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 Post subject: Re: How huge has the Alulua signing?
PostPosted: Mon Oct 30, 2017 11:33 pm 
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This D-line in my opinion may be better top to bottom than the 2004-2005 unit.

If you don't remember that unit had Aaron Smith, Kimo Von Olheoffen and Casey Hampton as the starters. Then the backups were Brett Kiesel, Chris Hoke and Travis Kirschke. That was a damn good group.

But I like this group from 2017 even better. Cam Heyward, Javon Hargrave and Stephon Tuitt as the starters. Then the backups are Tyson Alualu, L T Walton and Dan McCullers. McCullers may seem like the weakest of the two groups but he is about similar to Krischke.

What is frustrating to me is that we have such a great group of D-linemen and many have shown the ability to pass rush, don't look now but that is Cam Heyward with 5 sacks on the year, leading the team at the halfway point. Could Cam end the season with 10+ sacks? I think that he can. Hargrave and Tuitt get great pressure and could be sack artists too if given the chance.

I am not saying ditch the 3-4 completely, but man, couldn't we use more 4-3 looks and keep more D-linemen out there to pass rush? As it is we have this great group of D-linemen and yet somebody like Hargrave is taken off the field too damn much, only playing 46% of the snaps. He is a pass rushing force in the middle of the line, routinely pushing the interior of the line back into the QBs face time and time again. I take him off the field for nobody.

I just wonder what it would be like to occasionally mix it up in game and line up in a 4-3 with Heyward, Hargrave, Alualu and Tuitt as the 4 down linemen and then have your 3 LBers be Watt and Dupree with Shazier as the MLB. Or slide Heyward in to replace Alualu at DT and then use Dupree as a DE. Go with just Watt and Shazier as your two LBers and have Mike Hilton as your nickel back, a 4-2-5.

Many have not brought this up, but I can see Mike Hilton be used as a Mark Barron/Tyrann Mathieu type of hybrid player. He can be our Honey Badger, we can line him up in the slot, but also use him close to the line of scrimmage and use him almost like a hybrid LBer.

I just hope Tomlin/Butler start to add wrinkles and start to mold this defense to some of the talent that we have. Mike Hilton, Javon Hargrave, TJ Watt, we have a lot of unusual players with intriguing skillets that transcend the cookie cutter roles of our 3-4 defense. When that happens you have to break with conventions and start to mold the defense to the talent at hand.

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 Post subject: Re: How huge has the Alulua signing?
PostPosted: Mon Oct 30, 2017 11:37 pm 
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Scunge wrote:
This D-line in my opinion may be better top to bottom than the 2004-2005 unit.

If you don't remember that unit had Aaron Smith, Kimo Von Olheoffen and Casey Hampton as the starters. Then the backups were Brett Kiesel, Chris Hoke and Travis Kirschke. That was a damn good group.

But I like this group from 2017 even better. Cam Heyward, Javon Hargrave and Stephon Tuitt as the starters. Then the backups are Tyson Alualu, L T Walton and Dan McCullers. McCullers may seem like the weakest of the two groups but he is about similar to Krischke.

What is frustrating to me is that we have such a great group of D-linemen and many have shown the ability to pass rush, don't look now but that is Cam Heyward with 5 sacks on the year, leading the team at the halfway point. Could Cam end the season with 10+ sacks? I think that he can. Hargrave and Tuitt get great pressure and could be sack artists too if given the chance.

I am not saying ditch the 3-4 completely, but man, couldn't we use more 4-3 looks and keep more D-linemen out there to pass rush? As it is we have this great group of D-linemen and yet somebody like Hargrave is taken off the field too damn much, only playing 46% of the snaps. He is a pass rushing force in the middle of the line, routinely pushing the interior of the line back into the QBs face time and time again. I take him off the field for nobody.

I just wonder what it would be like to occasionally mix it up in game and line up in a 4-3 with Heyward, Hargrave, Alualu and Tuitt as the 4 down linemen and then have your 3 LBers be Watt and Dupree with Shazier as the MLB. Or slide Heyward in to replace Alualu at DT and then use Dupree as a DE. Go with just Watt and Shazier as your two LBers and have Mike Hilton as your nickel back, a 4-2-5.

Many have not brought this up, but I can see Mike Hilton be used as a Mark Barron/Tyrann Mathieu type of hybrid player. He can be our Honey Badger, we can line him up in the slot, but also use him close to the line of scrimmage and use him almost like a hybrid LBer.

I just hope Tomlin/Butler start to add wrinkles and start to mold this defense to some of the talent that we have. Mike Hilton, Javon Hargrave, TJ Watt, we have a lot of unusual players with intriguing skillets that transcend the cookie cutter roles of our 3-4 defense. When that happens you have to break with conventions and start to mold the defense to the talent at hand.





I like it Scunge.


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 Post subject: Re: How huge has the Alulua signing?
PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2017 8:07 am 
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It is huge. I wasn't impressed at first as Alualu got acclimated to his new defense. He has improved by leaps and bounds. It's just unfortunate the DLine has been experiencing all these injuries. Love to see Tuitt return soon. Folks are right back injuries are never good going forward. Haden and Alualu were really savvy FA moves for the Steelers. Improved an already decent defense.


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 Post subject: Re: How huge has the Alulua signing?
PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2017 9:24 am 
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Quote:
I just wonder what it would be like to occasionally mix it up in game and line up in a 4-3 with Heyward, Hargrave, Alualu and Tuitt as the 4 down linemen and then have your 3 LBers be Watt and Dupree with Shazier as the MLB. Or slide Heyward in to replace Alualu at DT and then use Dupree as a DE. Go with just Watt and Shazier as your two LBers and have Mike Hilton as your nickel back, a 4-2-5.


Alualu is light years ahead of having to rely on Cam Thomas and Ricardo Mathews as our #3 DE and occasional starter.
Not even close, but we are talking 5th and 6th rounders in the two above as opposed to a former 1st rounder in TA.
Great signing.

Those four guys in a 4-3 look, Heyward, Hargrave, Alualu and Tuitt should provide a rush 4 drop 11 look on many a passing down, if not a good number of base downs.
No 5 OLmen are blocking those 4.
Who do they not double team?
The quickness of Hargrave and Tuit would wreak havoc to the interior OL. Hargrave is constantly double in our 3-4 looks, and still creates headaches. Don't double that kid.........
mawwwwh, haw haw haw.
That was me rubbing my hands together in front of my face with a happy angry grin.
Who do you double? JH or ST?
We have seen Cam H. standing up on pass rushing downs more this year than in the past.

These 4 guys can still get plenty of rest with the constant rotation of Dupree and Silverback in on pass rushing downs.
With Watt rushing the passer as well.
There is so much more we can do to collapse the pocket, move the QB feet, take his eyes off the field, hurry throws, knock him down and ultimately sacks.
They were not doing much of any of that at all against Detroit, hence plenty of time for Stafford to move the ball up and down the field.
Luckily, once packed in, with less room for Stafford to work with, we made big plays.
I can not recall Stafford getting knocked to the turf much, let alone a single big hit?

Lt Walton has really impressed in a limited number of snaps.

I hope with Tuit back and adding in Silverback in the second half will open up opportunities to not only mix in different looks, but to create a great rotation of non-stop pressure with 4 guys.
All the parts are there - no excuses not to be able to ultimately rush 4 and drop 7.

And going forward, knowing Dupree has really not impresses, I would look at drafting that 275-285 lb freak of a 4-3 DE.
Or was Dupree supposed to be that guy?
Other option is for Cam H. to shed 10-15 pounds for some added quickness and draft another DT.

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 Post subject: Re: How huge has the Alulua signing?
PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2017 9:28 am 
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Scunge wrote:
This D-line in my opinion may be better top to bottom than the 2004-2005 unit.

If you don't remember that unit had Aaron Smith, Kimo Von Olheoffen and Casey Hampton as the starters. Then the backups were Brett Kiesel, Chris Hoke and Travis Kirschke. That was a damn good group.

But I like this group from 2017 even better. Cam Heyward, Javon Hargrave and Stephon Tuitt as the starters. Then the backups are Tyson Alualu, L T Walton and Dan McCullers. McCullers may seem like the weakest of the two groups but he is about similar to Krischke.

What is frustrating to me is that we have such a great group of D-linemen and many have shown the ability to pass rush, don't look now but that is Cam Heyward with 5 sacks on the year, leading the team at the halfway point. Could Cam end the season with 10+ sacks? I think that he can. Hargrave and Tuitt get great pressure and could be sack artists too if given the chance.

I am not saying ditch the 3-4 completely, but man, couldn't we use more 4-3 looks and keep more D-linemen out there to pass rush? As it is we have this great group of D-linemen and yet somebody like Hargrave is taken off the field too damn much, only playing 46% of the snaps. He is a pass rushing force in the middle of the line, routinely pushing the interior of the line back into the QBs face time and time again. I take him off the field for nobody.

I just wonder what it would be like to occasionally mix it up in game and line up in a 4-3 with Heyward, Hargrave, Alualu and Tuitt as the 4 down linemen and then have your 3 LBers be Watt and Dupree with Shazier as the MLB. Or slide Heyward in to replace Alualu at DT and then use Dupree as a DE. Go with just Watt and Shazier as your two LBers and have Mike Hilton as your nickel back, a 4-2-5.

Many have not brought this up, but I can see Mike Hilton be used as a Mark Barron/Tyrann Mathieu type of hybrid player. He can be our Honey Badger, we can line him up in the slot, but also use him close to the line of scrimmage and use him almost like a hybrid LBer.

I just hope Tomlin/Butler start to add wrinkles and start to mold this defense to some of the talent that we have. Mike Hilton, Javon Hargrave, TJ Watt, we have a lot of unusual players with intriguing skillets that transcend the cookie cutter roles of our 3-4 defense. When that happens you have to break with conventions and start to mold the defense to the talent at hand.


BTW Scunge,
renting a dust cropper this week and dropping leaflets with your above post, across the Steelers practice facility. What time shall i pick you up?

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 Post subject: Re: How huge has the Alulua signing?
PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2017 11:19 am 
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OMG. Schnge-- love you man-- but if ever here was a week where you can totally see why we don't have personnel for 4-3... Detroit game was it.

We ran MOSTLY 4-3 look with Hayward lining up where traditional 3-4 backer would be. Heyward basically didn't do shit-- relegated to power rush that was too slow to get home, even vs a 3rd string LT. You want to know why he Lions torched us between the 20s with pass game, that was a huge factor. Watt made some nice plays as an ILB, though. Really good at being an obstacle in zone.

What I'd like to see-- and even expect to see-- down the stretch: rotating Deebo in at stunt rusher alongside a rotation of Tuitt-Heyward-Gravedigger. Moving Bud to LOLB on occasion. Using Watt Dupree and Deebo at the same time on 3rd downs/late in games.

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 Post subject: Re: How huge has the Alulua signing?
PostPosted: Tue Oct 31, 2017 10:48 pm 
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Well this last game they did not have Tuitt and refused to use Deebo. In my scenario hypothetically they both play and it makes a huge difference.

My point of having unique players that transcends our 3-4 defense is a valid one I think.

Watt can line up at OLB, at ILB, can not just rush the passer but be a force in pass coverage. That 6' 5" frame and long arms of his make him challenging to throw passes over.

Arizona spent a 3rd on Mathieu but we got Hilton off the damn street when two other teams deemed him not good enough. We got a magnificent hybrid player, don't just call him a slot CB! This guy can do pass coverage but plays the run like an ILB and also is a talented blitzer.

Hargrave is our Aaron Donald, is our Geno Atkins, if only they would use him more to show his pass rushing talents. Most of those Super talented pass rushing 4-3 DTs have a talented running mate next to them inside. In my proposed 4-3 I wonder what Hargrave could do as a Warren Sapp type of pass rushing DT with someone like Tuitt/Heyward next to him inside?

It is easy to say hey we don't have the people or look at what they did against the Lions but that just rings false to me. I think we do have the talent, but we are not fully committing to genuinely try it as an option. Just give it an honest chance and I think we would all be shocked at the results.

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 Post subject: Re: How huge has the Alulua signing?
PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2017 3:29 am 
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I'm talking specifically about the true weakness for us running a 4-3, and that is-- as I have been saying for three years: we don't have 4-3 DEs on the roster, especially RDE. In this game, Heyward showed you why he is not a fit there, even thought he might be an excellent 3 tech. Hargrave is a fine 1 tech, and if I squint I can make out Tuitt as a LDE, even though he'd be a better 3 tech. Not sure if Bud could be that guy, but he's probably the closest to fitting that role, with Deebo filling the Dumervil/Cliff Avril stunt rusher spot.

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 Post subject: Re: How huge has the Alulua signing?
PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2017 4:22 am 
Never fails.....lol

No way should the Steelers switch to a 40 base

This defense is just coming together and you wanna fuck with it ? 3 trips inside the redzone = 3 pts. Zero touchdowns on the road vs Stafford. And you wanna change that. ?

Additionally....in a 30 base pretty easy to show a 30, 40, or even 50 front situationally and you wanna make us LESS flexible ?

Im pretty happy with the results this team gets with the 30 base and I think wed be worse off going to a 40 base at least for the forseeable future


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 Post subject: Re: How huge has the Alulua signing?
PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2017 5:23 am 
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The offenses and QBs that we have been facing have been underwhelming. It does not improve much over the next couple games facing Jacoby Brissett and Jared Hundley instead of Andrew Luck and Aaron Rodgers.

This defense has not arrived, is not a finished product. They should be trying to figure out how to maximize players potential instead of blindly adhering to the 3-4 defense. Hargrave playing 46% of the snaps is pathetic.

James Harrison not playing at all is ridiculous. William Gay continuing to see snaps is bordering on lunacy.

And I am not talking about scrapping the 3-4 defense and replacing it with the 4-3 as the base. I have always preached about having a flexible defense, a hybrid defense that can changeup from game to game and even within a game. There was one game where Tuitt was lined up wider as the RDE. What was that exactly? Heyward was not injured yet there they were lining Tuitt up at his spot and having him more flexed out. I have seen them moving around Watt, lining him up on both the left and right and even lining him up at ILB and rushing him from the interior. That is usually not what they do, usually the left OLB stays on the left, the ROLB stays on the right side, they usually don't change things up, tinker with things like that.

So, whether people want to realize it or not, I do see some change but I want to see more of it. Tom Brady is all about keeping clean in the pocket, stepping up in the pocket and delivering the ball in a hurry. If you have 4 big uglies and in particular two great interior rushers like say Hargrave and Tuitt preventing him from stepping up, and getting great pressure up the middle, well, that is one of the keys to beating him.

A 16 game season is a long time but it is now half over, and I still don't see them working on man to man coverages as much as I would like. I can't help but feel we are running out of time. Facing all of these underwhelming offenses, and substandard QBs was the perfect time to tinker with the defense, work on different packages, change things up, add new wrinkles, yet, there hasn't been enough of it.

My biggest fear is that they will face NE in the playoffs, maybe at home even, and still trot out the same defensive philosophy. They might think that the game plan was just fine last year, they just didn't have the personnel to make it work, to execute it. That would be a mistake. Yes, Haden is better than Cockrell, yes, Hilton is better than Gay, having Heyward back is better than Ricardo Matthews, yes TJ Watt is a big improvement over Jarvis Jones, but all of that does not matter if they use the same old 3-4 defense. That same old Dick LeBeau defense. Brady will burn us once again.

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