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View Full Version : Spagnuolo and philosophy


stlouisfan37
12-23-2009, 01:11 AM
In the preseason this year I called John Clayton on his weekly talk show here in Seattle. My concern was that the Rams problems could be as simple as sticking to older philosophies while the rest of the league evolves past them. The Rams have started a new regime, but besides the coaching staff and some player turnover, what has really changed? We are running a boring West Coast offense and a standard 4-3 defense, while other teams are developing very intricate, detailed offenses and 3-4 defenses.

This season has done little to change my opinion. The league is evolving quickly, and I think it is a big reason why teams like St. Louis, Seattle, Tampa Bay and Detroit are being left in the dust. We are so predictable it isn't funny. Teams don't have to work very hard to game plan for us.

I'm not saying that Spagnuolo isn't a good coach; quite the contrary. I think we have a huge lack of talent and he has this team playing hard every week regardless of that fact. My point is this: Do we even have a chance if our systems are becoming dinosaurs?

I don't see us doing anything special here. We are not innovative in any way. Can we get a lot better? Absolutely. But even if we turn this team into a contender, won't we then just become clones of teams like Philadelphia, who are stuck in the dark ages as well? We are never going to take the world by storm because all of the things we are doing have already been done before.

I think we should throw in the towel with this obsolete program and start over before we end up doing that anyway in two years by sending Spagnuolo down the road with a 9-39 record. I would love to see us bring in a guy like Russ Grimm to build a strong running game, rugged lines, and implement a 3-4 defense similar to what they are running in Arizona.

Crickett
12-23-2009, 01:28 AM
That plain old boring run of the mill vanilla 4-3 defense is what got the Giants a Superbowl win two years ago and Spags the reputation necessary to land a head coaching job. And if you don't believe me, look at the Giants defense last year with Spags as the d-coordinator and then this year with Bill Sheridan as the d-coordinator.

The Giants went from 5th in scoring defense in 2008 to 26th in 2009 so far with most of the same personal in place.


Meanwhile, the Jets running a 3-4 the entire time have gone from 16th in scoring defense in 2008 to first so far in 2009 with the change in head coach from Eric Mangini to Rex Ryan.

The 3-4 isn't some vastly superior scheme that would make the Rams a significantly better team by default. If it did, 2 of the top 5 scoring defenses wouldn't be 4-3 and 2 of the bottom 5 scoring defenses wouldn't be 3-4.

brat316
12-23-2009, 02:17 AM
3-4 has also become plain and standard seeing as half of the league runs it now.

On offense what you gonna do? You can't seem to keep your qb up right for long enough or have good enough WR to catch other than deep balls.

Do you want to fire Spags? and bring in Grimm? cause thats not the smartest idea.

Spags defense gets more creative with the players he has, ask Giants fans. When they had Tuck, Strahan and Mitchel, they would twist and stunt a lot with just 4 guys, and get pressure. They would switch up Tuck inside, outside. Its all depends on your players.

Rex Ryan does the same putting his players in the best position, thats why he usually get the most out of his players. Though Gholston is a lost cause.

stlouisfan37
12-23-2009, 03:57 PM
There are still some tough 4-3's out there. I guess I am just noticing the swing towards the 3-4 and wondering if the 4-3 will become obsolete.

One huge advantage to a 3-4, I believe, is that it costs less. In a 4-3 you generally have two high-salary DT's and a high-salary DE. In a 3-4 the NT is the key player, where the ends are generally lower salary players because they are, in essence, undersized DT's whose job is to contain as opposed to rushing the QB. Linebackers on average make much less money than defensive linemen. This savings, in turn, allows a team to spend more money on offensive weapons.

Another thing to consider is that the better 4-3 defenses out there are well developed systems that have matured and are well understood by the personnel. So for that I would say I need to be patient because this is the first year under this new system.

Having said that, am I the only one that questions whether or not Spagnuolo will bring this team into contention?

NGSeiler
12-23-2009, 11:12 PM
I think in large part we're predictable because we don't have the offensive weapons to really vary things up that much. That's not to say there aren't instances when the playcalling could be better (ie. fewer runs on first down), but what else do we have on offense besides Steven Jackson? More variation and more efficiency will hopefully come with more talent.

As for the defense, as it's been said, the 4-3 scheme was good enough for the Giants to knock off an undefeated Patriots team a couple of years ago. The two best teams in the league right now (Colts & Saints) run the 4-3 as well. I don't think the scheme is so much the issue as is the talent to make that scheme successful. The 4-3 and the WCO can be efficient and successful if there is talent on the field running it. And the 3-4 can certainly get expensive; just look at the contract DeMarcus Ware signed in October.

stlouisfan37
12-25-2009, 10:01 PM
Okay, so I figured out why I'm so frustrated with this team right now. It isn't the losing. Losing isn'y fun, but is to be expected right now so that isn't a big deal. What has me super frustrated is that this team has not developed a new identity since the new regime started. What we need is someone exciting, anyone really, to do something fun. Right now I think that's all it would take for someone to become the face of the franchise.

On another note, has anyone seen Freddie Barnes (Bowling Green WR) play this year? Not super fast but very productive and excellent hands. Any thoughts?

tfry
12-28-2009, 11:16 AM
Okay, so I figured out why I'm so frustrated with this team right now. It isn't the losing. Losing isn'y fun, but is to be expected right now so that isn't a big deal. What has me super frustrated is that this team has not developed a new identity since the new regime started. What we need is someone exciting, anyone really, to do something fun. Right now I think that's all it would take for someone to become the face of the franchise.

On another note, has anyone seen Freddie Barnes (Bowling Green WR) play this year? Not super fast but very productive and excellent hands. Any thoughts?

I couldn't agree more about the new identity. This team is painful and other than Jackson lacks major star power. Hell, there's players on the field half the time I don't even know about or have never heard of (And I follow players WAY more than the average fan). Free Agency is going to be a big need for us. Not sure if there will be any out there, but I'd like to see us grab some veterans who will bring leadership to the locker room.