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Houston Newspaper Breakdown of the Saints {pretty good breakdown}

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; The Saints – more physical than finesse. When you think of the Saints, you probably think of wide open football, but Sean Payton wants to run the ball and be physical about it. The Saints were known around the league ...

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Old 09-23-2011, 12:02 AM   #1
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Houston Newspaper Breakdown of the Saints {pretty good breakdown}

The Saints – more physical than finesse. When you think of the Saints, you probably think of wide open football, but Sean Payton wants to run the ball and be physical about it. The Saints were known around the league as a finesse team, but that all changed back in 2009. The Saints have a couple of brutes at guard in Carl Nicks and Jhari Evans and they will cause major problems for the Texans up the middle. The Saints averaged almost 50 yards less per game on the ground last year than in their Super Bowl year and they are looking to get the ground game back on track this year.
Drew Brees is great, but he’s not Peyton or Brady. There is no denying that the Saints emergence as an NFC power has coincided with their signing of Drew Brees back in 2006. Brees has posted some phenomenal numbers and, more importantly, been the unquestioned leader of the Saints. I have tremendous respect for Brees, but I do think he’s more “beatable” than both Manning and Brady. While Brees doesn’t lack the confidence of either QB, I have seen defenses confuse and rattle Brees from time to time which is why he’s thrown 79 interceptions in 81 games as a Saint including seasons with 22, 18 and 17. Granted, Brees throws more passes than your average QB, I’m just saying that the Texans have a better chance of shaking him than you might think.
The Saints receivers are an army of many. When Marques Colston went down, I don’t think too many people around the league thought the Saints were doomed considering the targets Brees still has at his disposal. Robert Meachem, Devery Henderson, Lance Moore, Darren Sproles and Jimmy Graham give Brees a plethora of targets to throw to, but more importantly, they give Sean Payton and Brees a ton of opportunities to isolate the defense’s weakest players in coverage and exploit them.
Sproles in the slot is trouble. In their matchup with the Bears, one of the things that really stuck out to me was that when Sproles played in the slot, the Saints found ways to get him the ball. In space, Sproles is a very tough problem for defenses so the Texans had better have the tackling gloves on.
Gregg Williams cranks up the blitzes, but is he a great defensive coordinator? I know Williams is one of the most visible coordinators in football and he’s certainly memorable since he is so blitz-happy, but blitzing doesn’t equal greatness. I think Williams is a good coordinator, but I also think his blitzing ways are a must with the Saints because it helps to cover up coverage issues and run defense issues they have. Against the Bears, Williams brought wave after wave of blitzes against Jay Cutler with great success. He used both safeties, two different corners and four different linebackers with his blitzes. However, with the way the Texans prefer to attack teams through play-action, I think we’ll see less blitzing from Williams and a greater focus on slowing down the running game.
Roman Harper (#41) and Jonathan Casillas (#52) are both a strength and weakness of the team. Harper blitzed the Bears NINE TIMES from his strong safety position and lived near the line of scrimmage. While Harper is an effective blitzer, he’s only average in coverage and can be exploited. Pay close attention to how often he is lined up on or near the line of scrimmage. Casillas had an awful game against the Texans in the preseason, but he’s incredible quick and tough to block when he blitzes. Against the run, he’s a weak link, but when he’s in the game, Gregg Williams loves to use him to get after the QB.


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Old 09-23-2011, 12:39 PM   #2
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I hope were careful with this gameplan...i dont think we blitz as much this game..it would be risky to leave the middle open like that against the Texans..they will run or burn us with the TE..
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Old 09-23-2011, 01:04 PM   #3
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We need to maintain what works best for us which in turn helped us notch a top 5 defense last year. Blitz, blitz, and blitz some more. We did not blitz against Green Bay and that worked out great. Play to our strength... force them to adjust to us. We have a healthy Jenkins manning the middle... and I'll take my chances with our stud muffin. I'm not the least bit interested having our guys drop back and twiddling their thumbs.
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Old 09-23-2011, 01:09 PM   #4
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I might just loose my mind if I see GW use Gibbs ole 10 yd coushin coverage again like they did in Green Bay
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Old 09-23-2011, 01:27 PM   #5
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Excellent article, though his assessment that manning and brady perform better when pressured is suspect. Brady is not very good when hit more than 5 times a game. But that's besides the point.

Schaub has not been great against decent defenses historically. The Texans run well, but unless the opposing secondary are significantly below average, he struggles when the run is cut off.

Last season, which is somewhat less meaningful, Schaub forced a lot of passes and while "accurate" overall, did not do well in 2010 against man-scheme defenses. The Texans' offense is built around play action/downfield pass routes. Teams like Baltimore/Jets/Giants/Oakland who had good man coverage and run blitzed kept the Texans more than contained.

Since they didn't really stop an offense last year, and they haven't played one yet this season, it is tough to say that they are improved. I would worry that they have confidence, but I have a sneaking suspicion that that confidence could be easily broken, just like Cutler's.

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Old 09-23-2011, 01:35 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by papz View Post
We need to maintain what works best for us which in turn helped us notch a top 5 defense last year. Blitz, blitz, and blitz some more. We did not blitz against Green Bay and that worked out great. Play to our strength... force them to adjust to us. We have a healthy Jenkins manning the middle... and I'll take my chances with our stud muffin. I'm not the least bit interested having our guys drop back and twiddling their thumbs.

The only difference is Houston O-line is light years better than Chicago's ..I dont think we blitz as much...but i hope we dont play 10 yards off...we have to be physical on the line with their receivers..they are big and fast..Ive watched them in both games and they get separation real quick...Also Schaub like that dam bootleg..so look out for that ..we stop the run and get pressure we win...

They have the number one ranked D right now, but really haven't played anybody...Drew needs to take what they give him and establish the run..the 3-4 has been kryptonite for Drew and confuses him at times...so a good running game and play action will be key...then take some shots down the field with Devery and Meach....we win ..but i think its a close one...and could come down to Kasay's leg..
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Old 09-23-2011, 01:53 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by strato View Post
The only difference is Houston O-line is light years better than Chicago's
I don't see why this makes a single difference whether or not we need to blitz. In fact, given that they are a better line offensively, in order to get to the quarterback, shouldn't we blitz more instead of waiting to get picked apart? Pressure pressure pressure.

..I dont think we blitz as much...
The only reason this should happen is if our front 4 generates an effective pass rush. That said, you acknowledge they have a better offensive line than Chicago so one would think in order to apply enough pressure, we need to blitz.

but i hope we dont play 10 yards off...we have to be physical on the line with their receivers..they are big and fast..Ive watched them in both games and they get separation real quick...Also Schaub like that dam bootleg..so look out for that ..we stop the run and get pressure we win...
Ordinarily I would agree with this... but because Andre Johnson is so big, so fast, and so physical, it's going to be extremely hard to jam in at the line of scrimmage. So in this instance, I wouldn't mind playing back and keeping him in front of us. I'd be okay with him catching 12 balls for 100 yards as opposed to 8 for 169 and a couple of scores.

Oh and they have Andre Johnson... and that's about it. "They" are non-existent. To counter their bootlegs, we should blitz our corners from the outside as we've done in years past... or Harper whenever we get the chance. We'll have at least 1 big collison back there.

We're going to win baby... by a touchdown.

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Old 09-23-2011, 02:06 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by papz View Post
I don't see why this makes a single difference whether or not we need to blitz. In fact, given that they are a better line offensively, in order to get to the quarterback, shouldn't we blitz more instead of waiting to get picked apart? Pressure pressure pressure.

Because if we blitz and dont get there then what?..yeah we get burned..

The only reason this should happen is if our front 4 generates an effective pass rush. That said, you acknowledge they have a better offensive line than Chicago so one would think in order to apply enough pressure, we need to blitz

Yes we do..but disguise it well..but not as often

Ordinarily I would agree with this... but because Andre Johnson is so big, so fast, and so physical, it's going to be extremely hard to jam in at the line of scrimmage. So in this instance, I wouldn't mind playing back and keeping him in front of us. I'd be okay with him catching 12 balls for 100 yards as opposed to 8 for 169 and a couple of scores.

Exactly why you jam him..don't give that big cushion..FS help will be needed...and we HAVE to WRAP up on him..

Oh and they have Andre Johnson... and that's about it. "They" are non-existent. To counter their bootlegs, we should blitz our corners from the outside as we've done in years past... or Harper whenever we get the chance. We'll have at least 1 big collison back there.

Then who covers Daniels?..I want them to blitz but be smart about it..Watch out for screens..remember Forte?

We're going to win baby... by a touchdown.
We could win by 2 TDs if we use our running game and play smart on D...i think G.W knows what to do..
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Old 09-23-2011, 02:36 PM   #9
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Because if we blitz and dont get there then what?..yeah we get burned..
We don't have to sack the quarterback in order to have an effective blitz. The hits and pressures will get the quarterback to start rushing things and have happy feet. It'll mess with the time clock ticking in his head. And that's when mistakes happen. If we can't get to the quarterback, it doesn't necessarily mean we'll get burned. Once again, we didn't blitz against Green Bay... did we not get burned consistently?

Yes we do..but disguise it well..but not as often
Hate to be repetitive but our top 5 defense blitzed on over 50 percent of our plays last year. Why change? Because of the possibility of Andre Johnson catching a deep ball? That's going to happen regardless. What's more important in this game is shutting down their running game(run blitzes)... because Johnson is going to get his. There are all sorts of different blitzes... I'm not saying we should jail break blitz and leave everyone open. Stop their run game with run blitzes, stop their bootlegs with corner blitzes, attack Schaub with our Harper blitzes.

Exactly why you jam him..don't give that big cushion..FS help will be needed...and we HAVE to WRAP up on him..
So knowing we can't jam him but we need to do it anyways. I'll pass on that one for the reason already mentioned. I'm not saying we completely ignore bum and run coverage... but we're at a big disadvantage in doing so.

Then who covers Daniels?..I want them to blitz but be smart about it..Watch out for screens..remember Forte?
Whoever Gregg Williams gives that responsibilty to. Yes we should definitely be smart about it. Like I said earlier, I'm not saying anything about doing jailbreak type stuff... I'm just not interested in blitzing less. I see no reason in doing so... especially if we're going to shut down their running game and create turnovers.

We should definitely watch their screen game... they're very good at it. Vilma and our DL need to do a good job sniffing these plays out. That doesn't change anything with me wanting us to continue what we did last game... and all year last season.

i think G.W knows what to do..
I agree GW knows what he's doing... hopefully he goes back to his roots and do what he does. ATTACK!

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Old 09-23-2011, 02:43 PM   #10
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Also Papz...they were talking on the radio today and saying look for draws to slow down the Saints pass rush...I will be there real close to the field ...so you can bet i will be hollering when the Texans have the ball..lol
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