D-Line as a unit

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D-Line as a unit
Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:17 am
  • I think that a lot of people on this board would agree that the D-Line is the #1 priority this offseason. I would argue that it goes much deeper than just plugging in a DT or DE here or there. In fact, I don't believe the Seahawks have had a D-Line unit since the days of Green, Nash and Bryant. Sure we had Tez in there along with Sam Adams at times, but there has not been a D-Line UNIT since the 80's. There has been a smattering of good dlineman over the years, but they have lacked the continuity and cohesion that a unit can bring.

    The d backs are the Legion of Boom. One could argue that the LBing Corps is almost there. Find a replacement for Hill that is along the lines of KJ and Bobby and they too are a unit amongst themselves.

    I remember when Jeff Bryant was drafted a year after Jacob Green. Everyone was asking why, since there was already a high pick on a DE used the year before.

    Currently on the D-Line we have Clemons on his 33 year old bad leg. We have Bruce Irvin who may never develop into an every down player. We have Mebane who isn't getting any younger. And finally we have a platoon of guys who may need to be resigned or further developed. Scruggs and Howard are clearly developmental guys. Branch may or may not be resigned and Jones, who knows. If we look at the stre4ngths of the current D-Line going forward, we would have to agree that Mebane is the only solid piece we have.

    JS/PC have done a good job of remaking the rest of the team. Its time they focus their attention and completely remake the D-Line. Time to get your turn over every rock mentality going to work your majic on the D-Line. Looking at the LOB and the potential of the LBers, we can see how important it is to build a UNIT and not just plug in guys.
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Re: D-Line as a unit
Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:38 am
  • I think we've got some good youth on the DL with Scruggs, Howard, and Irvin. I would expect us to take 2-3 DLmen in the draft and probably another 1-2 free agents. I don't beleive Branch or Jones will be back with the team. Jones has a bum knee and Branch was average. He offered nothing in terms of pass rush and the rush defense was sub-par the 2nd half of the year.

    It's obvious that Mebane is the best of the bunch. The question mark surrounding Clemmons on his health is unsettling. The Biggest issue is "what to do with Red Bryant?" Sure he's been a good team leader and has been dynamite on special teams, but A) He's not an effective pass rusher, B) Again the rush Defense was inferior for a good portion of the season. Yet he signed a huge deal, so the real question is what now?

    The real key will be to see how much of a jump will Scruggs, Howard, and Irvin make this year. If it's significant than you could see all 3 with significant roles this year. I still beleive we need to address WR and TE in the draft. Hopefully we can get 3 new DLmen in the draft to really drive the competition this offseason.

    The draft and free agency period should be very exciting for Seattle.
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Re: D-Line as a unit
Wed Jan 23, 2013 11:05 am
  • Irvin will be a good speed rusher for us, but we need younger insurance policies for both Clemons and Bryant.

    Our interior is in shambles.....Mebane is a little better than solid, and thats where it ends.

    We've all talked about the potential of Scruggs and McDonaly, Howard was completely invisible, and as mentioned Branch and Jones are likely gone. I see getting Mebane some help may be priority number one this offseason.
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Re: D-Line as a unit
Wed Jan 23, 2013 11:19 am
  • I like that there is some good depth of defensive lineman in free agency this year.

    For DT we could take a look at Henry Melton, Randy Starks, and Desmond Bryant.

    For DE we could take a look at Cliff Avril, Osi Umenyiora, and Dwight Freeney.

    I think there is some good value to be had.
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Re: D-Line as a unit
Wed Jan 23, 2013 11:27 am
  • Winterfell wrote:I like that there is some good depth of defensive lineman in free agency this year.

    For DT we could take a look at Henry Melton, Randy Starks, and Desmond Bryant.

    For DE we could take a look at Cliff Avril, Osi Umenyiora, and Dwight Freeney.

    I think there is some good value to be had.


    I like each of he DTs you mentioned (especially Melton), and none of the DEs you mentioned. Certainly Avril and Osi are above average pass rushers, but unless the market is dry -doubtful- there going to want more money than they're worth.
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Re: D-Line as a unit
Wed Jan 23, 2013 11:35 am
  • joeshaney wrote:
    I like each of he DTs you mentioned (especially Melton), and none of the DEs you mentioned. Certainly Avril and Osi are above average pass rushers, but unless the market is dry -doubtful- there going to want more money than they're worth.


    Avril is probably going to be the safest out of all those three DEs.

    With Osi and Freeney, the reason why I think we might be able to sign either of them to a (relatively) cheap short-term deal is because of their age (31 and 33) and the fact that both of them struggled to produce this season.

    I think Freeney still has enough speed, and the spin movies, to put good pressure on the QB from the DE position. The Colts switching defensive schemes and turning him into a 3-4 LB didn't play to his strengths, and I think that played a big part in his struggles, as well as playing hurt.

    With Osi, I think the fact that the Giants defensive line in general all struggled this season, and the fact that he rotates in with Jason Pierre-Paul and Justin Tuck (who both didn't perform as expected) hurt his production. But I think he still has juice left in the tank.
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Re: D-Line as a unit
Wed Jan 23, 2013 11:55 am
  • First thing to decide is whether to stick with the scheme or not.

    I liked playing Red Bryant at DE at first last year, but as this season went on, I became less and less of a fan. It just does not make sense for a non-blitzing team to use a guy at DE who gives you no pass rush. The ONLY way it makes sense is if the hawks had a historically great run defense. They did not. Teams were running all over them in the second half of the season.

    As it stands, on first and second down, usually the hawks rely on only Chris Clemons to get pressure. My opinion is that this is just not going to cut it. This is a scheme problem. I hope they take a hard look at what they are getting from having Red play DE. If they are hell bent on continuing that, it is time to develop some effective blitzing. Otherwise we will once again have one of the worst pass rushes in the league. (without the GB game, we averaged less than 2 sacks per game)
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Re: D-Line as a unit
Wed Jan 23, 2013 2:46 pm
  • A guy I like at DE would be Corey Lemonier of Auburn. I don't know if he will drop , but he has good size and speed. I am worried about Clemmons coming back and when. I think we need a every down end as well as DT
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Re: D-Line as a unit
Wed Jan 23, 2013 3:22 pm
  • I like Avril. He's young and productive. That's the only guy I'd sign out of the list. What I don't understand is our lack of desire to blitz.

    It's obvious - the perfect defense is one where your front 4 get's the pressure and you drop 7 into coverage.

    However, It's impossible to get "consistent" pressure when 3 of the 4 are sub-par pass rushers, who get very little penetration.

    I wish we'd embrace the hybrid- 3-4, 4-3 defense we are and sent 1-2 guys more often than we do. If our secondary is really as good as we hope then blitzing shouldn't be a huge problem.
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Re: D-Line as a unit
Wed Jan 23, 2013 3:27 pm
  • Michael Bennett is another possibility. To be honest, he'd probably be the cheapest and best suited to spell or replace Bryant.
    Add in a high draft pick for insurance for Clemons/Irvin. Then focus the attention on one of those DT's winterfell mentioned.
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Re: D-Line as a unit
Wed Jan 23, 2013 4:16 pm
  • I agree we need more pass rush but to change the scheme or to mess the chemistry of this D sounds crazy to me.
    We are not a good blitzing team thats not our strong suit.Keep the plays in front of them and eliminate big plays thats why this team was No 1 in points allowed.
    IMO 4 of the 5 losses were due to our offense.You have to beat the niners when you hold them to 13 points.If we win Zona Rams and the Mia games we have home field adv with a great chance to win out.Thats 4 games with the O scoring 16 points or less.I doubt that happens next year.
    This D will learn from the late game letdowns and come back stronger I believe.
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Re: D-Line as a unit
Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:50 pm
  • I really want Melton, he's proven in the league and young (26). I don't think there is anyone in the draft this year, that will be available to us, that can have the impact for us next season that he can provide.
    If we sign Melton, re-sign Jones, if we can get him on another 1 yr contract for reasonably cheap, and let Quinn get another DT and DE of his chosing in the draft and i'd be stoked!
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Re: D-Line as a unit
Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:06 pm
  • I agree with the OP. You get that feeling that Pete is no longer content with finding fixes on his defensive line. He wants to build this thing from the ground up, and Irvin was just the very beginning of that.

    That might not be good news for 2013, but it could prove to be a good thing in the long haul.
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Re: D-Line as a unit
Thu Jan 24, 2013 1:15 am
  • Personally, I look at out defensive line as two units, instead of one. We have our base defensive line, which has its purpose, and then we have our situational pass-rushing unit.

    There's been a lot of talk of improving one position and assuming it fixes much of our pass-rush problems, but adding a base-unit 3-tech may only fix the problem of that unit but not the other (depending on the player, of course).

    Personally, if we had a healthy base defense of the players we had last year, I'd be more than fine with that. What we absolutely need to improve on, imo, is our pass-rushing unit.

    Branch and Mebane on the inside performed well enough. Can they be improved on? Absolutely, but they weren't a huge liability. Now, Scruggs and McDonald in the pass-rushing unit? They're weren't cutting it. Not even close.

    I expect a very important signing at the 3-tech (either re-signing Branch, a FA, or thru the draft), but I think they will focus a lot of their attention on the D-line situational role-players, i.e. the second unit.
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Re: D-Line as a unit
Thu Jan 24, 2013 9:03 am
  • Recon_Hawk wrote:Personally, I look at out defensive line as two units, instead of one. We have our base defensive line, which has its purpose, and then we have our situational pass-rushing unit.

    There's been a lot of talk of improving one position and assuming it fixes much of our pass-rush problems, but adding a base-unit 3-tech may only fix the problem of that unit but not the other (depending on the player, of course).

    Personally, if we had a healthy base defense of the players we had last year, I'd be more than fine with that. What we absolutely need to improve on, imo, is our pass-rushing unit.

    Branch and Mebane on the inside performed well enough. Can they be improved on? Absolutely, but they weren't a huge liability. Now, Scruggs and McDonald in the pass-rushing unit? They're weren't cutting it. Not even close.

    I expect a very important signing at the 3-tech (either re-signing Branch, a FA, or thru the draft), but I think they will focus a lot of their attention on the D-line situational role-players, i.e. the second unit.


    Yes...I hear u.....and ur mostly right.
    But our base defense was just as bad as our pass rush unit.
    As you eluded to this is large in part due to health, but that's where depth comes in. I could see them resigning branch, drafting a player, and signing a top FA dt.

    They only need one more legitimate DE as long as they can replace Leroy with a quicker linebacker with pass rush ability.
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