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 Post subject: Gut check time
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 1:12 pm 
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This week will tell us who's playing out the string and who actually has heart on this team. Whether they won last week or not, this Buc team is in disarray. Rookie QB, 3rd and 4th string running backs, losers of 13 of their last 15 - these injured Falcons should take care of business in Tampa Bay.

Anyone, coaches included, just going through the motions should be benched for the rest of the year. This is uncharted waters for the Smitty regimn and must be dealt with accordingly. Coach hard and play hard. Anything less is unacceptable.


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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 3:20 pm 
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AngryJohnny51 wrote:
these injured Falcons should take care of business in Tampa Bay.

:rofl:

That'll be the day.

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 3:27 pm 
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Pudge wrote:
AngryJohnny51 wrote:
these injured Falcons should take care of business in Tampa Bay.

:rofl:

That'll be the day.


C'mon Pudge! I'm trying to psych myself up for this weekend! :D


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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 3:30 pm 
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Considering the Buc's seem to be getting it together and are actually playing some good football as of late it isn't a stretch to see Atlanta lose to them.

I think Peter King summed it up nicely in his MMQB story this week:

"I think it’s stunning how awful Atlanta is."

We started the season thinking that we could be a Super Bowl team. At this point of the season Atlanta's only purpose is to avoid ending in a tie with Jacksonville, Tampa, Minnesota, and Houston for worst team in the league.

We have two borderline winnable games left this year, Tampa & Buffalo, I'm questioning whether or not we can pull that off.

At least we should end up with a Top 5 pick in the draft.

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 3:39 pm 
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Quote:
"I think it’s stunning how awful Atlanta is."


The offense covered up alot of faults. This team had it's best chance at a Super Bowl last season.


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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 4:03 pm 
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dirtybirdnw wrote:
Considering the Buc's seem to be getting it together and are actually playing some good football as of late it isn't a stretch to see Atlanta lose to them.

I think Peter King summed it up nicely in his MMQB story this week:

"I think it’s stunning how awful Atlanta is."

We started the season thinking that we could be a Super Bowl team. At this point of the season Atlanta's only purpose is to avoid ending in a tie with Jacksonville, Tampa, Minnesota, and Houston for worst team in the league.

We have two borderline winnable games left this year, Tampa & Buffalo, I'm questioning whether or not we can pull that off.

At least we should end up with a Top 5 pick in the draft.

Houston IS WAY BETTER than us. They are actually competitive and in a position with a 3rd string QB to win games in the final 5 minutes. We have a 1st string Top 10 QB and we are out of the game 15 minutes in.

AngryJohnny51 wrote:
This team had it's best chance at a Super Bowl last season.

Yes, I know I am a prophet.

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Wed Nov 13, 2013 4:52 pm 
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I'm routing for the Bucs, a win by them, and we can have a shot at the #2 pic. With Jacksonville destined to take a QB, OMG :D

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Sun Nov 17, 2013 10:35 pm 
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AngryJohnny51 wrote:
Coach hard and play hard. Anything less is unacceptable.



Well, I guess we passed that test :ninja:

AJ51, care to change your mind about the 'braintrust'?..Just curious 8-)

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 2:10 am 
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These games show our brain trust to be better not worse!!! We need to lose to be better in the future, we can get a stud in the top 5 and another starter in the second round, plus all our injured guys back and we are set to make a run next year. Anything you see the rest of this year, is pointless, we are too hurt to win and aren't giving 100% as it's counter productive.

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 10:15 am 
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fun gus wrote:
AngryJohnny51 wrote:
Coach hard and play hard. Anything less is unacceptable.



Well, I guess we passed that test :ninja:

AJ51, care to change your mind about the 'braintrust'?..Just curious 8-)


Maybe! :P

TD and Smitty will be back. Nolan will be/has to be fired. Next season Smitty's seat will be hot though. I think TD is safe for a while longer.


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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 11:14 am 
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AngryJohnny51 wrote:
fun gus wrote:
AngryJohnny51 wrote:
Coach hard and play hard. Anything less is unacceptable.



Well, I guess we passed that test :ninja:

AJ51, care to change your mind about the 'braintrust'?..Just curious 8-)


Maybe! :P

TD and Smitty will be back. Nolan will be/has to be fired. Next season Smitty's seat will be hot though. I think TD is safe for a while longer.



I may be wrong, but I'm not as down on Nolan as Koetter. I mean, look what the guy has been given to work with? What he did last year making chickensalad out of chickensh*t was nothing short of remarkable. Then, this year we give away Abe ( who is rolling on his new team) and Biermann goes down...Rookie CB's and UDFA's....

I think he will go of his own volition. I would keep him and dump Koetter :ninja:

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 12:09 pm 
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fun gus wrote:
I think he will go of his own volition. I would keep him and dump Koetter :ninja:

Agree. Koetter stinks. If you give Nolan playmakers i.e. pass rushers, then there is nothing wrong with him or his scheme. The only issue with Nolan is whether he's still on that kick of having 10 3-sack guys than 3 10-sack guys. That's just stupid.

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 1:05 pm 
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Yeah, I can't hate on Nolan too much. He has a pretty bare cupboard to work with on that defense.

On the other side of the ball Koetter has plenty of weapons left to put up far better production that they have so far. The OC spot might be the undoing of Smith at this rate.

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 1:45 pm 
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Pudge wrote:
fun gus wrote:
I think he will go of his own volition. I would keep him and dump Koetter :ninja:

Agree. Koetter stinks. If you give Nolan playmakers i.e. pass rushers, then there is nothing wrong with him or his scheme. The only issue with Nolan is whether he's still on that kick of having 10 3-sack guys than 3 10-sack guys. That's just stupid.


well, is he stays and that truly IS his philosophy, then it doesn't make alot of sense to go for a power DE then. Maybe we should spend both our first pick on OL and DL. If by some miracle we end up with the #1 or #2 pick, I am beginning to think we should trade down a bit for the teams that need a QB or OT and try to fill more holes.....

:ninja: :whistle:

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 3:05 pm 
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fun gus wrote:
well, is he stays and that truly IS his philosophy, then it doesn't make alot of sense to go for a power DE then

And thus his philosophy is dumb.

A competent pass rush is going to have 1 10-sack guy, a good one is going to have 2, and a great one will have 3 or more. It's really that simple. If the goal is to get a better pass rush, then the Falcons need to find at least 1 of those guys. And when they get 1, they need to find 2. And if/when they find 2, they need to search for 3. It's not easy, but it's pretty simple.

IMO, the ideal strategy for the next 2 years will be finding the foundation pass rushers in this year's draft in Rounds 1 and 2. Then after giving Holmes/Konz/etc. another year to either sink or swim, the Falcons can devote their top 2 picks in 2015 to OL, if/when they dump Baker, Blalock, and/or decide to move on from Holmes and Konz, especially when it's been shown that OL tend to hit it by Year 3 and not at all.

In the meantime, if the Falcons can sign some mid-level FA OL with starting experience to bolster competition next spring/summer, hopefully that can upgrade the OL in the short-term while we wait until 2015 to fix it long-term.

Thus if you manage to hit on your 2 DL this year, and then your 2 OL next year, you've added foundation pieces that you can build the remainder of your DL and OL around for the next 5-7 years.

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 4:15 pm 
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Pudge wrote:
fun gus wrote:
well, is he stays and that truly IS his philosophy, then it doesn't make alot of sense to go for a power DE then

And thus his philosophy is dumb.

A competent pass rush is going to have 1 10-sack guy, a good one is going to have 2, and a great one will have 3 or more. It's really that simple. If the goal is to get a better pass rush, then the Falcons need to find at least 1 of those guys. And when they get 1, they need to find 2. And if/when they find 2, they need to search for 3. It's not easy, but it's pretty simple.

IMO, the ideal strategy for the next 2 years will be finding the foundation pass rushers in this year's draft in Rounds 1 and 2. Then after giving Holmes/Konz/etc. another year to either sink or swim, the Falcons can devote their top 2 picks in 2015 to OL, if/when they dump Baker, Blalock, and/or decide to move on from Holmes and Konz, especially when it's been shown that OL tend to hit it by Year 3 and not at all.

In the meantime, if the Falcons can sign some mid-level FA OL with starting experience to bolster competition next spring/summer, hopefully that can upgrade the OL in the short-term while we wait until 2015 to fix it long-term.

Thus if you manage to hit on your 2 DL this year, and then your 2 OL next year, you've added foundation pieces that you can build the remainder of your DL and OL around for the next 5-7 years.


I see your strategy, but I dont think I agree with going after TWO pass rushers with both our first picks. I think we need to at least try to bolster the OL with something other then a FA JAG or a 4th rounder. I could see getting one, but not two DE's... I know your reasoning, and you made a good case that it's easier to find an adequate OL outside the first two picks vs finding that pass rusher....BUt I see that as gambling a whole lot on Konz/Holmes to step it up. Baker aint going anywhere until 2015 at the earliest...If they were to do that, get two pass rushers with thier first two picks, that is a pretty big gamble: with thier jobs absolutely on the line. If we struggle next year and dont immediately improve Ryan's protection, Blank will be calling U Haul before you can say 'Jacksonville' :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 5:46 pm 
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I hear what you're saying, but I think the risk of having another year of a Bad OL is an acceptable risk. As I noted before, good defense is a much more important factor for overall team success than good OL play, as I noted earlier when discussing teams that make deep playoff runs.

Not to mention this team has succeeded with a line this bad. The issue this year is not the OL, it's the problems stemming from subpar QB play and the lack of viable WRs. The OL itself is about the same as it has been in past years. With a healthy Julio and some supplementary pieces added at WR and TE, there's really little reason to think the Falcons offense won't bounce back if you do absolutely nothing with the OL.

Obviously, the ideal world you can upgrade both areas. And the positive about the DL is that the FA class next year is much stronger in terms of quality front 7 prospects than the OL class, so there is a greater potential that if you're willing to spend $$$ in the off-season, the Falcons can address some of the DL problems and still be able to use their high picks on OL.

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 6:18 pm 
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Sub par QB play and weak WRs? Did you really say that? Don't you think a lot of the reason the QB is playing poorly is a one sided attack (pass) and poor protection and if RW, TG, HD and (fill in th eblank) are below standard then what does the rest of the league make do with and what are the chances of drafting someone better than any of them....or, at least, first two?

Wouldn't you say that, in general, we need to be drafting best available if it is not a QB or CB? Hasn't need drafting messed us up a bit?

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 7:20 pm 
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Look, Atlanta got elite production from their QB, 2 WRs, and TE last year. And they had a s***ty OL. And it resulted in them being 10 yards from the Super Bowl.

Now, the Falcons still have a s***ty OL, and are getting below average production from the QB (over past 4 weeks), neither WR is playing (Roddy is league average at this point in his production, not ability), and Gonzo is playing at a high level, but he's far from elite. And they are now the worst team in the league.

Again, contrary to popular belief, the status quo has largely been maintained up front.

Last year, thru 9 games, the Falcons gave up 10 sacks that were the fault of OL, missed 30 blocks, and allowed 37.5 pressures. This year, they've allowed 12 sacks, missed 34 blocks, and allowed 22.5 pressures. When you take sacks and pressures as Positive Pass Rushes (PPRs) and divide by total number of drop backs, you realize that in 2012 the Falcons OL gave up a PPR on 12.84% of drop backs. This year, that number is down to 8.98%. Now, where the line has taken a step back is run blocking. Despite having similar missed block numbers, when you factor in that the Falcons ran the ball 220 times thru 9 games last year vs. 165 times this year, one realizes that the OL is accounting for far more times when the RB is bottled up in the backfield or at the line of scrimmage. The percentage is: 13.6% in 2012 vs. 20.6% in 2013.

When you balance the two, it's about the same. Whatever gains have been made in pass protection are being lost in run blocking, you get about the status quo.

Some interesting numbers, when you look at EPA (Expected Points Added).

Thru the first 5 games, Ryan's EPA this year compared favorable with last year.

Thru first 5 games in 2012: 62.9
Thru first 5 games in 2013: 59.4

Since then…

Thru games 6-10 in 2012: 41.7
Thru games 6-10 in 2013: 8.7

Extrapolate, Ryan's numbers thru 5 games over the course of 16, you get a EPA of roughly 192. The highest rated QB in the league last regular season was Tom Brady with 196.6. Extrapolate Ryan's games 6-10 over 16 games, and you get EPA of 133, which is right at where RG3's was last year, ranked 6th with 129.6. BTW, Ryan's total by the end of the regular season in 2012 was 171.4, right behind Brady and Manning (171.8).

Now extrapolate Ryan's play over the past 5 games this year, and you get a 16-game total of 27.8. This is how it would stack up against last year's starting QBs:

18. Christian Ponder (35.7)
19. Josh Freeman (34.5)
20. Ryan Fitzpatrick (30.6)
21. Philip Rivers (28.5)
22. Jay Cutler (20.6)
23. Sam Bradford (19.1)

One way of looking at it, with Julio in the lineup, Matt Ryan looked like Tom Brady. Without him, he looks like a poor man's Ryan Fitzpatrick.

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 7:37 pm 
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That is the only thing that bugs me about Matt Ryan. He doesn't really elevate his peers performance by his mere presence. He can make good receivers marginally better but without elite talent his production won't be elite.

Unlike other QB's around the league that are capable of elevating the play of their peers. Players such as Tom Brady, Peyton Manning, Drew Brees. Granted I'm talking about the cream of the crop but it would be nice to have something more than above average at best given elite tools.

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Mon Nov 18, 2013 11:25 pm 
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Pudge wrote:
I hear what you're saying, but I think the risk of having another year of a Bad OL is an acceptable risk. ..The OL itself is about the same as it has been in past years..


No sir, I know you have a plethora of cute stats, but I absolutely take issue with this statement.

'I can believe PFF or my own lyin' eyes'. Our OL is most definitely WORSE this year then last year. ( and I saw your 'qualifier' in past year-S-)


Be reasonable, Pudge. Your a pragmatist, and one of the reasons I like you is because you have the ability and know-how to talk me off the ledge at times. But I cannot 'square; that statement, and please, dont 'provide' some 'in depth' statistical nonsensery about how Konz isn't sucking, Holmes didn't come into the first game out of shape, and if our OL was 'about the same' as last year we would not have been going after McClure when he had been out of the league until the bye.

Un-Uhn..No way :snooty:

So now we are down to 'Matt Ryan needs Julio to be a 'good' QB'. If that is, in fact the case we have MUCH bigger problems on our hands. I am not saying you are wrong here. But if that is true, Katie bar the door, because we are in for a rocky next 3-4 seasons..... :ninja:

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2013 12:04 pm 
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Again fun gus I want to point out that while the OL may be worse than it was last year, it's not by a huge margin. The point I'm trying to make is that it seems worse because you don't have the greatness of the passing game to offset it.

There's a term for this, that is currently escaping me, but it's basically how your perception is fallible and how you only notice the big stuff. It's the same basic premise I was arguing 2 years ago when I was saying that Julio Jones wasn't significantly better in 2011 than Michael Jenkins was in 2010. We get locked into the big splash plays that Julio made, but forget all the "little" chain-moving plays that Jenkins made the year before and the trade-off makes them roughly a wash (now again, I do admit that Julio > Jenkins, but not by the degree I think some believe). It's relevant now to the sort of production that Harry Douglas is putting up, mainly because he is capable of getting a 50 yd catch every now and then, but otherwise isn't really doing much.

I realized this back in June when I went back and read my game reviews of 2012, and saw that nearly every week my comments were on how the running game stunk and the OL is struggling to pass protect.

Don't you remember last year fun gus when you and RobertAP and I got into that tizzy about Todd McClure sucking? viewtopic.php?f=2&t=17783&p=113585

Is Konz worse? Yes. But remember, McClure had "lost it" last year…

What is happening is that you're seeing the OL in its "raw, uncut" form. And before you had Julio, Roddy, Tony, and Ryan to sort of cook it up, season it, to make it much more palatable.

What is happening is that people are once again realizing that I was right all along when I said months/years ago that once you moved past the big name superstars at the skill positions, this team's talent level is average at best.

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I want to improve the OL, but at the same time IMO it should take a back seat to the defense, and I don't think the Falcons have to bend over backwards to improve that unit. I don't really think throwing a bunch of $$$ at the problem is going to really solve anything, especially in an offseason where the OL talent is going to be limited (thus likely driving up the price), nor do I think the Falcons have to use high picks on the group this spring.

And again I'll stress that having a good OL is not a prerequisite to being a contender. Look at Arizona. Arguably the worst OL in the league, but they're in the playoff hunt. Why? Because they have a top-tier defense. Look at Indianapolis, bad OL last year and again this year. But they are in the playoff hunt. Why? Because they're defense has improved and they are getting good QB play from Luck. Seattle's OL has been piss poor over the past month, but again their defense has bailed them out and they are arguably the best team in the NFL. KC's OL hans't even been very good. Jeff Allen and Eric Fisher have been just as bad if not worse than some of our blockers up front this year, yet it's not stopping the Chiefs, why because they have a RB that makes his blocking better (which is a prerequisite of being a legit NFL starting RB, something this Falcon team has been missing since 2010) and they have a great defense.

If/when Roddy and Julio come back healthy next year, and the Falcons can shore up depth and roster at WR (Danario Alexander?) and TE (Fred Davis?), there's no reason to think Ryan won't be back producing as a Top 5 QB, with the Falcons doing nothing up front.

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2013 12:18 pm 
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Pudge wrote:
Again fun gus I want to point out that while the OL may be worse than it was last year, it's not by a huge margin. ...Is Konz worse? Yes. But remember, McClure had "lost it" last year…

What is happening is that you're seeing the OL in its "raw, uncut" form. And before you had Julio, Roddy, Tony, and Ryan to sort of cook it up, season it, to make it much more palatable..



We are substantially worse this year then last. Konz was a #2pick and the best center in the draft, and he stinks so bad they actually extended an olive branch to bring back McClure who had been sitting on his couch for 8 weeks. Im sorry, that is just plain bad. There simply is no excuse for it.

Now saying that the offensive weapons can cover up alot of bad OL play is fair enough, but we got our a$$ handed to us by a team we should have dispatched with ease..We were out Julio and Baker. Roddy is not 100%, but he's out there. Yet we still got steamrolled. The 'offensive weapons>weak Ol' theory seems kinda weak in regards to how we played sunday, because that only 'works' when these 'weapons' do thier job. I believe a great part of the reason they are not doing it is because Ryan is getting creamed.

the way I see it, we have two paths we can take...Path #1 is to use our first pick if we are in the 1-5 range on a foundation DE. Path#2 is to package that 1st round pick to Cleaveland for thier #9 and #27 in the first, plus a fourth rounder..Brandon Weeden aint gettin it done: and there are alot of QB's that will be flying off the shelf. They would prolly do this to snag Johnny Football...

Then, we can wait to see if Clowney will fall to #9...Now maybe Buffalo snags Clowney at #7..that's possible. But the question becomes this: do you 'trust' TD and Smith to pick a 'pass rusher' at #9 vs #4?

I would make this deal. We have the leverage. Trade away our first pick ( providing we keep playing 'competetive football the next 6 games :roll: ) take Clowney if he falls to #9 or get Anthony Barr..In fact, that's who I would pick over Clowney, anyways. I dont think Cloney could pass 'the filter'. Then, at #29 we snag Gabe Jackson ( road grader RG) and use the 4th round pick on a developmental QB and dump Dominique. We have just put a DE on the field, AND we got an extra RG.

I would go with Path#2 :ninja:

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2013 2:31 pm 
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I won't get into the specifics of drafting because again, I think making draft plans and projections in mid-November is the height of folly. Although for the record i think both Clowney and Barr will be taken off the board in the first 4-6 picks when all is said and done.

fun gus wrote:
We are substantially worse this year then last.

As a team, I absolutely agree. The running game has managed to get worse (thanks to the OL's run blocking getting worse as I noted before) and the defense is much worse. And the only strengths of this team from a year ago are now weaknesses because of the declining play of the QB which is directly related to the injuries at WR, not the play of the OL. Because the pass protection as a whole has been better over the past 5 games than it was over the first 5 games of the year, and we've seen the huge dip in Ryan's production.

The OL stinks, I'm not trying to deny this. But the point I'm making is that when you really look at this team, this team could go into next year with the same starting 5 as they opened the season, and if they get better production from the QB thanks to healthier WRs, then you have every reason to believe this team will be back in the playoff hunt. And if they actually improve their pass rush, especially since they will be losing 2 veteran starters in the secondary.

The point I'm just trying to make is that it's reasonable to think that the Falcons could do nothing with their OL and they could bounce back and have a 10-win season next year. But I keep hearing how the Falcons are doomed to have another 2-win season without substantial changes to the OL. I don't think that's true at all based off the game of football, this 2013 season, and past seasons the Falcons have had.

Again, I also want to upgrade the OL. But it's a distant 2nd priority to upgrading the defense. The Falcons got Alford & Trufant last year, they have William Moore for another 2 years, and potentially after new deals for Spoon and Peters in the next 6-12 months will have them as well. They might have stumbled onto another good player in Worrilow. But this off-season will be an abysmal failure if they can't add another playmaker/pass rusher in their front 4/7 whether that's a 4-3 DE like Clwoney, a 3-4 OLB like Barr, or a 3-4 DE that is going to be the next Cameron Jordan/J.J. Watt.

I'm tired of this team thinking you can have a middling defense and win Super Bowls. It's been proven time and time again that you can win a Super Bowl with a middling OL. That's all I'm saying is that if/when this team's priorities are in order, and TD is building this team the right way, it will be because he is finally putting the defense first and not trying to build one with 3rd and 5th round picks. Now, you can do that if you're the Bengals and you are drafting 1st round talents that are character risks that have fallen into those rounds i.e. Justin Houston, Geno Atkins, Greg Hardy, etc. But we all know that TD isn't that sort of guy.

One of the reasons why I'm not as quick to fire TD as others is because I think he finally "got it" this past April, with using our top 2 Picks on CBs. The reality is that outside QB, DE, and CB, every other position there is good evidence that you can wait until the 3rd round or later to find good players at, whether it's WR, TE, OL, LB, or S. But if you want to find good players at QB, DE, CB, and to a lesser extent OT and DT, you better use a #1 or #2 pick on that position. But it's not automatic, because at the end of the day you have to still draft well. Josh Sitton and T.Y. Hilton and Dashon Goldson don't just fall into your lap, you gotta find them, and that's something that TD hasn't done a good job doing. I believe him capable, he just has to go out and do it.

Look if the Falcons are picking 4th and the 4th best player in the draft is a OT, then I'm not going to complain about them taking the OT. But what people don't realize is that just because you have a good OT, doesn't mean you have a good OL. see Thomas, Joe. What people fail to realize is that if/when this OL becomes a good one it's either going to require 5 brand new starters which will take the better part of 3 years to find or that Jake Matthews/Taylor Lewan pick at OT, plus Peter Konz and Lamar Holmes not sucking.

Its the exact same argument that I've made int he past when discussing any defensive improvement, that players like Dent, Peters, Massaquoi, etc. have to become significantly better players. You need guys like Konz & Holmes to sink or swim next year. If they sink, then you move on in 2015 as you were going to do anyway. If they swim, then you'll be grateful for it. Again, I think it behooves the team to have some insurance policies in place in case they do sink, and if that means re-signing Joe Hawley and signing Anthony Collins, then by all means do that.

But a player like King Dunlap epitomizes exactly the approach IMO the Falcons should have had all along. He's succeeding in San Diego, and on tape he showed in spot duty in Philly that at worst he was a serviceable stop gap and at best he was a guy that could shut down DeMarcus Ware. And SD signed him to a 2-yr. $4M deal this of-fseason, while the Falcons gave Sam Baker, who is a marginally better player 6-yrs. $41M. And even if Dunlap fell flat on his face in SD this year, it only required an investment of $1.5M or so in guaranteed money. And they could easily move on and draft somebody else or sign somebody else. But the Falcons are in this situation where they are guaranteed like $12M more to Sam Baker, and can't get out of that deal and just have to hope that he plays better next year or else they pissed away all that money.

It's the same sort of value-based argument I made against the Julio Jones trade. This team has been TERRIBLE at assessing value, with overpaying for Julio when they could have gotten Torrey Smith for a 2nd and 5th round pick. Overpaying Dunta $57M and letting Grimes walk for $5M, over drafting guys routinely in Rounds 3-5 like Dent, Meier, etc. Thinking Osi because he's younger would be better than John Abraham, etc. And IMO once again over-spending whether it's in FA or the draft on O-linemen is another example of this team's inability to properly assess value.

As I've illustrated before, you can have Joe Thomas or Jake Long on your roster, and it doesn't make a huge difference. You can go from elite in Ryan Clady to marginal in Chris Clark and it doesn't make a difference. You can be like NO, and have a revolving door at LT with Jammal Brown to Jermon Bushrod to Charles Brown and eventually Terron Armstead, and it doesn't make an ounce of difference.

But if you go from Robert Ayers to Von Miller or Amobi Okoye to J.J. Watt, it for damn sure makes a difference.

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 Post subject: Re: Gut check time
PostPosted: Wed Nov 20, 2013 10:23 am 
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Just to be a little bit contrary here, P, or to flip the coin, keep in mind that arguably the best CB int he league (Sherman) was a 5th rounder, I think. Also, though I have no problem with the two CBs drafted it continues in along running ATL trad going way back where players furthest from the ball are deemed the most important. Call it the Matt Millen School of Drafting. In all honesty, it all seems like a borderline crap shoot to me. If Konz was rated across the board as the best C and even a guy like me can tell he is getting rag dolled then what does that say? The thinking was sound but....

I'm not sure what the problem is but above all else TD and crew seem to be having trouble evaluating the big uglies on both sides of the ball. Would you say that given the cost and return that Jerry is the biggest mistake TD has made or do you think signing JJ was? I know JJ winds up being the lightning rod move because of its conspicuousness but I actually think that just getting as close to the SB as they did last year and I would have to contend largely because of him that it is already worth it provided he continues giving good service upon recovery and given the body of evidence as to how we have looked since he went down.

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