Spring Game 2013-2014 Defense

Longestday

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I feel the defense of 2014 was much more effective and aggressive than in the 2013 spring game. I think there is no way the offense in the 2013 game would have been as effective against the 2014 defense.

The LB play was much more aggressive with several dives that got to the QB at the snap. This is great experience for the QB and OL in learning to deal with the pressure. There is no doubt that this will help prepare the O for VT. Pressure melted Vad to some degree and 2014 was a pressure cooker.

PJ and Tyler did a great job of being a "rush ends" like Sneezy as a OLB rush end. They both ran down A-Back rocket tosses from the back side or came in and pressured/sacked the QB.

Nealy and PJ both had jumps on the QB at the snap. I did see some improved OL play in dealing with the "jumps". Byerly improved throughout the game in his pre-snap assessment and resulting footwork/read to the LB "jumps". Did I say I really enjoy watching PJ play?

I am a little worried about the safeties. Perhaps they will be good at the passing defense, but I feel they may not have the "meanness" to stop the run constantly. We will miss JT here! I bet L Griffin would be good at the aggressive hitting type of safety.

I will say it seemed like the defense revolved around the 3 LBs or the 2 LB and the extra DB.

Freeman has a motor. Gotsis is Gotsis. The issues will be the DE more than anything, but our LB should be some of the best in the ACC as a "cover" for inexperience at DE.

After all the footage I have been over, I don't recall a lot from the corners. Perhaps that is because the WR are good blockers? This may also be because Byerly and Laskey did a lot of work on the inside.

In 2013, the 2nd team O moved the ball much better than 2014. Was this due to Justin in 2013 or was the 2nd team defense better in 2014? I think it is most likely a little of both. I know everyone liked Griffin's athletic ability, but he did not run the O as well as JT in 2013.

Passing was not heavy, but no pass was broken up or intercepted (am I right there was no interceptions). Either the pass was a reception, hit the hands of the receiver (3 of these ,1 Bostic, 1 Zenon, 1 McNearney) or in 2 cases thrown away/a busted route.

I do wonder if we could go back to the 3 LB and have one LB as a rush end to help pressure the QB. Harrell could add to the LB group and allow PJ and Tyler to play rush "OLB" ends.
 

Sean311

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I'm just glad that TR is giving our O those looks early on because every team plays us basically that same way. I also feel that our defense is one of the best in the ACC this year.
 

Boomergump

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I think the reasons behind your observation are twofold: First, the weather. Passing was going to be next to impossible and very dangerous to attempt consistently. So why not pin your ears back and run blitz? Secondly, I think CPJ is determined to improve the offense's reaction to the defensive tactics that seem to be trending against us. For a couple years we saw the bend but don't break mentality on defenses. That has recently given way to flooding the LOS and trying to force quicker decisions while disrupting the MESH. He and Roof probably agreed to use such tactics before the game. Besides, our defense needs to develop a little swagger and playing that way can help a little.
 

OldJacketFan

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While watching the game there was no doubt in my mind that CPJ and CTR specifically and deliberately had the D pressuring the LOS in order to give the O line and the QBs the look they had SO mcuh problem with last season. The only way to deal with that kind of pressure is to see it, recognize it and adjust to it repeatedly! I was very pleased to see that facet of the spring game.
 

AE 87

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While watching the game there was no doubt in my mind that CPJ and CTR specifically and deliberately had the D pressuring the LOS in order to give the O line and the QBs the look they had SO mcuh problem with last season. The only way to deal with that kind of pressure is to see it, recognize it and adjust to it repeatedly! I was very pleased to see that facet of the spring game.
I suspect our offense running no huddle was the other side of this coin.
 

dressedcheeseside

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So what is the risk for defenses playing this way?
The best way to attack this defensive strategy is with the quick pitch to the Aback. The defense is selling out big time at the LOS, if the qb reads it quick enough, he can get the quick pitch to the Aback and then he has one guy to beat with a lead blocking Aback assigned to him.
 

dressedcheeseside

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The best way to attack this defensive strategy is with the quick pitch to the Aback. The defense is selling out big time at the LOS, if the qb reads it quick enough, he can get the quick pitch to the Aback and then he has one guy to beat with a lead blocking Aback assigned to him.
We'd also need a good block on the playside corner by the playside wr. Also, the Aback would have to be at full speed because the backside blitzer is in the backfield early and can run the play down if the Aback is slow or indecisive.
 

takethepoints

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The other down side of crowding the LOS and hoping for the best is that, if the blocking is just a bit better then you expect about 50% of the time, you are going to be giving up a lot of long runs.

Coach is always pointing this out when people say we need more of a short passing game; he wants the opposing D close to the LOS. That way you get more one-on-one match-ups and the other side is one mistake away from a long run. The dive doesn't have to deliver much to make this work either; the old 4 yard standard is all you need.

Now, it is true that last year we simplified the O too much by getting away from what we do. Oth, we were 5th in the country in rushing per game, DTs and LBs shooting the gaps and all. I expect we'll do better in the season coming up.
 

Longestday

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A short pass can keep people form crowding the LOS. It keeps them from being too aggressive and getting into the back field to early. A long pass mainly effects the Corners and Safeties. We need the LB to think twice about charging the LOS and backfield. At least thats what I think.
 

MidtownJacket

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CPJ has often said he sees the pitch as the same functional response as a short pass route when facing this type of D pressure.
 

wingsrlevel

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I'd like to se Smith start at safety and let Golden concentrate on special teams. Am I the only person concerned with JG coverage and tackling skills?
 

Longestday

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The coaches will put the best people on the field and everyone else will get better. Golden is very good at returns and I expect him to win a game with one this year.
 

Eric

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I'd like to se Smith start at safety and let Golden concentrate on special teams. Am I the only person concerned with JG coverage and tackling skills?
I like both of the guys back at S, but worry about both for the same reasons.
 

GT Man

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The coaches will put the best people on the field and everyone else will get better. Golden is very good at returns and I expect him to win a game with one this year.
He doesn't even have to run any back for TDs. Just an extra 10 yards on returns could benefit us greatly, and be a difference-maker.
 
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