Steelers Versus Patriots Winners And Losers

The Pittsburgh Steelers lost to the New England Patriots 55-31 on Sunday and below is my list of winners and losers from the game. Feel free to add your own in the comments below and I do expect a ton of them.


Jerricho Cotchery – Seven catches for 96 yards and three touchdowns makes Cotchery a winner. The adjustment that he made on the first touchdown catch was fantastic. He is not blazing fast, but he knows his assignments.

Cameron Heyward – Once he got his motor started, Heyward did not slow down. Not only did he provide consistent pressure, he recorded a sack and five total tackles. He was easily the best player on the Steelers defense in this game.

Guy Whimper – Don’t be surprised if Whimper grades out as the Steelers best offensive lineman. Outside of the early pressure allowed in the game, he had a very clean game at right guard filling in for the injured David DeCastro. You are not going to confuse him for DeCastro, mind you, but he represented himself well.

Jonathan Dwyer – Dwyer touched the ball twice and not only did he set a new longest run for the season (30), he produced 53 yards of offense when you add in his one catch for 23 yards. If that wasn’t enough, he also retuned two kickoffs for 38 yards with a long of 23.


Troy Polamalu – Worst game since perhaps the 2010 game against the New Orleans Saints. Quarterback Tom Brady moved him around with ease with his eyes and it resulted in two easy touchdowns.

Ryan Clark – Clark not only missed several tackles, but like Polamalu, he was a liability in coverage. Both he and Polamalu were guessing a lot and guessing wrong.

Lawrence Timmons – Timmons was out of position several times and he missed quite a few tackles. He couldn’t get off blocks and couldn’t wade through trash.

Kelvin Beachum – Beachum will easily grade out as the worst offensive linemen as he allowed two sacks and several pressures in the game.

  • 2443scott

    winners are guys who get there pay checks who wouldnt start on other teams and i blame coaching for that ….losers are the guys who bend over backwards for the team and try even when they are hurt ….also the losers are OC and LC for not prepairing the team to play …another loser is tomlin by not holding his coaching staff accountable to have a game plan and getting the offence in shape and ready to play ball ….are countless times you see miss plays because players are not in right spots ….i dont see troy as a loser because he was trying to wake up def and doing so was doing to much …i rather have a guy do to much then 1 who dont finish plays off or makes a weak a tempt at a tackle or just walks like hes in mud to a ungoing play….and this comes down to coaching and not makeing guys who do this accountable …tomlin cant say we will look at it and fix it and sit guys and not look at his coaching staff and not hold them to his own standards those are the standards it starts with the coaches and ends with players if players are not on same page and have to guess who to block or will the other guy do it ..then it all falls on coaches for these loses ….and biggest losers are the fans who now will go a whole year with one best qbs lose out on a year to get another superbowl bens time is running out we the fans deserve better from the coaching staff and then we can hold players accountable for their play …

  • mlc43

    Please don’t take this wrong but if you don’t think Troy was a loser you must have missed the game. You can’t wake up a defense when you are asleep yourself. I was embarrassed for him on several occasions. I definitely agree with you on the coaching. I never thought I would doubt Lebeau and his system but the last couple of years has changed my thinking on that.


    I’d put Sanders on the losers list, his cake easy drop along the sideline was a game changer, instead of moving into position to take the lead we punted and the rest is history.

  • Nolrog

    Yeah, Troy didn’t have a good game at all. And Ryan Clark looks done.

  • Berlusconi

    I agree with your list Dave, but i have some players to add:

    -Mike Adams: I put him there, but maybe he just accomplished what we expected. When he was in the game he got a lot of help from Heath and still got beat. It looked like Cotchery from this point forward had to work the middle of the field alone because Miller had to help in pass protection.
    -Ziggy Hood: I thought he may be better when he is not on the field for so long, but he seemed to get pushed around with ease.
    -Sanders: He had to make that catch, and he is on the losers list just because of the importance of this sideline catch at this moment, not because of his overall play.

    -Roethlisberger: Had some bad moments and some great moments. Throws the interception, and then a great touchdown to Cotchery over the middle.
    -McBriar: Had the best punt of the season for the steelers, only to have a horrible game-changing punt after that.

  • Chris Maxwell

    Bell should be on the winners list, he had a good overall performance.

  • Bell Cow

    I’d have to add Dick Lebeau and basically the entire defense except for Heyward to the losers list. They all got completely schooled by the Patriots coaching staff and couldn’t make the proper adjustments to even remotely contain their offense. Also, Steve McClendon continues to get swallowed by blocks up front and it’s killing our run defense. If they want to continue running the 34 next season, they have to get a big NT.

  • 20Stoney

    I can’t remember a guy declining as quickly as Clark has.

  • r4kolb

    The one thing I think that people may really be missing and I never hear it mentioned is how much they miss “Big Snack” Casey Hampton. Don’t get me wrong in his last 2 years playing he kind of faded a little but they really miss that pressure up the middle he created.


    James Farrior.


    Put Art Joseph Rooney II at the very top of the Losers List as he is the architect who has constructed the framework of this house of cards.

  • r4kolb

    The thing with Clark is I’m not sure his decline is based on his being old. It seems like he doesn’t like to hit anymore. He wiffed on more tackles this year already then he has all his career. I personally think he has checked out mentally. I say this not out of rage at our play this year, but I think Shark needs to replace him as a starter. To me it’s a win win, season is over anyway and Shark gets his reps.

  • r4kolb

    Seems like we say that about Sanders after every game.

  • RW

    Please don’t lynch me for this, but perhaps it’s time to examine the personnel we have on defense this offseason and put in a 4-3 package to use on passing downs? Heck, maybe it’s time to switch to 4-3 altogether. Our DE’s are more suited to play inside as DTs anyway. Know I will take a lot of heat for this.

  • Guest

    That’s my observation, too..

  • HarryBackside

    Bipolars … love it!

    I’ve seen some other lists that include Ben with the winners. He had decent numbers, but once again he wasn’t able to produce until after the team had fallen to a big deficit. That has become a trend with him this season.

  • Shannon Stephenson

    I agree we need change but t0 implement a new system like that is too difficult. I would bench a star player and get the attention of the whole team that no one is exempt from the bench. Tome to get nasty with these guys

  • Shea Fahr

    Ben also turned the ball over 3 times so definitely not on my winners list.

  • HarryBackside

    The DE’s aren’t really suited for a 4-3, but that’s beside the point. I don’t think the solution to the problem is the 4-3, or the 3-4. The answer is both. Most of the really successful defenses in the NFL are finding ways to combine the two schemes. There are a number of teams that play a single gap 3-4 defense, as opposed to a 2 gap scheme. Basically, they are applying 4-3 concepts, but using 3-4 personnel. It gives a defense the ability to rush the passer, while remaining athletic enough to handle spread offenses. There is actually some really interesting, and innovative stuff happening across the league on the defensive side of the ball.

  • steeltown

    Losers: The entire secondary, the entire front seven (except Heyward and Worilds) the coaching staff for failing to you know, coach..and also failing to find or hold onto a capable punter

    Winners: Cotchery, Bell, Dwyer, Heyward, Worilds and Tom Brady

    If the coaching staff does not retain Cotchery and Dwyer in the offseason, theyre nuts, these two guys continue to contribute week after week and have become valuable contributors, especially Dwyer who plays with FIRE.. something this Team greatly lacks right now

  • RW

    That’s the sort of thing I meant. I think Heyward and McClendon would be fine DTs, mostly because they’re lighter and better with their technique than they are with brut strength. I would argue that the use of both would be optimal, particularly because the best rushers coming out of college have been and will be traditional 4-3 DEs. I would be all for a single gap 3-4 scheme to alternate with a traditional 2-gap scheme.

  • CrazyTerry

    Bell had some really great patient runs. But htere were 2 or 3 times where he couldn’t get that extra inch at the end because he was a little too patient all the way. And we ended up not converting on the next down.

  • DoctorNoah

    Our entire defense has gotten swallowed whole on eye fakes from the QB and half-decent play action. Our DL and OLB’s are not consistently getting push on passing downs, and our lack of run defense allows teams to be multifaceted, which prevents our seemingly talented secondary from turning the screws. On defense we are failing from the fundamentals up to the high concepts. I never thought I’d say this but our entire defense (besides, for some reason, Brett Keisel) looks undersized. Maybe it’s just because we’re getting outplayed.

    Whatever LeBeau thinks he’s doing, it’s not getting done. Any ideas why?

  • westcoasteeler

    Not just taking their pool table away…

  • Reg Sayhitodabadguy Hunt

    Ben is turning the ball over way too many times for me haley needs to have him practice throwing the ball away scenarios i love ben but sometimes i just wanna catch him outside an beat the wheels off him

  • Ahmad

    Can’t argue with any of these.

  • Eric

    Losers: Bell (3 dropped passes) and Sanders (2 drops). Add the entire O-Line as the perennial loser along with Bicknell their unit coach. Add Blake to the winners for his ST play.

  • Virdin Barzey

    I have no problems with this list. I agree, they should add a new category that Berlusconi seemed to have coined. BIPOLARS. That’s classic.

    We were holding out hope a little longer with Troy and Clark but I think we are clearly at the point where we can safely say, they are done. No injury to speak of so that excuse is out the window.

    Poor and embarrassing.

  • Eric

    Its time to stop playing Boggle on the field

  • Reg Sayhitodabadguy Hunt

    The problem with this team is that everybody is not on the same page and that falls on gm an coaching they should have built thier def around troy a few yrs back they really clark was a good comp
    bo with him but no probowl caliber corners same with off. they got ben weapons our wr are good but do the compliment bens style of play even when he says he likes tall targets

  • Don

    Tell Gronk that Clark doesn’t like to hit. I agree with you that he is not the same, but not wanting to hit isn’t the problem. He isn’t reading plays. One clear example is the 93-yd run last week. He is consistently out of position. This was always a strength for him in the past.

  • 2443scott

    i know troy had a bad game but i was trying to say he did so because he was doing to much on his own ..because dicks been trying to put fire under these guys to get more turn overs and he took it to heart i believe because hes a vet and just over played him self i can for give troy for haveing a bad game look at all the good or great games hes had …its the other guys i got a prob with who dont try as hard as troy has ….did he play badly yes but i believe its because of coaching staff that keeps guys to long who never really show promise then the ones who do get released because they keep 3 or 4 guys just because some day they might show promise ..

  • Eric

    3 dropped screen passes is loserville IMO

  • Don

    I think the conventional choice there would be “Tiddly Winks” 🙂

  • SteelerFanInMD

    Mike Tomlin has to be the biggest loser. His team gave up the most points and yardage in steelers history.

  • Chad H

    4-3 package is used on rushing downs. When u run a 3-4 it’s a hybrid package. When u run a 4-3 they have a hybrid 3-4 package on passing downs. Our problem is we don’t have an anchor at NT and our signal caller is a rookie. For “obvious” reasons we have problems on defense.
    To switch to a 4-3 now would be a mistake with the personnel we have and the number of draft picks. We need OL once again and a true NT. We also will need a weapon at WR. Hindsight we should have let Sanders go and had an extra pick.

  • srdan

    Can we put the game-plan on the losers list? When we press receivers, we get stops. When we give cushions, we don’t. I understand that the latter gives up big plays, but it also makes them. The league is changing, and our gameplan is to win like we did in 2005. We don’t have the OL, defense or RB to do it. This has to come from the top down, to let this team play to its abilities. No need to instill will on them on 4th down up the middle (for the 3rd time in a row). We are not built for that, especially with our top two interior lineman in street clothes.
    Why abandon the run, when we were down 3 and then 10 points in the 3rd. Give your workhorse the ball, off guard and off tackle zone plays. They couldn’t stop him on those.

    And please, the gadget plays…where were they the last two weeks. Is it a coincidence that we won the two weeks we did something other than line up in 11 all game? You can’t tell me chandler jones is more disciplined than suggs.
    C’MON MAN!

  • r4kolb

    Hence the “I think he has checked out” comment. I think it’s more mental then physical. If you disagree I’m good with that.

  • AndyR34

    I think it makes him a “bi-polar”…love that description!

  • Reg Sayhitodabadguy Hunt

    Why not start allen on gronk when hes the reason we beat them last game did they really think shark who is a five/nine rookie gonna stop gronk poor coaching week after week it seems like the more tomlin says he gonna look at film an turn things arond the worse we play mind since unleash hell we are 2-10 an thats just this season including preseason when you’ve had months to look at film cuz we missed the playoffs months to regroup an get healthy months to rebuild an stenghten weak links through the draft im gonna stop now im getting sick

  • srdan

    Hmm, good point. Never thought of this.

    I’d put my money on him being “bigger snack” now.

  • AndyR34

    I don’t think he was creating much pressure up the middle, but he was still stopping the run. McClendon became the chosen one because he old generate some pressure up the middle and remember, with little pass rush the past couple of years, we were asking our DL to focus on rushing the QB more. Unfortunately, this has had disastrous consequences for our ability to stop the run! Now we can’t do either…put pressure on the passer or stop the run.

  • Don

    No, I think we’re in agreement. It’s just that “doesn’t like to hit anymore” sounds like someone who’s afraid. I don’t think that’s it, but I do agree that it’s mental. He’s simply not where he needs to be. A critical shortcoming as the last line of defense. I can’t tell if it’s a matter that he’s checked out, or if the defensive game plans are ill-conceived and/or poorly understood by the players.

  • srdan

    I hope you are bigger than an offensive lineman, because he is. Good luck. lol

  • Reg Sayhitodabadguy Hunt

    This team doesnt play with intensity no fire what-so-ever an unprepared week in week out thats all on the head coach

  • srdan

    Let’s leave the emotion out of this question and be reasonable.

    How do you retool this team?

    My suggestion is the obvious first. Clark, Kiesel (love them), ziggy and sanders walk. Ask Ike and 43 to take paycuts, or you only keep one.
    Keep velasco move Pouncey to LG. Draft a tackle.

    Draft a matchup problem on offense. TE or WR. We have nowhere to go in the Redzone.

    Those have to be the first two round choices.

    If enough money frees up sign a safety and pray that he does well.

  • cencalsteeler

    The bad coaching got exposed by a better coached team. I could easily tell each time the ball was to be snapped based on the tapping Velasco received. This made it easy for the D to anticipate the snap and was a disadvantage for our line.
    Bells missed catches are on the coaching staff as well. When you run an out and up, you need to turn your head toward the qb to fake the out. This draws the lb in and you gain your separation on the up, or the seam up the sidelines. Bells route running was horrendous and the lb was with him like glue. If he was coached correctly, he might of caught those balls.

  • Ups-

    1. Cotchery showed a lot of heart. Needs to come back next year at an appriate price though.
    2. Bell-140 yards from scrimmage. Nuff Said
    3. Cam Heyward
    4. AB
    5. Sanders

    1. Ike quit
    2. Clark can someone please show him how to tackle, if you are flying through the air you can’t control where you are going.
    3. Lebeau-C’mon Man
    4. Myself for noticing improved punting-yeah it was that bad
    5. Ben while he put up gaudy stats, you can give Brady the ball on a short field you mine as well go ahead and put 7 on the scoreboard.

  • It does not matter would you feel better if they scored 54? No you would not

  • Thats absolutlely ridiculous they do not have the lineman to play a 4-3 and teams would adjust they also do not have the corners and safties either.

  • If he doesn’t quit that ole tackling

  • He doesn’t if it is a running back with a full head of steam watch him go flying like he is trying to catch an infield fly.

  • RW

    The corners and safeties have little to do with the defensive front you play. It was just an opinion, d-bag. I agree they don’t have the lineman right now, my suggestion was that more lineman are available for a 4-3 in the draft than the 3-4. It’s very difficult to find an all-world NT, which is what you need if you want to be a great 3-4 defense. It’s far easier to find DTs and DEs in a draft and my suggestion is that we should slowly move in that direction. TO BE CLEAR: I do not wish to transform our defense mid season. That would be idiotic. But we do have some people who could play a 4-3 right now and we could use them to build on a 4-3 front moving forward. I know it won’t happen because Butler will take over for Lebeau at some point, but a guy can offer an opinion, no?

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    Great comment. I noticed a lot of “bi-polars” too. It seems the Steelers lack the mental focus to bring their best effort on every play.

    Troy’s strip on the sideline was an amazing play. It showed speed, effort, technique, and physicality. Then he gets beat badly for two TD’s.

    Ben showed some great touch and accuracy in the passing game on multiple TD passes. Then he heaves one up for Brown like a hail mary, ten yards short and with so much air underneath it, Bellicheat could’ve ran under it for the INT.

    I could list about ten more players but I’ll just leave it at BI-POLARS.

  • StarSpangledSteeler

    I believe we are closer to being a good 4-3 defense than we are to being a good 3-4 defense. Hypothetically speaking:

    1) Trade up and draft Clowney at RDE.
    2) Put Woodley at LDE.
    3) Move Heyward, McClendon to the DT spots.
    4) Have Timmons and Jones both drop 10 pounds to play OLB.

    That’s a pretty solid front 6. The problem comes at MLB and the secondary.

    You need ball hawk CBs and safeties who can cover a lot of ground. We have Cortez Allen… And that’s about it…

  • You need two penetrating DT? Lamarr Woodley is not a 4-3 Sam and what corners do you feel comfortable with in man coverage?

  • RW

    Allen for sure – his first game as the nickel CB in the slot against the patriots is exhibit A – and I wouldn’t play Woodley at LB – he was a DE in college. In an ideal world I’d trade him, but that won’t happen. Again, I’d rebuild through the draft.

  • Trade up with what ammo? and for a player whose coach told him to not worry about the NFL and just play.

  • Whitesauce

    The list is solid. I think I would Bell to the winners, but I understand the debate. What’s really disappointing is that three of the losers are supposed to be our best players. Things are really changing for this team. It’s amusing that the veterans stripped rights away from younger players earlier this year, and now, it’s the veterans that seem to lack focus. I don’t know: maybe they are trying to do too much. I just know that things won’t work unless all the defenders show some discipline.

  • Swear I saw Mat Mcbriar playing Galaga

  • Whitesauce

    Another thought: For the last few years, Troy has been able to improvise because Clark played so well. I think neither play is what he used to be. However, I’m not sure it means they can’t play, although it’s hard to defend them after yesterday. Perhaps they need to play their position in a more traditional way and be more focused on stopping the big play. As I said, it’s not clear they can even do that. It might be worth reducing their responsibilities a bit and give the CBs more help.

    P.S. I can’t remember a Steelers team that had to rely on so many young players.

  • HarryBackside

    If I’m trading up for a player, it’s going to be Anthony Barr, not Clowney. Then I have the option to switch back and forth between a 4-3 or 3-4 front, and have a guy with the athleticism to drop into coverage and shut down a TE when needed.

    I don’t understand all the love for the 4-3 defense. If it’s so great, then why are so many defenses moving away from it, and why are the bulk of the top ranked defenses consistently made up of teams that play in a 3-4?

  • treeher

    I’ve been saying the same thing for the past year

  • RW

    This year: 4 of top 5 teams are 4-3 for yardage and turnovers.

  • rizzo29

    Father time has definitely caught up with him,but on the whole it,s has to be one of the best FA signing the Steelers have made.Watching him flying around in those afc champ games against Balt laying the lumber,time to move on

  • RW

    We may not need ammo or a trade…

  • RW

    4-3 package is used on rushing downs? The 3-4 has been the best defense against the run for years, based primarily on big lineman, it allows LBs to make plays in the running game. With the advent of the zone blitz, LBs also became free to rush the QB and cause confusion in the 3-4. The 4-3 has traditionally been used to get after the QB (the giants of the previous few years were a great example of that).

  • Chris Wilkes

    Right. I love the way Dwyer plays. That whole situation with letting him go shows just how bad the coaches and decision makers have been this year.

  • Chad H

    RW I think we are saying the same thing. No matter if u are a base 3-4 or a base 4-3 on rushing downs u stack the box. On passing downs u don’t. How it is done is based upon the personnel groups u have. That’s where the term hybrid package comes to terms.

  • Alan Felicia

    Why? Just looked at what Colbert and his scouting team has done (or lack of) between 2008 thru 2012 drafts. They have done a poor job of replacing aging star like Aaron Smith, James Farrior, James Harrison, Ike Taylor, etc. They completely struck out in 2008 draft (Mendenhall, Sweed, Bruce Davis, etc.). In 2009, instead of finding a way to move up and get Clay Matthews, they elected to stand pat and draft Hood (who is now a complete Bust). Also, they also passed on James Laurinaitis. In 2010, they passed on Carlos Dunlap and Sean Lee over Jason Worilds in the 2nd round.

  • steeltown

    You cant really pick names out of certain drafts after the fact and then lay blame.. I mean Geno Atkins wasn’t drafted untill the 4th Rd in 2010 so every Team passed on this guys more than once, more than twice…. its not an exact science

    I will admit though, besides C.Allen and Heyward (and of course hopefully Jarvis Jones, Sharmarko Thomas and Vince Williams) they haven’t had much luck drafting Defensive players and its showing……. but who knows, maybe N.Williams or Arnfelt is the next Keisel {wishful thinking}

  • Fr33th1nk3r

    I give Timmons a pass this year because he is having to compensate for having a rookie 7th rounder starting next to him. WHile Vince Williams has grown considerably in his role since Foote went down……he’s still not very good.

  • Alan Felicia

    As a frustrated fan, I know I’m knit picking but Colbert and the scouting team (especially Dan Rooney Jr.) have been terrible. I know its not an exact science but they picked Thad Gibson and Geno Atkins goes 4 picks later! What is the reason for all their misses. Has Colbert been lazy since he’s won 2 SBs and getting to SB 3 times? Colbert have been Dir of Player Personel and later GM for last 13 seasons. Maybe its time for some new creative minds in that dept.

  • Shannon Stephenson

    Now that is the exception…lol

  • Eric

    As usual, I agree with most of what you said, but I cannot put Bell in the winners list. He had a decent game, but 3 drops of easy to catch passes is not acceptable.

  • MC

    Cam has been the one bright spot on a consistent basis. Where are all the people who were calling him a bust now?

    This has to be clarks last year. He’s not making any impact plays this year..He even concussed himself because he chooses to go with the smaller helmet that offers less protection. I’ve played with one of those helmets and now I have a new Schutt vengeance and will never go back. He doesn’t wear the other ones cause they look stupid, well when you concuss yourself on a hit and have to come out of the game, that affects your team and ,makes you look stupid.

  • MC

    Very true, he can make a game changing play but then drop one the next play. I’d rather go with a receiver who is solid and consistent instead of flashy and inconsistent.

  • MC

    That first fumble from Ben was inexcusable.

    One solution that will make games far more winnable for the steelers is to teach Ben how to throw it away when nothing is there or have him read quicker.

    I want a QB who can look off defenders just like what Brady did to Troy.

  • RedCarpetDefense

    I think the DL may turn out to be the strength of this defense over the next few seasons. We’re really just a NT away. The rookies getting valuable minutes in games does bode well for gaining experience just gotta stay healthy. This season doesn’t matter much to me as all along I felt its more about getting the rooks playing with the results being what ever they may be. If the team was winning better yet but my hopes this season for this team was tempered early on.

  • Bell Cow

    Once upon a time the Steelers ran a 43 defense and once their great defensive linemen retired, they switched to a 34. Hampton, Arron Smith are gone and possibly Kiesel next year. McClendon, Heyward, and Hood are not suited to play a 34. Our linebacking core (except Woodley) cannot rush the passer. Woodley could easily convert DE much like Demarcus Ware is doing in Dallas with great success. Heyward is capable of playing DE and McClendon and Hood would be better suited as DTs in the 43. I know for a fact that Timmons would be a great WLB because he did it at Florida State and Jarvis Jones could be utilized as a SLB much like Denver does with Von Miller.

    Of course they would need to draft some guys, but it’s not that outlandish and shouldn’t be dismissed so quickly. Also, don’t forget that Tomlin make his mark as a defensive coordinator and was a disciple of Tony Dungy and Monte Kiffin in Tampa.

  • steeltown

    He had a few drops yes, but rushed for 4.6yds per carry and had 139yds all purpose yds

  • JohnnyV1

    Loser – me. Living just outside of Boston and having to face New England fans who just won the world series, but beat my Steelers like nobody’s business. Ouch! Also, Ryan Clark is done and the defense in general needs more guys who don’t quit, ever.

  • clean it up potty mouth

  • Paul Barracliffe

    I’m puzzled as to what the Steelers need to be competative again. I mean, can we really be this bad? I think our team has some deep problems and Tomlin is looking like a very bad coach that causes it. Their bad at every position group as they are consistently aeneamic on offense and defense;they don’t consistently pressure quarterbacks or force turnovers and running the ball effectively seems to be a distant memory that the current group does not have the talent to recall. Then after sucking so much these guys like Clark, Brown, and even the worst OC in the leaugue have the gaul to flap their gums about anything. As fans we are on the losers list.

  • Riverstko

    They need to start Cotchery and use sanders in the slot.

  • Riverstko

    McClendon is too SKINNY

  • Riverstko

    Barr or Clowney cant hang with these new hybrid te they would get ate up! Nowadays you need a safety or tall cb onTEs. AGAIN McClendon is too skinny to play NT. He should jump in Keisel spot next year at RE

  • HarryBackside

    Barr played WR and FB during his first two year at UCLA. If he didn’t make the switch to defense, he would be one of those new hybrid TE’s. Barr has 4.4 speed, and is already asked to play man coverage against TE’s (including Zach Ertz in two games last season).Barr is a better athlete than the TE’s he asked to cover.

    I don’t know about Clowney’s coverage skills. I do know that he is a freak athlete, with 4.4 speed, and is bigger, stronger and faster than most of the TE’s he would be asked to cover. Although, I don’t think Clowney has much to worry about, since he’ll be rushing the QB.

    If 320 lbs is too skinny to play NT, then there’s a lot of 3-4 teams that have undersized NT’s.

  • HarryBackside

    It’s not easy to find the type of DE’s you need for a true 4-3 defense. There aren’t many guys like Julius Peppers, Mario Williams, or JPP’s walking the earth. You can find guys to play in an Under front, which is practically identical to a single gap 3-4 defense.

    I think the direction you will see the defense move, is away from LeBeau’s 2 gap 3-4, and towards a one gap 3-4, which is what most of the 3-4 team in the NFL are using. It’s easy to learn, and still provides the versatility needed to defend the spread.