December 16, 2017, 10:35:19 AM

Author Topic: New names at ILB  (Read 4264 times)

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Offline RT

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #15 on: July 15, 2017, 09:00:19 AM »
I'm already looking forward to the competition at ILB for training camp.

Cody Heiman has already received a significant amount of discussion, but I had not heard anything about Derrick Mathews until I ran across this tidbit.

http://www.houstontexans.com/news/article-2/Houston-pro-day-recap/cfbbfe7a-6b3d-4c98-a1a6-34a93a2fb4d3

Quote
John Harris
Texans Analyst

-- The one guy I wanted to see work out didnít get a chance to, other than the bench press. ILB Derrick Mathews was one of the most instinctive linebackers in the nation and one of the most productive, intelligent and complete linebackers in this draft class. Problem was his size. His program height/weight was 6í/222 lb. and that was going to be tough to overcome. However, he did weigh 232 pounds and didnít have an ounce of fat on him. A torn ACL suffered in October against Memphis kept him from completing a full work out beyond the bench press. That said, he threw up 26 reps of 225 pounds and when fully healthy, he has plenty of potential. I talked to him after the day and he said he was real close to doing a full workout but just wasnít quite there. Heís yoked up, football intelligent and loves to compete but just has to deal with being 6í.

Regardless of size, I will be watching Mathews as well as Heiman as closely as I can from now through training camp. It should be fun.

Don't go to sleep on this kid once TC starts. He's 2 years removed from his ACL injury, so he should be "full go".

I've read a couple of places that he fits the hybrid Safety/Linebacker role like GB drafted Josh Jones to be.

Would be nice to have 2-3 players that fit that role IF TT/MM want to go "all in" with that type of defense.

I'll be watching a number of no-name kids in TC, and Mathews will be one of them.
It is a great time of year for those of us that like to look for the little known guy to emerge and ILB has a few.

Mathews has a lot of the same qualities that Joe Thomas possesses. The one thing that make me leary of him is that the Redskins had him on their PS for a season and in their off season program for a year, yet got rid of him after making that investment.

2 UDFA's , Cody Heiman and David Talley should be interesting players to watch also, both have the makeup to be ST's aces.

Also journeymen Jordan Tripp can not be forgotten as a possiblity. 
« Last Edit: July 15, 2017, 09:06:29 AM by RT »

Offline dannobanano

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #16 on: July 15, 2017, 01:30:26 PM »
I'm already looking forward to the competition at ILB for training camp.

Cody Heiman has already received a significant amount of discussion, but I had not heard anything about Derrick Mathews until I ran across this tidbit.

http://www.houstontexans.com/news/article-2/Houston-pro-day-recap/cfbbfe7a-6b3d-4c98-a1a6-34a93a2fb4d3

Quote
John Harris
Texans Analyst

-- The one guy I wanted to see work out didnít get a chance to, other than the bench press. ILB Derrick Mathews was one of the most instinctive linebackers in the nation and one of the most productive, intelligent and complete linebackers in this draft class. Problem was his size. His program height/weight was 6í/222 lb. and that was going to be tough to overcome. However, he did weigh 232 pounds and didnít have an ounce of fat on him. A torn ACL suffered in October against Memphis kept him from completing a full work out beyond the bench press. That said, he threw up 26 reps of 225 pounds and when fully healthy, he has plenty of potential. I talked to him after the day and he said he was real close to doing a full workout but just wasnít quite there. Heís yoked up, football intelligent and loves to compete but just has to deal with being 6í.

Regardless of size, I will be watching Mathews as well as Heiman as closely as I can from now through training camp. It should be fun.

Don't go to sleep on this kid once TC starts. He's 2 years removed from his ACL injury, so he should be "full go".

I've read a couple of places that he fits the hybrid Safety/Linebacker role like GB drafted Josh Jones to be.

Would be nice to have 2-3 players that fit that role IF TT/MM want to go "all in" with that type of defense.

I'll be watching a number of no-name kids in TC, and Mathews will be one of them.
It is a great time of year for those of us that like to look for the little known guy to emerge and ILB has a few.

Mathews has a lot of the same qualities that Joe Thomas possesses. The one thing that make me leary of him is that the Redskins had him on their PS for a season and in their off season program for a year, yet got rid of him after making that investment.

2 UDFA's , Cody Heiman and David Talley should be interesting players to watch also, both have the makeup to be ST's aces.

Also journeymen Jordan Tripp can not be forgotten as a possiblity.

True. The Redskins had him, but I believe he was still not fully past his ACL recovery, plus teams sometimes make changes in personnel to their PS's due to injuries on the 53 man roster. For instance, a couple of injuries at OG and there is little to zero additional personnel on the PS, so you drop a player (like Mathews) to add an OL to the PS.

I have no idea if that's the case here, but it may not be simply he wasn't good enough to stick in WASH.

Packers picked him up in season, and thought enough of him to extend him on a futures contract.

TC can't get here fast enough for me. I want to watch players with pads on, rather than running around in shorts/helmets.

Offline Gregg

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #17 on: July 15, 2017, 04:02:00 PM »
It was not hindsight.

At the time I said: Why doesn't TT send a PI down there to do an inquiry?  If there are no red flags, then why not take him with a lower pick?

Anyone who can say about Smith what you just did, never saw films of him in college.  We simply do not have any inside linebacker who can cover like him.  Plus, the guy had amazing speed to the outside, so he could snuff out sweeps from the inside out.   

Clark will probably turn out to be a good enough player.  But in a 3-4 defense, that is a linebacker oriented style of play.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2017, 04:02:58 PM by Gregg »

Online Twain

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #18 on: July 15, 2017, 05:35:36 PM »

Anyone who can say about Smith what you just did, never saw films of him in college.  We simply do not have any inside linebacker who can cover like him.  Plus, the guy had amazing speed to the outside, so he could snuff out sweeps from the inside out.   


But Gregg- I gotta ask-- if he can't control his foot, and has to wear a brace because of it, will he still have the amazing speed and the ability to cover?  From what I read, he still needs the brace, and still walks with a limp. 

Smith may still be a good player, but at this point it isn't about his college tape, but instead is about how he can run now.  A lot of questions still.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2017, 05:36:17 PM by Twain »
"The trouble ain't that there are too many fools, but that the lightning ain't distributed right."

Offline RT

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #19 on: July 15, 2017, 09:23:57 PM »
It was not hindsight.

At the time I said: Why doesn't TT send a PI down there to do an inquiry?  If there are no red flags, then why not take him with a lower pick?

Anyone who can say about Smith what you just did, never saw films of him in college.  We simply do not have any inside linebacker who can cover like him.  Plus, the guy had amazing speed to the outside, so he could snuff out sweeps from the inside out.   

Clark will probably turn out to be a good enough player.  But in a 3-4 defense, that is a linebacker oriented style of play.

Let me introduce you to the Packers new cover LB that you so desire. He's not brokedown and he's better in coverage than Smith was before Smith got hurt.

http://www.nfl.com/draft/2017/profiles/josh-jones?id=2558119


Offline Gregg

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #20 on: July 15, 2017, 09:46:17 PM »
I think you may be missing my point.

I said that with Smith, you would not have to rotate around or sub out.

I liked the pick of Jones, I really did, but he is not going to be a three down ILB.

Offline RT

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #21 on: July 15, 2017, 10:15:44 PM »
I think you may be missing my point.

I said that with Smith, you would not have to rotate around or sub out.

I liked the pick of Jones, I really did, but he is not going to be a three down ILB.
And Smith will never be a 3 down LB in his lifetime again either.

You are obsessing about a dying breed. It is the age of specialization. Why is it important to have a ILB that stays on the field for 3 downs? It's not. If you are one of the 3 or 4 teams that have a guy with enough talent to do that, great. But it is hardly a necessity for a good defense.  A team gets to 3rd down and and it's 6 or 7 DB's on the field anyways. Who is naturally going to be better in coverage, a LB or a DB? 

The Packers current ILB group is more than good enough to be part of a quality defense.

Offline claymaker

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #22 on: July 16, 2017, 09:24:18 AM »
If Smith comes back at just 70 percent of what he was he will be worth it.

Many people thought he was the best overall LB in the draft and worth a top five pick.

In watching films of him, what Smith could do better than any other ILB in that draft was to cover, in either zone or man to man.  But he was also big enough and strong enough to jam the middle.  In other words, you would not have to rotate him or sub him.  He was a three down LB all the way.

We will see what happens with him.  IMO, that kind of player was worth the risk. 

I also lamented TT not going after Lael Collins.  I was correct on that one.  That guy can play every OL spot except center, and he can be good at them.  Hard to believe, but he is even better than Barclay.

70% would not be enough to cover a RB or TE. 3rd pick in the 2nd round was a huge gamble to take on him. Might as well have been a first round pick with guys like Myles Jack and Hunter Henry still on the board. At least Myles Jack played, but they chose a player they knew wouldn't play for at least a year.

His film in college counts for nothing now. Just because his knee is at 70% doesn't mean he can do 70% of what he could do in college. His foot movement is huge and that is limited to less than 50% from what I gathered.

Collins is a different matter. Murder investigation, I can understand why TT kept his hands off that one. I have zero interest in debating that topic because everyone knew he was talented and it wasn't until a a last minute red flag that made him dropped like a molar shaped air balloon from the sky.

Offline claymaker

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #23 on: July 16, 2017, 09:35:42 AM »
I think you may be missing my point.

I said that with Smith, you would not have to rotate around or sub out.

I liked the pick of Jones, I really did, but he is not going to be a three down ILB.
And Smith will never be a 3 down LB in his lifetime again either.

You are obsessing about a dying breed. It is the age of specialization. Why is it important to have a ILB that stays on the field for 3 downs? It's not. If you are one of the 3 or 4 teams that have a guy with enough talent to do that, great. But it is hardly a necessity for a good defense.  A team gets to 3rd down and and it's 6 or 7 DB's on the field anyways. Who is naturally going to be better in coverage, a LB or a DB? 

The Packers current ILB group is more than good enough to be part of a quality defense.

I agree with this, but would bring up the point that some offenses are beginning to use more traditional or balanced formations to keep defenses from using those personal types.

I don't think we'll see Jones as an ILB in the base defense. However, it is a good bet he plays a ton at ILB in the Nickel and Dime packages, which are used a lot. He's not the player you want to slap a label on. Unless another Safety is able to properly replace Burnett, I see Jones as Burnett's heir. I think his future relies on Randall's ability to succeed at his new position.

Offline RT

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #24 on: July 16, 2017, 10:51:07 AM »
Good stuff claymaker. Only thing I would add here is don't sleep on Kentrell Brice as a future starter. If this is Burnett's last season and the Packers have a defined hybrid role planned for Jones, Brice may fill the roll as the traditional safety.

Offline Shanedorf

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #25 on: July 23, 2017, 07:29:34 PM »
ILB Joe Thomas played a lot of snaps in 2016
How many ? 634 on defense ( 61 %)  and another 187 on ST's ( 42%)

That's a ton of snaps and its likely that the others mentioned in this thread will eat into his nickel and dime snaps in 2017



Offline RT

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #26 on: July 23, 2017, 08:54:51 PM »
ILB Joe Thomas played a lot of snaps in 2016
How many ? 634 on defense ( 61 %)  and another 187 on ST's ( 42%)

That's a ton of snaps and its likely that the others mentioned in this thread will eat into his nickel and dime snaps in 2017
Read today where there were games at the end of the season that him and Clinton-Dix played 100% of the defensive snaps. That's the good news, the bad news is he ranked in the 30's as a coverage LB, giving up over 9 yards a play when targeted. Probably a big reason for the drafting of Josh Jones in the 2nd round of this years draft.

Offline Gregg

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #27 on: July 25, 2017, 07:36:39 PM »
I don't know how you guys can make these authoritative pronouncements when, in fact, TC just opened today.

Smith still has several weeks to work out, and the first reports are that he is even more muscular now.

BTW, I did not limit my choices to him. I also said I would not have minded TT taking Myles Jack either.

In my view, either one would have been better than what we have, and then CM 3 could have been moved outside.

We will see.

Offline RT

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #28 on: July 25, 2017, 09:04:29 PM »
Gregg, for me it's these choices of LB's that just don't fly. If you recall Reggie Ragland was all the rage pre-draft, a little surprised you haven't included him also. The idea to pass on Clark for any ILB in last years draft , for me would not make any sense. The 2 best LB's from last years draft, that played off the ball were Deion Jones and Jatavis Brown.  Both of these players would have certainly made the defense better, but they didn't need to be draft in the first round either.   

Offline Gregg

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Re: New names at ILB
« Reply #29 on: July 27, 2017, 08:29:46 AM »
The problem as I saw it with Ragland was that he did not have the speed that Jack or Smith had.

He was a very good run stuffer and hitter, but the NFL game now demands that linebackers be able to run and cover also.