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Ricardo Allen: Falcons' defense needs discipline, not Superman


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https://www.espn.com/blog/atlanta-falcons/post/_/id/34600

 

Ricardo Allen was as emotional as anyone after he saw teammate Keanu Neal suffer yet another season-ending injury on Sunday, but the Atlanta Falcons free safety has learned not to dwell on the uncontrollable.

Of course, Allen knows that Neal’s presence will be missed on defense for the remainder of the season following an Achilles tendon tear, which typically requires eight months for recovery. But Allen, who suffered a season-ending Achilles tear last season, isn’t about to let his fellow defenders use Neal’s injury as an excuse.

"My message to the defense? Do your job. That’s all," said Allen, a team captain. "Whatever your job entitles, do that. Do it as hard as you can for your brothers. That’s it. We’re not asking nobody to be Superman. Just be who you are and what you’re supposed to be for this team.

"Yeah, we understand it’s going to be 'mess-ups' here and there, but you’ve got to do it for everybody around you. If you do your job and they beat us doing your job, they deserve it. But if they beat us and we’re not doing what we’re supposed to, that’s on us."

The 1-2 Falcons have to do a much better job on defense now without Neal roaming as the enforcer. The 27-24 loss to the undermanned Indianapolis Colts exposed some defensive flaws that could doom the Falcons if they are not corrected. Players were caught looking in the backfield, as Colts coach Frank Reich masterfully designed misdirection and play-action plays. If the Falcons were fooled by Andrew Luck's replacement, Jacoby Brissett, just imagine what type of issues could lie ahead with Deshaun Watson, Russell Wilson and Drew Brees in the next six games. That's not to mention the variety of looks the Falcons could see from offensive gurus Sean McVay and Kyle Shanahan later in the season.

The Falcons continue to have penalty issues, which point to a lack of discipline. Four of the 16 penalties they drew against the Colts came against the defense on third down, allowing the Colts to pick up first downs. The Colts had seven first downs by penalty in the game. It makes you wonder if coach Dan Quinn should take sterner action against repeat violators.

One of those defensive penalties was too many men on the field, as the Falcons were caught switching personnel, and defensive tackle Grady Jarrett couldn’t get out of the game. Quinn, as the defensive coordinator, didn’t feel good about the lack of communication but vowed to get the penalty issues fixed this week while having officials out for practice. The Falcons have done that regularly, but Quinn emphasized it this week in preparation for Sunday’s matchup with Tennessee.

The Falcons are tied for 29th in the league in third-down defense, allowing opponents to convert 52.8% of the time. They are giving up 21.7 first downs per game, which is tied for 22nd. Their minus-five point differential, with the defense yielding 25 points per game and the offense scoring 20 points per game, ranks 22nd.

I think it’s about the small details on defense," cornerback Desmond Trufant said. "I felt like [against the Colts], it was more we were inflicting damage on ourselves than them beating us. I mean, they made some plays, but I think we’ve got to start with doing our job first, getting in position. ... We’ve got to make sure we’re doing what we’re supposed to do."

This week’s task likely means preparing for what Titans quarterback Marcus Mariota is capable of accomplishing as a dual-threat quarterback and the power Derrick Henry brings in the running game. At the same time, the Falcons can’t be fooled into thinking it’s all about stopping the run because Mariota might try to go downfield to wide receiver Corey Davis or someone else.

More thing anything, the Falcons can’t sulk about Neal not being in the lineup. Quinn talked about Kemal Ishmael stepping in to play some strong safety. But filling in for Neal might be by committee, with Quinn looking at all options. Safety Jamal Carter was elevated from the practice squad for depth. Nickelback Damontae Kazee played free safety last season. But it will be difficult for anyone to mirror Neal’s impact when healthy.

"Just the way that he brings the pain, man, and the way that people have to account for No. 22," Allen said. "When they know he’s coming, people pull hands down. Tipped balls happen a little bit more.

"That’s why I think we ended up winning that game on fourth down against the Eagles -- because they saw 22 coming and pulled that ball back. You understand when 22 is out there, he’s trying to get that ball. And if he’s not trying to get that ball, he’s trying to get you. He’s an enforcer, and we’re going to miss that. It’s a physical presence that’s hard to match when you take a guy like him off the field."

 

 

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Allen doesn't have room to criticize anyone or anything.  He may be the on-field backfield coach, but he misses tackles, gets ran over and is a step late covering over top as well. Kazee showed he was faster to the ball by the number of interceptions he jumped last season.  Why put Allen back there when he clearly wasn't the best at the position?  Why not put Allen at the nickel position?  The decisions this coaching staff makes is not sound at all.

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2 minutes ago, Da_Truth said:

Allen doesn't have room to criticize anyone or anything.  He may be the on-field backfield coach, but he misses tackles, gets ran over and is a step late covering over top as well. Kazee showed he was faster to the ball by the number of interceptions he jumped last season.  Why put Allen back there when he clearly wasn't the best at the position?  Why not put Allen at the nickel position?  The decisions this coaching staff makes is not sound at all.

Lol this post 

IMG_4182.JPG.97b5401963293e1d12bb6a7316cfbc29.JPG

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:lol: I love Rico. He gone tell it all. :lol:

Two days. Two comments that confirm what a lot of us already knew. 

It ain’t scheme. It ain’t a lack of talent. It’s discipline. It’s fundamentals. Guys aren’t doing basic stuff and that’s a serious indictment of everyone from the coaches to the players not being pros and policing that themselves.

:angry: I need to stop because I’m getting heated all over again.

DQ it’s time to sit some guys, and it’s time to simplify the gameplan even more. If we got to run two coverages and one front, so be it.

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5 minutes ago, PeytonMannings Forehead said:

:lol: I love Rico. He gone tell it all. :lol:

Two days. Two comments that confirm what a lot of us already knew. 

It ain’t scheme. It ain’t a lack of talent. It’s discipline. It’s fundamentals. Guys aren’t doing basic stuff and that’s a serious indictment of everyone from the coaches to the players not being pros and policing that themselves.

:angry: I need to stop because I’m getting heated all over again.

DQ it’s time to sit some guys, and it’s time to simplify the gameplan even more. If we got to run two coverages and one front, so be it.

Who were the main culprits or was it across the board? To my untrained eye, it looked like the defensive line kept taking chances and letting themselves get blocked out of plays. Campbell was awful and Foye needs to see more time.

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12 minutes ago, Jpg428gggg said:

Who were the main culprits or was it across the board? To my untrained eye, it looked like the defensive line kept taking chances and letting themselves get blocked out of plays. Campbell was awful and Foye needs to see more time.

It was across the board. Oliver played well, then got grabby at the wrong time.

The first touchdown pass given up, I didn’t see who the two guys were, but two guys followed the fake screen and left the wheel route behind it open for an easy catch. 

I thought our linebackers were slow to read their keys, and you already pointed out Campbell.

We didn’t give up a ton of yards on the ground, but once again we lost the edges at the wrong time, then there were too many early yards we allowed up the middle, which of course allowed easy throws to convert. 

Guys weren’t getting off blocks. Tackling took a big step back this week. We’d make hits on these little 5 yard checkdowns and the receiver would fall forward for an extra two, three yards.

And the leverages... the leverages were terrible. We were overrunning stuff, not caging the runner in space properly. Pretty much every good thing we did on defense against the Eagles was missing.

And all that before I get to the coordinator — Vic in space again missing tackles. Adrian Clayborn peeling off in coverage against a running back meaning we were only rushing three and allowed Brissett to hold the ball fovever then run for the first down.

It was all around bad.

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41 minutes ago, PeytonMannings Forehead said:

:lol: I love Rico. He gone tell it all. :lol:

Two days. Two comments that confirm what a lot of us already knew. 

It ain’t scheme. It ain’t a lack of talent. It’s discipline. It’s fundamentals. Guys aren’t doing basic stuff and that’s a serious indictment of everyone from the coaches to the players not being pros and policing that themselves.

:angry: I need to stop because I’m getting heated all over again.

DQ it’s time to sit some guys, and it’s time to simplify the gameplan even more. If we got to run two coverages and one front, so be it.

YESSIR!

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@PeytonMannings Forehead You probably already watch this guy but to your point about either over playing or miss playing the keys on defense we even have Debo here  not playing like his usual self. Quinn just showed us versus the Eagles we can play and guys were caught trying to be Superman like Allen is saying! 

 He posted just the first half alone and while there was the obvious tackling, swarming, contain and fundamental issues I was still encouraged to see guys like Davison and Bailey proving their worth. 

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1 hour ago, Da_Truth said:

Allen doesn't have room to criticize anyone or anything.  He may be the on-field backfield coach, but he misses tackles, gets ran over and is a step late covering over top as well. Kazee showed he was faster to the ball by the number of interceptions he jumped last season.  Why put Allen back there when he clearly wasn't the best at the position?  Why not put Allen at the nickel position?  The decisions this coaching staff makes is not sound at all.

He wasn't really that good too begin with, he was serviceable now he has at least 3 unnecessary roughness penalties smh. He cant cover , committing penalties , not being physical. He cant stop anyone smh Trufant is the only saving grace for this secondary along with Kazee 

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21 minutes ago, PeytonMannings Forehead said:

It was across the board. Oliver played well, then got grabby at the wrong time.

The first touchdown pass given up, I didn’t see who the two guys were, but two guys followed the fake screen and left the wheel route behind it open for an easy catch. 

I thought our linebackers were slow to read their keys, and you already pointed out Campbell.

We didn’t give up a ton of yards on the ground, but once again we lost the edges at the wrong time, then there were too many early yards we allowed up the middle, which of course allowed easy throws to convert. 

Guys weren’t getting off blocks. Tackling took a big step back this week. We’d make hits on these little 5 yard checkdowns and the receiver would fall forward for an extra two, three yards.

And the leverages... the leverages were terrible. We were overrunning stuff, not caging the runner in space properly. Pretty much every good thing we did on defense against the Eagles was missing.

And all that before I get to the coordinator — Vic in space again missing tackles. Adrian Clayborn peeling off in coverage against a running back meaning we were only rushing three and allowed Brissett to hold the ball fovever then run for the first down.

It was all around bad.

And yet it still took 7 first downs by penalty for the colts to scrore.

 

Very frustrating

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1 minute ago, caponine said:

He wasn't really that good too begin with, he was serviceable now he has at least 3 unnecessary roughness penalties smh. He cant cover , committing penalties , not being physical. He cant stop anyone smh Trufant is the only saving grace for this secondary along with Kazee 

It is what it is.  But DQ and TD seem to think in their minds that this defense has the players to contend with the top offenses when they don't.  It's the same repeated issues year after year--lack of tackling and coverage in the secondary.  Defense STILL the issue.

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1 minute ago, Da_Truth said:

It is what it is.  But DQ and TD seem to think in their minds that this defense has the players to contend with the top offenses when they don't.  It's the same repeated issues year after year--lack of tackling and coverage in the secondary.  Defense STILL the issue.

This team is soft , they're made from Jello. How you let the same play beat you over and over without fighting back smh 

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4 minutes ago, caponine said:

This team is soft , they're made from Jello. How you let the same play beat you over and over without fighting back smh 

Exactly.  No team is perfect, but this team makes the same mistakes over and over and is very inconsistent.  They get up to play the Eagles like All World beaters then look completely unprepared the following game.  Just when you think they've turned a corner, same B.S.

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1 minute ago, Da_Truth said:

Exactly.  No team is perfect, but this team makes the same mistakes over and over and is very inconsistent.  They get up to play the Eagles like All World beaters then look completely unprepared the following game.  Just when you think they've turned a corner, same B.S.

The player that's disappointed me the most though is Takk, a passionate guy and he plays like he made of cottonelle smh and yeahh but even with that though Carson still almost beat us because of the same stupid stuff 

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44 minutes ago, caponine said:

This team is soft , they're made from Jello. How you let the same play beat you over and over without fighting back smh 

I know man it literally looks like me playing madden vs my little brother.

The most frustrating thing to me is, ppl just nickel and dime us down the field week after week, year after year and we do nothing. Heaven forbid we actually get someone in a 3rd and long or 4th and long cuz you know he’s calling that ****** *** prevent D. Only thing it prevents is us winning games. I love several players on D but I ******* hate our defense

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47 minutes ago, caponine said:

The player that's disappointed me the most though is Takk, a passionate guy and he plays like he made of cottonelle smh and yeahh but even with that though Carson still almost beat us because of the same stupid stuff 

Injuries happen in the NFL. Takk has created problems/pressure for opposing qb’s so far this year. Just been dealt a tough hand

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