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AngusMcFife

Is edge/pass rush a need?

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It occurred to me that the best defense of 2019, the Patriots, were a dominant unit despite not having a very good pass rusher. Jamie Collins had the most sacks (7) followed by Van Noy (6.5). The two DL with the most snaps were Lawrence Guy and John Simon (!!!). Instead of a freak athlete on the edge, they just loaded the front 7 with smart, versatile players. In fact they traded for Michael Bennett and he barely played, before getting traded again.

It seems to me that the Ravens defense is closest to the Patriots schematically, and clearly they are built similarly with dominant secondaries. Wink has clearly found out that you can get pressure through a variety of blitzes instead of just relying on winning 1-on-1 matchups.

The Ravens could definitely use an interior DL who can push the pocket. But as far as the LB group goes, I wonder if the Ravens coaches and FO are thinking about the roster the same as most other teams. They might be looking at more Patriots-type players at LB than your prototypical freak athlete on the edge. Sometimes the gains that such an edge player bring in the pass rush is offset by losses in run defense, coverage ability, and lack of versatility.   

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Yes, it's true that we, like the Pats, have choosen to build in a way that makes heavy investments in the secondary and that necessarily leaves less resources for the front-7. This has been a smart trade-off given the current positional economics of the league. However, we do need to add pieces to shore up the front, even if they are not star explosive edge players, which would go higher than we pick anyway. 

We actually struggled setting the edge last year. Even though that's a supposedly easier to find trait. We likely add guys who are bigger/stronger to fill that role. I see a really good fit with Marlon Davidson at DE. 

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We absolutely need an edge rusher that can get to the passer. Just think of how both the Patriots and Ravens were eliminated, by a team that can run the football. We also weren’t a great matchup for the 49ers either. We beat them because we were better coached when it mattered.

The problem with all these stunts and blitzes is that we can overwhelm poorly coached teams to plug the run and pressure the QB, but when they don’t get home they leave the secondary exposed or additional rushing lanes to be found for big gains.

If we add a good edge rusher than it means we’re less reliant on blitzes and can thus be more unpredictable against opposing offenses. The secondary is in place for years to come, this is the time to add cheap edge rushing talent in the draft... if not swinging for the fences with Clowney.

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Regardless of if a defense isn't dependent on high levels rushers to be successful, it still makes sense for us to upgrade any weak spots on our defense. We've already built through the secondary and done a hell of a job at it. Of course coverage is more important, but it's time to round the team out. 

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Depends on if you think a front 7 lead by Brandon Williams, Wormley, Ward, Ferguson & Bowser can get enough pressure on Mahomes to get enough stops. 

The Chiefs are the team to beat, and imo the best way is to do that is limit the number of possessions they get (and our offense it built to do that) and  pressure Mahomes with only 4 guys, and I don't think we can at present.  Its all well and good to load up on the secondary, but they can't lock down all the weapons the Chiefs have for 4 sec every play

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Look at the QBs/offenses New England's defense faced to get that "best" ranking. They didn't need a pass rush to win those games. And in the few where that wasn't true and the opposing offense was competent, well, it showed. 

Baltimore needs edge-rushes. Period.

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2 hours ago, diamondbull424 said:

The problem with all these stunts and blitzes is that we can overwhelm poorly coached teams to plug the run and pressure the QB, but when they don’t get home they leave the secondary exposed or additional rushing lanes to be found for big gains.

If we add a good edge rusher than it means we’re less reliant on blitzes and can thus be more unpredictable against opposing offenses. The secondary is in place for years to come, this is the time to add cheap edge rushing talent in the draft... if not swinging for the fences with Clowney.

I agree its not ideal. The best possible way to build a great D is like the 49ers, with 5 1st round picks on the DL. 

But we've already invested in the secondary and its great. I'm just not sure we can add a difference making edge pass rusher through free agency (they're super expensive) or the draft (at the end of the 1st round). All the impact guys are taken by then, you have to roll the dice on someone with holes in their game. For instance if the guy can't play the run or drop in coverage, he's not really going to be a useful OLB for us in year 1. 

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1 hour ago, drd23 said:

Depends on if you think a front 7 lead by Brandon Williams, Wormley, Ward, Ferguson & Bowser can get enough pressure on Mahomes to get enough stops. 

The Chiefs are the team to beat, and imo the best way is to do that is limit the number of possessions they get (and our offense it built to do that) and  pressure Mahomes with only 4 guys, and I don't think we can at present.  Its all well and good to load up on the secondary, but they can't lock down all the weapons the Chiefs have for 4 sec every play

From what I've read we are franchising Judon, so at this point I'm expecting him back. I'm all for adding a good DL who can push the pocket too. 

Yes the Chiefs are a problem, but I think it'll be hard to keep that defense together once Mahomes gets paid. So we'll have to outscore them.  

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