Where Will Hawk Play?

Greg C.

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Excuse me if I've missed something, but has the coaching staff said anything yet on where they plan to put A.J. Hawk? Since he was first mentioned as a possible draft pick for the Packers, I've liked the idea of putting him on the weak side to beef up the run support behind KGB and blitz right-handed QB's from the blind side. Having KGB and Barnett on the same side of the line would be all speed and not enough strength. Opposing teams would run at them all day long. Plus, Barnett has done a good job in the middle, and he will still have a big guy (Pickett) in front of him to occupy blockers and more of a hard-hitting type of safety behind him if Manuel beats out Roman.

I'm thinking that either Ben Taylor or that other rookie will fight for the strong-side spot.

Thoughts?
 

subin

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I think it was basically confirmed already that he'll be playing the weakside.

I could see Ben Taylor winning the starting strong side spot, with Abdul Hodge getting some action. The real question, I think, is which position Hodge will be playing. He played MLB in college, and it seems as if that's his natural position, but Barnett is pretty solid there. I'd like to see Barnett moved to the outside, but I don't like the idea of a rookie starting at MLB.
 
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Greg C.

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Thanks for the response, subin. I wouldn't rule out having a rookie start at MLB. Barnett did well at that spot as a rookie, and that rookie on the Seahawks was tremendous last year. But I do think it makes the most sense to keep Barnett there, at least for now. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

It's funny how people assume that your best linebacker should play in the middle, but on the defensive line and often in the secondary as well, the most athletic guys play on the edge. There are reasons for this, I know. My point is that having a top-flight linebacker playing on the edge can be a wonderful thing. Hawk could create some real havoc over there.
 

mattresell

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subin said:
I think it was basically confirmed already that he'll be playing the weakside.

I could see Ben Taylor winning the starting strong side spot, with Abdul Hodge getting some action. The real question, I think, is which position Hodge will be playing. He played MLB in college, and it seems as if that's his natural position, but Barnett is pretty solid there. I'd like to see Barnett moved to the outside, but I don't like the idea of a rookie starting at MLB.

This is a pretty common argument but I don't think it's particularly valid. Unless I'm missing something, I feel like most people have objections to starting a rookie at MLB because of the responsibilities that come with that position. (play calling and making sure defenders are where they need to be) The MLB is typically the player who handles these tasks but we have seen other teams that give that responsability to OLB or even SS.

There's no need to assume that Hodge couldn't play MLB and still have Barnett run the defense from OLB.

Am I right about this or am I missing something else about the MLB position that would inhibit a rookie from performing well?
 

Gopackgo82

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mattresell said:
subin said:
I think it was basically confirmed already that he'll be playing the weakside.

I could see Ben Taylor winning the starting strong side spot, with Abdul Hodge getting some action. The real question, I think, is which position Hodge will be playing. He played MLB in college, and it seems as if that's his natural position, but Barnett is pretty solid there. I'd like to see Barnett moved to the outside, but I don't like the idea of a rookie starting at MLB.

This is a pretty common argument but I don't think it's particularly valid. Unless I'm missing something, I feel like most people have objections to starting a rookie at MLB because of the responsibilities that come with that position. (play calling and making sure defenders are where they need to be) The MLB is typically the player who handles these tasks but we have seen other teams that give that responsability to OLB or even SS.

There's no need to assume that Hodge couldn't play MLB and still have Barnett run the defense from OLB.

Am I right about this or am I missing something else about the MLB position that would inhibit a rookie from performing well?

That's what I was thinking too. The MLB is kind of like the QB of the defense, but if they switched Barnett to OLB then he would have to take those responsibilities with him.
 

calicheesehead

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From what I've read Barnett stays put as the Mike while Hawk plays the Will. They actually have been playing Hodge 50% of the practices at Mike as well.
 

Bobby Roberts

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subin said:
I think it was basically confirmed already that he'll be playing the weakside.

I could see Ben Taylor winning the starting strong side spot, with Abdul Hodge getting some action. The real question, I think, is which position Hodge will be playing. He played MLB in college, and it seems as if that's his natural position, but Barnett is pretty solid there. I'd like to see Barnett moved to the outside, but I don't like the idea of a rookie starting at MLB.

Hodge won't be on the outside. He's best suited to be a MLB and should develop into a very good player behind Barnett for now. Maybe next year he will push Barnett to start in the middle and move Barnett outside, but it's unlikely to happen this year.

The strong side is up between Popinga, Taylor and Manning right now. Manning will be able to backup all 3 positions, great depth guy.

My bets at this point are Taylor at SAM, Barnett at Mike and Hawk at Will, with Popinga, Manning and Hodge as backups. All of the remaining LBs will have to outdo themselves to make the roster.
 

pyledriver80

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Yeah, I knowthere is some talk about moving Hodge outside but he is definitely not suited to play either the SAM nor the Will.

I see there is some confusion as to what the differences in responsibilties are. I will try to explain it as best I can. I will tell you how we designate responsiblities.

In a basic set here are the WILL's responsibilties.........................Our WILL LB aligns in a “20â€
 

porky88

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Yeah Hodge can only play MLB in my opinion. That's why it makes sense to move Barnett to the outside where he is actually more suited to play and Hodge in the middle. I don't see this being the case this year. I see Hodge as a backup. Remember he is a rookie. I expect Ben Taylor to start at SLB. He did have a solid year last year and should be able to do well in our system.

Then again I though the same about Raymont Thompson..

AT least we can say we have depth at a position that was regarded as one of our weakest on our roster. We really did do nice upgrading positions, yet people still think TT is running Favre out of town.
 

pyledriver80

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I don't know if I like Barnett on the outside. I would rather have Taylor and Hawk on the outside. I do not know if Hodge will develop into a GREAT NFL linebacker. His size will hamper him but Sam Mills was also undersized as well. I think he stood out because at Iowa because he benefitted from playing with Greenway. He has a motor and I wish him the best but am not as sold as everyone else
 

porky88

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pyledriver80 said:
I don't know if I like Barnett on the outside. I would rather have Taylor and Hawk on the outside. I do not know if Hodge will develop into a GREAT NFL linebacker. His size will hamper him but Sam Mills was also undersized as well. I think he stood out because at Iowa because he benefitted from playing with Greenway. He has a motor and I wish him the best but am not as sold as everyone else

Zach Thomas is also pretty small. Hodge lacks height but that isn't that big of a deal for a MLB, at least in my opinion.

I love Barnett on the outside. It's easier for him to fly to the ball. I like both Hawk and Barnett there with Hodge in there. For this year though def go with Hawk, Barnett, and Taylor. I don't think Hodge will be ready yet. I think he's the top spot.
 

SuperRat

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Weakside depends on the offense setup, where the tight end lines up. The weakside linebacker is generally the ROLB though.
 

Cheesehead4

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SuperRat said:
Weakside depends on the offense setup, where the tight end lines up. The weakside linebacker is generally the ROLB though.

Thanks, so I did create him at the right position then :lol:

my A.J Hawk madden stats.

8 games
10 INT'S
100 tackles
10 PD
5 FF
3 FR
15 Sacks.

:lol: Man if only :shock:
 

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