Originally Posted by junk
I'm actually worried about run defense a little bit this year.
Maybe I'm way off base, but I think OCs will attack Dallas more in the run game now with corner being solidified. I wouldn't be surprised to see a focus on the run with play action pass to attack the safeties as a common approach against Dallas.
Although Lee and Ware are outstanding, I'm not sure about the rest of the front 7s ability to stand up against the run for an entire game.
And, btw, Jones isn't a good personnel guy. See 1 playoff win in 15 years.
One of Rob Ryan's tendencies is to blitz on 1st or 2nd down and play coverages on 3rd and longs. We had a lot of success in keeping teams pushed back and forced them into passing situations. For example on 1st and 10 we blitz them and they lose 8 yds so it becomes 2nd and 18. There aren't many teams that are going to roll out a running play in that situation. Our players and Rob Ryan would be ecstatic if teams chose to run the ball more on us.
I've studied Ryan's defense for a while now and even though he uses zone blitzing as a base principle in his defense he likes to attack specific gaps on the o-line. The coverage he plays behind it is variation of a 3-3 zone where the corners use man techniques. (this is why Spencer dropped into coverage on blitzes 25% of the time)
The run defense struggled alot against the Eagles (1st game) because Reid took advantage of the over-aggressiveness of the linebackers. It didn't help matters when Lee injured his wrist at the end of the 1st quarter because the fearsome tandem of Brooking and James got exposed pretty quickly. The following week Seattle tried the same plays the Eagles ran without much success.
Ratliff's size is a concern with the amount of snaps he has played the last few years but Brent has shown that he can successfully two-gap whereas Ratliff struggles with it and is more of a 1-gap attacker. Brent's season last year was disappointing but his knee injury slowed him down considerably. Lissemore can also play the nose but his style is similar to Ratliff. I'm sure Coach Baker already has a rotation in mind to keep Ratliff fresh in the 4th qtr.
"It's little bit like the description of pornography from years back. It's hard to define it. But you know what it is at the end of it. It's hard to define it. I think you know who is more physical. Often times you see that in the fourth quarter. A lot of time the team on the other side feels it. We pride ourselves on being a physical football team. It's important to us. It's an important time of the year to lay that foundation." - Coach Garrett