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tjsunstein
11-05-2008, 09:58 PM
There seems to be a list about every other position except linebackers. They get little love on here but yet they do so much. Who do you have as your top linebackers in the game today?

1. DeMarcus Ware
2. Ray Lewis
3. Patrick Willis
4. London Fletcher
5. Shawne Merriman
6. Brian Urlacher
7. Demeco Ryans
8. David Harris
9. Derrick Brooks
10. Derrick Johnson

I really wanted to find a place up here for Vilma, Harrison, Ruud, Suggs, and maybe, just maybe I thought about Porter for a second. So what. :)

Judge by linebacker as a position, intangibles, changing the game plan kind of guys. Don't just go by stats because this position is much more. Example: D'Qwell Jackson leads the league in tackles and wont even see a list, hopefully.

These lists tend to be controversial and try not to be a homer if at all possible. :D

Sniper
11-05-2008, 10:08 PM
1. LaMarr Woodley
2. David Harris
3. No one cares.

21ST
11-05-2008, 10:18 PM
nice love for london fletcher

badgerbacker
11-05-2008, 10:30 PM
I really don't think you can include all linebackers in this. It is really hard to compare what Shawne Merriman does with somebody like Patrick Willis.

d34ng3l021
11-05-2008, 10:33 PM
Well you have 3-4 OLBs (of which there are 2 kinds, but I dont think anyone cares to make the distinction here), 3-4 ILB (of which there are 2 kinds), 4-3 (of which there are 2 kinds), and a 4-3 MLB.

Can't really compare all of them at once cause they all have different roles.

Caddy
11-05-2008, 10:42 PM
Ruuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuud!

BlindSite
11-05-2008, 10:43 PM
43 MLBs

1. Brian Urlacher
2. Nick Barnett
3. Antonio Pierce
4. Ray Lewis
5. Jon Beason
6. DeMeco Ryans
7. LofaTatupu
8. Kirk Morrison
9. Barrett Ruud
10. Bradley

Sniper
11-05-2008, 10:44 PM
10. Bradley

Yeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa boyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy

Chucky
11-05-2008, 10:45 PM
43 MLBs

1. Brian Urlacher
2. Nick Barnett
3. Antonio Pierce
4. Ray Lewis
5. Jon Beason
6. DeMeco Ryans
7. LofaTatupu
8. Kirk Morrison
9. Barrett Ruud
10. Bradley

Jon Beason ahead of Demeco? The homer in me also says Ruud should be a little higher. I thinjk Cover 2 MLB's are much more valuable and is a harder position to play.

vidae
11-05-2008, 10:46 PM
Glad to see Derrick Johnson getting some love!

d34ng3l021
11-05-2008, 10:52 PM
43 MLBs

1. Brian Urlacher
2. Nick Barnett
3. Antonio Pierce
4. Ray Lewis
5. Jon Beason
6. DeMeco Ryans
7. LofaTatupu
8. Kirk Morrison
9. Barrett Ruud
10. Bradley

the suspended/banned iloxy: No Curtis Lofton? What kind of list is that? Tool.

I think Beason could be higher. Same with Ryans. And Ruud.

4-3 MLBs

1. Brian Urlacher
2. Ray Lewis
3. Lofa Tatupu
4. Jon Beason
5. DeMeco Ryans
6. Barrett Ruud
7. Nick Barnett
8. Antonio Pierce
9. London Fletcher
10. Kirk Morrison

Caddy
11-05-2008, 10:53 PM
the suspended/banned iloxy: No Curtis Lofton? What kind of list is that? Tool.

I think Beason could be higher. Same with Ryans. And Ruud.

4-3 MLBs

1. Brian Urlacher
2. Ray Lewis
3. Lofa Tatupu
4. Jon Beason
5. DeMeco Ryans
6. Barrett Ruud
7. Nick Barnett
8. Antonio Pierce
9. London Fletcher
10. Kirk Morrison

What is this iloxy ban/suspension you speak of?

tjsunstein
11-05-2008, 11:03 PM
43 MLBs

1. Brian Urlacher
2. Nick Barnett
3. Antonio Pierce
4. Ray Lewis
5. Jon Beason
6. DeMeco Ryans
7. LofaTatupu
8. Kirk Morrison
9. Barrett Ruud
10. Bradley

Give me Ryans, Ruud, Ray Ray over Barnett.

regoob2
11-05-2008, 11:04 PM
What is this iloxy ban/suspension you speak of?Is it my birthday?

regoob2
11-05-2008, 11:04 PM
James Harrison is one of my favorite players to watch.

d34ng3l021
11-05-2008, 11:05 PM
Me and my sources has found out we are unable to give rep that iloxy deserves so much.

We are continuing to investigate.

Rayray52
11-05-2008, 11:09 PM
Lofa Tatupu is a great linebacker he has amazing insticts and a nose for the ball but his athletisicm is only average which really subtracts from his cover skills and his ability to run down ballcarriers having said that hes still a top 10 maybe top 5 linebacker but cant be considered elite.

Burns336
11-05-2008, 11:14 PM
43 MLBs

1. Brian Urlacher
2. Nick Barnett
3. Antonio Pierce
4. Ray Lewis
5. Jon Beason
6. DeMeco Ryans
7. LofaTatupu
8. Kirk Morrison
9. Barrett Ruud
10. Bradley

Dude Antonio Pierce at 3? Even Giants fans think he's a fat 2 down backer.

BlindSite
11-05-2008, 11:49 PM
I have a serious man love hard on for Pierce,

Hines
11-05-2008, 11:56 PM
LaMarr Woodley
James Farrior
Lawrence Timmons
James Harrison

























































The rest.

MetSox17
11-05-2008, 11:56 PM
ILB/MLB

1. Brian Urlacher
2. Patrick Willis
3. Ray Lewis
4. Lofa Tatupu
4. Demeco Ryans
6. David Harris
6. Jon Beason
6. Kirk Morrison
9. Bart Scott
10. Barrett Ruud

OLB's
1. Demarcus Ware
2. Shawne Merriman
3. Julian Peterson
4. Adalius Thomas
5. Lance Briggs
6. AJ Hawk
7. Terrell Suggs
8. James Harrison
9. Derrick Johnson
10. Ernie Sims

Sniper
11-05-2008, 11:58 PM
Really? No LaMarr Woodley in your top 10 OLB? Seriously?

A.J Hawk has been a disappointment as a pro.

MetSox17
11-06-2008, 12:01 AM
Joey Porter is playing better than him right now, and not even he is on my top ten list. That's not a knock on either player, but i think the guys i listed are reaally damn good.

Sniper
11-06-2008, 12:03 AM
You have Bart Scott in your top 10 ILB/MLB. WTF?

MetSox17
11-06-2008, 12:05 AM
You have Bart Scott in your top 10 ILB/MLB. WTF?

What's wrong with Bart Scott?

tjsunstein
11-06-2008, 12:11 AM
Bump AJ down more on that list. He's not worthy of being ahead of Suggs, Harrison, and Derrick Johnson.

Sniper
11-06-2008, 12:12 AM
What's wrong with Bart Scott?

He's not a top 10 ILB/MLB, nor is he intelligent.

Sniper
11-06-2008, 12:13 AM
Bump AJ down more on that list. He's not worthy of being ahead of Suggs, Harrison, and Derrick Johnson.

And Woodley.

MetSox17
11-06-2008, 12:15 AM
He's not a top 10 ILB/MLB, nor is he intelligent.

Well make a list, so i can disagree with it.

Zyro_1014
11-06-2008, 12:24 AM
MLB
1) Urlacher
2) P Willy
3) Ray Ray
4) Beason
5) Kirk Morrison
6) Demeco
7) Lofa
8) David Harris
9) Rudd
10) Barnett

OLB
1) D Ware
2) Merriman
3) Adalius
4) Lance Briggs
5) Julian Peterson
6) Suggs
7) Woodley
8) Ernie Simms
9) Derrick Johnson
10) Tommy Howard- Just love the guy....had too

MetSox17
11-06-2008, 12:26 AM
Woodley's not even the best OLB'er on his own team.

Zyro_1014
11-06-2008, 12:27 AM
Woodley's not even the best OLB'er on his own team.

people do have their own personal preferance man...

MetSox17
11-06-2008, 12:30 AM
people do have their own personal preferance man...

I love redundancy.

Zyro_1014
11-06-2008, 12:31 AM
I love redundancy.

you also love weiners...

TitleTown088
11-06-2008, 12:34 AM
the suspended/banned iloxy: No Curtis Lofton? What kind of list is that? Tool.

I think Beason could be higher. Same with Ryans. And Ruud.

4-3 MLBs

1. Brian Urlacher
2. Ray Lewis
3. Lofa Tatupu
4. Jon Beason
5. DeMeco Ryans
6. Barrett Ruud
7. Nick Barnett
8. Antonio Pierce
9. London Fletcher
10. Kirk Morrison

43 MLBs

1. Brian Urlacher
2. Nick Barnett
3. Antonio Pierce
4. Ray Lewis
5. Jon Beason
6. DeMeco Ryans
7. LofaTatupu
8. Kirk Morrison
9. Barrett Ruud
10. Bradley

I really hope you're not basing that on this seasons play. He has not played well at all this season. Not looking like himself one bit.

bored of education
11-06-2008, 06:37 AM
Their is only one 4-3 olb right now I would take over Derrick Johnson and that would be Lance Briggs.

703SKINS202
11-06-2008, 08:16 AM
I feel like Terrel Suggs is getting underrated on a lot of OLB lists.

Sniper
11-06-2008, 08:17 AM
Woodley's not even the best OLB'er on his own team.

This is a complete and utter lie! LaMarr Woodley is the greatest thing since sliced bread! No, wait, **** that. LaMarr Woodley is greater than sliced bread.

CroomDawgs
11-06-2008, 08:26 AM
I'll give it a go.

MLB/ILB:

1. Brian Urlacher
2. Ray Lewis
3. Lofa Tatupu
4. Patrick Willis
5. DeMeco Ryans
6. London FLetcher
7. James Farrior
8. Jon Beason
9. David Harris
10. Barrett Ruud


OLB:
1. DeMarcus Ware
2. Shawn Merriman
3. Julian Peterson
4. Adalius Thomas
t-5. Lamarr Woodley
t-5. James Harrison (really both are equal to me)
7. Joey Porter
8. Terell Suggs
9. Lance Briggs
10. Derrick Brooks

jsagan77
11-06-2008, 08:34 AM
London Fletcher is playing better than any MLB in the league right now... Top 5 LB and it's not even close..

abaddon41_80
11-06-2008, 08:34 AM
How is Joey Porter not in anyone's top ten OLBs? He is leading the league in sacks, has tons of TFLs, and is the only player anyone knows on the Dolphins defense which is 12th in the league in PPG and 7th in run defense.

CroomDawgs
11-06-2008, 08:37 AM
How is Joey Porter not in anyone's top ten OLBs? He is leading the league in sacks, has tons of TFLs, and is the only player anyone knows on the Dolphins defense which is 12th in the league in PPG and 7th in run defense.


Wow good call, I'm gonna edit my list

703SKINS202
11-06-2008, 08:37 AM
London Fletcher is playing better than any MLB in the league right now... Top 5 LB and it's not even close..

Don't know if he is the top one but to leave him off a top 10 mlb list is atrocious.

SeanTaylorRIP
11-06-2008, 10:32 AM
IMO Ray Lewis and London Fletcher are the top 2 MLB's right now. While there might be more athletic, more explosive, and better range in coverage MLB's right now, if you take in consideration what they give your defense as far as an extra coach on the field and making sure the entire defense is lined up and doing their job, no others can compare. Also they are the two surest LB's, and if it were a goaline situation I'd take them.

abaddon41_80
11-06-2008, 11:46 AM
This list will be a little different but I am basing everything off of this season

MLB:
1. Barrett Ruud
2. Ray Lewis
3. Patrick Willis
4. Jon Beason
5. "Captain" Kirk Morrison
6. Ray Lewis
7. London Fletcher
8. DeMeco Ryans
9. James Farrior
10. Lofa Tatupu

OLB:
1. James Harrison
2. Joey Porter
3. Demarcus Ware
4. Terell Suggs
5. LaMaar Woodley
6. Julian Peterson
7. Adalius Thomas
8. Lance Briggs
9. Derrick Johnson
10. Kawika Mitchell

MetSox17
11-06-2008, 11:50 AM
1. James Harrison
2. Joey Porter
3. Demarcus Ware
4. Terell Suggs
5. LaMaar Woodley
6. Julian Peterson
7. Adalius Thomas
8. Lance Briggs
9. Derrick Johnson
10. Kawika Mitchell
.

Say whaaaa?

XxXdragonXxX
11-06-2008, 12:35 PM
Everyone needs to replace Julian Peterson with LeRoy Hill on their OLB lists.

Jimmy
11-06-2008, 12:40 PM
you all disgust me. Not one of you mentions DJ Williams. Yet more proof that nobody will ever care about the denver broncos, and fans everywhere will continue to ignore the play of two probowl players in williams and bailey. williams leads the friggin nfl in tackles.

MetSox17
11-06-2008, 12:42 PM
you all disgust me. Not one of you mentions DJ Williams. Yet more proof that nobody will ever care about the denver broncos, and fans everywhere will continue to ignore the play of two probowl players in williams and bailey. williams leads the friggin nfl in tackles.

ZOMGZ, tackles mean everything!

Ravens1991
11-06-2008, 12:43 PM
how much do you all weigh in total tackles when it comes to LB. I know DJ Williams and D'Qwell Jackson are top in the lead in tackles but hardly in anyones list. I think they are preety important but not the biggest thing.

Jimmy
11-06-2008, 12:43 PM
ZOMGZ, tackles mean everything!

zomg half the people here are obsessed with stats. just trying to make some people appreciate what little talent we have left on the broncos. DJ is a great player. don't p.m.s.

Sniper
11-06-2008, 12:44 PM
ZOMGZ, tackles mean everything!

Wait, so Dhani Jones isn't good then?

:D

Jimmy
11-06-2008, 12:46 PM
to add on to that, i know a lot of broncos fans tend to scrutinize DJ for his questionable ability to read and react... but here's a guy (not to sound like madden) who's played all 3 linebacker positions, and played quite well in all 3 places. name another linebacker that has that under his belt.

MetSox17
11-06-2008, 12:49 PM
zomg half the people here are obsessed with stats. just trying to make some people appreciate what little talent we have left on the broncos. DJ is a great player. don't p.m.s.

DJ Williams is the equivalent of the scoring leader for the Knicks. Somebody needs to get the points...

Ravens1991
11-06-2008, 12:50 PM
still tackles should at least be looked at. Yes it isn't the only thing but it does show he is stoping the offensive player.

ShutDwn
11-06-2008, 12:50 PM
A lot of tackles usually mean you were on a bad defense that couldn't get off the field.

Like Jon Beason and Patrick Willis last year. Beason's tackles are down, but he is playing really well.

Jimmy
11-06-2008, 12:54 PM
DJ Williams is the equivalent of the scoring leader for the Knicks. Somebody needs to get the points...

false. DJ is 1 of 2 good tacklers on this team. he's been able to rack up the tackles at all positions as well.

Xonraider
11-06-2008, 12:57 PM
1. LaMarr Woodley
2. David Harris
3. No one cares.

Shawn Crable. :D

MetSox17
11-06-2008, 12:58 PM
false. DJ is 1 of 2 good tacklers on this team. he's been able to rack up the tackles at all positions as well.

Exactly. It isn't so much him being good, as it is his team being bad.

The Great Jonathan Vilma
11-06-2008, 12:59 PM
Denver's defense plays is so weak that the number of opportunities he has to make tackles is inflated. Tackles can be a good indicator, and show how a guy flows to the ball, but often don't tell the whole story. When DJ was against the Saints, he had 14 solo's, but he was also responsible for covering Reggie Bush in the pass game, which lead to many of the tackles after a few yards. I'd be interested to see the number of reps each defense has taken, and then see tackle numbers, could be more helpful.

SuperMcGee
11-06-2008, 01:01 PM
I know a lot of guys before the season were predicting a breakout year from Posluszny, and I'd say they've pretty much been right. Very impressive player.

Dr. Gonzo
11-06-2008, 01:03 PM
how much do you all weigh in total tackles when it comes to LB. I know DJ Williams and D'Qwell Jackson are top in the lead in tackles but hardly in anyones list. I think they are preety important but not the biggest thing.

The problem with tackles in that often times defenders on bad teams easily get a crap load of tackles. I still think tackles are an important stack but LB's need to be judged by watching games and watching how they impact the game rather than stats.

Jimmy
11-06-2008, 01:11 PM
edit: forget about tackles, dj is still a great linebacker who will be overshadowed

Ravens1991
11-06-2008, 01:39 PM
The problem with tackles in that often times defenders on bad teams easily get a crap load of tackles. I still think tackles are an important stack but LB's need to be judged by watching games and watching how they impact the game rather than stats.

I see what you mean I understand, tackles for a loss are important as well. But nothing beats watching the players on film.

Sniper
11-06-2008, 02:42 PM
Shawn Crable. :D

Cato June.

fenikz
11-06-2008, 02:53 PM
Dansby > all

can play all spots in the 3-4 and 4-3

GB12
11-06-2008, 03:42 PM
I really hope you're not basing that on this seasons play. He has not played well at all this season. Not looking like himself one bit.
This season no, but overall he is top 7. He was a top 2 MLB last year, this year he hasn't been much of a factor.

BlindSite
11-06-2008, 04:47 PM
Dansby > all

can play all spots in the 3-4 and 4-3

Dansby is quite seriously, probably the most underrated Linebacker in the NFL.

Turtlepower
11-06-2008, 05:03 PM
Anyone else feel like that people here are starting to ignore stats to a point where it is getting a bit ridiculous? I know stats aren't a complete measurement, but you gotta give credit to the guys who lead the league in tackles because they are stopping the play.

BlindSite
11-06-2008, 05:06 PM
Yeah its a bit of a two fold statement, Willis is a top 2 linebacker because he had a mass of tackles in his rookie season, but Dhani Jones sucks but he's leading the league.

Linebackers, like defensive ends, have to be judged with the eye more than anything else, but I think an opinion about a player is formed through watching, its reinforced by stats.

steelersfan43
11-06-2008, 06:52 PM
how much do you all weigh in total tackles when it comes to LB. I know DJ Williams and D'Qwell Jackson are top in the lead in tackles but hardly in anyones list. I think they are preety important but not the biggest thing.

When a good linebacker plays on a terrible defense they get a very high amount of tackles. And then you look at a very good defense like the steelers, the leading tackler is james farrior with only fifty, and the tackles are alot more spread out among the defenders..

Bruce Banner
11-06-2008, 07:03 PM
This list will be a little different but I am basing everything off of this season

MLB:
1. Barrett Ruud


Glad to see this. He's very unappreciated.

Don Vito
11-06-2008, 07:04 PM
Adalius Thomas has been a beast this year. He can do it all.

The Great Jonathan Vilma
11-06-2008, 07:54 PM
Anyone else feel like that people here are starting to ignore stats to a point where it is getting a bit ridiculous? I know stats aren't a complete measurement, but you gotta give credit to the guys who lead the league in tackles because they are stopping the play.

I don't think so. When someone says 'DJ Williams, he's leading the league in tackles!' what do you really expect. No one is saying completely ignore the stats, but they should back the statement, not make it. Tackles are good and dandy, but that alone is hardly a reason to rate someone, otherwise we are simply saying that Dhani Jones and DJ Williams are both even and outstanding......maybe they are, but not in my books. I think DJ is awesome, and deserves mention, but the reasoning to mention him alone was flawed. It is hard to mention a guy on an absolutely terrible defense as a top guy, it is just hard to do. Many give Bailey the benefit of the doubt, but to be honest he has dropped considerably in my eyes, whether it be more to him not being able to stay on the field or not, that factors in.

Mr. Stiller
11-06-2008, 08:38 PM
Dansby > all

can play all spots in the 3-4 and 4-3

By that definition Lawrence Timmons is the best LB in the league.

Timmons > Dansby.

Timmons can not only play all 4 3-4 LB Positions, but he can also cover WR's 1 on 1.

Dansby: 55 Tackles, 3 sacks 1 PD
Timmons: 30 Tackles, 4 Sacks, 1 PD

Timmons is rotating in all positions.

bantx
11-06-2008, 09:09 PM
To Jimmy, Eric Weddle is leading our defense in tackles. Does that mean hes the best defensive player on our team? Or are we just getting beat and Weddle has to make the tackle every play.

MetSox17
11-06-2008, 09:10 PM
To Jimmy, Eric Weddle is leading our defense in tackles. Does that mean hes the best defensive player on our team? Or are we just getting beat and Weddle has to make the tackle every play.

Oh for sure. That means Weddle >> Bob Sanders, LaRon Landry & Ed Reed

renegade
11-06-2008, 09:12 PM
Well, Gocong sucks... ALOT. However, Omar Gaither's and Stewart Bradley's awesomeness help make up for some of the suckitude.

fenikz
11-06-2008, 09:15 PM
Dansby's number are better

Burns336
11-06-2008, 10:10 PM
Not that this matters or is relevant to this discussion, but I've noticed they didn't count Ware's FF on his strip sack of Marc Bulger on any website...

How many "big stats" like these get missed?

Mr. Stiller
11-07-2008, 09:55 AM
Dansby's number are better

Dansby with more play time has 20 more tackles and 1 less sack.

I bet Timmons would have upwards of 50 tackles and 7-8 Sacks if he were starting fulltime.

Jimmy
11-07-2008, 11:08 AM
To Jimmy, Eric Weddle is leading our defense in tackles. Does that mean hes the best defensive player on our team? Or are we just getting beat and Weddle has to make the tackle every play.

dj williams wasn't playing well at the expense of others. williams is a linebacker, and unlike weddle, isnt getting tackles at the expense of others getting beat, he's a linebacker. you miss the point of the tackles stat. it is simply an added bonus to the fact that he has been playing very well, and simply is able to wrap up and misses few when he gets an opportunity. he is great in pursuit, and in this instance the tackle stat only reinforces the player DJ is. the stat alone does not define his season, he's been playing great most plays regardless of how many tackles he makes

Sniper
11-07-2008, 01:11 PM
Well, Gocong sucks... ALOT. However, Omar Gaither's and Stewart Bradley's awesomeness help make up for some of the suckitude.

Gocong is good near the LOS against the run. Sometimes, the Eagles try to have him cover, and that is an epic fail.

Sniper
11-07-2008, 01:11 PM
I bet Timmons would have upwards of 50 tackles and 7-8 Sacks if LaMarr Woodley didn't get all of the sacks

Fixed that for you.

tjsunstein
11-07-2008, 02:27 PM
I think it's midway through page two that these threads turn into a homer-fest. Id love to throw Barnett or Hawk out there but I cant convince myself to accept the way theyve been playing this year.

Mr. Stiller
11-07-2008, 02:39 PM
I think it's midway through page two that these threads turn into a homer-fest. Id love to throw Barnett or Hawk out there but I cant convince myself to accept the way theyve been playing this year.

I thought Nick Barnett was a top 2 4-3 MLB.. but Lewis is back to his 2000 or close form ... and some other guys are stepping up.

Ravens1991
11-07-2008, 03:05 PM
I dont think he is close to his 2000 form, but he is back in terms of being a elite MLB.

GB12
11-07-2008, 04:34 PM
I thought Nick Barnett was a top 2 4-3 MLB.. but Lewis is back to his 2000 or close form ... and some other guys are stepping up.
He was/is, but he sure hasn't been playing like it this season.

ChezPower4
11-07-2008, 04:39 PM
He was/is, but he sure hasn't been playing like it this season.

Yea, Barnett has not been himself this year at all. Could be one reason why our run defense has been so bad.

The Legend
11-07-2008, 04:42 PM
Dhani Jones and Karlos Dansby have played well.

ChezPower4
11-07-2008, 04:51 PM
I've watched a few of the Titans games this year and David Thornton seems to be playing very well this year. Seems like Haynesworth, D-line and Cortland Finnegan are getting all the credit for the units great success. The LBs have played very well IMO and don't get credit that they should.

Pokeys
11-08-2008, 09:19 PM
Its too bad Manny Lawson hasn't lived up to his potential. I could have seen him on these lists...

d34ng3l021
11-08-2008, 09:31 PM
Michael Boley needs to be blitzed more. Maybe put on some more weight too. He is still doing a good job in coverage though.

OzTitan
11-09-2008, 01:34 AM
I've watched a few of the Titans games this year and David Thornton seems to be playing very well this year. Seems like Haynesworth, D-line and Cortland Finnegan are getting all the credit for the units great success. The LBs have played very well IMO and don't get credit that they should.

Poor ol' Keith Bulluck can't even get a top 10 mention from anyone :P And this is for one of the top rated OLB's in Madden! I actually think Thornton has surpassed him but Keith is usually a popular choice in "most underrated" threads - I guess he really is, by the people who say he is underrated no less. I mean yeah, if noone is going to rate him well, then I guess he is underrated :P

TitanHope
11-09-2008, 01:53 AM
Thornton has been lights out this season.

Nevertheless, Bulluck has been the most consistently productive LB in the NFL entering this season - and that includes ILB's and WLB's in all schemes whether 4-3 or 3-4.

I did the averages a long time ago, and I think only Julian Peterson was closest.

terribletowel39
11-09-2008, 02:10 AM
I'm pretty sure that has to go to Ray Lewis, London Fletcher, or Derrick Brooks. Not Keith Bulluck, although he is good.

Rayray52
11-09-2008, 02:11 AM
Two or three years ago sure throw bulluck on there maybe even top 3 if its OLB only, however hes slowed down alot and other than that huge 3 int game last year against the colts hasnt been dominant in a while.

Dr. Gonzo
11-09-2008, 02:22 AM
He was/is, but he sure hasn't been playing like it this season.

No way has Barnett ever been a top 2 4-3 MLB. Before this year he has always been one of the best MLB's in the league but top 2 is way overating him.

GB12
11-09-2008, 02:25 AM
No way has Barnett ever been a top 2 4-3 MLB. Before this year he has always been one of the best MLB's in the league but top 2 is way overating him.
Last season he was top 2. Overall he's probably top 7.

Rayray52
11-09-2008, 02:31 AM
I know its a more limited role but how has Takeo Spikes looked this year? is he totally washed up or can he still make a play here or there

Dr. Gonzo
11-09-2008, 02:35 AM
Last season he was top 2. Overall he's probably top 7.

Off the top of my head I would have rated Patrick Willis, Jon Beason, Brian Urlacher, D.J. Williams, London Fletcher, and Demeco Ryan ahead of Nick Barnett as far as MLB's go last year. Some of those may be debateble and and it late but while it may be another case of homer bias I think each of those guys out performed him and each were close to him statistically.

The Legend
11-09-2008, 03:51 AM
What's up with the Saints not talking with Jonathan Vilma about a contact?
He's going to be a Free Agent if they don't resign him.
Do you think they will try to franchise tag him?

I could see him going to the Broncos if they don't sign him.
To play along side two other Miami linebackers and One former teammate.
Dj William and Nate Webster, I think Webster is better on the outside.

Gay Ork Wang
11-09-2008, 04:27 AM
What's up with the Saints not talking with Jonathan Vilma about a contact?
He's going to be a Free Agent if they don't resign him.
Do you think they will try to franchise tag him?

I could see him going to the Broncos if they don't sign him.
To play along side two other Miami linebackers and One former teammate.
Dj William and Nate Webster, I think Webster is better on the outside.
theyd lose a first rounder

abaddon41_80
11-10-2008, 01:26 PM
I know its a more limited role but how has Takeo Spikes looked this year? is he totally washed up or can he still make a play here or there

He looked old and slow for the first few weeks of the season but since around week 5 he has really picked it up. He has been playing almost as well as Willis

A Perfect Score
11-10-2008, 02:06 PM
Ray Lewis is still the best MLB in the league, and to me, it isnt close. You may all call me a homer, but TBH, when you look at it, he brings far more to his team then just tackles. Imagine the Ravens defense without Ray Lewis. Sure, they have some other pieces, but it wouldliterallly FALL APART. The man is an extra coach out on the field, he is one of the most charismatic and energetic leaders of his generation of football, and he is playing like he is 25 again, flying over the field, making tackles, getting INTs, and overall just playing better football then any other LB in the game atm.

As far as the tackles stat is concerned, I think its WAY overrated. Tackles for Loss and other big plays are FAR more important in judging a LB i think. And the reason for this is, tackle numbers are quit frankly, very skewed. I mean, look at someone like Ernie Sims, and this relates back to the DJ Williams argument. Ernie Sims will consistently get more tackles then someone like, lets say, Julian Peterson. Does that make him a better LB then Peterson? Absolutely not. But Peterson has Tatupu and Leroy Hill in his LB core who are also going to get tackles, whereas Ernie Sims has...I think you get the point.

Also, lets take into consideration where tackles are made. A guy like Patrick Willis racked up ALOT of tackles last year, but when someone on here ran the stats, it turned out most of them came 3-5 yards down the field, where as in comparison, most of David Harris's tackles came much closer to the line of scrimmage. So Harris may not have had as many tackles overall, but who was making more of an impact? Ill take the guy making tackles closer to the line of scrimmage anyday.

Finally, scheme plays a huge role. Guys like Harris and Willis will get a put load of tackles in their respective 3-4's but Ruud wont get as many as either of them when he means just as much to his own defense as either of them.


I firmly believe that the best way to judge a LB is to ask yourself, what would happen to this defense if I took this LB away. Is it a scheme defense, like the steelers, where anyone can step in at OLB and get 10 sacks? Im sorry steelers fans, but your OLB's consistently put up great numbers no matter who is playing there, and that isnt coincidence, which is why neither James Harrison of Lamar Woodley would be in my top 10 OLB's. For proof, lets just see how Clark Haggans is doing in a different defensive system after beign a very servicable starter in Pitt. Or is it someone like Ray Lewis, where if you take him out of that defense it falls apart. If you take a guy out of his scheme, can someone else step in and do his job relatively well?

My Top 10 MLB/ILB:

1. Ray Lewis
2. Brian Urlacher
3. London Fletcher
4. Demeco Ryans
5. Bo Ruud
6. Karlos Dansby
7. Jon Beason
8. Lofa Tatupu
9. David Harris
10. Patrick Willis

Top 10 OLB:

1. Derrick Johnson
2. Shawn Merriman
3. Demarcus Ware
4. Derrick Brooks
5. Adalius Thomas
6. DJ Williams
7. Terrell Suggs
8. Michael Boley
9. Lance Briggs
10. Joey Porter

Basileus777
11-10-2008, 02:11 PM
to add on to that, i know a lot of broncos fans tend to scrutinize DJ for his questionable ability to read and react... but here's a guy (not to sound like madden) who's played all 3 linebacker positions, and played quite well in all 3 places. name another linebacker that has that under his belt.

DJ Williams was awful at MLB.....

He's a good WLB who is also solid at SLB. That's not all that unique.

The Great Jonathan Vilma
11-10-2008, 02:21 PM
Finally, scheme plays a huge role. Guys like Harris and Willis will get a put load of tackles in their respective 3-4's but Ruud wont get as many as either of them when he means just as much to his own defense as either of them.

Is this saying you believe an ILB in a 3-4 should get more tackles than a 4-3?

I respect your LB ranks, although i disagree slightly.

Don Vito
11-10-2008, 02:21 PM
Adalius Thomas was having a great season but he broke his forearm and is out for the season. Almost everything that could go wrong for the Pats has gone wrong this year.

terribletowel39
11-10-2008, 02:28 PM
Is this saying you believe an ILB in a 3-4 should get more tackles than a 4-3?

I respect your LB ranks, although i disagree slightly.
Yea that assessment is incorrect. 34 ILB's usually take on a blocker or two. Seeing as how 43 has four defensive lineman to eat up blockers. And 34 has 3.

And APS, Clark Haggans always sucked.....he had one okay year but he never broke double digit sacks. Closest he got was 9 one year other than that he averaged like 4-5 sacks a year. Which is not good.

Ravens1991
11-10-2008, 02:31 PM
Ray Lewis is still the best MLB in the league, and to me, it isnt close. You may all call me a homer, but TBH, when you look at it, he brings far more to his team then just tackles. Imagine the Ravens defense without Ray Lewis. Sure, they have some other pieces, but it wouldliterallly FALL APART. The man is an extra coach out on the field, he is one of the most charismatic and energetic leaders of his generation of football, and he is playing like he is 25 again, flying over the field, making tackles, getting INTs, and overall just playing better football then any other LB in the game atm.

As far as the tackles stat is concerned, I think its WAY overrated. Tackles for Loss and other big plays are FAR more important in judging a LB i think. And the reason for this is, tackle numbers are quit frankly, very skewed. I mean, look at someone like Ernie Sims, and this relates back to the DJ Williams argument. Ernie Sims will consistently get more tackles then someone like, lets say, Julian Peterson. Does that make him a better LB then Peterson? Absolutely not. But Peterson has Tatupu and Leroy Hill in his LB core who are also going to get tackles, whereas Ernie Sims has...I think you get the point.

Also, lets take into consideration where tackles are made. A guy like Patrick Willis racked up ALOT of tackles last year, but when someone on here ran the stats, it turned out most of them came 3-5 yards down the field, where as in comparison, most of David Harris's tackles came much closer to the line of scrimmage. So Harris may not have had as many tackles overall, but who was making more of an impact? Ill take the guy making tackles closer to the line of scrimmage anyday.

Finally, scheme plays a huge role. Guys like Harris and Willis will get a put load of tackles in their respective 3-4's but Ruud wont get as many as either of them when he means just as much to his own defense as either of them.


I firmly believe that the best way to judge a LB is to ask yourself, what would happen to this defense if I took this LB away. Is it a scheme defense, like the steelers, where anyone can step in at OLB and get 10 sacks? Im sorry steelers fans, but your OLB's consistently put up great numbers no matter who is playing there, and that isnt coincidence, which is why neither James Harrison of Lamar Woodley would be in my top 10 OLB's. For proof, lets just see how Clark Haggans is doing in a different defensive system after beign a very servicable starter in Pitt. Or is it someone like Ray Lewis, where if you take him out of that defense it falls apart. If you take a guy out of his scheme, can someone else step in and do his job relatively well?

My Top 10 MLB/ILB:

1. Ray Lewis
2. Brian Urlacher
3. London Fletcher
4. Demeco Ryans
5. Bo Ruud
6. Karlos Dansby
7. Jon Beason
8. Lofa Tatupu
9. David Harris
10. Patrick Willis

Top 10 OLB:

1. Derrick Johnson
2. Shawn Merriman
3. Demarcus Ware
4. Derrick Brooks
5. Adalius Thomas
6. DJ Williams
7. Terrell Suggs
8. Michael Boley
9. Lance Briggs
10. Joey Porter


Great post I love Ray he is important for the team, I hope we hire him as a LB coach when he retires. I think he is elite as well, he is a coach on the field, he gives your defense a identity, plus he is versatile, he can play blitz,defend the run and he isn't a bad coverage man as well. I think he can be a pro bowler in any defense, whether its a traditional 4-3, a 3-4, or even a tampa 2.

fenikz
11-10-2008, 02:56 PM
My Top 10 MLB/ILB:

1. Ray Lewis
2. Brian Urlacher
3. London Fletcher
4. Demeco Ryans
5. Bo Ruud
6. Karlos Dansby
7. Jon Beason
8. Lofa Tatupu
9. David Harris
10. Patrick Willis

Top 10 OLB:

1. Derrick Johnson
2. Shawn Merriman
3. Demarcus Ware
4. Derrick Brooks
5. Adalius Thomas
6. DJ Williams
7. Terrell Suggs
8. Michael Boley
9. Lance Briggs
10. Joey Porter

Kind of hard to say he is a ILB and he isn't playing MLB(thats Hayes who is very underrated) but he is most certainly a top 10 LB

BlindSite
11-10-2008, 03:34 PM
He might be top 10 but there's no way in hell he's playing better football than Beason this year.

vidae
11-10-2008, 03:37 PM
I'm really surprised you have Derrick Johnson as your number one OLB. I mean, homer aside, I agree, but not many people see Chiefs games and just look at stats. Derrick Johnson is very underrated and our defense just isn't the same when he's out.

MetSox17
11-10-2008, 03:40 PM
I wanna hear how Derrick Johnson and Shawne Merriman are better than DeMarcus Ware.

A Perfect Score
11-10-2008, 03:46 PM
I wanna hear how Derrick Johnson and Shawne Merriman are better than DeMarcus Ware.

Well, personally, I think Derrick Johnson brings more to the table then Demarcus Ware. If you take Ware away from that Dallas defense, you have guys in Anthony Spencer and Greg Ellis who can make plays, and TBH, I have always been a believer that 3-4 OLB's are a bit easier to come by then a great 4-3 OLB. Derrick Johnson is a VERY complete backer with almost no weakness (he can be a bit wary to take on blockers, and will sometimes try to run around them instead of through them, but hes getting better). Dont get me wrong, i am a HUGE fan of Demarcus Ware and I appreciate that he can do more then most 3-4 OLBs, and it may seem like im faulting him for the Cowboys having depth, but Im not. Simply put, I think I value a fantastic 4-3 OLB over a 3-4 one. And to be frank, look at what happened with the Chargers defense without Shawn Merriman. It has literally fallen apart. Obviously there are other factors, but Merriman was the key piece to that defense.

Basileus777
11-10-2008, 03:55 PM
I'm a Chiefs fan, but I think you're crazy is you put DJ over Ware. DJ is a good player, but he doesn't have nearly the same impact on the game as Ware.

The Great Jonathan Vilma
11-10-2008, 04:31 PM
I may be biased, as I am a huge Beason fan, but i would say he's a top 5 MLB. Production aside, although it is impressive, he flies around the field, is smart, solid in coverage, is the emotional leader of that defense (after basically every play he runs over to the guy who made the play and gives them a 'good job' smack), can make tackles with impact, is solid against the run....i don't know, i just really like what he brings to the table. Just my opinion though, but i may be playing favorites.

Gay Ork Wang
11-10-2008, 04:42 PM
Lance Briggs is certainly better than DJ Williams

BlindSite
11-10-2008, 06:29 PM
I may be biased, as I am a huge Beason fan, but i would say he's a top 5 MLB. Production aside, although it is impressive, he flies around the field, is smart, solid in coverage, is the emotional leader of that defense (after basically every play he runs over to the guy who made the play and gives them a 'good job' smack), can make tackles with impact, is solid against the run....i don't know, i just really like what he brings to the table. Just my opinion though, but i may be playing favorites.

We're both beason homers, but you're right. The defense has gone from being talented yet leaderless (without Dan Morgan on the Field) to being Dominant and clearly fired up.

When the Panthers lost Morgan to injury is was clear a lot of missing from the D and then last season with Minter retiring the Morgan not being around, it was pretty darn clear to everyone that the defense was suffering, but it was clear when Beason was on the field things did go better.

This year with him and Harris there's not only been a notable change in chemistry, but also the determination and the brotherhood on the defense is impressive.

No one is talking about it, but Carolina is 2 overall in points allowed, behind Tennessee. Beason is a HUGE reason for that.

MetSox17
11-10-2008, 06:33 PM
Well, personally, I think Derrick Johnson brings more to the table then Demarcus Ware. If you take Ware away from that Dallas defense, you have guys in Anthony Spencer and Greg Ellis who can make plays, and TBH, I have always been a believer that 3-4 OLB's are a bit easier to come by then a great 4-3 OLB. Derrick Johnson is a VERY complete backer with almost no weakness (he can be a bit wary to take on blockers, and will sometimes try to run around them instead of through them, but hes getting better). Dont get me wrong, i am a HUGE fan of Demarcus Ware and I appreciate that he can do more then most 3-4 OLBs, and it may seem like im faulting him for the Cowboys having depth, but Im not. Simply put, I think I value a fantastic 4-3 OLB over a 3-4 one. And to be frank, look at what happened with the Chargers defense without Shawn Merriman. It has literally fallen apart. Obviously there are other factors, but Merriman was the key piece to that defense.

So your rankings are mostly dependent on what team they play for? For example, if Demarcus Ware played for the Lions, he'd be #1?

Ware is a complete LB'er. He covers, rushes the passer as good as anyone, is as sure a tackler as anyone, and is great in the open field. Shawne Merriman is a good rusher. That's probably about it.

I disagree completely with your analysis, because 4-3 OLB'ers have much less to worry about than any 3-4 'backer. And trust me, i love Derrick Johnson, but i don't think he's the best outside backer in the league.

Basileus777
11-10-2008, 06:43 PM
I really don't think you can compare 4-3 OLBs and 3-4 rushbackers. They don't really play the same position. A mediocre rushbacker arguably deserves to be ranked higher than a pro-bowl 4-3 OLB because pass rushers simply have a larger impact on the game. I don't think you can really group the two together because one of them plays a far more important role for a defense.

A Perfect Score
11-10-2008, 08:39 PM
So your rankings are mostly dependent on what team they play for? For example, if Demarcus Ware played for the Lions, he'd be #1?

Ware is a complete LB'er. He covers, rushes the passer as good as anyone, is as sure a tackler as anyone, and is great in the open field. Shawne Merriman is a good rusher. That's probably about it.

I disagree completely with your analysis, because 4-3 OLB'ers have much less to worry about than any 3-4 'backer. And trust me, i love Derrick Johnson, but i don't think he's the best outside backer in the league.

how? Many pro bowl 3-4 OLBs are one trick ponies who only rush the passer and are incapable of anything else. In fact, many are converted DE's who simply dont have the size to play DE and the athleticism to play standard 4-3 OLB. Now, Demarcus Ware is an exception, but your argument is flawed in assuming that 3-4 OLB's have more qualities then 4-3 OLB's. And your right, Merriman is much less dynamic then Ware, but hes just SO GOOD at rushing the passer that its impossible to ignore his impact or take away from what he brings to that defense.

TitanHope
11-13-2008, 11:10 PM
I'm pretty sure that has to go to Ray Lewis, London Fletcher, or Derrick Brooks. Not Keith Bulluck, although he is good.

Bulluck's past 5 seasons:

'03: 137 tot's, 3 sacks, 2 INT's, 1 DEF TD, 5 FF, 6 PD's
'04: 152 tot's, 5 sacks, 2 INT's, 1 DEF TD, 1 FF, 13 PD's
'05: 138 tot's, 5 sacks, 2 INT's, 0 DEF TD, 1 FF, 10 PD's
'06: 144 tot's, 2.5 sacks, 1 INT's, 1 DEF TD, 2 FF, 8 PD's
'07: 88 tot's, 0 sacks, 5 INT's, 0 DEF TD, 1 FF, 7 PD's

Bulluck AVG (SLB):
131.8 tot's, 3.1 sacks, 2.4 INT's, .6 DEF TD's, 2 FF's, 8.8 PD's.

Ray Lewis AVG (ILB):
116 tot's, 2.1 sacks, 2.2 INT's, .4 DEF TD's, 1.2 FF's, 8 PD's

Brooks AVG (WLB):
119 tot's, 1.4 sacks, 1.4 INT's, .4 DEF TD's, 1.6 FF's, 6.2 PD's.

Fletcher AVG (ILB):
142 tot's, 2.3 sacks, 1.6 INT's, .6 DEF TD's, .6 FF's, 7.2 PD's.

Bulluck beats both Lewis and Brooks in every statistical category. Fletcher is only better in total tackles and tied in DEF TD's. Bulluck wins in everything else. Think of other big name LB's, and compare them yourself.

Two or three years ago sure throw bulluck on there maybe even top 3 if its OLB only, however hes slowed down alot and other than that huge 3 int game last year against the colts hasnt been dominant in a while.

Bulluck hasn't slowed down - he's just no longer the only talented player on the DEF. The reason his tackles dropped last year is because no one could get past the DL. This season, Bulluck is on pace for 103 tot's, while David Thornton is on pace for 75 tot's.

Bulluck is vastly under-appreciated by Titans fans because he has been great for so long. He didn't have 3 INT's against the Colts last season - He had 3 INT's against the Saints on MNF, which only attributes to his playmaking abilities, and even if we outright exclude that game, he still has 2 INT's which is the same amount Ray Lewis had all that season. He had 9 solo tackles against Chicago this past week while playing with cracked ribs. The guy's an iron man at the LB position, and the ability to stay healthy is an attribute in it's own right.

Bulluck slowing down...ppl mek me lolz...

Joker_232
11-13-2008, 11:16 PM
My Top 10 MLB/ILB:

1. Ray Lewis
2. Brian Urlacher
3. London Fletcher
4. Demeco Ryans
5. Bo Ruud
6. Karlos Dansby
7. Jon Beason
8. Lofa Tatupu
9. David Harris
10. Patrick Willis



NO love for P Willy?

jsa230
11-13-2008, 11:27 PM
Unfortunately for us Green Bay fans we are about to find out just how good Nick Barnett is. He is on the down side of his career,and he may never be as good as he was but If this list had been madea couple of years he most definately been on it. Finally some lonon fletcher love. I dont know why people ignore how good of a player he is. FLETCHERS A BEAST

GB12
11-13-2008, 11:30 PM
Unfortunately for us Green Bay fans we are about to find out just how good Nick Barnett is. He is on the down side of his career,and he may never be as good as he was but If this list had been madea couple of years he most definately been on it. Finally some lonon fletcher love. I dont know why people ignore how good of a player he is. FLETCHERS A BEAST
I don't know about that. I think he was just having a bad year. He is only 27.

jsa230
11-13-2008, 11:43 PM
perhaps he was playing through injuries, who knows i know he hasnt played the way that made me like him in the first place ...btw what happened to abdul hodge?

CashmoneyDrew
11-13-2008, 11:58 PM
TitanHope you make a damn strong case for Keith Bulluck. I'd follow you if you ran for office.

OneToughGame
11-14-2008, 12:10 AM
Have people outside of Seattle (fans) been watching Leroy Hill? I'm really curious of what other people think of him.

My top MLB/ILB I'll do OLB's later.

1. Ray Lewis
2. Brian Urlacher
3. Patrick Willis
4. Lofa Tatupu - My favorite player in the NFL but I'm trying to be non homer on my list lol.
5. Demeco Ryans
6. Barrett Rudd
7. Jon Beason
8. London Fletcher
9. Jon Vilma
10. David Harris

Joker_232
11-14-2008, 12:14 AM
Have people outside of Seattle (fans) been watching Leroy Hill? I'm really curious of what other people think of him.

My top MLB/ILB I'll do OLB's later.

1. Ray Lewis
2. Brian Urlacher
3. Patrick Willis
4. Lofa Tatupu - My favorite player in the NFL but I'm trying to be non homer on my list lol.
5. Demeco Ryans
6. Barrett Rudd
7. Jon Beason
8. London Fletcher
9. Jon Vilma
10. David Harris

I absolutely HATE the Seahawks but i am a huge USC fan and i love Lofa

CashmoneyDrew
11-14-2008, 12:15 AM
Isn't LeRoy Hill a free agent after this season?

OneToughGame
11-14-2008, 12:17 AM
Isn't LeRoy Hill a free agent after this season?

Yeah.... I really really hope Seattle resigns him. He's a great LB (IMO) and would make a great SLB when Peterson calls it quits.

I absolutely HATE the Seahawks but i am a huge USC fan and i love Lofa

Gotta love Lofa. Guys a very nice guy and a great team player.

TitanHope
11-14-2008, 11:54 PM
TitanHope you make a damn strong case for Keith Bulluck. I'd follow you if you ran for office.

"TH - Hope you can believe in!!!"

I like the sound of that! :D

But in seriousness, Bulluck is an elite LB. He just doesn't get the Pro Bowl bids because the 3-4 LB's rush the passer and get the sexier sack stats.

3-4 OLB's and 4-3 OLB's should be given separate slots in Pro Bowl balloting. With Merriman and Adalius Thomas out, maybe a 4-3 LB will actually get some recognition. Who am I kidding? It'll probably be Joey Porter, a OLB from Pittsburgh, and someone like Mike Vrabel or something...stupid... *pouts*

Burns336
11-15-2008, 01:12 AM
how? Many pro bowl 3-4 OLBs are one trick ponies who only rush the passer and are incapable of anything else. In fact, many are converted DE's who simply dont have the size to play DE and the athleticism to play standard 4-3 OLB. Now, Demarcus Ware is an exception, but your argument is flawed in assuming that 3-4 OLB's have more qualities then 4-3 OLB's. And your right, Merriman is much less dynamic then Ware, but hes just SO GOOD at rushing the passer that its impossible to ignore his impact or take away from what he brings to that defense.


I think surrounding talent should be taken into consideration. Merriman plays behind a much better D-line than Ware and an established OLB opposite of him. Not an aging and ****** Greg Ellis and a new comer in Spencer.

Obviously there is no way to be certain, but I just think Ware could have put up similar sack numbers (which he has anyway in dallas) and provided more in other areas.

Menardo75
11-15-2008, 01:15 AM
Gotta love Lofa. Guys a very nice guy and a great team player.

No you don't I'll show you how.

giantsfan
11-15-2008, 01:15 AM
I think surrounding talent should be taken into consideration. Merriman plays behind a much better D-line than Ware and an established OLB opposite of him. Not an aging and ****** Greg Ellis and a new comer in Spencer.

Obviously there is no way to be certain, but I just think Ware could have put up similar sack numbers (which he has anyway in dallas) and provided more in other areas.

I love Ware and perfer him to Merriman but Merriman is much more dynamic pass rusher and his dominance in that single area is the thing that made that whole SD defense run. Now ware's a better LB because he plays the run better and is better in coverage, but Merriman's just on another level as a pass rusher.