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mqg96

Comparing Smith and Quinn's defenses first 4 seasons.

43 posts in this topic

Smitty's defenses in his first 4 years finished as follows:

2008 20.9 ppg (11th), 1.83 points/drive (16th)
2009 20.3 ppg (13th), 1.82 points/drive (19th)
2010 19.8 ppg (6th), 1.54 points/drive (6th)
2011 22 ppg (17th), 1.76 (17th)

So far in Quinn's first 4 years, the numbers are as follows:

2015 21.6 ppg (14th), 2.01 points/drive (18th)
2016 25.3 ppg (27th), 2.29 points/drive (27th)
2017 19.1 ppg (6th), 1.86 points/drive (18th)
2018 27.8 ppg (28th), 2.72 points/drive (30th) so far.

I got this from someone's post, not sure if it's 100% accurate but it seems fairly right to me. So far Quinn's best year defensively in Atlanta is no better than Smith's best year from 2008-2011 in his first 4 years. All of this is without adding Smith's best year defensively in Atlanta (2012) where we finished with only allowing 19.7 ppg and only 1.65 points per drive (both good for top 10 in the league). 

Quinn's best year in these categories (2017) are almost as high as Smith's worst year (2011). Not to mention all those blown 4th quarter leads that Quinn already has under his belt (12 in almost 4 seasons, Smith only had 11 in 7 seasons and most of those didn't begin until the 2012-13 postseason and then his final 2 seasons with the Falcons).

You see. Quinn has NEVER had an above average to elite defense since he's been with the Falcons. This whole "fast" and "physical" thing has NEVER worked. His schemes just aren't working, and I believe defensively skill position wise we have more talent with Quinn than we did with Smith. Kyle Shanahan being our OC was a bigger factor in our run to the Super Bowl rather than our defense. It made our defense look good because our high powered offense put the pressure on opposing teams to keep throwing the ball and play catch up, which made our "bend don't break" defense looked good but in reality it was never good. In fact, in the Super Bowl era only the 2008 Arizona Cardinals had a worse defense in points allowed than the 2016 Falcons and the 2008 Cardinals were 9-7, but we were 11-5.

You're not going to have a historical offense every year, and when you don't, then you have to rely on your defense to give you the championship, but where has that defense for the Falcons been? What's happening is that since 2017, without the Falcons high powered offense, now teams can just play time of possession (control the clock) running the ball (keeping the ball away from Matt Ryan) and our fast but small defense gets ran over by big backs and big offensive linemen up front. Our offense can't get a yard. Our D-line can't stop a yard. That's a recipe for disaster. Championship teams have run defense that travels and a solid run game with big O-linemen that travel. The Falcons don't have that philosophy.

Edited by mqg96
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While I'm not the biggest Mike Smith fan when it comes to defense, credit is due in his 2010 defense. That was a good unit. But overall, a common theme between both Smitty and DQ is they rely on their defense being hidden more than being good. Look at how few drives these defenses face. This isn't a case of "getting off the field". This is the offense controlling the ball and limiting the defense's exposure to giving up yards and points. It's essentially "The offense can't score if they aren't on the field". I tried to explain this last year, when everybody was so hyped about the points per game stat but didn't look beyond that because they just wanted validation.

Last year, the Falcons had the league's lowest number of drives defended: 162 drives. The defenses in the bottom five in drives were in the bottom half in points per drive. For comparison, the defense that faced the most drives was Jacksonville, who we all know was a dominant group. They defended 197 drives, 35 more than the Falcons. That's over 3 games worth of drives. They were beasts, not protected by few drives. And for comparison, the defenses that saw the top five in drives, four of the five were in the top 10 in points and yards per drive. 

In eight combined seasons with Smitty and DQ, we have one good defense. I think this year's defense could have been very good and been the best in this bunch, but the injuries killed any hope of that. 

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I would say the defensive stats for Smitty are a bit skewed because of the way the Falcons played from 2008 to 2010. We were a run first, ground and pound team. Only in 2011 did that philosophy change after the GB asswhupping in the playoffs. And let's be honest here, did anyone really feel safe with that Smitty defense? I neve really did, Quinns D at least showed flashes of greatness over several games, Smitty not so much. idk just my view of it.

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I still say the 2012 Falcons could beat the 2016 Falcons they had some dogs on that D like Abe/Samuel/ and both safeties were playing lights out football

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The best Falcons defenses of the Matt Ryan era were 2010 - 2012 when we were 14th, 8th, and 12th in DVOA. It's been 20+ every year since. 

The two most likely reasons IMO are: John Abraham was a good enough pass rusher to drive a lot of defensive performance and the league has changed quite a bit since then and our schemes have struggled to keep pace. 

 

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32 minutes ago, DoYouSeeWhatHappensLarry said:

The best Falcons defenses of the Matt Ryan era were 2010 - 2012 when we were 14th, 8th, and 12th in DVOA. It's been 20+ every year since. 

The two most likely reasons IMO are: John Abraham was a good enough pass rusher to drive a lot of defensive performance and the league has changed quite a bit since then and our schemes have struggled to keep pace. 

 

The defensive talent is pretty much reason for some optimism for things to get better. This year was a mess, but Allen/Neal/Kazee/Jarrett/Takk/Senat/Beasley/Campbell/Jones is a pretty good base from the last few drafts. That's nine young guys. Unfortunately, losing the three biggest generals (Allen/Neal/Jones) on the defensive side just created a vortex that sucked everything down with it. 

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With out looking at the stats, the Defense under smith was good enough to win 2-3 games a year. They had multiple wins with goal line stands or stopping the opposing teams with game on the line. DEfenses under DQ May be for one or two games have not shown ability to get stops when needed.

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1 hour ago, rh50 said:

I still say the 2012 Falcons could beat the 2016 Falcons they had some dogs on that D like Abe/Samuel/ and both safeties were playing lights out football

Man did we kill it with Abraham. I hated when we released him. I actually missed the way Turner carried this team back then for a few good years.

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16 minutes ago, MAD597 said:

Common thread between them both is relying on light fast guys and ignoring the lines. That thinking doesn't work

You keep saying this even though it isnt true in either respect. 

The team has put resources into "the lines," The team has had "heavy" players. It hasnt translated to success all that frequently. The best Falcons defense (2011, 8th in defensive DVOA) didnt have a single defensive player over 305 and even then it was only Corey Peters. 

Other teams have won tons of games with "light fast guys." Other teams with "big bodies" havent done much defensively. 

The best defensive player in the league is a 280 lbs defensive tackle. The best defensive lineman for the better part of this decade is a 288 lb DE. The best pass rusher in the league is a 250 lbs OLB. 

It isnt about weight. It's about ability. Weight doesnt win, leverage and technique win. 

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2 hours ago, FalconBlood23 said:

I would say the defensive stats for Smitty are a bit skewed because of the way the Falcons played from 2008 to 2010. We were a run first, ground and pound team. Only in 2011 did that philosophy change after the GB asswhupping in the playoffs. And let's be honest here, did anyone really feel safe with that Smitty defense? I neve really did, Quinns D at least showed flashes of greatness over several games, Smitty not so much. idk just my view of it.

points per drive adjusts for this though.

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2 hours ago, vel said:

But overall, a common theme between both Smitty and DQ is they rely on their defense being hidden more than being good.

This is why I want an offensive minded head coach.  This is an offense driven league, and we have coaches running our team who want to play prevent football.  We need an aggressive/attacking mentality, not this, "make them beat us this way," mentality.  Guess what, they figured out that you want them to beat you that way, so they do.  And once they do, the flood gates open and we hemorrhage yards.

Bring in an offensive minded coach that understands that in order to stop teams, you have to interrupt their game plan and make them adjust.  The best way to do this is with PRESSURE ON THE QB.

Same thing goes for the offense, keep the defense guessing.  If they adjust, then you adjust to exploit another weakness in their scheme.  We don't do ANY OF THAT. 

If we're playing a team that has the worst secondary in the league, we're trying to run it down their throats.......  I guess it would be too obvious if we attacked their ailing secondary.

When we played a team that was missing their entire starting defensive line, we couldn't, or just didn't try to, exploit that.  When we were facing a team that had injuries across their offensive line, we couldn't, or just didn't try to, exploit that.

I've had enough of defensive minded head coaches.  Bring in an offensive guy.  Have that offensive guy get a really aggressive DC.  

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22 hours ago, mqg96 said:

Smitty's defenses in his first 4 years finished as follows:

2008 20.9 ppg (11th), 1.83 points/drive (16th)
2009 20.3 ppg (13th), 1.82 points/drive (19th)
2010 19.8 ppg (6th), 1.54 points/drive (6th)
2011 22 ppg (17th), 1.76 (17th)

So far in Quinn's first 4 years, the numbers are as follows:

2015 21.6 ppg (14th), 2.01 points/drive (18th)
2016 25.3 ppg (27th), 2.29 points/drive (27th)
2017 19.1 ppg (6th), 1.86 points/drive (18th)
2018 27.8 ppg (28th), 2.72 points/drive (30th) so far.

I got this from someone's post, not sure if it's 100% accurate but it seems fairly right to me. So far Quinn's best year defensively in Atlanta is no better than Smith's best year from 2008-2011 in his first 4 years. All of this is without adding Smith's best year defensively in Atlanta (2012) where we finished with only allowing 19.7 ppg and only 1.65 points per drive (both good for top 10 in the league). 

Quinn's best year in these categories (2017) are almost as high as Smith's worst year (2011). Not to mention all those blown 4th quarter leads that Quinn already has under his belt (12 in almost 4 seasons, Smith only had 11 in 7 seasons and most of those didn't begin until the 2012-13 postseason and then his final 2 seasons with the Falcons).

You see. Quinn has NEVER had an above average to elite defense since he's been with the Falcons. This whole "fast" and "physical" thing has NEVER worked. His schemes just aren't working, and I believe defensively skill position wise we have more talent with Quinn than we did with Smith. Kyle Shanahan being our OC was a bigger factor in our run to the Super Bowl rather than our defense. It made our defense look good because our high powered offense put the pressure on opposing teams to keep throwing the ball and play catch up, which made our "bend don't break" defense looked good but in reality it was never good. In fact, in the Super Bowl era only the 2008 Arizona Cardinals had a worse defense in points allowed than the 2016 Falcons and the 2008 Cardinals were 9-7, but we were 11-5.

You're not going to have a historical offense every year, and when you don't, then you have to rely on your defense to give you the championship, but where has that defense for the Falcons been? What's happening is that since 2017, without the Falcons high powered offense, now teams can just play time of possession (control the clock) running the ball (keeping the ball away from Matt Ryan) and our fast but small defense gets ran over by big backs and big offensive linemen up front. Our offense can't get a yard. Our D-line can't stop a yard. That's a recipe for disaster. Championship teams have run defense that travels and a solid run game with big O-linemen that travel. The Falcons don't have that philosophy.

I think if you compare takeaways and run defense Quinn falls even shorter. 

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17 hours ago, MAD597 said:

Common thread between them both is relying on light fast guys and ignoring the lines. That thinking doesn't work

I wholeheartedly agree. And there's only one person in the organizatio nthat loves style of substance.  The guy that puts hair style over job performance.  Sneaky Dimitri

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1 hour ago, FalconFanSince1970 said:

I think if you compare takeaways and run defense Quinn falls even shorter. 

Yep. Again, credit to Smitty. He had ball hawks. Grimes and Samuel run circles around Tru and Alford on their worst days. Even Decoud and Moore over Rico and Neal. We don't have a ball hawking secondary. 

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2 hours ago, mqg96 said:

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So basically we need more size. Both our DTs are 6'0 flat. Crawford is 6'5 but has no value vs power run teams. Takk is the heaviest DE we have at 6'2 265. Vic is 6'3 246. That's a linebacker. Reed is 6'3 254. Means, who doesn't even play, is 6'3 263. We have little edges. We need one dominant DT added, but we need more help on the edges than people are realizing. 

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18 hours ago, E. T. said:

All had average dlines. It starts upfront.

Pretty much. Put quality talent on the line. Hard to have a top tier defense without studs in the trenches. It’s one of the main issues that has been constant under both Quinn and Smith regimes. 

It’s not even a scheme thing. We know for example Quinn’s scheme works. Just don’t have the studs to make it as effective as possible. 

 

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5 minutes ago, vel said:

So basically we need more size. Both our DTs are 6'0 flat. Crawford is 6'5 but has no value vs power run teams. Takk is the heaviest DE we have at 6'2 265. Vic is 6'3 246. That's a linebacker. Reed is 6'3 254. Means, who doesn't even play, is 6'3 263. We have little edges. We need one dominant DT added, but we need more help on the edges than people are realizing. 

and that's our average weight and height with Shelby included in the mix, so imagine our average without Shelby! :o

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11 minutes ago, vel said:

Yep. Again, credit to Smitty. He had ball hawks. Grimes and Samuel run circles around Tru and Alford on their worst days. Even Decoud and Moore over Rico and Neal. We don't have a ball hawking secondary. 

Hard to be about the ball when you don't have ball hawks. Kazee on INTs and Neal on FFs maybe.

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18 hours ago, MAD597 said:

Common thread between them both is relying on light fast guys and ignoring the lines. That thinking doesn't work

Quinn and TD have to face that harsh fact and abandon this alleged "fast and physical" defensive scheme. Sounds like a great idea, but its trash. It hasn't worked to this point and it is never going to work.

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I would like to also to see averaging Points scored across the league as well over the years stated. My guess is that average scoring is way up over these 4 years versus the Mike Smith years. Not using as an excuse but I don't think you can look at those numbers in bubble

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12 minutes ago, vel said:

So basically we need more size. Both our DTs are 6'0 flat. Crawford is 6'5 but has no value vs power run teams. Takk is the heaviest DE we have at 6'2 265. Vic is 6'3 246. That's a linebacker. Reed is 6'3 254. Means, who doesn't even play, is 6'3 263. We have little edges. We need one dominant DT added, but we need more help on the edges than people are realizing. 

Exactly. Yes, when it comes to individual players it's about leverage, technique and skill and not just size, however, when it comes to the overall collective unit you need size (or a balance) and not just small quick guys. Too many small and quick guys are not good. Too many big and slow guys are not good. It must be a balance. ESPN/NFL analysts and former players have repeatedly said throughout the season that the Falcons lack size up front, but we also don't have enough skill players with dawg with them either. Vic Beasley has the speed and size but he doesn't have that dawg in him like Takk does. Desmund Trufant doesn't have that dawg in him either. I've heard him on the radio multiple times. I just don't see either. Rico Allen is a good leader. Start at 2:33.

 

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8 minutes ago, mqg96 said:

Exactly. Yes, when it comes to individual players it's about leverage, technique and skill and not just size, however, when it comes to the overall collective unit you need size (or a balance) and not just small quick guys. Too many small and quick guys are not good. Too many big and slow guys are not good. It must be a balance. ESPN/NFL analysts and former players have repeatedly said throughout the season that the Falcons lack size up front, but we also don't have enough skill players with dawg with them either. Vic Beasley has the speed and size but he doesn't have that dawg in him like Takk does. Desmund Trufant doesn't have that dawg in him either. I've heard him on the radio multiple times. I just don't see either. Rico Allen is a good leader. Start at 2:33.

 

Yep. Need more dawgs. Period. Tru is soft. Vic is soft. Vic needs to go. Tru is here because of his contract, but I'd have him on a very short leash. Bring in guys who'd eat glass. 

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