WPC: Defense in Perspective

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Pappas

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http://www.warpathconfidential.com/?p=440

Defense in Perspective

By John Pappas
Warpath Confidential Editor

So how good will the Redskins defense be in 2009? According to those on the squad, maybe one of the best, provided they learn to play as a unit and can manage to stay healthy.

The Redskins’ defense was one of the better units in the league in 2008, finishing the regular season ranked fourth. Since then, the team retained every key player on defense while adding more in the offseason.

They picked up Albert Haynesworth in free agency, Brian Orakpo in the first round of the draft, and Jeremy Jarmon in the supplemental draft. They also drafted cornerback Kevin Barnes and linebackers Cody Glenn and Robert Henson. Additionally, this year sees the return of Phillip Daniels and Reed Doughty from injury.

That kind of talent may add up to one of the most dominating units in the league. The players however, are avoiding the speculation.

“We are one of the best I’ve seen talent-wise, on paper,” said DeAngelo Hall. “But you know on paper you don’t win games. We’ve got to take that number four ranking we had last year and throw it out the window. None of that means anything now.”

Andre Carter agrees. “Last year it was a blessing to be ranked so high. We just added more pieces to the puzzle. Now on paper it looks good, but we got to go out there and perform. That’s the total difference. You ever heard of the term 'paper champs?’ You don’t want to be that type of team.”

Click the link for the full article...
 

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Needless to say, if the offense doesn't get in gear, the D will be worn out by the 3rd quarter
 

Om

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Nice, John. Captures the mood ... confident but cautious optimism. Glad Griffin went right to the heart of the health thing, too. That's one of the most underrated factors in the NFL today. Every year in late December some national media guy will write an article chronicling starter man-games lost to injury league wide, and almost without exception the majority of teams highest on the list are well-represented on the playoff calendar.

A lot of people don't want to admit it, but luck plays a huge, huge part in that. Some injuries can be attributed to age or poor conditioning or other quantifiable factors, yes. The majority ... no. Pure dumb luck. Hell, just ask Phillip Daniels.
 

Henry

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Ever since 1997 I've been very wary of expecting improvement simply because of roster additions.

That said, if the defense DOES improve based on the type of players we signed, it has the potential to be positively dominating. More dominating than 2004 dominating. The kind of defense that makes the offense better. We've had good defenses in the past, but not the turnover-and-sack-generating type of good defense. That's the type of defense that makes a mediocre offense a good offense.

The pieces for that type of defense are there. But if I've learned anything over the past 15 years, thinking you have the pieces means, well, pretty much nothing.
 

Pappas

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Ever since 1997 I've been very wary of expecting improvement simply because of roster additions.

That said, if the defense DOES improve based on the type of players we signed, it has the potential to be positively dominating. More dominating than 2004 dominating. The kind of defense that makes the offense better. We've had good defenses in the past, but not the turnover-and-sack-generating type of good defense. That's the type of defense that makes a mediocre offense a good offense.

The pieces for that type of defense are there. But if I've learned anything over the past 15 years, thinking you have the pieces means, well, pretty much nothing.
I hear you, but in defense of the defense, this is the most talent they have had on that side of the ball since Petitbon IMO.
 

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I don't think anyone is questioning the talent, John. Just noting that this defense has had talent before and still managed to lay an egg. I think we want to see great things and understand that great things are possible but after so many years of being snake bit many are deep in "show me" mode before getting all excited.
 

Boone

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I worry a little about these guys reading their own headlines. I think Blache worries about that too - hence the many 'we haven't done anything' type comments we've heard from him already.
 

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