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 Post subject: Last 4 gms should decide where Falcs go in free agecy/draft
PostPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2005 3:25 am 
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One good thing about the next 4 games at least for me is evaluation of players on the Falcon's and can they handle there jobs.So far we know the run defense stinks,def backls get lit up like christmas trees and the off line still has problems pass blocking especially vs good defenses.I expect players will play well vs the Saints since they are not good but the next 3 games(Chicago,Tampa,Carolina) will see who shd be on the bench and what improvements need to be made for specifically.Here are the thins I will be reviewing:

1.First on offense,the offensive line can the linemen protect vick on passing plays.Why does it seem like when we face carolina they always man handle our offensive line and if it wasn't vick being houdini half the time there would be alot more sacks.Watch right tackle(Weiner,Stokes) can they handle peppers.More times than not peppers has blown right by right tackle. Shaffer is a free agent watch left tackle does rucker or rice continue to get pressure? Also watch center does the other tam def tackles continually bust through to stuff the falcon running game? Mcclure has been a weak spot for way to long and it is time to get someone bigger that can standup to these big def tackles.
2.Defense -the main problem of the Falcon's.Watch where the other team runs the ball.Is it towards the left end where brady smith would be playing and is the other team gaining yds there.Is it up the middle where lavalias isn't stopping the run? If I am Mora I bench Babs just to see what Davis can do. We need to find out if def end is a problem stuffing the run. We already know that the left def end side isn't getting to the QB for pressure and sacks.Are the linebackers doing there job or is the other teams running backs plowing right through to teh secondary? Finally the def backfield has been bad for 2 yrs now and changes are forth coming. We have Cash,Mathis coming back although I thought Mathis was a free agent? Anyway we need to be grooming someone at corner.I hate the way our corners have to play off the receivers.I dont know if it is a by roduct of having weak safeties that can't help in coverage or def line not pressuring whcih makes the safties look bad thus corners have ot play off receiver or just that Webster can't cover up close? I am going to be looking at thev defense as a whole and watch certain positions to see i the players are getting the job done. I think mora can be to wishy washy and not hold players accountable.If you want to win champinships you got to be fixing things and not let being a nice guy get in the way.

There is only so much we can do in the off season.I don't think the falcon's will be able to do alot in free agency since there isn't alot of money left.Mora mentioned a few weeks ago the defense is young and inexperienced. That is true plus there have been injuries however the defense still needs alot of talent despite that scenario.Here are some possible solutions for the team.

1.Off tackle - depends on if a player in the draft falls to the falcon's like Jonathan Scott then you take him.Not sure if scott can play right tackle,I would think since left tackle is usually more difficult.Shaffer may be resigned but since vick is lefthanded right tacvkle becomes the more important position.Really I would love to have 2 new tackles.I thin playing tough teams the next 3 out of 4 weeks will show how bad the tackles are in pass offense.
2.Center - I would hoope we can find a bigger center that can play in free agency.I am not sure a rookie can handle the center position but if they can we would probably draft one in the 3rd or 4th round. Free agency since we have so many areas that need fixed not sure if we can afford anyone good (lecharles bentley).
3.Guard - left guard maybe we take a guy like Sedderstrom I believe from minnesota or wisonsin in the 3rd round.Again not sure if we can find quality in free agency since limited budget.
4.Def line - well this is an important area and it will be determined next 4 games how much we need help.Frankly, if you can't do it against the all ran teams we have already played what makes you think we are going to be any bettervs the better teams the next 3 out of 4 games. I am tired of the def tackles namely Lavalias getting pushed around.the falcon's philosphy is to get smallish def tackles that are quick.One thing when tampa used to have sapp,mcfarland is those guys are strong.L avalias may be big but s weak.Def tackle is a high priorty although I can see thevfalcon's wait to draft that position because of just drafting Babs there. I don;'t think babs is going to pan out as stopping the run but will see.Would be nice to get a free agent that could if anything stop the run let coleman get to the passer. Def end.well we know so far teams run ragged over there and I just hope mora has the sense to start davis since Babs is not a def end.I can't trell if it will be a spot can not be fixed or can.I posted that NFL Draft Blitz things Darren Howard could be a falcon .Don't think howard's forte is stoping the run.Would not surprise me to see the falcon's draft someone if they thought he could develop frast in the 1st or 2nd round at def end.The epxerts always say a pass rusher can cover up alot of mistakes.So far we are getting no production from this spot.
Linebackers - I don't think the falcon;'s do anything here other than hope the backers get better with a yr of experience and hartwell and beck being back.
Def backs - For 2 yrs the def backs have been bad.I know Hall is or can be a pro bowler and webster is better than the safeties are at there position even though he is overpaid.Since corners are so hard to come by it would be great to get a combination corner/safety in the first round or second.I am not sure if Huff will be around he would answer the problem though.With cash playing well when he was here beforee injury I think if the falcons can't get a combined corner/safety then safety will be the first place that gets priorty.After watching games of our safeties tackling like girls half the time at least one of them is getting replaced.Realistically I think only one gets replaced so it depends on who the falcon's are higher on strong safety or weak. This is a real good draft to get safeites so I gues will find out.Seeing the likes of Darnell Bing,Pollard,perhaps Ko Simpson,Landry,Huff not sure about blue if he is another thomas daivs over sized linebacker trying to play safety. I think Scott wil dodge the bullet again and be moved back to strong safety.He must have some talent being that highly drafted at least I hope so. I look for a 1st or 2nd round pick at safety and maybe if there is any money the other safety not drafted will be filled by free agency.

Basically these next 4 games are going to tell me alot about our team.Which players can play with the better players in the league.Wil see who isn't doing there job and who is for the most part.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2005 3:52 am 
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Good post man. One thing I have been juggling around is maybe we could draft a CB/S guy like Huff or Allen or (yeah right) Williams, and have them play corner next year. Then we could move Webster to our Strong Safety (meaning he would be our ball hawk) since he is actually a decent tackler usually. Then we could draft a Strong Safety in the 2nd or 3rd round and have them start behind Hall next year. Some people will probably say this is ridiculous, but it really is the best scenario for the next season, until we can get rid of Web's contract. Then we could draft a corner after that or hope we can get one in later rounds, and move Huff, Allen, Williams to their Safety position. As for the rest, we will be picking up linemen in the later rounds as per Gibbs' usual style, and I think we could find some gems that way.

Unfortunately, I think DE will have to wait until the 2007 draft or something unless we trade up for Williams or Kiwanuka............which brings me to another point. I have been thinking about the best way to get what we need now & I came up with an excellent idea. We trade Schaub + our first 3 picks of this draft for the first 3 picks of the Jets, Lions, etc. This moves us into a very good position for the draft to fill needs and gives Schaub the chance he deserves to go start somewhere.. Not sure if this would ever happen or the legistics of it, but it would be an interesting change on the trade Schaub for a 1st round pick stuff we typically hear.


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 Post subject: Interesting thoughts Incomparable!
PostPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2005 5:47 pm 
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I don't see all the possible trades you mentioned but they are interesting thoughts on what to do.I don't think the Falcon's trade schaub this off season but next they better or risk losing him to free agency.I am not sure if he is a free agent or restricted free agent.If Restricted some team may offer him alot and well have to let him go.Schaub should net us a no2 pick since he doesn't play enough to heighten his value.

I see the falcon's winning possibly 2 more games and inish at 9-7 which means will probably draft around 18-22.If a team covetes huff for corner he could go in the top 10.Hopefully if ko simpson comes out and is graded high the falcon's select him.If Mario Williams or the guy from boston college are off the board by the falcon's pick and huff is I think Jonathan Scott might be there to pick and it is hard bypassing a big left tackle who could play right tackle.Well just have to let it play out and see where the cards drop.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2005 6:55 pm 
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Ko was selected to the All American Team today, beating out Bing, Blue, Pollard, & a number of other good players. It was he, Williams, Huff, and someone else who made the team. I will try to find out who the other guy was too.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2005 7:45 pm 
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Even though I've praised Shaffer for much of this year, I think these last 4 games will really display the sort of ability he has.

He will face Rice and Rucker of course, but he'll also battle with Alex Brown, Will Smith, Darren Howard, and Charles Grant. Now only Rice is considered an elite DE, but Brown and Rucker are still good Pro Bowl caliber plays and Smith is one in the making, while Howard and Grant aren't having great years, but aren't slouches.

How well he plays against these guys will display if he's capable of being our LT for a few more years. I don't expect him to pitch 4 straight shutouts, but if in 3 out of these 4 games he doesn't look overmatched and do a pretty good job keeping his man from taking over a game, then I'd say its a plus in my book.

I know I'm in the minority, but I don't think we have to do a lot of big things to the defense. Now that doesn't mean I'm against using early draft picks on guys or signing 1 high caliber free agent. But i think that experience alone is going to improve the defense from 2005 to 2006. Now would they be among the best in the league on added experience alone in '06? Probably not.

I think the defense will improve if we get the players in here that will allow us to be more aggressive. I think that's what has hurt us this year, and why we saw a similar regression from 2002 to 2003. We relied too much on the bend but don't break mentality, and as a season passes, giving up huge chunks of yardage plays on your psyche, and you start to do more breaking and less bending. So for that reason, getting DEs or DTs or whatever that are big bodies that can plug run lanes is not necessary. Instead, I think getting DEs and DTs that are more aggressive, bring more speed and athleticism is more important since it will allow us as a unit to be more aggressive, and hopefully more successful. Despite what others might think, the Bucs defense even at their height of their defense prowess under Dungy were weak up the middle vs. the run. A team with a solid interior ground game could slash through the middle of their line because Sapp & McFarland & Culpepper weren't great run stoppers. Now of course, few teams could say that they were solid enough in terms of their middle O-linemen matching up with the Bucs D-line, but I think if you look at 2003 with both Sapp & Booger McFarland there in the game that Bibla started and Duckett had 93 yards that day.

I think we need a safety that can play the run well. I think we need a young cornerback that can be groomed to be a starter in a year or two. I think we need another pass rusher at DE to take pressure off the other guys. Those are the only things that I'd call needs on defense. Everything else is just depth if that.

Offensively, the only thing I think we need right now is a left guard that fits our scheme but also plays well in pass protection enough that he can match up with the Kris Jenkins, Shaun Rogers, and other top DTs in the league. At least better than Matt Lehr does.

OT, now I don't think it's a need since I think as it stands now we can live with Shaffer & Weiner as our starters in 2006. But I would like to add someone at that position to push those guys or potentially replace one. Losing both would hurt this year since it really breaks up continuity.

But I agree, these last 4 games will give the chance to some players to earn contracts next year or a spot on the waiver wire.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 10, 2005 11:09 pm 
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Great post Pudge. The Bucs D was able to be gashed up the middle in the run game. Their inside & strong LB's were never that good, and their great players were not really run stuffers with one exception. John Lynch was a beast against the run back then. That is why teams didn't constantly run over that Bucs D. If you remember, Lynch was more often running into the box upon the snap than dropping into coverage. The important ingredient for making this happen though is a great pass rush & 2 strong corners, which is what that D is built around. The biggest problem I see with our D right now is the same problem they had before their Super Bowl season, no dominant outside pass rusher. Once they picked up Rice, that D went from a top defense to the best in the league. So we're abouit 4 players away from having that kind of D. We need a big time DE, another good cover corner (not necessarily a great one though), a big hitting, run stuffing Safety, and a ball hawking Safety. So basically everything you said is exactly what we need.

Offensively, we need to re-tool the O-line obviously. And we will never really know about our skill players until the line gets solidified, so I will leave that alone.


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 Post subject: We need to build a defense like the 2000 Ravens
PostPosted: Sun Dec 11, 2005 1:10 am 
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I remember the 2002 Tampa Bay defense they were tough as nails to pass against but you could run up the middle on them despite Sapp and Mcfarland being the def tackles.I used t get so mad since we had Dan Reeve's most of the time the falcon's chose to run sideways which benefited tampa's defense since they were fast and would just cut yo u off and made it hard to run against them. Duckett may have had 93 yds that one game but the majority of times the falcons could not move the ball against the Bucs defense.

The defense I wish the Falcons would try and model is the 2000 ravens defense.They had huge def tackles,just great all around players all over the field.Mcalister,Ray Lewis,Mcrary just spelled trouble of opposing offenses.Unfortunate;y I think mckay is trying to model the defense like the Bucs which isn't bad but you can run up the middle with a power back.I know at this it is far fetched to think the falcons could remotely have a defense like the bucs or ravens but it just shows you can build a fast quick defense with power guys at def tackle like the ravens did.You would think Donatrell would have some say on his def tackles.He came from green bay having gilbert brown but at the end of his career.As long as mckay is here I think will always be small and can get pushed around.

Back to my main point these next 4 games we will see who should stay and who should go for next year.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 11, 2005 2:33 am 
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I agree. I've always believed that Ravens defense was superior because they had everything the Bucs had including the run stuffing DT's in Adams & Goose. I think this franchise has a problem with big fat guys though, so we won't likely see that while McKay & Co. are here.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 12, 2005 6:07 pm 
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we could possibly go after the center from minnesota who was a finalist for the best interior lineman award. hes 6'4" and 285lbs. he fits the mold we are setting for our OL.


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