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Disturbing trend on TATF - Ignore Edge Rusher in draft?


g-dawg
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It seems most of you on TATF are starting to shift away from edge Rusher to Darron Lee or a Defensive Tackle in the 1st round - a few even have us reaching for a safety early.

Just help me understand.  We had 17 sacks last year - We hope Beasley gets better, were-sign ed Clayborn (who was disappointing last year as a passrusher) and we grabbed a promising DT/DE 'tweener in Derrick Shelby who had a whopping 3.5 sacks.  I like retaining Clay and signing Shelby but you guys - seriously? - that is all you wanna do?  Billings is strictly a nose tackle who does not project  to have much higher passrusher and his tape backs that assertion.   Rankins? a little better passrusher - maybe he gets an extra 2-3 sacks but he is not the answer to all we need on passrush.  Darron Lee? He will be a good player but won't  help much in passrush. 

I don't  see Ogbah or Dodd dropping to#50 and I see both as competent passrusher - same with Shaq.  If we skip out on 1st Rd pass rusher it is doubtful we get one.  If Falcons go that route, I can picture the hand-wringing now when we have 8 sacks going into the second half.

We still need edge rush.  Please make the argument that we don't  without telling me how Clay and Shelby are going to suddenly triple last year's production.

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Well, I don't think "triple last year's sack production" is really a realistic goal. And FTR, we had 19, not 17. And the idea that there are any players in this draft capable of coming in and contributing 8+ sacks is probably a bit off base. And even if it isnt, there's nothing to say that those players are ONLY found in the first round. 

I'd like to add an edge rusher at some point. But I'm not willing to leave great prospects who can also support and improve the pass rush on the board for the sake of taking someone like Ogbah or Dodd. Just doesnt make sense to me. 

Our pass rush is going to depend on the continued development of Beasley, the rotation of the DEs, continued improvement at DT, and better play at LB. All of those things need to happen to generate more pressure. 

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I do not disagree.  Thankfully TATF isn't running the war room.  It's one thing to make incremental upgrades -- I think we've seen that story before -- but there is no substitute for having a stud coming off the edge.  Ernie Acorsi said the first personnel lesson he learned was you win Super Bowls with Quarterbacks and pass rushers.

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we just used a very high pick on an edge rusher last year. We cannot discount his growth potential. We have zero rush up the middle, which IMO is a bigger concern. I for one think we are in better shape at DE than DT.

Clayborn finished the season strong when moved back to DE, where he will primarily play. Shelby was very good subbing in for Wake. So we made moves there. I could see 6-8 sacks for Clayborn and same or more from Beasley on the other side. Good pass rushers seem to break out in year 2-3, so we need to give him time.

On the other hand, Hageman shows flashes at best, but isn't proven. Babs is getting very old, Jarrett is potential, but a 5th rounder. (we have seen that before with Beirman) so not ready to say he is a starter.

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Pass rush and OG (interior OL stability) are the top two things this team has to have.

That said, it seems like a weak edge rush class.  If instead of covering edge rush, we get a penetrating tackle, it's reasonable to assume that in addition to his 4 sacks, he creates 3 more for each edge rusher.  That's a net gain of 10, even though you only see 4. 

A coverage OLB helps (but not to the same extent) by taking some of the shorter routes away so the QB holds the ball longer.

 

Realistically, I think Clayborn at end instead of tackle, and Shelby at end and tackle will make a large difference.  We essentially "gained" Clayborn at end, because that's not where we had him last year.

The question comes down to : Do you think a penetrating DT can help Beasley, Shelby, and Clayborn get more sacks than a rookie edge rusher would get on his own.

I think so, given this edge rush class.

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I think having a defensive tackle that can generate interior pressure on a consistent basis would do a lot for our pass rush. Beasley and Clayborn and Shelby will have a much better shot at closing the deal if the QB doesn't have a nice, defined pocket. 

I also think having a linebacker who could cover a tight end (for a change) would do a lot for the pass rush. If the tight end or running back is ALWAYS open, then if the rusher doesn't get to the QB in half a second, the ball's already gone. Coverage sacks aren't always long-developing - if you've got good coverage at the second AND third level in conjunction with even a mediocre rush, you stand a much better chance of either sacks or turnovers.

Obviously it depends on who's there and getting good value, but I want the player who can help us the most, not the player who has the "right" position next to his name.

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2 minutes ago, takeitdown said:

Pass rush and OG (interior OL stability) are the top two things this team has to have.

That said, it seems like a weak edge rush class.  If instead of covering edge rush, we get a penetrating tackle, it's reasonable to assume that in addition to his 4 sacks, he creates 3 more for each edge rusher.  That's a net gain of 10, even though you only see 4. 

A coverage OLB helps (but not to the same extent) by taking some of the shorter routes away so the QB holds the ball longer.

 

Realistically, I think Clayborn at end instead of tackle, and Shelby at end and tackle will make a large difference.  We essentially "gained" Clayborn at end, because that's not where we had him last year.

The question comes down to : Do you think a penetrating DT can help Beasley, Shelby, and Clayborn get more sacks than a rookie edge rusher would get on his own.

I think so, given this edge rush class.

I agree with this assessment.

Unless Nkemdiche/Rankins/Billings lands in our laps I see us needing Darron Lee or Floyd at 17 and a DT at 50. We can go OG and TE in the 3rd/4th and pick up a returner in the 7th to replace Hester.

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I think pressure/havoc/disruption requires a coordinated effort of talent across your front seven, and in alot of cases front 4 (in a predominantly 4-3 front).

If you consider the QB's in NFC South alone (and who'll be such over the course of the next 10-12 years) you have Cam Newton and Jamies Winston - 2 QB's who combined for 186 rushes, 849 yards and 16 TD's in 2015.  Those are two BIG QB's who step up in the pocket when there is little pressure.  If we have edge rush, but no pocket rush that keeps that QB back at his original drop point...I think the edge rush is minimalized.

As you know, I'm a proponent of DT in Round 1 (and even trading up to get the right guy) in large part because our depth chart past 2016 looks abysmal.  AJC already depth charted Shelby to DT which while he may be versatile enough to play it...doesn't strike me as where you want him lining up a majority of the time.

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2 minutes ago, direwolf said:

I think having a defensive tackle that can generate interior pressure on a consistent basis would do a lot for our pass rush. Beasley and Clayborn and Shelby will have a much better shot at closing the deal if the QB doesn't have a nice, defined pocket. 

I also think having a linebacker who could cover a tight end (for a change) would do a lot for the pass rush. If the tight end or running back is ALWAYS open, then if the rusher doesn't get to the QB in half a second, the ball's already gone. Coverage sacks aren't always long-developing - if you've got good coverage at the second AND third level in conjunction with even a mediocre rush, you stand a much better chance of either sacks or turnovers.

Obviously it depends on who's there and getting good value, but I want the player who can help us the most, not the player who has the "right" position next to his name.

This is how I'm looking at it aswell.

If the edge class is weak why reach,why not just go to where you have mentioned and get someone there it prettymuch does as you describe. 

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Well put. Someone is going to slip through the 1st round. It always happens. May be Robert Nim. from Ole Miss or Bullard but someone will. Hopefully the new eyes will result in a solid draft. No matter how optimistic this roster is still not there. I wish we had those 5th and 6th picks back. UDFA is going to be very important this year. We got to nail this draft!

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18 minutes ago, 1989Fan said:

we just used a very high pick on an edge rusher last year. We cannot discount his growth potential. We have zero rush up the middle, which IMO is a bigger concern. I for one think we are in better shape at DE than DT.

Clayborn finished the season strong when moved back to DE, where he will primarily play. Shelby was very good subbing in for Wake. So we made moves there. I could see 6-8 sacks for Clayborn and same or more from Beasley on the other side. Good pass rushers seem to break out in year 2-3, so we need to give him time.

On the other hand, Hageman shows flashes at best, but isn't proven. Babs is getting very old, Jarrett is potential, but a 5th rounder. (we have seen that before with Beirman) so not ready to say he is a starter.

This sounds like the Nolan "I want 10 guys with 4 sacks each" thought process.  What did that get us?  Oh yeah.....10 guys with 1 sack.

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I've always thought interior pressure would solve our sack problems. All the time you see our edge guys behind the quarterback. If we had anyone push the middle of the pocket we would have plenty of sacks. 

Not many teams have multiple first round picks at end. Usually 1 and a supplemental guy who then hits the FA market 4 years later. We have Vic, that's our guy. We have Shede and Grady, that's our interior pressure. I think Lee would compliment our front 4 nicely.

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12 minutes ago, kiwifalcon said:

This is how I'm looking at it aswell.

If the edge class is weak why reach,why not just go to where you have mentioned and get someone there it prettymuch does as you describe. 

Why is the edge class weak?  You don't think Lawson, Dodd, Ogbah or Floyd are capable of averaging 6-9sacks/yr?

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11 minutes ago, g-dawg said:

This sounds like the Nolan "I want 10 guys with 4 sacks each" thought process.  What did that get us?  Oh yeah.....10 guys with 1 sack.

how so? If CLay can be a 5-8 sack guy and Beasley makes the jump (could be 5, 10???sacks) then what you are saying makes no sense. You don't have to agree with me, but don't go twisting what I said to do it. Your response was completely irrelevant to what I posted.

We NEED a interior pass rush. Beasley can get around the edge, that is a given. QBs just step up as there is no middle push, or dump a short route, as we cannot cover the short zone with our current LBs.

You mention getting an edge rusher in round 1 who can get us 6-9 sacks, but they would be taking snaps from Beasley, who I think can be a 8-15 sacks guy. Give me a 6-8 sack DT and it is going to make a huge difference. And no I do not think Lawson, Dodd, Ogbah, Floyd can all be 6-8 sack guys even. I would be pleasantly surprised if 2 of the 4 were 8 sacks a season players. You can get either of the PSU DE's and get similar production in round 2-3.

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1 minute ago, 1989Fan said:

how so? If CLay can be a 5-8 sack guy and Beasley makes the jump (could be 5, 10???sacks) then what you are saying makes no sense.

We NEED a interior pass rush. Beasley can get around the edge, that is a given. QBs just step up as there is no middle push, or dump a short route, as we cannot cover the short zone with our current LBs.

You mention getting an edge rusher in round 1 who can get us 6-9 sacks, but they would be taking snaps from Beasley, who I think can be a 8-15 sacks guy. Give me a 6-8 sack DT and it is going to make a huge difference.

It really comes down to putting as many guys that require attention on the field at once. If those are DTs, so be it. You need to pressure the offense from as many points along the OL as possible. That leaves more players in winnable situations where they can apply pressure. if you're only getting pressure from your ends, they're just going to use TEs and RBs to chip them. If you're getting consistent pressure from your DTs, the offense has to worry about multiple trouble spots along the OL, leaving guys in winnable 1 on 1 situations. 

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2 minutes ago, 1989Fan said:

how so? If CLay can be a 5-8 sack guy and Beasley makes the jump (could be 5, 10???sacks) then what you are saying makes no sense. You don't have to agree with me, but don't go twisting what I said to do it. Your response was completely irrelevant to what I posted.

We NEED a interior pass rush. Beasley can get around the edge, that is a given. QBs just step up as there is no middle push, or dump a short route, as we cannot cover the short zone with our current LBs.

You mention getting an edge rusher in round 1 who can get us 6-9 sacks, but they would be taking snaps from Beasley, who I think can be a 8-15 sacks guy. Give me a 6-8 sack DT and it is going to make a huge difference.

What you are saying is the same speculative tripe we have been hearing for the last five years.  Fix the f-ing problem.

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