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San Diego’s Defensive Woes begin in the Trenches.

Discussion in 'American Football' started by Concudan, Sep 25, 2013.

  1. Concudan

    Concudan Meh... Staff Member Administrator

    Mar 5, 2006
    Most everyone knows that the Chargers employ the 3-4 defensive scheme where the linemen are focused first with stopping up the run lanes and second on penetrating and pressuring the Quarter Back. This often opens up opportunities for the Outside Linebacker to pressure the Quarter Back. However this relies on the defensive linemen to occupy more than one offensive blocker.

    If you look at tackling, a very telling stat is that our leading tackler is our Safety Eric Weddle is the leading tackler on the team. He has 24 total tackles, behind him is Bront Bird with 18. The Chargers are failing to pressure the QB. We rank 32nd overall in QB hits with 8. The bright side to that piece of news is 5 of those hits resulted in a sack. Donald Butler and Dwight Freeney both have .5 sacks. Jarius Wynn, Larry English, Jarret Johnson and Reggie Walker all have 1 sack.

    Corey Liuget and Kendall Reyes have been shoved into the starting role at Defensive End. Both have proto-typical size for the position (Liuget 6’ 2”, 300 lbs, Reyes 6’ 4” 300 lbs), but neither seem to be forcing the opposition to target them with more than one blocker.

    Along the defensive line, the players are not making many stops either; Reyes leads the defensive linemen with 9 tackles (6 solo, 3 assists), Cam Thomas (Defensive Tackle) has 6 (3 solo, 3 assists) while Liuget follows with 5 tackles (4 solo, 1 assist). Statistically our line is ranked 30th against the run (based on runs stuffed and stops for a loss of yardage) and 26th against the pass (Based on sacks).

    That is not a lot of production from the big men up front, however it could be argued that is more a production of the 3-4 scheme than a knock against their ability, drive, or ferocity. I would argue that not all the blame can be laid directly in the trenches however. The line needs support from the LBs. This is the basis of the 3-4 defense after all, the line occupies and clogs the line of scrimmage and the LBs move around and attack.

    We brought in Dwight Freeney to provide pressure on the QB. So far he has been stymied, getting to the QB for only 1 sack in 3 games. However you stack it the defensive problems start up front. Dead last in QB hits, bottom 3rd in defensive line categories. The secondary needs help, and that help has to start up front.

    How do they do that? I wish I had the answer; one thing that jumps out at me is that I do not see a lot of movement or attempts to hide coverage pre-snap, that is the first thing I would do. Move the LBs around, have them jostle position until the snap, do not let any QB get a sense of what they are going to do. This will help the pressure at the line because the linemen and QB will not always know who to point out. Next, stop playing off the receivers. No free yards. The CBs either bump at the LOS and cover or we find someone who will.

    I know, I know, easily said from the comfort of my recliner. The point is valid. However I contend that the players are professionals and will step up if challenged. They have to trust each other and know that they will have the support needed. That is another thing I think needs to be improved upon is team trust. This is a newly thrown together secondary who has had injuries shuffle their lineup. They have to trust each other, the Defensive Coordinator and the scheme, I am not sure that is in place yet.

    The pressure has to start up front, until it does, this D can’t be counted on to make late game stops.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  2. robdog

    robdog Code Monkey Staff Member Administrator

    Jun 29, 2009
    We definitely need to get some more pressure on the QB.

    But you have to admit, we are almost there. Get some people healthy, draft a couple good prospects, and next season is going to be "interesting".

    Is it sad that I am pretty pumped/excited about next season???
  3. Lance19

    Lance19 BoltTalker

    Oct 2, 2011
  4. Razma

    Razma Well-Known Member

    Jan 7, 2007
    I almost passed out when English made a play last game but he really shouldn't be on the team but since we didn't retain Barnes/Phillips he got to stay. I feel bad for Freeney he has to be ******* exhausted and only getting pressures on the stat sheet.

    We just need more guys and better depth but Liuget and Reyes are both underperforming heavily at the moment they started slow last year and picked it up lets hope its sooner then later this year. I think Cam has been solid but when you get doubled and the other guys on the line get contained with single blocks not much you can do.

    1-2 more good drafts and I think the cupboards will be fully stocked and we can get back to that pass rushing 3-4 that gave the Colts fits and when you watched it you knew someone was gonna make a play.
  5. Fossil

    Fossil BoltTalker

    Jan 6, 2008
    Methinks the football gods of the trenches are POd at us for ignoring them all those years, so they dished out a Jared Gaither entrée served with a Melvin Ingram IR/PUP and a side order of Jerideau.
    Last edited: Sep 26, 2013
  6. Dublin Bolt

    Dublin Bolt BoltTalker

    Aug 12, 2006
  7. SuperCharger92

    SuperCharger92 Winners Win

    Sep 25, 2011
    Cam Thomas is the problem. Not eating space.

    He's a 1 gap player, but Pagano is a 2 gap scheme. That's what Aubrayo Franklin did so well last year, he created 1 on 1's, which helped Liuget and Reyes ball out.

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