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Old 01-11-2012, 03:44 AM   #31
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Default Re: You guys are NUTS!!!

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Originally Posted by FanSince72 View Post
Unlike many here, I have no problem looking at reality.

The fact is that the "Zone Blitz" is a dinosaur, our pass rush is nowhere near what it used to be and we have a secondary that leaks like a sieve.

And that's not from just "one bad showing at a particularly bad time" but that's what it's been like for that last few seasons. There was a time when I'd see us have a team in a third and long situation and I could almost guarantee the next play would be a punt. But in these last couple of seasons, I cringe at a third and long because most of the time it ends up not just in a first down, but a first down after a 20 or 30 yard gain.

I don't know what you're looking at but I'm seeing a defense that no longer bothers other teams and one that is not adapting to the pass-first / pass-quick offenses that are now becoming the norm. The image of knuckle-dragging, quarterback beating defenses is becoming a thing of the past and they're being replaced by pass-oriented defenses with an emphasis on speed and agility instead of brute force.

For the last three years we've desperately needed better CB's and Safeties, but instead we groom a new crop of linebackers and pass-rushers as if we're in some kind of time warp.

Aren't you tired of worrying that a team starting on their own10-yard-line trailing us by 5-points with less than two-minutes to go is no guarantee of a win? Aren't you tired of watching some second-rate QB move that team down-field as if there was no one else out there?

I am.

The name, "Pittsburgh Steelers" used to conjure an image an impenetrable defense where other teams were lucky to score field goals. But lately that name brings to mind images of missed tackles, blitzes that arrive too late, cornerbacks who couldn't keep someone from throwing a ball of paper into a wastebasket and who give up passing yards in groups of ten and first downs as if they're door prizes.

It can't all be about injuries or lack of talent so there must be more to it than that.
And if the lack of production of our offense can be laid at the feet of Bruce Arians, then the inability of our defense to stop a team from turning what should be a cakewalk into a nail-biter ought to be laid at the feet of Dick LeBeau.
I don't even know where to begin with this. Defense is so, so unbelievably far from being the main problem on this team that I feel dirty having wasted so much ink (even virtual ink) on defending Dick Lebeau and his "vanilla" zone blitz. That you would judge this D not by its own merits but rather by a misguided mythic rewriting of Pittsburgh defenses past is just misguided.

The '78 Steelers, arguably the greatest team ever and our greatest defense, still lost games, still gave up 24 points to Houston and KC and 31 to Dallas, and still let Archie Manning throw for 344 yards. Other teams do get paid to show up and play. They don't have a Steelers clause that says they can take the Steelers game off because we're so scary. And you know what? They never have had that clause. Weird, huh?

Bill Cowher's defenses were no better than Dick Lebeau's defenses of late. Some were significantly worse. There is one significant difference: Cowher had the rather pleasant habit of grinding the game out once he had even a 3-point lead, keeping his D off the field entirely, something I'd like to see more of. But this has nothing whatsoever to do with Dick Lebeau and his zone blitz (about which you are completely and utterly misguided, by the way). Sorry.
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Old 01-11-2012, 09:12 AM   #32
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Default Re: You guys are NUTS!!!

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Originally Posted by ricardisimo View Post
I don't even know where to begin with this. Defense is so, so unbelievably far from being the main problem on this team that I feel dirty having wasted so much ink (even virtual ink) on defending Dick Lebeau and his "vanilla" zone blitz. That you would judge this D not by its own merits but rather by a misguided mythic rewriting of Pittsburgh defenses past is just misguided.

The '78 Steelers, arguably the greatest team ever and our greatest defense, still lost games, still gave up 24 points to Houston and KC and 31 to Dallas, and still let Archie Manning throw for 344 yards. Other teams do get paid to show up and play. They don't have a Steelers clause that says they can take the Steelers game off because we're so scary. And you know what? They never have had that clause. Weird, huh?

Bill Cowher's defenses were no better than Dick Lebeau's defenses of late. Some were significantly worse. There is one significant difference: Cowher had the rather pleasant habit of grinding the game out once he had even a 3-point lead, keeping his D off the field entirely, something I'd like to see more of. But this has nothing whatsoever to do with Dick Lebeau and his zone blitz (about which you are completely and utterly misguided, by the way). Sorry.
No mythology here.

I'm just tired of watching teams walk up and down the field on us because they saw something in LeBeau's game plan that demonstrated an obvious workaround and we just sit there and let them work around it.

How many years is it going to take, for example, before LeBeau gets up one morning and realizes that we need better CB's and a better secondary plan overall?

Yet year after year we get more linebackers.
Lebeau's defenses are OK, but they also tend to be predictable. If we play a soft schedule we get by with it, but when we play stronger teams, or teams that run unconventional offenses, that predictability becomes a weakness.

As far as "Zone Blitz" goes, you're taking that phrase way too literally. All I mean by that is to use it as a reference to a defensive scheme that at one time represented a true innovation in football but is now something that has been analyzed and copied to the point where it doesn't mean anything anymore -- it's just "LeBeau's defense".
It's become more of a cliche than a truly effective scheme and one that can work from time to time but lacks "newness" and seems to be relied upon to cover weaknesses elsewhere (like in the secondary).

This also isn't about defending Arians either.
I've said that we can do a lot better than Arians and I meant that. The only reason I bring him up is that everyone wants to throw him under the bus when the offense doesn't produce yet when the defense mails it in, there are five thousand reasons why that's true and none of them involve LeBeau.

I know he's a god, but come on.

And please stop with all of the statistical bullshit.
Statistics can be made to say anything you want them to say (politicians have known that for years) and that doesn't change the fact that we suck on third down and we struggle to get teams off the field. If you can't see that, then you're just not looking.

As defenses go, we're certainly not bad, but we lack innovation, we suffer against teams that don't use traditional drop-back passing, we can't seem to stop simple screen passes and blitzing does little when the ball goes from snap to release in less than two seconds (which is fast becoming the "new normal").

I'd like to see us change things around and become a little less front line / linebacker oriented and more quick play / pass oriented. But when we can't even address the obvious problems like a lousy secondary, what kind of innovation can we expect? I don't think LeBeau is blind to what needs to be done, it's just that the changes we really need to make will take a couple of years and at 73, I just think LeBeau finds it easier to stay the course rather than commit to addressing our problems and perhaps re-designing a defense for a more modern game.

I just don't think he's up to it and maybe it's time to find someone who has the inclination to look at things differently and has the time to experiment.
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Old 01-11-2012, 10:40 AM   #33
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Default Re: You guys are NUTS!!!

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I think the ironic thing about what happened Sunday was that wasn't the defense we whipped together that LeBeau is known for. I literally had to check the coaching depth chart to see if the name "Tim Lewis" had crept up along anywhere. LeBeau had the right mindset but the entire make-up of the defense we wanted to attack with was QUICKLY debunked and thwarted early.

I'll never truly understand on how and why we didn't make adjustments to go back to the defense LeBeau is known for. Disguising the defensive alignment and using zone coverage behind a blitzing, aggressive bunch up front to force the QB into making quick throws into coverage. This Steelers coaching staff is the WORST at making adjustments. That must change.
I'll never understand why we cant do man to man coverages more....Do they think that is not needed for most teams...I dont get it.
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Old 01-11-2012, 12:13 PM   #34
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Default Re: You guys are NUTS!!!

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Originally Posted by FanSince72 View Post
No mythology here.

I'm just tired of watching teams walk up and down the field on us because they saw something in LeBeau's game plan that demonstrated an obvious workaround and we just sit there and let them work around it.

How many years is it going to take, for example, before LeBeau gets up one morning and realizes that we need better CB's and a better secondary plan overall?

Yet year after year we get more linebackers.
Lebeau's defenses are OK, but they also tend to be predictable. If we play a soft schedule we get by with it, but when we play stronger teams, or teams that run unconventional offenses, that predictability becomes a weakness.

As far as "Zone Blitz" goes, you're taking that phrase way too literally. All I mean by that is to use it as a reference to a defensive scheme that at one time represented a true innovation in football but is now something that has been analyzed and copied to the point where it doesn't mean anything anymore -- it's just "LeBeau's defense".
It's become more of a cliche than a truly effective scheme and one that can work from time to time but lacks "newness" and seems to be relied upon to cover weaknesses elsewhere (like in the secondary).

This also isn't about defending Arians either.
I've said that we can do a lot better than Arians and I meant that. The only reason I bring him up is that everyone wants to throw him under the bus when the offense doesn't produce yet when the defense mails it in, there are five thousand reasons why that's true and none of them involve LeBeau.

I know he's a god, but come on.

And please stop with all of the statistical bullshit.
Statistics can be made to say anything you want them to say (politicians have known that for years) and that doesn't change the fact that we suck on third down and we struggle to get teams off the field. If you can't see that, then you're just not looking.

As defenses go, we're certainly not bad, but we lack innovation, we suffer against teams that don't use traditional drop-back passing, we can't seem to stop simple screen passes and blitzing does little when the ball goes from snap to release in less than two seconds (which is fast becoming the "new normal").

I'd like to see us change things around and become a little less front line / linebacker oriented and more quick play / pass oriented. But when we can't even address the obvious problems like a lousy secondary, what kind of innovation can we expect? I don't think LeBeau is blind to what needs to be done, it's just that the changes we really need to make will take a couple of years and at 73, I just think LeBeau finds it easier to stay the course rather than commit to addressing our problems and perhaps re-designing a defense for a more modern game.

I just don't think he's up to it and maybe it's time to find someone who has the inclination to look at things differently and has the time to experiment.
"Walk up and down the field on us"? When? What are you talking about? The defense lost one game for us this year (I still say this last one was a joint effort.) It happens. The NFL permits other teams t win. It's in the rulebook. So, other than the second Baltimore game, when did this happen.
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:18 PM   #35
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Default Re: You guys are NUTS!!!

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"Walk up and down the field on us"? When? What are you talking about? The defense lost one game for us this year (I still say this last one was a joint effort.) It happens. The NFL permits other teams t win. It's in the rulebook. So, other than the second Baltimore game, when did this happen.
Look, I'm probably not explaining myself as well as I could and right now I really don't feel like trying to figure that out. I still think that our D has become predictable and in some cases stale, but I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree on that.

What I'm trying to say in a general sense is that I don't want to see LeBeau turn into someone like Noll who in my opinion stayed way too long and was basically mailing it in by the time he quit.

That happened because Cope anointed him "Emperor" , the fan base agreed and after that, no one had the guts to tell him that it might be time to move on and we all sat around waiting for him to make that decision himself. That detracted a lot from what Noll accomplished and the same thing can happen with LeBeau.
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:42 PM   #36
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Default Re: You guys are NUTS!!!

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What I'm trying to say in a general sense is that I don't want to see LeBeau turn into someone like Noll who in my opinion stayed way too long and was basically mailing it in by the time he quit.

That happened because Cope anointed him "Emperor" , the fan base agreed and after that, no one had the guts to tell him that it might be time to move on and we all sat around waiting for him to make that decision himself. That detracted a lot from what Noll accomplished and the same thing can happen with LeBeau.
I thought the 1984 and 1989 seasons were two of Noll's better coaching jobs, personally. Getting that 1984 squad to a conference championship and that 1989 squad within a whisker of another was nothing short of brilliant coaching. The fact is, outside of a few future hall of fame holdovers from the 70s dynasty at the end of their rope, the majority of the rosters of the Steelers teams throughout the 1980s were wall to wall mediocrity at best.
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Old 01-11-2012, 03:34 PM   #37
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Default Re: You guys are NUTS!!!

Comon' now, Chuck Noll delivered 4 Rings in what?, 5 seasons (2 back-to-back = 4 !!!)
So, I personally, couldn't give give a rat's-petoby what Chuck did before, OR After that crowning-NFL never-to-be-repeated achievment !!!
I would SALUTE that guy's excrement -no matter where it dropped !!!
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Old 01-11-2012, 03:54 PM   #38
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Default Re: You guys are NUTS!!!

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Look, I'm probably not explaining myself as well as I could and right now I really don't feel like trying to figure that out. I still think that our D has become predictable and in some cases stale, but I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree on that.

What I'm trying to say in a general sense is that I don't want to see LeBeau turn into someone like Noll who in my opinion stayed way too long and was basically mailing it in by the time he quit.

That happened because Cope anointed him "Emperor" , the fan base agreed and after that, no one had the guts to tell him that it might be time to move on and we all sat around waiting for him to make that decision himself. That detracted a lot from what Noll accomplished and the same thing can happen with LeBeau.
So let it happen. His defense is indeed very, very predictable. I predicted it would be #1 this year and I was right. All the other teams kept expecting him to trick them, the way Bruce Arians does on offense, but he fooled them with his predictability. Tricky Dick!

What you are saying makes no sense. If the D this year was even just mediocre, then yeah, we could have this discussion. But it was the number one defense in the entire national football league, both in terms of yards and points. I'll ask you again: do the Steelers strike you as the type of team that punishes success? Does Dick Lebeau strike you as the type of coach who thinks that finishing #1 overall is a sign that he's lost a step?

What was predictable, other than his success yet again? I just don't get where you are coming from.
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Old 01-11-2012, 04:05 PM   #39
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Default Re: You guys are NUTS!!!

Conversation:

Dad: Son what's wrong with your report card?

Son: What do you mean Dad?

Dad: You seem to be letting school pass you by.

Son: Why do you say that Dad?

Dad: Well you seem to be getting the same grades every year. I don't see you improving like the other kids.

Son: Sorry Dad, I'll try to do better next time.

Dad: Yeah you do that. I am not going to stand for these same old A+ grades anymore. Your friend went from a D to a C+. He made improvements and is doing things.

Son: Walks off scratching his head wondering if that is really his Dad.

You people are really NUTS!!! Think about the comment "the game has passed you by". I guess there really are dumb people in the world. WOW!
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Old 01-11-2012, 05:29 PM   #40
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Default Re: You guys are NUTS!!!

I like Dick LeBeau and will be very sad to see him retire when he does. He is probably the best d-coordinator in the NFL. I don't understand why people complain about being the #1 defense in the NFL???? Is there something better than #1 that I'm not aware of???
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