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Ron Rivera vs Great Quarterbacks


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#1 Mr. Scot

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 10:37 PM

Anyone suggesting that the Drew Brees problem has been "solved" would be extremely premature at this point. But with that said, today's game reminded me of something from the past that could bode well for the Panthers future.

Few opposing coaches have consistently frustrated Peyton Manning like Ron Rivera did while working as defensive coordinator for the San Diego Chargers. Rivera's Charger defenses gave Manning fits, and you'd have to believe that fact weighed in to the Panthers decision to hire Rivera as their head coach.

At the time Rivera was hired, I had to wonder if the defensive coach who figured out how to make things rough on Peyton Manning could do similar things to Drew Brees.

Today's game makes me think he at least has a shot.

Rivera and Panthers DC Sean McDermott knew that, as a shorter quarterback, Brees had a habit of sliding in the pocket in order to find sight lines and locate his receivers. Since Brees has a phenomenal memory for where receivers are meant to be on a given play, he's been pretty good at knowing where to move. He's also been really effective at looking off safeties and using pump fakes to fool both rushers and coverage guys.

Taking all these things into account, the Panthers defensive braintrust worked today to keep the area in front of Brees as clogged and chaotic as possible, thus hindering his ability to have clear line of sight to his downfield receivers. They also apparently worked pretty hard on teaching their defensive guys not to fall for some of Brees' tricky moves, as was especially evident in the early pick six when an attempt to fool Charles Godfrey failed miserably.

Tactics like that, plus not being afraid to throw pressure at Brees - as many opposing DCs have been - worked to limit Brees to a good but not exactly elite performance. Granted, the team got lucky with a couple of critical drops early on, but all of that is part of the game too.

So all in all, while it's still too early to 'declare victory' for anything other than this one game, it's a good sign.

#2 Fox007

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 10:40 PM

I hate Brees so bad, but that little fuger is very crafty.

The teams that do well vs Brees do get a lot of pressure up the middle, and we will have to do that when we play him.

#3 rodeo

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 10:42 PM

So all in all, while it's still too early to 'declare victory' for anything other than this one game, it's a good sign.


Profundity thy name is Scot.

#4 KSpan

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 10:50 PM

From the endzone camera angle, it looks like Breed may have lost track of Godfrey behind the tight end and couldn't see him when he made the throw. Either way, great awareness on Charles' part.

#5 LinvilleGorge

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 10:58 PM

He was raping us when we were just trying to rush 4 and cover on the back end. We were raping him as soon as we realized we had to bring the heat.

#6 Mr. Scot

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 11:38 PM

From the endzone camera angle, it looks like Breed may have lost track of Godfrey behind the tight end and couldn't see him when he made the throw. Either way, great awareness on Charles' part.


Charles Johnson helped out a whole lot there.

Watch the clip and you'll see Brees do that pump fake like he often does. Instead of biting on it, jumping way up or getting out of position, Johnson holds his ground pretty well and Brees winds up making an awful decision.

I gotta believe he was coached not to fall for that.

#7 Frash Brastard

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 11:44 PM

You have to constantly pressure Brees to win a game against the Saints* (and replace Brees:Saints* with Brady:Patriots or Rodgers:Packers). Either that or try to get your offense to score 50 points.

We did show some playoff caliber pass rushing today. That's the kind of defense it takes to win in January and I hope this team brings that pressure more consistently and expands its ability to do so.

#8 panthers04100

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 11:51 PM

didnt read

#9 Mr. Scot

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Posted 16 September 2012 - 11:53 PM

Now, just to give equal time to the other side...

One of the abiding criticisms of Rivera defenses ever since his Chicago days is that they sometimes go for the strip at the expense of a tackle and it comes back to bite them. On one of the early big runs, that was exactly what happened.

I am absolutely in favor of coaching guys to be very aggressive trying to force fumbles. It works. But you have to balance it with disciplined tackling. Otherwise you get results like what happened on that play.


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