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Maybe Next Year Millen2
07-15-2008, 04:03 PM
Its officialy the lull in the offseason.

What do you think is the best case scenario we can accomplish in terms of pass rush this year.

Here are my optimistic predicitons to pass the time.

DeWayne White 9 sacks (faces 4 rookies(Baker,Williams,Brown,Williams), 2 switching from RT to LT(Gross/Staley), good tackles mostly at home(Clifton,McKinnie,Samuels,Bharnes,Roos,Brown,P ettigout) which helps with crowd noise, we paid him he better produce, 6.5 last year until he got hurt and played with one arm)

Redding 7 sacks (needs to step up like in 2006, with a better secondary that split second may be the difference)

LBs/Safeties 8 sacks (same as last year between Sims,Lenon,Dizon,Alexander,Bullocks,random corners etc)

Avril 5 sacks (situational pass rusher, probably a little optimistic)

Alama Francis 4 sacks. (With signficant playing time at both DE/DT, anything less and I'll be severly disappointed)

DeVries 4 sacks (6.5 last year, so he drops some with less playing time, but still might see action on 1st/2nd down until IAF beats him out)

Fluellen 3 sacks (hey Kalimba got 3)

Moore 2 sacks (same as last year)

Darby 0 sacks (stricltly a run stopper)

Total 42 sacks, 5 more than 2007. More consistent pass rush hopefully and White/Redding need to stay healthy. Its going to have to be a team effort. If one guy falls short one week out of the young guys(IAF,Avril,Fluellen), another guy needs to pick up the slack. White/Redding must be consistent.

Prowler
07-16-2008, 01:05 PM
sounds pretty good, i like the more athletic defensive line. pretty much no excuses this year, we had some time to develop a few of our players, and cut/traded the ones that didn't fit. should be interesting to see how improved our defense turns out to be this year. bodden, smith, and kelly should help the rush a ton.

its kind of surprising to see your stats too and notice that we were in a 4 way tie for 9th most sacks in the league last year. i'm saying we stay in late top 10 this year too. 7th place with 42 sacks sounds good.

Maybe Next Year Millen2
07-16-2008, 01:58 PM
Yes we were tied 9th but thats deceiving.

The problem was the in the second half of the season, not only did we not get sacks, we didn't get any consistent pressure. In the first half we got consistent pressure and sacks and thus turnovers masking our terrible secondary.

24 sacks in first 8 games. 13 sacks in second 8 games. We faced much better O-lines in second half(GB twice, at San Diego, at Minnesota(improved), Giants) with an injured White and Rogers was a non-factor against good O-lines. (Rogers numbers 2.5 vs Denver, 2 vs Chicago, 2 vs KC, .5 at GB in garbage time). Probably the 3 worst O-lines we faced is when Rogers turned it on. And with Rogers, in 7 years we have never cracked the top 20 in run defense. I won't miss Rogers at all, but White and Redding need to do their job.

Iamcanadian
07-17-2008, 10:47 AM
Yes we were tied 9th but thats deceiving.

The problem was the in the second half of the season, not only did we not get sacks, we didn't get any consistent pressure. In the first half we got consistent pressure and sacks and thus turnovers masking our terrible secondary.

24 sacks in first 8 games. 13 sacks in second 8 games. We faced much better O-lines in second half(GB twice, at San Diego, at Minnesota(improved), Giants) with an injured White and Rogers was a non-factor against good O-lines. (Rogers numbers 2.5 vs Denver, 2 vs Chicago, 2 vs KC, .5 at GB in garbage time). Probably the 3 worst O-lines we faced is when Rogers turned it on. And with Rogers, in 7 years we have never cracked the top 20 in run defense. I won't miss Rogers at all, but White and Redding need to do their job.

Your stats reveal a ton of information. Once Rogers shut down, we got 13 sacks. He was the guy teams feared and without him, teams easily handled our DL. I see a different scenerio, one in which Detroit is limited to around 26 sacks not the 37 sacks we managed with Rogers. Rogers freed up White and Redding to play man to man as Rogers tied up 2 defenders on himself. White and Redding won't have that luxury next season and are going to be facing a lot more double teams and sacks could be few and far between.
Face it, teams with solid QB's will rip this defense apart as our back 7 playing zone won't be effective if the QB has skill and has all day to throw the ball. Fortunately for the Lions that type of QB doesn't exist in the NFC North unless Favre starts for GB which I doubt happens. We should have a decent offense if Smith proves successful and we will win our fair share of Division games but out of Division games will be a huge struggle.
IMO 8 or 9 wins should take this weak Division so realistically whoever dominates the Division should be our champion and our defensive weaknesses should be noticable within the Division which just possibly might give us a shot at the playoffs, but if we don't dominate within the Division then last place is very likely.

Maybe Next Year Millen2
07-17-2008, 11:08 AM
I think the sack decrease was not solely on just Rogers(scapegoat answer). Rogers was still playing in the second half of the season(its not like we lost him to injury), but multiple things changed for the Defense making Rogers less effective(facing better Olines in second half), this did have impact on our pass rush, but so did many other factors

1) Redding having to be the nose tackle even though he was playing under tackle, while Rogers was haphazard and freelanced in his gaps. When we faced better runners in the second half, Rogers struggled as he always has throughout his 7 years in Detroit.
2) DeWayne Whites injury which coincidentally happened in Week 8. With him out 2 games and then playing with one arm, White couldn't be effective. And Rogers double team would only really effect Redding. They could double team Rogers with a G/C and still double team White last year with a Tackle/tight end if needed.
3) Secondary not providing enough time. That extra split second does make a huge difference in the NFL. This year we shouldn't have to mask the secondary with the pass rush. The secondary should hold its own as long as the pass rush is decent.
4) we played better O-lines in the second half of the season (5 playoff teams plus Minnesota with Peterson). This year we'll play good O-lines as well(mostly at home, which helps us) and on the road we play 3 rookies, 2 guys switching from LT/RT, then 3 good LTs on the road (Clifton,McKinnie,Ugoh, all expected losses).

We have 5-6 new starters on Defense plus actual situational guys like Avril/Fluelle, who are young but talented. Who knows what to expect with that much change.

When Redding was double teamed in 06, he did better for some reason. Redding can handle the double teams and still get sacks. White was injured in Week 8. Once White was injured the sacks for everyone decreased(on top of Rogers ineffectiveness) because White is our best pass rusher.

Iamcanadian
07-17-2008, 11:08 PM
I think the sack decrease was not solely on just Rogers(scapegoat answer). Rogers was still playing in the second half of the season(its not like we lost him to injury), but multiple things changed for the Defense making Rogers less effective(facing better Olines in second half), this did have impact on our pass rush, but so did many other factors

1) Redding having to be the nose tackle even though he was playing under tackle, while Rogers was haphazard and freelanced in his gaps. When we faced better runners in the second half, Rogers struggled as he always has throughout his 7 years in Detroit.
2) DeWayne Whites injury which coincidentally happened in Week 8. With him out 2 games and then playing with one arm, White couldn't be effective. And Rogers double team would only really effect Redding. They could double team Rogers with a G/C and still double team White last year with a Tackle/tight end if needed.

---The trouble was that nobody doubled Redding much as he isn't as good as his salary would indicate. White is decent but hardly an all star and definitely teams designed their pass blocking to limit Rogers effectiveness after his strong 1st half and nobody could pick up the slack. There is no imdication that they will be better without Rogers, there is nothing to suggest this will be the case. It's just wishful thinking based on nothing but pure hope from a homer.

3) Secondary not providing enough time. That extra split second does make a huge difference in the NFL. This year we shouldn't have to mask the secondary with the pass rush. The secondary should hold its own as long as the pass rush is decent.

---I agree, if the pass rush is decent, the back 7 will be vastly improved but unlike you I cannot see where losing Rogers will improve our defensive line one iota. I believe the opposite, that without Rogers teams will simple double team any threat and I don't believe we have the talent on the DL to make much of an impact.

4) we played better O-lines in the second half of the season (5 playoff teams plus Minnesota with Peterson). This year we'll play good O-lines as well(mostly at home, which helps us) and on the road we play 3 rookies, 2 guys switching from LT/RT, then 3 good LTs on the road (Clifton,McKinnie,Ugoh, all expected losses).

---I guess we'll have to wait and see if the DL can handle the load, remembering that teams dominated it in the second half, not just beat us but completely took our defense apart because the pass rush disappeared.

We have 5-6 new starters on Defense plus actual situational guys like Avril/Fluelle, who are young but talented. Who knows what to expect with that much change.

---Change can be nice but 5-6 new starters doesn't usually equate to a better defense as it takes time for a defense to jell together, that's providing the new players are really talented. I just happen to think you are getting carried away with the idea that our defense will be significantly improved. Your reasoning is based on hope rather than any factual information.

When Redding was double teamed in 06, he did better for some reason. Redding can handle the double teams and still get sacks. White was injured in Week 8. Once White was injured the sacks for everyone decreased(on top of Rogers ineffectiveness) because White is our best pass rusher.

---I agree that White is our best pass rusher but I think that Redding was simply overrated by Millen when he franchised him. He pretty well disappeared last year as team were more prepared for him after his 06 season. White is our best but he's not close to being an All Pro and without a dynamic pass rusher on our DL, the back 7 will be left on an island which can only lead to disaster. Unless Marinelli is facing a complete disaster, his track record indicates to me that he doesn't believe rookies can be very effective in their 1st season and I doubt Fluellen or Avril even see the field as rookies. As bad as our defense was last year, IAF never saw much playing time and neither will these 2.

Maybe Next Year Millen2
07-18-2008, 08:46 AM
I agree that Redding has to step up and have a big year.

However, Redding didn't have that bad a year despite his sack numbers. He was our strongest run defender, had a high number of tackles for loss, and he did get the most consistent "pressure" from what I saw on the QB. The problem was he was about .5 second to late. A better secondary could possibly fix that and lead to higher sack numbers for Redding. Plus the fact that Darby will be more strict in his gap assignment. Leaving Redding to do what Rogers was doing last year, in pinning is ears back and rushing the passer. Rogers has always been an undertackle his whole career. He was in Texas with Casey Hampton as the nose, he was the under alongside Wilkinson and even 2006 he was the undertackle while they tried Cody/Marcus Bell at Nose(disaster). Rogers did what he knows and occassionally he would take over and wreak havoc but the rest of the time disappear. He's done that his whole career. I agree that Redding is overpaid but alot of players are overpaid with free agency. Marinelli wanted him and he is crucial for this team. If we lost Redding to free agency, we would be royally screwed.

I think Avril could see the field this year as a 3rd down rusher. Fluellen has less of a chance unless Ikaika fails. If Ikaika fails as a DT on third downs, then we have to turn to Fluellen. Ikaika would have played more if not for the hamstring injury that set him back. Darby will not be in on 3rd downs. Its either Ikaika or Fluellen unless you think it will be Langston Moore.

Iamcanadian
07-19-2008, 05:57 AM
I agree that Redding has to step up and have a big year.

However, Redding didn't have that bad a year despite his sack numbers. He was our strongest run defender, had a high number of tackles for loss, and he did get the most consistent "pressure" from what I saw on the QB. The problem was he was about .5 second to late. A better secondary could possibly fix that and lead to higher sack numbers for Redding. Plus the fact that Darby will be more strict in his gap assignment. Leaving Redding to do what Rogers was doing last year, in pinning is ears back and rushing the passer. Rogers has always been an undertackle his whole career. He was in Texas with Casey Hampton as the nose, he was the under alongside Wilkinson and even 2006 he was the undertackle while they tried Cody/Marcus Bell at Nose(disaster). Rogers did what he knows and occassionally he would take over and wreak havoc but the rest of the time disappear. He's done that his whole career. I agree that Redding is overpaid but alot of players are overpaid with free agency. Marinelli wanted him and he is crucial for this team. If we lost Redding to free agency, we would be royally screwed.

I think Avril could see the field this year as a 3rd down rusher. Fluellen has less of a chance unless Ikaika fails. If Ikaika fails as a DT on third downs, then we have to turn to Fluellen. Ikaika would have played more if not for the hamstring injury that set him back. Darby will not be in on 3rd downs. Its either Ikaika or Fluellen unless you think it will be Langston Moore.

I want to see it happen before I'll believe Redding can do it without Rogers taking up the double teams. He's going to be the complete focus of defenses we play and I'm just not sold that he has all Pro potential to consistantly beat the double team. IAF should be in the DT rotation unless he is another wasted draft pick. Sure, Marinelli may play a rookie if everybody else is either injured or completely non productive but I'd rate it a longshot that Fluellen ever plays as a starter this coming season. Even Avril is a longshot and he plays a position of need.
I just don't see that our defense is substantially better than last year. Counting on rookies is pretty lame if your expecting substantial improvement and bringing in a lot of name players from other teams who are for the most part over the hill cannot impact that much either. It is sad to say but I think Marinelli has to be a bit desperate to get the Lions to at least 8 victories even though Ford is slow to fire people. Millen has consisrtantly blamed his HC's for the team's failures not himself and if Marinelli cannot produce 8 wins, I think he is in trouble and I think he knows it. The offense IF Smith produces should be above average but our defense just doesn't have it yet IMO. I believe Marinelli will be extremely reluctant to put his career into the hands of rookies on defense and will tend to play veterans hoping they can at least keep us in some ballgames. It is all gong to come down to how good a HC Marinelli is? I think a good start is absolutely necessary, if we start out 2-5, the players may well quite on Marinelli and a horrible season could follow. If we get off to a 5-2 start then he will keep the players on his side and a decent season may be possible. However, that defense scares the h-ll out of me, on paper it looks worse than last years but that is where Marinelli's coaching will come in. If he can get them to play over their heads, we could be decent but IMO, it's a longshot at best.