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Coverage or Pass Rush?

Coverage or Pass Rush?  

45 members have voted

  1. 1. What is more valuable on Defense?

    • Coverage
      11
    • Pass Rush
      34


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I think I’d rather have coverage in today’s NFL. They’re easier to keep together and generally consist of more pieces. 

Another big factor: mobile QBs. Wilson, Watson, Lamar, Mahomes, Rodgers, they can all move. That forces rusher to play contain on more occasions than vs statue QBs, which mitigates a rusher’s value to some extent. Additionally, I think OL talent is pretty so-so in the league at the moment, meaning lesser pass rushers can have more success (yes that’s a completely unsubstantiated opinion).

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1 hour ago, samsel23 said:

The really good QB’s can neutralize a good pass rush.   Won’t have near as much success if coverage is always good.  

Plenty of great QBs torch even great corners on a consistent basis. I think great QBs just neutralize even amazing defenses, regardless of the unit being specified - not just pass rush or coverage.

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22 minutes ago, Yin-Yang said:

I think I’d rather have coverage in today’s NFL. They’re easier to keep together and generally consist of more pieces. 

Another big factor: mobile QBs. Wilson, Watson, Lamar, Mahomes, Rodgers, they can all move. That forces rusher to play contain on more occasions than vs statue QBs, which mitigates a rusher’s value to some extent. Additionally, I think OL talent is pretty so-so in the league at the moment, meaning lesser pass rushers can have more success (yes that’s a completely unsubstantiated opinion).

I think it depends on the other unit...   I mean if you have an average pass rush sure the coverage will be better.   But if you have one of the worst pass rush in the league than no.   Receivers being covered will eventually get open there is only so much time you can give someone can be covered.  Shadowing someone is very hard to do for 5-6-7 seconds without that person getting free.

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2 minutes ago, sryan66611 said:

I think it depends on the other unit...   I mean if you have an average pass rush sure the coverage will be better.   But if you have one of the worst pass rush in the league than no.   Receivers being covered will eventually get open there is only so much time you can give someone can be covered.  Shadowing someone is very hard to do for 5-6-7 seconds without that person getting free.

You’re not wrong but the same works, even more so, with an elite pass rush. If there is trash coverage behind an elite pass rush, it neutralizes the rushers completely. 

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I'd rather have a great pass rush than great coverage. (Even 20+ years ago, when d-backs were allowed to "cover" the way I envision it, I still would have said pass rush.) No matter how great or mobile your QB is, when the guys in the trenches consistently collapse the pocket, force him to get rid of the ball quicker than he wants to, and just generally get in his face, he's going to have problems.

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Chicken or the egg discussion

In the end I gave my vote to the pass rush under the circumstance, that the pass rush can't get home with 3-4 man. 

With the 4 man rush, you can keep 7 back to cover and prevent the big plays. I takes only 4 to make 7 players good.

 

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Would rather have the elite coverage as long as it’s not in wet conditions. Elite coverage forces the QB to have to thread the needle. Elite pass rush forces the QB to get the ball out of quick. I’d rather pressure the QB to have to have elite ball accuracy vs pressure him to have elite pocket awareness. I know its close, but I just feel like an elite OL can neutralize the elite pass rush whereas the elite receiver group is likely still neutralized by the elite secondary.

I look at Joe Flacco’s elite 2012 playoff run and while he faced some great pass rush teams, he didn’t face secondaries that were elite. The mile high miracle likely doesn’t happen against this Patriots defense of this Ravens defense. Flacco was able to beat the pass rush by checking down to Ray Rice when the defense got upfield and then when the OL bought time he would expose the secondary to big gains to Torrey Smith and Jacoby Jones. Again an elite secondary likely shut down our receiving core and force the RBs and TEs to be a significant part of the offense. I don’t think we beat those high powered teams with that offense against an elite secondary. Same with the Eli Manning runs that he had to win the SB.

Then I look at some of the more progressive team builders in football in BB and Ozzie/DeCosta/Harbaugh... and both teams have decided to cultivate an elite coverage unit vs an elite pass rush unit, so I think there’s something to be said about that particular preference. Perhaps it’s only coincidental and less because it’s better than pass rush in their eyes and more because it’s easier to build/sustain an elite coverage unit (or some similar reasoning that we don’t know), but what we know is that they’ve chosen to construct the secondary in that way and it’s working well.

edit: I would MUCH rather have an top coverage unit with an average pass rush (Ravens/Bills?) than a top pass rush with an average secondary (Packers/Vikings?) I’ve seen the top QBs struggle more being forced to consistently to thread the needle against top coverage than them simply dinking and dunking a top pass rush down the field (tiring them out in the process) for scores.

Edited by diamondbull424

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The Steelers have had a pretty good pass rush for the past 3 seasons and was average at best. This year we get a great cover safety and a good #2 CB and our defense is suddenly really good. We still have the good pass rush, but now we can actually cover a little.

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12 hours ago, samsel23 said:

The really good QB’s can neutralize a good pass rush.   Won’t have near as much success if coverage is always good.  

Great point.

I remember well the game that the Dolphins gave the '85 Bears their only loss. 
It was all because Dan Marino was a complete master at getting rid of the ball in a heartbeat. In a more current time, Peyton Manning and Tom Brady were/are great at it too.

But, ohhhh, that game. awesome. 

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19 hours ago, Tetsujin said:

zone coverage -> pass rush

man coverage -> coverage

Pass Rush > Man Coverage > Zone Coverage

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7 hours ago, Danand said:

Chicken or the egg discussion

In the end I gave my vote to the pass rush under the circumstance, that the pass rush can't get home with 3-4 man. 

With the 4 man rush, you can keep 7 back to cover and prevent the big plays. I takes only 4 to make 7 players good.

 

Hah, I came in here to write this. I really feel that there is no wrong answer. Gun to my head, I think pass rush, but there are arguments for both and they're all good. 

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I think the most effective way to stop an elite QB is to knock him on the ground, so pass rush.  

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