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Next Season's Defense....

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Posted

Starting with the Defensive line:

CJ - average against the run, great bull rush, good speed rush.

McClain - below average against the run, average pass rush.

Neblett - below average against the run, average pass rush.

Fua - below average against the run, below average pass rush.

Edwards - above average against the run, average pass rush. (I hear, I've never seen him play)

Hardy - average against the run, average bull rush, good speed rush.

So imo we're going to acquire a FA DT who has good/great pass rushing ability. This would improve the greatest weakness on our defensive line.

We might draft an OLB to replace TD if he goes down yet again with another season ending injury.

At CB we have Gamble, Hogan, Captain as the possible starters for next season. Hogan is 5'10", and Captain is 5'8", which can be a liability in the red zone when teams start lobbing jump balls, you have to assume we'd be at a significant disadvantage. It's possible that we might draft a tall CB to start opposite Gamble, and move Hogan to nickle, and keep Captain as a backup and ST standout.

I'm expecting the Panthers to also draft a safety to push Martin for his starting spot.

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Posted

LDE – Greg Hardy/Thomas Keiser

RDE – Charles Johnson/Antwan Applewhite

We are very good at DE! In rotation, these four players are solid!

DT is a crap shoot! Edwards, Fua, McClain, Neblett, Nwagbuo, Kearse, Shirley, Pressley.

Who knows how this group is going to shape up over the offseason. I really like what I have seen out of Neblett this year. Using a four man rotation, we need 2 pass rushers. I do not see any in this list.

SLB – James Anderson/Thomas Williams

MLB - Jon Beason/Dan Connor/ Omar Gaither

WLB – Thomas Davis?/ Jordan Senn?

Who knows how this group will shape up after injuries. I believe Senn solidified a backup role next year.

SCB (LCB) – Gamble/?

WCB (RCB) - ?/Munnerlyn

Nic – Hogan/Butler

We obviously need another starting caliber m2m cover corner.

SS – Charles Godrey/ Jonathan Nelson?

FS – Sherrod Martin/ Jordan Pugh?

This is not great, but not below average.

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Posted

People are saying we don't need an overhaul, but consider that TD has had three major injuries to his knee - if he comes back they would be very wise to keep him as a role player. Beason has been out all season due to his Achilles injury and his direct replacement Conor, will see his contract expire this season. If we don't bring him back, then we will have twoo players who had major injuries this year, three career below average/poor backups and James Anderson. The linebacker position could well see an overhaul of sorts.

I agree that Davis is probably best suited as a rotational player at this point. If he ever gets back to where he was, we can re-evaluate then, but until then, he only needs to be used in spot duty. As for the rest of the LB's, I am worried about whether or not Beason will come back as the same player he was before. At worst, I think he will still be good, I just don't know if he will be as dominant as he was. So at LB, we need a starting OLB, and someone at MLB that can step in and start if Beason isn't ready or has a setback (whether that's Connor or someone else). And as with every position, we need the best depth we can find.

The DT position was a joke all year long and that was mainly due to lack of disciplined play and experience. Debatable if Edwards makes it back from his injury, Fua and McClain should improve but they were pretty darn awful. That has once again left us with mediocre career backups (I do like Neblett though, have for a while).

I think you are right about the lack of experience hurting the DT's. I don't think either Fua nor McClain were ready to start this year. But I do think both have talent and the potential to be good, solid DT's down the road. The problem is that we need more experience to go along with all of that youth (which includes the young guys that have been playing since both went on IR). And while Edwards coming back will help (and I do think he should be fine coming back from the bicept injury), it's not enough. And despite what some say, it's not a space eater we need, but someone that can consistently get pressure from the inside. So here, we only need one vet to come in, we already have plenty of depth and youth to build on.

Then look to the secondary. Whilst I actually like the look of Munnerlyn as a starter, I am unsure if it's a long term answer. What is more concerning to me is the safety position. Why Godfrey received the extension when he did will baffle me for some time. Martin has sadly made steps backwards (but is no where near as bad as some on here believe).

I can't stand Munnerlyn as anything other than ST. The problem I have with him is that he doesn't have the closing speed and qiuckness to recover when his man has space, but that same lack of speed and quickness (not to mention questionable instincts) also allow WR's to get separation from him far too often. Now Butler, I think, would be ok as the nickel, but I really don't want him starting. Hogan is still an unknown, which makes him a wildcard. If he has shown enough in practice to convince Rivera that he can be a starter next year, we might be ok at CB, but if there's still some question, then we need to look at a CB early.

At Safety, I think we will be ok without making changes. Both have been somewhat inconsistent, but I think a lot of that has to do with still learning the defense, playing with a rotating group of guys in from of them, and a serious lack of pressure from our DL (not to mention Godfrey's shoulder injury). I think both can be solid contributors on a good team, but if the right guy is there, they can be upgraded...but it's relatively low on the priority list.

We have question marks and worse at at least half the starting positons on the defence. Facing facts, we will see plenty of new players next year and I would guess at least 2-3 new starters. As someoner stated, it likely won't be an overhaul, but our defensive staff are going to have a lot of big questions to answer.

I agree we'll see a lot of change on the defensive side. Maybe even a surprise or two. I think we need 3 key additions on defense, one at each level, along with 2-3 guys to upgrade our depth. And while that sounds like a lot, it really isn't. Not if that is our focus for the entire offseason (which I am sure it will be). Most of the depth and even 1 or 2 starters can come from FA (as long as noone expects superstars), while we need at least one immediate starter to come from the draft. Then we can use the rest of the draft to add depth while hopefully developing a couple to be eventual starters.

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Posted

Actually most guys make a full recovery from achilles surgery with no drop off in ability level. On the other hand three ACL tears is another matter totally.

As for who we pick it will be based on who is available versus who wants our pick so we trade down if possible. It is too early to tell who we will pick up although defense is the consensus need.

I don't know much about achilles injuries, however I did read this report. It's data is pulled from the 2008-09 period, so its a couple of years behind todays treatment methods, however to assume it's cut and dry that he won't see an impact appears naive.

http://www.lowerextremityreview.com/article/return-to-football-after-achilles-tendon-rupture

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Posted

Starting with the Defensive line:

CJ - average against the run, great bull rush, good speed rush.

McClain - below average against the run, average pass rush.

Neblett - below average against the run, average pass rush.

Fua - below average against the run, below average pass rush.

Edwards - above average against the run, average pass rush. (I hear, I've never seen him play)

Hardy - average against the run, average bull rush, good speed rush.

So imo we're going to acquire a FA DT who has good/great pass rushing ability. This would improve the greatest weakness on our defensive line.

We might draft an OLB to replace TD if he goes down yet again with another season ending injury.

At CB we have Gamble, Hogan, Captain as the possible starters for next season. Hogan is 5'10", and Captain is 5'8", which can be a liability in the red zone when teams start lobbing jump balls, you have to assume we'd be at a significant disadvantage. It's possible that we might draft a tall CB to start opposite Gamble, and move Hogan to nickle, and keep Captain as a backup and ST standout.

I'm expecting the Panthers to also draft a safety to push Martin for his starting spot.

This is one of the worst assessments I have ever seen from anyone about any roster.

One of CJ's strengths is his run play and he is one of the leagues best at containing, predicting and making plays. Neblett is a space eater and is good against the run, not so hot in generating pressure. McClain and Fua are not carbon copies of each other, one can get a tiny bit of pressure (McClain) and is terrible against the run, the other is decent at not giving ground (Fua) but can't make a move into the backfield.

Before writing our CBs off, I would actually look into the amount of TDs we have given up to WRs in the red zone. Just to clarify I don't know what that data says.

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I don't think that the team is going to have any major overhauls on defense outside of the LBs. Beason, Davis, and Anderson I think will start. TD's knee is an obvious concern, but the 2nd tear came from coming back too early imo, while the injury this season he got rolled up on. From the way it sounds, he will be back (and at worst, as a back-up/vocal team leader). There is a pressing need at WLB. Senn I'd like to see kept on board for depth and special teams.

Captain is the Jordan Senn of the CBs imo. Plays well when asked to fill in, but is best on special teams and being rotated in.

I was all aboard the Morris Claiborne train, but if he is taken before the Panthers selection comes up, I'd like to see the team attempt to trade down in order to nab Zach Brown. If they can't trade, then taking Dre Kirkpatrick could work but I see him being next year's Patrick Peterson: CB in college and drafted to play it in the pros, but would more than likely play much better at S.

DE: CJ, Hardy, Applewhite, Keiser.

I'm good with that. I can't imagine why anyone else would want to waste a pick when the DEs have outplayed everybody else on the defense. All season long we've heard about DT being a problem, LBs decimated by injuries, and questionable secondary play. How often has their been concern about DE, aside from the bitching about CJ's contract and the occasional "Cut Hardy!!!" clowns that are really just trying to start trouble on the boards?

#2 CB, WLB (potential starter), MLB (depth), and S (depth) are the only real positions I'd like to see addressed.

I agree with the theory, I just don't like the players mentioned. I'd rather have J. Jenkins than Claiborne and S. Spence than Brown.

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Posted

This is one of the worst assessments I have ever seen from anyone about any roster.

One of CJ's strengths is his run play and he is one of the leagues best at containing, predicting and making plays. Neblett is a space eater and is good against the run, not so hot in generating pressure. McClain and Fua are not carbon copies of each other, one can get a tiny bit of pressure (McClain) and is terrible against the run, the other is decent at not giving ground (Fua) but can't make a move into the backfield.

Before writing our CBs off, I would actually look into the amount of TDs we have given up to WRs in the red zone. Just to clarify I don't know what that data says.

You say little things in your post that make me think your reading comprehension is suspect. I didn't list Fua and McClain as having the same attributes, and yet you think I did. That makes what you're saying about my post suspect.

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This is one of the worst assessments I have ever seen from anyone about any roster.

One of CJ's strengths is his run play and he is one of the leagues best at containing, predicting and making plays. Neblett is a space eater and is good against the run, not so hot in generating pressure. McClain and Fua are not carbon copies of each other, one can get a tiny bit of pressure (McClain) and is terrible against the run, the other is decent at not giving ground (Fua) but can't make a move into the backfield.

Before writing our CBs off, I would actually look into the amount of TDs we have given up to WRs in the red zone. Just to clarify I don't know what that data says.

this

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You say little things in your post that make me think your reading comprehension is suspect. I didn't list Fua and McClain as having the same attributes, and yet you think I did. That makes what you're saying about my post suspect.

The difference is one word.

You may not realise it but McClain is no where near Fua in the run game and Fua is no where near MCClain in the passing game. Neither excel in their strongest areas, they should improve, but to have them one degree from average is just wrong.

Using your rather limited way of 'grading', McClain would be very poor against the run, below average pass rush and Fua would be average in the run game and a very poor pass rush.

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The difference is one word.

You may not realise it but McClain is no where near Fua in the run game and Fua is no where near MCClain in the passing game. Neither excel in their strongest areas, they should improve, but to have them one degree from average is just wrong.

Using your rather limited way of 'grading', McClain would be very poor against the run, below average pass rush and Fua would be average in the run game and a very poor pass rush.

When it's an extremely short evaluation, one word carries a lot of meaning, as you well know.

McClain was very poor against the run during the pre-season, but imporved some during the regular season, which is a fact that is common knowledge to most Panther fans, and obvious to see on the field. Hence your grade is incorrect.

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I think everyone agrees we need to upgrade our play at the 2nd corner position,DT, and replace TD but I think it is an over simplification just to think we can fix our problems by only upgrading those postions.To me we need to get more pressure on the qb,stop the run,and figure out some way we can cover the TEs in our division and league.Does that mean we can simply upgrade those 3 positions and get Beason back? I dont think so. As another poster pointed out more pressure on the qb will help our Cbs and safeties in coverage. How do we get that pressure? Do we change schemes or bring more blitzs? I think we have some challanges that have just as much to do with coaching as it does with players. We have not been able to stop substained drives all year and have been torched in just about every way imaginible.

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When it's an extremely short evaluation, one word carries a lot of meaning, as you well know.

McClain was very poor against the run during the pre-season, but imporved some during the regular season, which is a fact that is common knowledge to most Panther fans, and obvious to see on the field. Hence your grade is incorrect.

Not sure what you have been watching but he improved in his final game, that is it. Until then he was a huge issue for us. Since he and Fua have been put on IR our run D has magically improved...

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