Can't help but wonder if a 3-4 is in the works...

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from dreighver. Show dreighver's posts

    Can't help but wonder if a 3-4 is in the works...

    Due to Mayo's injury, I don't see the 4-3 as a good fit for this defense. To properly run a 4-3, you need some speed and range at LB. Mayo provided this when he played at ROLB. Spikes would man the MLB position, and Hightower found himself at LOLB. New England played a certain alignment of 4-3 that put these guys in ideal positions to succeed. Forgive me, as I don't recall the exact formation alignment. It was either 4-3 odd, 4-3 over, 4-3 under, or 4-3 even. 

    However, with Mayo, arguably our rangiest LB, gone, I don't see Hightower and Spikes holding up in a 4-3.

    We saw a good bit of the 3-4 on Sunday, and I'm surprised this isn't getting more attention from fans here. It looked good when it was used in the earlier parts of the game. It seemed rather clear to be that the 3-4 was their base defense going into the game. 

    While losing Mayo and Big Vince hurts, I think the following 3-4 could minimize the losses.

                                                         Kelly - Forston- Armstead

                                         Ninkovich - Fletcher - Hightower/Spikes - Jones

    I think a defensive line of Kelly, Forston, and Armstead could do some good things. Slide Chris Jones and Vellano in as backups to Kelly and Armstead at the 5-tech, DE position. Forston is the weak link, and he's obviously no Vince, but he's a big-body who can take on a few blocks. He doesn't need to be great, just needs to not be bad.

    At the LB position, I see Ninkovich and Jones as natural fits at their respective positions. Ninkovich would be playing the Vrabel role, as the swiss-army-knife, do-it-all, weakside OLB in the 3-4. He can rush the passer, play the run, and cover when needed. This position fits his skill-set perfectly. Jones is an adequate "elephant". He's athletic enough and smart enough to drop into coverage on occasion, but he would be primarily rushing the passer, a role that he has thrived it. Fletcher would play the Bruschi role; the more coverage-oriented MLB. Fletcher has shown flashes and he could thrive in this defense. He's fast, instinctive, and great in coverage. While his run defense is suspect, he is adequate enough. Lastly, Hightower and Spikes could rotate through at the "thumper" position next to Fletcher. Think Ted Johnson -- a big, hard-hitting LB, good for an occasional blitz. 

    Thoughts?

     

     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from CHAMPSXLVIII. Show CHAMPSXLVIII's posts

    Re: Can't help but wonder if a 3-4 is in the works...

    i don't have lots of knowledge of schemes but i think the problem is hightower in the sub defense

     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from rameakap. Show rameakap's posts

    Re: Can't help but wonder if a 3-4 is in the works...


    Nink bulked up to play DE, Jones is having a great season w/o being asked to do something he's never done.

    I would say this team can be ok at DT if Armstead is effective and Kelly comes back

    They need a trade for a tackling machine LB'er. My choice is Paul Posluszny

     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from prolate0spheroid. Show prolate0spheroid's posts

    Re: Can't help but wonder if a 3-4 is in the works...

    Yes, I think it's definitely a possibility, though more than formation, I think the real challenge is getting a group of people on the field that together can stop the run, rush the passer, and drop into coverage.  The particular formation you suggest uses three interior linemen to negate the need for one of the run-stopping linebackers (either Spikes or Hightower).  It also puts Nink and Jones into more dual roles where they could be dropping into coverage or rushing.  This could work, though a lot will depend on how effective those three linemen are, whether Nink and Jones are effective both in coverage and at pass rushing (and particularly pass rushing while playing a role where they have to think about dropping into coverage and can't just tee off upfield), and whether Fletcher is really all that good.  The one thing you have to worry about in a 3-4 is that the linemen are a bit small and underpowered to command double teams (they also are all undrafted players, whose talent may be limited).  Do you want to take either Hightower or Spikes off the field to put in Forston?  

     

     

     
  5. You have chosen to ignore posts from PatsEng. Show PatsEng's posts

    Re: Can't help but wonder if a 3-4 is in the works...

    I just can't see it dreighver. Just starting from the DL alone:

    Armstead is a complete unknown and has never even played a preseason game in the Pro's, then to make him a starter immediately in a 34 with a 2 gap assignment to make sure Jones is free to rush is putting a ton of faith into the guy. I still want to know where people are getting this much faith in Armstead. As of today I have more faith in Jones and Vellano because they've actually played against NFL talent.

    Forston in the middle? The guy is barely 300lbs (I think he's listed about 305) which is to small to play NT with a 2 gap assignment and is so good both Jones and Vellano have started over him. Between being bounced back and forth between the PS and 53man because of injury you suddenly want to make him the starter in the most critical position in a 34?

    Kelly, ok I can see that working but he's going to get dbl'd down because Forston and be singled

    Going to the LB's right now Spikes, Hightower, Jones, and Nink are the best of the front 7 you have. So, you want to take one of them off the field to add in Fletcher and a couple subpar/unknown DL? That doesn't make to much sense. We just don't have the personal to pull off an effective 34 right now. Hence why we haven't really seen it since Wilfork has gone down. Without having a big body that can take on two blockers the DL falls apart and you have to move one of your most stable DL to a position he hasn't played yet mid way through a season while removing one of your better assests to make up for a lack of coverage. You are subtracting from a semi solid unit at that point and creating even more space for RB's to get into the 2nd level. 

    It's better to stay in 43 right now but they have to use their pieces in a better manner. Both Jones and Vellano can be functional in sub roles so with any luck Armstead is as good as people think otherwise you have a rotation with Kelly next to them. C. Jones is the best rusher so you have him up at the line then depending on opponent you play Nink (more run heavy teams as he is excellent at setting the edge and screens) at DE or move Hightower to DE (Hightower is a better rusher than Nink and can drop back into coverage against passing teams). Against run heavy teams or teams with bigger slower RB's/TE's Hightower can drop into coverage but against quicker opponents better to have Fletcher in coverage and possibly bring Collins in for spread packages with the occasional Nink stunt to provide pressure up the middle. 

     
  6. You have chosen to ignore posts from 49Patriots. Show 49Patriots's posts

    Re: Can't help but wonder if a 3-4 is in the works...

    Nope, we don't have a NT(325 pound OL occupying force) to run a 34. We would be ran out of town.

     
  7. You have chosen to ignore posts from geoffchox. Show geoffchox's posts

    Re: Can't help but wonder if a 3-4 is in the works...

    It seems that there is some overthinking in trying to replace Mayo. Hightower is clearly not suited to play Mayo's role which involves playing in space.  He is just too big, his change of direction is just waaay too slow. He seems OK playing his SLB role's so why not keep him there.

    Wouldnt it be better to leave everyone where they normally play then replace Mayo with Collins then give him some safety help.

     
  8. You have chosen to ignore posts from rkarp. Show rkarp's posts

    Re: Can't help but wonder if a 3-4 is in the works...

    In response to PatsEng's comment:
    [QUOTE]

    I just can't see it dreighver. Just starting from the DL alone:

    Armstead is a complete unknown and has never even played a preseason game in the Pro's, then to make him a starter immediately in a 34 with a 2 gap assignment to make sure Jones is free to rush is putting a ton of faith into the guy. I still want to know where people are getting this much faith in Armstead. As of today I have more faith in Jones and Vellano because they've actually played against NFL talent.

    Forston in the middle? The guy is barely 300lbs (I think he's listed about 305) which is to small to play NT with a 2 gap assignment and is so good both Jones and Vellano have started over him. Between being bounced back and forth between the PS and 53man because of injury you suddenly want to make him the starter in the most critical position in a 34?

    Kelly, ok I can see that working but he's going to get dbl'd down because Forston and be singled

    Going to the LB's right now Spikes, Hightower, Jones, and Nink are the best of the front 7 you have. So, you want to take one of them off the field to add in Fletcher and a couple subpar/unknown DL? That doesn't make to much sense. We just don't have the personal to pull off an effective 34 right now. Hence why we haven't really seen it since Wilfork has gone down. Without having a big body that can take on two blockers the DL falls apart and you have to move one of your most stable DL to a position he hasn't played yet mid way through a season while removing one of your better assests to make up for a lack of coverage. You are subtracting from a semi solid unit at that point and creating even more space for RB's to get into the 2nd level. 

    It's better to stay in 43 right now but they have to use their pieces in a better manner. Both Jones and Vellano can be functional in sub roles so with any luck Armstead is as good as people think otherwise you have a rotation with Kelly next to them. C. Jones is the best rusher so you have him up at the line then depending on opponent you play Nink (more run heavy teams as he is excellent at setting the edge and screens) at DE or move Hightower to DE (Hightower is a better rusher than Nink and can drop back into coverage against passing teams). Against run heavy teams or teams with bigger slower RB's/TE's Hightower can drop into coverage but against quicker opponents better to have Fletcher in coverage and possibly bring Collins in for spread packages with the occasional Nink stunt to provide pressure up the middle. 

    [/QUOTE]

    Pats Eng hit the nail on the head. This team as it currently manned, does not have the personel to play 2 gap at the LOS, with the exception of Kelly. I much prefer a rotation of Kelly, Vellano, Jones and Forston handling the conventional 2 DT spots, and a rotation of Jones, Nink and Buchanon playing the 2 conventional DE postions. Keep all 7 fresh in the rotation.

    The team is struggling to replace Mayo, as the LB's consisting of Fletcher, Hightower and Spikes is being exposed in any matchup with a TE or RB, and Gregory simply not showing he is capable either. I am somewhat surprised Collins has not shown better, as the snaps are there for his taking.

    I am still sitting here, watching the GM refuse to swallow his pride and cut Bequette, and replace him with a LB that has the speed to cover. Where is Gary Guyton when the PAts need him? Even Tracy White would help 

     

Share