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 How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It? 
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
m2karateman wrote:
With all due respect, turnovers weren't the problem for the Lions....on offense or defense. The problems were third down conversions on both sides of the ball. Teams were able to extend drives on the defense, particularly Green Bay and New Orleans in the final two games. On offense, it was the inability to convert short third downs late in the game AND burning time off the clock by using the running game. Mikel LeShoure, according to Schwartz, was drafted with the purpose of helping in that regard. It was a good plan, but the problem was that A) he got hurt, B) the offensive line doesn't get enough push in that predictable of a situation, and C) Linehan's plays aren't all that great so as to help the running game.

The Lions have to be able to convert more third downs, particularly in short yardage situations. But likewise, receivers need to hold onto the damn ball better in those situations as well. Pettigrew, Burleson, even CJ....I can recall several third down drops by them, and others, through the season. That simply can't happen at the rate it did.

I agree that improving the LB corps needs to happen as well, particularly on the weakside. Levy was a disaster. He should be relegated to backup for all three positions, and get an honest-to-God weakside player. Doug Hogue may be that guy, but we'll see. If the coaching staff thinks he is, then re-evaluate the middle spot, because Tulloch didn't impress. He was nothing more than a slightly improved version of Paris Lennon. Moreso, the biggest area of improvement needed is at safety. Spievey and Delmas started out the season OK, but did a backslide throughout the year. Somebody, ANYBODY, needs to pull Delmas aside and show him how to use his arms in tackling. Take him to a Judo or Jujitsu class, ask him to carry beer barrels in the off-season, tell him to lift the offensive linemen and carry them from one weight station to another.....whatever it takes, he needs to learn to use his arms to wrap up the ball carrier. I appreciate his life-like imitation of a pinball, but I'd rather not see it on the field of play. As for Spievey......he needs to be a backup, I think. Just hasn't got instincts, and his coverage skills are plain bad. I don't know how he got through Iowa as a corner, but as an NFL safety he couldn't cover a blade of grass if he were a blanket.



Thought that Spievay was a wasted draft pick last year (3rd round). He's done nothing since to change my opinion. Mayhew missed on this one, or was it the scouts missed? Either way, that shouldn't happen. In regards to the LB's, think Levy plays better in the middle than outside, and wasn't overly impressed with Tulloch either.
Feel the entire back seven requires an infusion of talent. Would like to see at least one corner, two safeties and two linebackers added to our present mix.


January 12th, 2012, 11:02 am
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
Blueskies wrote:
I don't even think the O line is that bad.

Stafford wasn't touched during the NO game. The Lions don't have a healthy RB that would play for any other team in the NFL (Kevin Smith was literally sitting on his couch).

I don't think the Lions O line is great by any means, but it isn't bad. I think its average, and they played above average towards the end of the season.


This.

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January 12th, 2012, 12:41 pm
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
Schwartz alluded to this in an interview way back in the day: how many o-linemen form Peyton's heyday can you name? A good QB makes the O-line better.

Do you really think the Saints have 3 pro bowl-caliber guys on their line? I would send them to the Holding Pro Bowl in Holdalulu if anything. :D

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January 12th, 2012, 1:04 pm
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
IMO Spivey is better than Delmas. I can't stand Delmas. IMO he is Ernie Sims part 2, at a more important position.


Our OL was TERRIBLE in the N.O. game. We can't open a hole for our running backs to save their lives. Sproles was allegedly a washed up has-been, on his way out, and not worth re-signing in SD, yet he has a career year in N.O. I wonder why? Ryan Grant is garbage, yet he does well in GB. Anyone that Pitt puts in their backfield can rush for 1000 yards, easily. Who the hell is Isac Redman? The same is true about Houston. Slaton was the next coming to Our Savior himself, until they decided not to pay him and made a UDFA their new God, and their next is waiting in the wings in Ben Tate when Foster wants a huge payday. Don't give me this garbage about our Rbs being the problem, and our OL being good.

Stafford wasn't touched? He may not have been sacked, but he was hurried a number of times and he was about to get killed when he threw one of his two picks, not to mention having ZERO time to get rid of the ball. Give Stafford N.O.'s OL, give him 7 seconds to throw the ball, an OL that can run block, and we would have beat N.O. on the two early turnovers that we did get.


Last edited by wjb21ndtown on January 12th, 2012, 2:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.



January 12th, 2012, 1:48 pm
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
wjb21ndtown wrote:
IMO Spivey is better than Delmas. I can't stand Delmas. IMO he is Ernie Sims part 2, at a more important position.


You know the more I think about it, he is.

As for O-line sure they didn't play good against Saints but they did do a pretty good job during the regular season.

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January 12th, 2012, 2:13 pm
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
wjb21ndtown wrote:
IMO Spivey is better than Delmas. I can't stand Delmas. IMO he is Ernie Sims part 2, at a more important position.


Our OL was TERRIBLE in the N.O. game. We can't open a hole for our running backs to save their lives. Sproles was allegedly a washed up has-been, on his way out, and not worth re-signing in SD, yet he has a career year in N.O. I wonder why? Ryan Grant is garbage, anyone that Pitt puts in their backfield can rush for 1000 yards, easily. Who the hell is Isac Redman? The same is true about Houston. Slaton was the next coming to Our Savior himself, until they decided not to pay him and made a UDFA their new God, and their next is waiting in the wings in Ben Tate when Foster wants a huge payday. Don't give me this garbage about our Rbs being the problem, and our OL being good.

Stafford wasn't touched? He may not have been sacked, but he was hurried a number of times and he was about to get killed when he threw one of his two picks, not to mention having ZERO time to get rid of the ball. Give Stafford on N.O.'s OL, give him 7 seconds to throw the ball, an OL that can run block, and we would have beat N.O. on the two early turnovers that we did get.


What could Stafford do if he had refs that didn't call THIS a penalty?

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January 12th, 2012, 2:24 pm
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
I saw bad calls go both ways that day. I stated that in the thread discussing the refs. Good teams over-come bad calls. It happens, it's part of the game.


January 12th, 2012, 2:30 pm
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
thelomasbrowns wrote:
wjb21ndtown wrote:
IMO Spivey is better than Delmas. I can't stand Delmas. IMO he is Ernie Sims part 2, at a more important position.


Our OL was TERRIBLE in the N.O. game. We can't open a hole for our running backs to save their lives. Sproles was allegedly a washed up has-been, on his way out, and not worth re-signing in SD, yet he has a career year in N.O. I wonder why? Ryan Grant is garbage, anyone that Pitt puts in their backfield can rush for 1000 yards, easily. Who the hell is Isac Redman? The same is true about Houston. Slaton was the next coming to Our Savior himself, until they decided not to pay him and made a UDFA their new God, and their next is waiting in the wings in Ben Tate when Foster wants a huge payday. Don't give me this garbage about our Rbs being the problem, and our OL being good.

Stafford wasn't touched? He may not have been sacked, but he was hurried a number of times and he was about to get killed when he threw one of his two picks, not to mention having ZERO time to get rid of the ball. Give Stafford on N.O.'s OL, give him 7 seconds to throw the ball, an OL that can run block, and we would have beat N.O. on the two early turnovers that we did get.


What could Stafford do if he had refs that didn't call THIS a penalty?

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Whats funny is that was the picture on SI.com's NFL homepage right before that game. Pictures say 1000 words dont they.

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January 12th, 2012, 8:48 pm
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
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I completely understand that we have to fix our offensive line. I really do. But can anyone REALLY think that its the offense's fault??? I mean come on. I think our defensive backs are much more to blame than our offensive line. I think other than not being able to run the ball effectively, our O-line has been fairly decent.


i wouldnt say its the offense's fault but the offense is one dimensional. look at how the saints can beat you, they can play short passing game with graham, sproles, thomas; they can go deep with graham, colston, meachem, henderson, moore; they can go short yardage with ivory; they can ball control with thomas and ivory and outstanding inside blocking; they can use sproles however they want out of the backfield, line him at wr, etc. You cannot game plan for that Saints offense unless you build a defense that is man for man more talented than them at every position and to do that would probably need a 5 man defensive line with 1 great LB and 5 very good DBs. The Saints offense is clearly better and much much more sophisticated than that of the Lions'. Defensively, however, I would say the Lions defense is significantly better than that of the Saints, the Saints have the advantage in that our offense is very predictable and can be game planned against.

Being that developing a defense that could stop the Saints seems unattainable, I dont think there are a lot of changes to be made on that side of the ball. Sure you could draft an OLB like Burfict, maybe get lucky and see Barron slip in the draft and trade up to get him and fill your two biggest holes on the defense, then re sign Avril, Tulloch and have LoJack and Young stay healthy all season and add Brandon Carr to play CB w Houston, drop Wright and Berry to nickel and dime backs. That improved defense is still going to get toasted by them and if you havent added to the offense, your not likely to beat them barring some unforeseen injury.

Its my opinion at this point in time that to beat these ridiculous high powered, high efficiency teams - New Orleans, GB, New England - you have to be ready to drop 40 points on them at any time and if you get a lead late < 5 minutes in the game be ready to play ball and clock control. I might change my mind depending on how the playoffs go, ie can Baltimore or DEN beat NE? Can the NYG or SF hold a candle to the Saints and Packers? Until something difft happens, it seems to me that NE will meet either the Saints/Packers in the super bowl and one of them wins in a shoot out.


Quote:
I just dont want to look back in a few years and see all the resources we spent on offense and have it be too late. Lets get ourselves another strong defensive player or two and then focus on the O-line. Just my opinion. Im sick and tired of watching our secondary get burned time after time and hear excuses of how its not their fault. When is it gonna be their fault??? I say it is now, so lets fix it. Period.


i would hate to see us grab another strong defensive player, see him play well, have everyone in the league acknowledge that he is talented and good, watch the defense play better against most teams but only to see the season again end in a shoot out vs the Packers/Saints and by next season maybe even the Eagles and Panthers.


January 13th, 2012, 1:48 am
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
We will never be good if we can't pick up a 3rd and 2 on the ground, period. With this offensive line it will never happen.

Like I said, it was our offense, not our defense that let us down FIRST. The D was spent at the end the first 1/2 and they didn't look rested even after the 20 minute 1/2 time rest. N.O. dominated us after that. We put them out there three times with short rest, ran them ragged, and failed to give them ANYTHING on offense for pretty much the rest of the game. We couldn't sustain drives, we couldn't run the ball (and no, it wasn't Kevin Smith's fault), and we couldn't score. We will never be an elite team until we can do those things.


DB's? I would like to replace Delmas with a safety that is more fundamentally sound, doesn't over-run his angles, doesn't go for the big hit, but rather makes sure tackles, and can cover a damn tight end. I think our CB's are adequate, and I think Spivey could work if he had a good counter-part. Dan Connor would be a nice off-season addition, but IMO it's a pipe dream that isn't going to happen.


January 13th, 2012, 2:15 pm
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
http://www.nfl.com/news/story/09000d5d8 ... ent_stream

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Exit Interview: Lions need more bite on defense next
season

2011 in a Nutshell: Detroit's 12-year playoff drought came to an end with a 10-6 second-place finish in the NFC North. That was great news. The bad news was the fact that this team finished six games back of the front-running Packers and were one-and-done in the playoffs.

What Went Right: Two words: Matt Stafford. The former top overall pick not only stayed relatively healthy all season, but really produced, and one 5,038-yard, 41-touchdown campaign later you can put the third-year player in the upper echelon of quarterbacks. By the way, that yardage total is the third-highest in NFL history. Not bad.

Calvin Johnson destroyed NFL secondaries, with 96 catches for 1,681 yards and a league-leading 16 touchdown catches. What's a more unstoppable tandem in pro sports than Stafford to Megatron?

Former third-round pick Kevin Smith was very effective late in the season before getting hurt, and will probably be a cog in a running back-by-committee come 2012 (more on running backs below).

What Went Not so Right: Whoever starts, Detroit has to run the ball more to keep Stafford upright and defenses off balance. An effective ground attack would also keep the oft-burned defense off the field. For all the ballyhoo regarding the front four, the defense was a points-allowing machine. Detroit's front four did not control the line of scrimmage as expected, and Ndamukong Suh's suspension did not help matters. The Lions allowed over 24 points per game, and were often terrible against the run, allowing five yards per carry (30th in the NFL).

Meanwhile, the secondary played worse as the season wore on. At midseason, Detroit allowed the fewest big pass plays in the league. But down the stretch, the back four gave up more than their share. They couldn't cover anyone at Lambeau in Week 17, making Matt Flynn look like Joe Montana in Tecmo Bowl. Then there was the wild-card debacle in New Orleans, where Drew Brees threw for 466 yards.

Until Detroit can generate pressure when it counts, and get better safety play, 9-7 is where this franchise will sit. With Suh, Cliff Avril and Nick Fairley on the line, this team was talented enough to get 41 sacks. But until they start imposing their will and affecting games, playoff failure will be more the norm than an anomaly.

Offseason Crystal Ball: Jim Schwartz will have to decide if he's comfortable with Chris Houston, Eric Wright, Amari Spievey and Louis Delmas being his starting secondary again. Wright got burned for 67 receptions, which is not good, but did hold his own considering how much he was targeted. Houston is not a bad player. But the safeties -- Spievey and Delmas -- don't exactly cover for the mediocre play of the corners. With the promising Aaron Berry and Alphonso Smith on the bench, look for safety to be the area of turnover.

If the coaching staff rolls with the same back seven next season, reaching 11-12 wins isn't likely. On that note, linebacker Stephen Tulloch is a free agent. Expect the linebacking corps and secondary to be heavily evaluated as to how much the club wants to invest in both free agency and the draft. This is a club that's looking at extending Megatron, as well as bringing back tackle Jeff Backus, and there's only so much to go around.

Offensively, Mikel LeShoure should get a long look. Don't forget, this club invested a second-round pick last year in the former Illinois standout before the kid got hurt. With Best's concussion problems, and the up-and-down nature of Smith's career, LeShoure could very well play a big role in 2012.

Team Needs and Draft: Outside of the back seven, April's draft should be dedicated to acquiring depth on both lines. That includes finding a new right guard or right tackle. Gosder Cherilus gave up nine sacks from his tackle position. Right guard Stephen Peterman ain't exactly John Hannah. If the club opts not to re-sign defensive end Cliff Avril because of his market price, then drafting a 4-3 end is a priority. Kyle Vanden Bosch will turn 34 in 2012, and despite having eight sacks last year, might not have too much left.

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January 13th, 2012, 3:45 pm
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
Lions2SB2 wrote:
wjb21ndtown wrote:
IMO Spivey is better than Delmas. I can't stand Delmas. IMO he is Ernie Sims part 2, at a more important position.


You know the more I think about it, he is.

I don't think so. We had to move him to the other side so Spievey could learn the easier position. When Delmas was where Spievey is, he was a stud. Move Delmas back to his original spot and put a proven S where he used to be(proven enough so Delmas does'nt have to move back there) and he will have a career year. Delmas is a gambler so let him gamble

And BTW Why does Sims get so much hate for always being healthy and being our best defender while he was here? No one ever rips on Paris Lenon or Chuck Darby. Dewayne White was not even an Arena league talent.

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January 13th, 2012, 5:34 pm
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
Killwill25 wrote:
Lions2SB2 wrote:
wjb21ndtown wrote:
IMO Spivey is better than Delmas. I can't stand Delmas. IMO he is Ernie Sims part 2, at a more important position.


You know the more I think about it, he is.

I don't think so. We had to move him to the other side so Spievey could learn the easier position. When Delmas was where Spievey is, he was a stud. Move Delmas back to his original spot and put a proven S where he used to be(proven enough so Delmas does'nt have to move back there) and he will have a career year. Delmas is a gambler so let him gamble

And BTW Why does Sims get so much hate for always being healthy and being our best defender while he was here? No one ever rips on Paris Lenon or Chuck Darby. Dewayne White was not even an Arena league talent.



IMO Delmas was never a stud. He gets a lot of hype due to his highlight reel, occasional play-making ability, but he has always gone for the big hit over the sure tackle, he's regularly out of position, he can't cover, and he takes HORRIBLE angles on his tackles, often getting beat for big gains. He's like a Dre Bly, but at safety, and IMO that's no damn good. I don't mind a gambler at CB, where they have a S to back them up, but a gambler at safety is horrible, IMO.


January 13th, 2012, 6:02 pm
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
wjb21ndtown wrote:
Killwill25 wrote:
Lions2SB2 wrote:
wjb21ndtown wrote:
IMO Spivey is better than Delmas. I can't stand Delmas. IMO he is Ernie Sims part 2, at a more important position.


You know the more I think about it, he is.

I don't think so. We had to move him to the other side so Spievey could learn the easier position. When Delmas was where Spievey is, he was a stud. Move Delmas back to his original spot and put a proven S where he used to be(proven enough so Delmas does'nt have to move back there) and he will have a career year. Delmas is a gambler so let him gamble

And BTW Why does Sims get so much hate for always being healthy and being our best defender while he was here? No one ever rips on Paris Lenon or Chuck Darby. Dewayne White was not even an Arena league talent.



IMO Delmas was never a stud. He gets a lot of hype due to his highlight reel, occasional play-making ability, but he has always gone for the big hit over the sure tackle, he's regularly out of position, he can't cover, and he takes HORRIBLE angles on his tackles, often getting beat for big gains. He's like a Dre Bly, but at safety, and IMO that's no damn good. I don't mind a gambler at CB, where they have a S to back them up, but a gambler at safety is horrible, IMO.



Well said. Im glad im not the only one who thinks this. Delmas gets the recognition as a "Solid player" because hes flashy. Hes got the cool entrance, the cool hair..etc. But wheres the production? And besides, even if he were an Ed Reed, hes never on the field anyway. Hes always hurt for some reason or another.

and WJB..I wasnt really agreeing with your opinion on it being the offenses fault, but the more I read your points the more i agree. Though I dont think the defense should always use that as an excuse, it sure does help when your offense can convert 3rd downs and be able to control more clock. I am all for upgrading this O-line, definetely. That is why im so supportive for drafting Peter Konz if he falls to us, which I doubt he will.

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January 13th, 2012, 10:16 pm
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Post Re: How Broken is the Defense? How Do You Fix It?
I don't understand why it has to be an either/or discussion, as if only one side of the ball should be addressed? The New Orleans game, and indeed all of the losses this year, were total team losses. The offense remained one-dimensional in those games, and the defense failed to make key stops in those games. Neither the offense or defense can be viewed as a finished product by any means. There is room for improvement on both sides of the ball. Which side of the ball they decide to upgrade first doesn't really matter to me.

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January 14th, 2012, 12:21 am
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