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Hawks Defense has a 3rd down problem.

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Hawks Defense has a 3rd down problem.
Wed Oct 11, 2017 5:37 pm

  • I don't need to read that to know that 3rd and long is too often a slam dunk for opposing offenses. Tough to watch at times.
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    Seymour
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  • It is hard to watch. Just infuriating to watch them give up countless 3rd and longs. Hard to be elite when you can't get off the field.
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    Missing_Clink
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  • It's an issue of concern, for sure.

    That list is ripe for statistical misinterpretation, however.
    New England is ranked in the top tier. They have had less than half as many third and long opportunities to defend as the Hawks. I wonder why?

    I also have to imagine that many teams would take wild swings in conversion rate on a game to game basis. That list could look way different in 2/3 weeks.
    Grahamhawker
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  • This has been a problem since before the game in XLIX the D is vulnerable in the middle of the field at the seams of the zones. We've seen the TE seam routes rip the D but receivers at the edges of the zone are doing the same thing. Other OCs have figured out a vulnerability of our team's D. It usually works best when the risk is highest for a deeper play and the underneath seams of the inside zone is then exposed. First downs then happen underneath the main protection.

    Our pass D is programmed to prevent balls over their heads leaving plays underneath or at the edges of zone coverage in front of the defenders open. The failing is is in the rigidity of the coverage, of course this is part of the strengths for the pass D. You have to pick your poison, run the risk of a big play, or give up a first down.

    I'm uncertain that there is answer but will defer to others here with better football knowledge, possibly if the team could find a superior pass covering slot corner or OLB the edges of the zones might have be better protected but at the expense of exposing run vulnerability.
    Last edited by jammerhawk on Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.
    Until we develop a pass rush that will cause opposing teams to be forced to scheme to defend it we will never be able to consistently take the final step. The interior rush needs improvement. The OLine clearly still needs work.

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    jammerhawk
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  • Its infuriating to watch the opposing offense on 3td and 10 run all goes with their wideouts, then have a RB run a 5 yard route and catch the ball with nobody within 30 yards of him. And if there is a defemder there, he misses the tackle.
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    XxXdragonXxX
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  • True that, but bending rather than breaking is the basic DNA of Pete's schemes.

    I have long suspected Coach Richard has trouble scheming defending the seams of zones. The team has improved defending TEs but were awful against th rams at doing that and weak in the rest of their games this season. It's a team weakness.
    Until we develop a pass rush that will cause opposing teams to be forced to scheme to defend it we will never be able to consistently take the final step. The interior rush needs improvement. The OLine clearly still needs work.

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    jammerhawk
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  • True, but winning TOP and turnovers are part too. I think DQ was better at consistent pressure on QB. KR seems to be more about forming the pocket and relying on backs to sneak in or hold off a flat pass.

    While wags seems to maintain his tackling numbers y2y, I recall he being everywhere more back in the day.

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    NOLAHawk
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  • jammerhawk wrote:Our pass D is programmed to prevent balls over their heads leaving plays underneath or at the edges of zone coverage in front of the defenders open.


    I agree. This is part of it. Our defense is always in some pseudo-prevent. It allows a lot of yardage underneath, but that's still a victory for the defense, because it forces a QB into a station-to-station approach of sustained drives, and very few QBs in the league can consistently pull that off.

    The irony here is that when we've lost under Pete Carroll, it's rarely been because of sustained drives, but because the defense occasionally fails and allows big plays.
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    MontanaHawk05
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  • Seymour wrote:I don't need to read that to know that 3rd and long is too often a slam dunk for opposing offenses. Tough to watch at times.


    I saw a LOT of 3rd and short as well.

    Which is the bigger problem IMO. The D is good on first down, but then soften up on 2nd allowing easy check downs and runs for 5-7 yards, giving the other team too many easy 3rd and less than 5 yards, which they're converting at a high percentage.

    I get it, this has always been a bend but don't break D, and it's worked. But it leaves them on the field too long, and for an offense like ours that takes FOREVER to get going, it's a bad combo.
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    Sgt. Largent
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  • Sgt. Largent wrote:
    Seymour wrote:I don't need to read that to know that 3rd and long is too often a slam dunk for opposing offenses. Tough to watch at times.


    I saw a LOT of 3rd and short as well.

    Which is the bigger problem IMO. The D is good on first down, but then soften up on 2nd allowing easy check downs and runs for 5-7 yards, giving the other team too many easy 3rd and less than 5 yards, which they're converting at a high percentage.

    I get it, this has always been a bend but don't break D, and it's worked. But it leaves them on the field too long, and for an offense like ours that takes FOREVER to get going, it's a bad combo.


    I define 3rd and long as 5 yards plus. By definition it is 6 plus yards.
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