Defense Issues: Lack of Talent or Lack of Focus

Treb1982

Jolly Good Fellow
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Here are just my thoughts on the defense. In the 1st half our defense gave up only 4 first downs, 145 yards and 10 points. In the second half (obviously a much different story) Tech gave up 14 first downs, 383 yards, and 35 points. So my question is we were obviously talented enough to stop them in the first half so was it a talent issue that lead to 2nd half meltdown, adjustments GSU made, fatigue, or lack of focus? I personally believe what CPJ said on his radio show is correct. I believe that Tech walked out to play the second half thinking that the game was already over. Once you let up or lose your edge/focus its extremely hard to gain it back especially against an option/spread based team.

I know everyone is beating up the defense (and they deserve criticism) but I really don't think it is a talent issue and the players are as terrible as everyone is making them out to be. I mean if you look at the box score from VT's game with ECU: VT game up 502 yards, 20 first downs, and 28 points to ECU compared to 528 yards, 23 first downs, and 38 points Tech gave up to GSU. Statistically, GSU is 16th in the country in total offense compared to ECU who is 29th. So far GSU has played two FBS defenses rated 52 and 72 in total defense and ECU has played two FBS defense rated 120 and 39.

Before I get crucified for this post, I am not GSU is better than ECU! What I am saying is that nobody is talking about how VT's defense doesn't have talent right after a non-power 5 team just went into Blacksburg and put up over 500 yards. Everyone is saying it was a let down game after a big win the week before. Is that really any different from our defense having a let down in the second half after playing our best half of the season against an in-state school? I am grateful we won and I hope this was a huge chance for the coaching staff to teach our young defense that no matter what the score is you got to keep your focus and don't let up. Maybe I am wrong and it is a talent issue and VT, UNC, Pitt, Duke, Clemson, and UGA will put up 30-40 points on us but I don't think that is the case.
 

sidewalkGTfan

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I think we have enough talent on D that we shouldn't look like Larry, Curly and Moe out there. For some reason, we make playing Defense look way harder than it should be.
 

jeffgt14

We Suck
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You are correct. What happened with GSU had nothing to do with talent. We may not be that talented on D and we may find that out a few times this season, but as far as that last game against GSU is concerned, lack of talent was not the reason they came back.
 

AE 87

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Roof said this week that the problem was focus but also said we've been trying to develop depth as well. He made a comment about not playing very many guys last year and not being able to do that this year.
 

33jacket

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Georgia
Enough talent to be better against our first three opponents

Not enough talent to compete with clemson or uga quality teams

Not enough talent to field a top 30 defense. I have never seen a good defense perform like this; ever. Concentration is part of being a good defense. Focus. Intensity. This team doesnt have it. They have not shown that at all. They are out of position. Blowing assignments game after game.

For this year our best hope is the perform to what they are which is a 60th ranked defense. Right now they are a 102 ranked defense again lesser talent teams....

If we ratchet out O up and they perform like a 60th ranked D we can win 8. It puts a ton of pressure on the O though so thats unfair. But possible
 

Whatllyahave

Georgia Tech Fan
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67
We definitely lack talent and apparently smarts. It looked like we had never seen an option play before when run to the right side of our D. Good lore, if they had run that play a few more times they would have kept the ball, scored some more and never given us a chance to win.
 

danny daniel

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We definitely lack talent and apparently smarts. It looked like we had never seen an option play before when run to the right side of our D. Good lore, if they had run that play a few more times they would have kept the ball, scored some more and never given us a chance to win.
I saw two major problems with the right side D: Safeties caught too far up and nside or poor angles or poor tackling or some or all of that. Two people covering pitch man and nobody on the QB. That was execution and/or focus. There was also some speed differential in the open field. That is talent.
 

sidewalkGTfan

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I saw two major problems with the right side D: Safeties caught too far up and nside or poor angles or poor tackling or some or all of that. Two people covering pitch man and nobody on the QB. That was execution and/or focus. There was also some speed differential in the open field. That is talent.
IMO speed doesn't necessarily equal talent. Everybody has fast players at skill positions these days.
 

jchens_GT

Ramblin' Wreck
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Georgia
I think we have some talent on D, but our main problem is not having enough mature talent on the defensive line. Shawn Green has done fairly well so far holding his ground on double teams and clogging things up. Gotsis is a good player, but some folks think he would really shine at end instead of tackle. After these guys, you've either got upperclassmen with a lower athletic ceiling or a bunch of sophomores and freshmen that are athletic but lack experience. I think our secondary is pretty good, but we are also playing a lot of young guys there who, again, have athletic ability but lack experience.
 

danny daniel

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IMO speed doesn't necessarily equal talent. Everybody has fast players at skill positions these days.
I agree that most people have speed at the skilled positions. My point is that we do not match that speed with our DBs, particularly our safeties. Our D scheme puts a lot of pressure on our safeties (no deep middle safety) and they are struggling from a speed standpoint IMO to stop big plays. Part of that is initial alignment, poor angles, and poor tackling, but part is lack of speed. I count lack of competitive speed as a talent issue.
Milton and White can run but I have not seen closing speed from any of our other DBs. Maybe L Griffin or some of the freshmen have competitive speed?
 

dressedcheeseside

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I agree that most people have speed at the skilled positions. My point is that we do not match that speed with our DBs, particularly our safeties. Our D scheme puts a lot of pressure on our safeties (no deep middle safety) and they are struggling from a speed standpoint IMO to stop big plays. Part of that is initial alignment, poor angles, and poor tackling, but part is lack of speed. I count lack of competitive speed as a talent issue.
Milton and White can run but I have not seen closing speed from any of our other DBs. Maybe L Griffin or some of the freshmen have competitive speed?
Golden is pretty fast, Isaiah and Demond, not so much.
 

sidewalkGTfan

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Playing speed and speed are two different things. We don't have a problem with the latter. We have a problem with the former because guys are out of position, taking poor angles and using crappy technique. And a large part of that is focus. Another part of that is bad habits and coaching.
I completely agree with this.
 

GTonTop88

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It didnt help that their QB was getting perfect placement on his deep balls in the second half. Reminded me of Tajh Boyd last year against us.
 

Longestday

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Their QB placed balls just like in the NCSU.

One ball could have been/almost an interception by Lawrence. The other, Smith was there but a little behind, looking at the WR, misjudge the timing of the ball with his hand swat.
 

Oldgoldandwhite

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Don't forget we got gashed in the first half on 3rd and long or the game would have been over then. We got gashed against Tulane. We got gashed against Wofford. That is what troubles me. You can blame it on the front four if you want to , but our DB's, are slow, can't cover, and our LB's can not get off blocks. I look for us to get gashed once or twice every game and bless us if the opposition has a great RB.
 

Mack

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I saw two major problems with the right side D: Safeties caught too far up and nside or poor angles or poor tackling or some or all of that. Two people covering pitch man and nobody on the QB. That was execution and/or focus. There was also some speed differential in the open field. That is talent.
I am still trying to find the safety on the bombs down the sidelines......no cover 2 at all. We didnt look good.
 

GTJake

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It's hard to disagree with the "talent has slipped" argument, especially on defense, though I think we might have some young talent.
On defense, I'm hoping CTR has kept it pretty vanilla the first three games, then as the season progresses game experience starts to make a difference.
 

Boomergump

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I'll say this: there were times from the upper north where it looked like we were playing defense with 10 men. That usually happens when players blow assignments against the option. I haven't watched the defensive tape yet, but I can tell you there were some horrible angles taken out there. When I was at the Radio Show it was playing all over the room. On that first long TD run IJ took a HORRIBLE angle and ran himself out of the play. He was the only guy out there, so there you have it.

Is it talent or focus? In my mind it is both, but more of the latter. What happened in half 2 was a combination of crappy defense AND a lot better execution on their part. You have to give them credit. They made the throws EVERY TIME. That isn't easy to do with decent coverage (which it was most of the time). Not great coverage, but decent.
 
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