in our system thus not as familiar.

2nd, I think we will continue to have the safeties interchangeable as we have done in the past. But I think more likely they will hide Southward as much as possible until he is comfortable playing centerfield in our scheme on obvious passing plays.

For example, Willymo will be in the box when the opponents are in obvious run looks and then Willymo will be the deep saftey against obvious pass looks. Southward will probably be asked to play more man than single high on those pass downs as well.

I can see us playing both in deep zone or in a three deep shell more often than leaving Southward as the single high safety until they feel comfortable with his recognition skills. He easily has the speed needed to cover ground, but needs to learn the nuances of the position.

They brought along DeCoud and Moore very similar to this as rookies. Letting the Vets take on the tougher roles until they were ready to play without thinking too much

This sounds about right.

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FSs job is not to be a ball hawk. Its to cover mostly.

Southward played nickle and CB iirc at Wisconsin.

He IS a FS.

Don't get caught up in the flash that is INTs and big hits. Those aren't the fundamentals of the job description. Just a bonus.

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Here is the thing, after that very lengthy post I just did about the Big Nickel it should be clear to everyone that Nolan's safeties are interchangeable, which is the trend that most defenses are moving towards nowadays. Interchangeable means that there really is no FS and SS on the field, there are just 2 Safeties that have to be able to handle the exact same responsibilities as the other one depending on which side of the formation is the strong-side. The old days of the thumper run-stopping SS and more coverage focused FS are dying. And in Nolan's scheme, it is already dead.

So you are both right and wrong with your initial post. Moore already has the responsibilities of a FS in this defense; but he also has the responsibilities of a SS as well.

Edited by RandomFan
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You say South isn't a FS and that Moore could be because he played a little FS in college, but i'm pretty sure South played a lot more CB/FS than Moore ever has.

South has the speed and size to be a perfect hybrid safety in Nolan's scheme, in which he uses the FS much more like the SS than in some systems. Moore will retain his position, South and Lowery will duke it out for the opposite spot. No need to move things around just for the sake of moving things.

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