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Are we really equipped to run a dominant 3-4?

Discussion in 'Packer Fan Forum' started by Southpaw, Jan 31, 2012.

  1. Southpaw
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    Southpaw Endorphin Junkie

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    Starks barely had more total yards than Grant did. What matters more to me is the fact that Grant was able to stay healthy. Grant when he was being given the carries; he produced.

    How many times this year did Starks nearly get Rodgers killed because he was completely useless in pass protection?

    How many times this year did Starks run the wrong way on the handoff and Rodgers had to do it himself? There was one game where it happened 3 times.

    The run game here takes a long backseat to the passing game. In reality it shouldn't, we should be more balanced but that's the way it is.

    IMO, neither of these guys are going to give us any kind of consistent production in the run game or any type of balance. We should be looking to get a feature back that can actually make plays even with limited carries. Starks is not that guy and neither is Grant but Grant has made more big plays in games this year than Starks has and he's been healthier than Starks too
  2. realcaliforniacheese
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    realcaliforniacheese A-Rods Boss

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    You mean the guy who really didn't start getting the bulk of carries until Starks went out in the 1st Giants game. who averaged 4.2 yds per carry, go look at the stats. who averaged 17 yards a catch. That guy? if he had gotten the same number of carries he had had in 08 and 09 he would have been a 1200 yard rusher. I think he proved he still has juice in the tank and he can block.
  3. NelsonsLongCatch
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    NelsonsLongCatch Cheesehead

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    ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

    Really? Ryan Grant love? Do teams ever game plan for Ryan Grant? NO
  4. NelsonsLongCatch
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    NelsonsLongCatch Cheesehead

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    Starks averaged 4.3 and had 5 rushes of 20+ yards... Not to mention he's younger and cheaper.
  5. NelsonsLongCatch
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    NelsonsLongCatch Cheesehead

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    I'm in agreement with you here. Neither guy is a top running back. Teams don't fear either guy. Neither guy makes you say "wow".
  6. realcaliforniacheese
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    realcaliforniacheese A-Rods Boss

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    We will never be a power run team. We run to setup the play action. but we can run. there were a couple of games we ran the clock out running the ball and we have young talent coming down the pike. Not saying we will keep Grant but who knows, he might be worth hanging on to for another year until we see how the younger guys do in camp.
  7. AaronShockley
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    AaronShockley Cheesehead

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    No, but of the two Ryan Grant did more with less carries, without The support and backing of the staff, and way outperformed a 1 Million dollar contract. Had almost 600 yards with like 2/5 of the carries, give him a years carries, even in the offense last year he's a 1000-1200 yard rusher this year.
  8. Croak
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    Croak Cheesehead

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    I honestly don't think he cares what Packer fans think of him. Otherwise he wouldn't have had the courage to do the whole bit with replacing a certain former high profile player.
  9. NelsonsLongCatch
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    NelsonsLongCatch Cheesehead

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    Where do you get these facts from? Ryan Grant had 134 carries last year. James Starks had 133 carries last year. If my math is correct, Grant had one more carry than Starks.
  10. AaronShockley
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    AaronShockley Cheesehead

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    I was speaking more on how the carries were split in games, but didn't clarify, so I understand your point. But with that lets look at the stats.

    Rushing is almost identical
    Grant had 134 Carries for 559 yards at 4.2 yards a carry. 2 TD
    Starks had 133 carries for 578 yards and 4.3 yards a carry.1 TD

    Receiving advantage Grant
    Grant had 19 catches for 268 yards at 14.1 yards a catch. 1 TD
    Starks had 29 catches for 216 yards at 7.4 yards a catch. 0 TD

    We obviously need a multi dimensional back, and Grant gives us that, he also finds the endzone better, and seems to run with better authority, if you actually watch the games. Also if you give Grant the full amount of carries he is used to (312 and 282), let's just say 275 carries he would have rushed for 1155 yards at his current averages.

    But the point I really want you to see from here is this.
    When Ryan Grant is given over 10 carries in a game, he averages 5.12 yards a carry, and that's even with the Giants game where he only averaged 2.2 a carry being factored in. When he gets under 10 carries his average drops to 3.48 per carry.

    We give Grant the main load of carries, he will be the same back he was in 2008 and 2009. Starks just isn't the guy.
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  11. Southpaw
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    Southpaw Endorphin Junkie

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    I still think we need a back that teams will actually respect, either that or we need to open up our playbook a little bit and start running the ball more.

    We could use a feature back that has playmaking ability and that we can turn to when our receivers decided to leave their hands at home. We don't have that now. Teams don't go into meeting and say "we gotta watch out for 44 or he'll kill us"

    There are quite a few that will be there in the draft if we decide it's a priority. Martin, Rainey, Pead, Lamichael James and there are some good ones in FA.
  12. ThxJackVainisi
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    ThxJackVainisi Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    Grant is not under contract so he has no affect on the cap now. If he’d agree to play again for $1M or so he may be back, but I don’t think so. Because while he was OK he’ll turn 30 next season and will probably fall victim to the ‘release a year early rather than a year late’ idea. Alex Green is another reason and so is Brandon Saine. Starks has to prove he can get and stay healthy. I thought Saine showed some potential and he may be the fastest back on the team. And Thompson is sure to bring in a draftee and/or UDFA RB as well. I don’t think that leaves room for Grant.

    A pay site had an article about how the Packers missed Brandon Jackson this season. Your initial reaction may be ‘ya sure’ but consider this: In his last two years as the 3rd down back he never gave up a sack. He never lost a fumble in Green Bay and he was never penalized. And he caught the ball well out of the backfield. My point is not that I thought they should have kept him, only that they didn’t find a reliable third-down back to replace him. And because of the importance of the passing game, IMO it’s important that they do. If healthy, maybe Green can resume his role as third down back. But if he’s healthy he may become the main RB. Again if healthy I think he’s the ideal back because he can take it the distance and he catches the ball out of the backfield well. But they need a 3rd down guy who can pick up a blitz.
  13. realcaliforniacheese
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    If Saine can learn to pick up the Blitz he may become that 3rd down back. He also has those great hands. Lots of potential there. Going to be interesting how he comes out of this off season. He and So'oto are the two I am most interested in this year as far as having the most potential for growth. I really hope Green makes a full recovery in time to be fully productive next year otherwise I think we must bring back Grant.
  14. El Guapo
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    Let's be really honest here. There is no back in the NFL that would run well in the GB offense. The offensive line for GB is not very good. I said it. The line gets undeserved credit due to Rodger's knack for avoiding the sack, but they let guys through. More importantly, they are not good run blockers. They don't seal the edge, don't pull worth lint, and rarely accomplish enough on the first level to get to second-level blocks. I'm not saying that they are bad, but the Packers boast a very average offensive line. No running back can produce behind an average offensive line when you also saddle the RB with limited opportunities to carry the ball.

    Unless GB changes its offensive focus to be more balanced instead of a pass-first attack, we won't have a running game to speak of. So argue back and forth about Grant vs Starks, but it won't matter who is in the mix.
  15. TheOnlyMeIKnow
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    My problems with Green Bay's 3-4 are all personal related. We have a good tandem inside with Green and Raji, though Green is getting old, and I think we can also through Pickett into this because I think he should be in the middle, not on the outside. We don't have Defensive Ends that can stop the run or draw double teams to free up Matthews or So'Oto, or Jones, or Zombo, or whoever is lined up opposite Matthews. It's because of the DE's that we are having problems with the rush. If they could draw a double team you could put ME opposite Matthews and get a good pass rush. With the problems the DE's are having you could put LT, or current outside linebackers coach Kevin Greene in their prime opposite Matthews and get nothing. Our inside linebackers are attrocious! I've never liked Desmond Bishop, and may never like him, and it's got to do with the Viking game when Barnett did his ACL a few years back. Every time I see him on the field I get nervous! Hawk is a lost cause at this point, I went from loving this guy to this year seeing no effort or intelligence in his play. HE is why LeGarrett Blount scored that long TD against Tampa. He had him squared up for a 7 or 8 yard gain and threw a forearm at him, instead of wrapping him up and dropping him! DJ Smith outplayed him. Our safeties are a joke. We lose Nick Collins and Burnett all of a sudden becomes stupid? Come on nobody buys that! Peprah is a good back up...key words back up. At corner I like Tramon and Woodson, but Woodson is what 36 now?

    We don't have the talent for the scheme. I don't think we have the talent for ANY scheme, this defense needs to be rebuilt completely!
  16. mradtke66
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    mradtke66 Cheesehead

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    Again though, in the 3-4, "Ends" are inside guys. The widest they line up is head up on the offensive tackle and I don't think they every have outside containment responsibilities. 3-4 ends need to be run pluggers and not much more. Of course, getting a pass rush out of them is nice, but finding the right body type for a 3-4 end (300 pounds, long and strong) that can also rush is pretty tough.

    When we line up in nickel, the look and responsibilities change. Sure, we call it a 2-4, but squint your eyes and turn your head. It's not that different than a traditional 4-2 nickel.

    Raji and the other lineman (Pickett, Neal, or Wynn) are lined up more like a 4-3 defensive tackle, usually a 3-technique. The outside linebackers are in the correct spot to be 4-2 pass-rush-specialists-ends, they just happen to be standing up instead of putting their hands in the dirt.

    Finding a compliment to Matthews on the outside is probably the single most important thing this off season. Outside linebacker is the playmaker position in the front 7 (6 in nickel).
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  17. TheOnlyMeIKnow
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    That is true about the DE's but if they can draw a double team with either the tackle and the guard, and have the OLB blocked by a TE or a back, advantage defense. If they draw tackle and TE, then you either have a back or a free shot at the QB. I still say at least one of the DE's has to be able to draw 2 guys.
  18. mradtke66
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    mradtke66 Cheesehead

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    In base or nickel?

    In nickel, which is where we spend 75% of our time, we don't have ends. We have two tackles and and two outside linebackers. Yes, one of them should command a double team, but that should be Raji. If we're playing armchair coach, we'll assign out blocking assignments. Center and Guard: Raji. Other Guard: Wynn. Right Tackle and Tight End: Matthews. Left Tackle and a back coming up to chip: Walden/Zombo/2012 Draft Pick.

    In base, it shouldn't matter as much. Again, we're in base 25% of the time. It is a run defense first, which is why we sometimes trot out a 3-man line of Green, Raji, and Pickett. No pass rush? Who cares? We're not letting you run up the middle. Further, the default rush is still only 4 guys. You could still successfully double everyone in a base offensive set of 2WR, 1TE, 2Backs.
  19. TheOnlyMeIKnow
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    In PASSING situations we need a DE to draw a double team. And if we are in nickle it should be a 3-3-5. Dime should be a 3-2-6. These looney packages with one down lineman to me are just waiting to be eaten alive by opposing offenses. If we can't hit the QB, which we've shown we really can't, and we're doing a 1-5-5 set or some other such craziness maybe we SHOULD be playing base more! And I agree, this IS armchair coaching, which makes it more frustrating, since the coaches haven't figured it out yet!
  20. ThxJackVainisi
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    ThxJackVainisi Lifelong Packers Fanatic

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    Good posting, mradtke66. Improving the ROLB spot is key next season.
    Having trouble keeping track of your argument? Are all of your problems with the D personnel related? (Or did you really mean “peronal”?;) ) Or are they alignment/scheme related?

    The fewer the number of DL in the formation, the less predictable where the rush is coming from. The exact same defensive alignments that worked in 2010 didn’t work last season. It’s not the coaches who haven’t figured it out – it’s you. (See above.)
  21. Croak
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    Look at some of the really good 3-4 defenses. The Ravens have Ray Lewis, Terrel Suggs, and Brenden Ayenbadejo for linebackers. The Steelers have James Farrior, James Harrison, and Lamar Woodley. The 49ers have Navarro Bowman, Aldon Smith and Patrick Willis. Multiple fast hard hitting linebackers are the signature of all 3 of these defenses. But they all have at least one really good d lineman as well. The Ravens have Haloti Ngata. The Steelers have Brett Keisel. The Niners have Justin Smith. It's interesting to note that the Niners list all of their d lineman as defensive tackles on their roster.

    Here is a fine article on the 3-4 from NFL.com; http://www.nfl.com/kickoff/story/09...ng-34-defense-to-add-pressure-on-quarterbacks
  22. Southpaw
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    Southpaw Endorphin Junkie

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    Ravens defense is a hybrid type that more closely resembles a 4-3 than a 3-4. But I agree, like I've been saying the strength in a good 3-4 is your linebackers and we really only have one. That's simply not going to cut it. Especially when they lack simple tackling fundamentals which is pivotal for any linebacker especially in this scheme.
  23. 7thFloorRA
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    7thFloorRA Cheesehead

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    That is a good point. Talent, pass rush cover skills.....all of this doesn't mean **** when the no one can perform the simplest of tasks which is to tackle. I have still heard no good explanation of exactly why this team can not tackle.
  24. mradtke66
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    You're applying 4-3 thinking to a 3-4 defense. Again, look at our "2-4" nickel. It really is a 4-2 front. The outside linebackers in a 3-4 are defacto defensive ends. Completely different than 4-3 OLBs.

    Consider: Failing getting a OLB that played a 3-4 in college, and there aren't many 3-4s in college, the next best and most common draft selection that can be turned into an NFL 3-4 OLB is the undersized, college pass rushing defensive end. Tweeners.

    Taking that thinking to the extreme, Pierre-Paul of the Giants might not have a home on our defense. Now of course, if the Giants traded JPP to us for a conditional 7th round pick AND JPP agreed to sign a 10 year contract for the veteran minimum and without a signing bonus, we'd find a way to use him. But that'll never happen. JPP is listed at 278. He is the wrong kind of Tweener for the 3-4. He is NOT a base 3-4 end--he's too little. Okay, then we'll move him to outside linebacker. Can he turn, run, and cover people? I don't know for sure, but I'd guess not (and I say guess. Mario Williams did okay before he got hurt, but that isn't a direct comparison. The Wade Phillips 3-4 is even closer to a 5-2, based on how little coverage responsibilities their OLBs have.) JPP is not a full-time player for our 3-4. At realistic best, he'd be young KGB--a 3rd down pass rush specialist.

    Croak makes a perfect point: "It's interesting to note that the Niners list all of their d lineman as defensive tackles on their roster." Because in a 3-4, that's really what they are, even if we call the 5-technique a 'defensive end.' Another way to look at base it's not a 3-4, but a 5-2 with a nose guard, two tackles, and two ends.
  25. AmishMafia
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    AmishMafia There's cheese under that hat

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    I believe we spent more time in the nickel because we had a lack of talent at the DE position. And you are right about the lack of need for a pass rush from our DL. They will get a few, but it needs to come from our LBs. Reiterating my comment from page 1 - a good DE will make our LBs look much better.

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