| FTBL Defense needs major fixing

Brandon Van de Graaff

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Or if those 2 fumbles inside the 1 that both led to UF's TD's go the Tide's way. The first one was a fumble and recovery by Bama, IMO. Second one, Jobe was offsides, but those were 2 huge plays. There were some odd plays in the game though, like the Surtain score he gave up. The throw from Trask to Pitts in the end zone over Branch was a throw that Aaron Rodgers would be proud of. Sometimes you have to tip your hat, it ain't always on the defense.
 

Brandon Van de Graaff

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He's a good set of eyes and ears to have in the building, and I know Saban likes him. But since our QB situation was cured 3 years ago, the former defensive coordinator in the building has become the backup quarterback in the "back up is better" argument void for the fans.
 

Crimson&WhiteGecko

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@Brandon Van de Graaff @TerryP

Admittedly, it is very hard to see Saban not having those suffocating, boa constricting defenses. Especially when Clemson is doing a decent job of it (even though Burrow made them look like fools too).

And having K Smart for those years really created something special that is really hard to duplicate despite what is going on with today's offenses. I do believe this is fundamentally why Saban is keeping the current DC. But... Golding is going to need to improve what he is doing with the LBs. Our preseason Butkus candidate has disappeared into the ether (he's good but not great) & there has been some clear plays that offensive geniuses Kiffen & Mullen continue to exploit our LB corp. This will not stop until those guys can stop it from happening.

I have a great deal of confidence in Saban working to evolve the player/position & play calling in the LB signal callers. We just haven't seen a bone crushing LB Corp since Foster & Ragland who had a different D coordinator. Maybe we never will again. I know that we've had to play more dime & nickel over the last 5 years so that to really even say that the base defense is something else is probably false (dime & nickel is being more the base now). And if anyone can come up with a new form of defensive play calling to attack this high powered offenses, it's going to be Saban. It might just be his last stamp on the college football dynasty before he retires.
 
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TerryP

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Which one of the interior linebacking guys are you talking about? The one with 68 tackles on the season, or the one with 68 tackles on the season?

Bama has exploited linebackers all season. Last weekend, it was a TE on a S. The offense isn't unique in that its the only one who actually takes advantages of these matchups. It's that era of college football.
 

BamaFan334

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You keep saying "it's the current environment for college football" (as has Saban to an extent), so are you ok with us giving up 46 points to a team that Vanderbilt, Kentucky, Tennessee, Texas A&M, South Carolina and LSU gave up less points to? I understand no more 10-17 point games due to the current offensive state in the sport, but 46 is still too many points for me. I didn't agree with that assertion after Ole Miss, and I don't agree with it now. I get it that Grimes, Shorter, Pitts, and Toney are all former high four stars and five stars, but we also have the same ranked defensive guys defending them. The Metchie hit saved the game for us in the end. That play is a one in a million type of play and highly highly doubtful we get that kind of fortune against a Clemson in a tight game. I love the guys we have on our defense and this is not a shot at any one of those guys, I just feel they are out of position. No way is Dylan Moses just making that many bad plays. he may be good for one or two, but no way is the guy we've watched the last four years that out of position that many times based on bad play.

I also want to state that there always seems to be one or two drives in a ball game where I am left scratching my head at what Sarkesian is running. It completely goes against everything he has done the entire game and it has me wondering if he's taking his foot off the gas or if he's simply testing the defense with new plays to see if they are worth calling. If I recall it came in the 3rd quarter when we got the ball the first time, and the 4th play call was just crazy considering the success we have throwing the ball ten yards or more. To me it gives the opponent an opportunity for an easy stop and to get back into a gain. I saw it against Florida, and I see it usually once a game.
 

Crimson&WhiteGecko

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I was referring to Moses as a preseason Butkus candidate who didn't even make it as a finalist.

There are plenty of LB's in the country with plenty of tackles. I know that Harris & Moses are good LB's, especially against the run. And I agree 100% that the offenses today are doing everything to exploit LB's with TE's or WR in the Slot match up against LB's that can't keep up. This is what we are are continuing to see. Heck, we are doing it to other teams. And this last weekend we saw LB's (Moses) assigned to the RB on a wheel route where if Moses didn't hold him the player would have scored a TD on two different plays. We've also seen several plays where the LB lines up with a RB/WR on the sideline & I believe it was Harris who just couldn't cover at that position & the other team scored a TD from that (might have been last year). It was played correctly by Harris but he just couldn't do the job.

All of this points to the fact that the position/formations/play calling needs to evolve. The two LB's might have 68 tackles on the season but how many of those were tackles for loss or no gain Vs. tackles after major yardage?
 

ColAngus

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It was Moses' mistake that allowed UF to convert the 3rd and 17 in the 3rd quarter Saturday. He followed that mistake up with a PI on the very next play. UF scored a few plays later to make it 35-31.

Now in his defense, the PI may not have been totally his fault. He was lined up wide, playing man on #6. He didn't have much of a shot there.
 

Brandon Van de Graaff

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The middle of the defense, from the nose to the safeties, has been the lesser part of the defense all year. No doubt about that. I think sometimes though, folks look at a game like the SECCG and instead of lack of execution, they think it's all poor scheming. Both are products of coaching, but they are obviously very different issues. We hear Saban say all the time, "10 guys can do exactly what they're supposed to do, but if 1 guy screws up, it leads to a big play."

But, we have seen Saban change his schemes and the way he recruits in order to adjust to evolving offenses during his time at Bama. In many ways, his evolution on the offensive side has been detrimental to the defense, but it is a worthwhile change.
 

Crimson&WhiteGecko

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I think it is fundamentally impossible for us to know for sure which unless were a part of the program. But I have no qualms leaving it to CNS at assessing the culprits & fixing it. Sometimes, folks tend to come across as if he were oblivious to things.
 

BamaFan334

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I get what you're saying, but that's also a motivational type speak, because how often are you honestly getting eleven guys to all do their job the right way on one play at any level of the sport? I just have a hard time believing we are that weak because of the players in the middle as you stated. Saban would get that one fixed really quick. I haven't dissected play calling and pretty ignorant to the schemes we do run on defense, but we somehow get killed by tight ends and get destroyed on slant routes in every down and long we run it seems. I hate the feeling of having no faith in getting a team 3rd and 17 and stopping them. Vanderbilt, Kentucky, Arkansas, Missouri, sure. But anyone else with more than one target, I worry every single time.
 

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In my opinion, as long as the Oline are allowed to release 3 yards down field to block on a passing play and you have this era of RPO QBs and playcalling in College football, you will not have dominate LBers. It's near impossible for them to read their markers correctly and be in position anymore. If they change it the NFL 1 yard standard, you'll see a complete reversal from offensive to defensive advantaage... again in my opinion.
 

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