PFF Oakland @ Saints Review | TigerDroppings.com

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blueslover
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PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


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Cameron Jordan’s Big Day
In order for the Saints new defense to be viable they need major production from DE Cameron Jordan. In this game at least he didn’t disappoint, earning a +4.8 grade overall thanks largely to a pair of sacks, a hit and three more pressures coming from his 22 snaps rushing the passer. The bad news is that Jordan is unlikely to face a unit in as much disarray as the Oakland O-line is, but you can’t fault him for ruthlessly taking to pieces what was in front of him. Fellow end Glenn Foster did an equally impressive job on the Raiders backups, matching Jordan’s pressure profile exactly but on only 15 pass-rushing snaps to earn himself a +5.2 grade overall.

Taking Your Chance
Preseason is all about making the most of your opportunities, and that’s all a player can do. Ramon Humber is seen as a special teams ace and depth player but was given the chance to start thanks to injuries in the Saints’ linebacker corps. With that chance he had himself a day, earning a +4.0 grade by making plays in both the run game and in coverage. This was the most impressive display I’ve seen from a Saints linebacker in some time, even with the caveats that it was only in preseason and coming against an offense that wasn’t exactly getting things done in Oakland. Humber led the team in tackles and defensive stops, and didn’t allow a catch into his coverage.

Vaccaro Showing the Quicks
This is a case of being more impressed with the look of a player than in any quantifiable measure of his performance in the game. Maybe I’m just used to inept play from New Orleans safeties, but the speed with which Vaccaro closed on plays was impressive to watch. On occasion it was his undoing, arriving at a speed too great to control himself and make a play, leading to a missed tackle on one occasion, but it also meant that he was arriving with a chance to impact plays you usually don’t see safeties involved in at all. He was meeting receivers at the same time the ball arrived on deep-dig routes that usually see safeties arriving a second late and just trying to limit the damage. It may not have shown up here, but I think the Saints will be very happy with Vaccaro in the long-term.

Game Notes
The Saints missed just three tackles on defense, but the Raiders combined to miss nine.

--all good stuff, Jordan looks primed to take the next step toward being a truly special or dominant player. The switch to 3-4 is an improvement for him as much as anyone.
--I'll never question Vaccaro over Jarvis Jones if he continues progressing as he has so far. Dude definitely is a playmaking gamer. After being one of the worst D's in history in 2012 we suddenly have some solid looking building blocks for long term improvement. It will be interesting to see how they perform against the Texans for 3 quarters.









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Hoodoo Man
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


quote:

The Saints missed just three tackles on defense, but the Raiders combined to miss nine.







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bonethug0108
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Member since Mar 2013
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


I think our Dline will be a vastly underrated aspect and we appear to have tons of youth and potential that could set us up for years.

I've always said the OLB is overrated in the 3-4 just because they usually get the sacks. Having a great line is THE key to having a great 3-4 defense and the ILBs are just as important as the OLBs as they take care of both the middle runs and zones and also blitz.

The key component in a 3-4 is the NT and I think many people here underestimated Bunkley. He isn't putting up the stats but him and John Jenkins(who I am very happy to eat crow on because I thought he'd take a year to develop) are commanding double teams up the middle and the way our DEs are playing if they aren't getting doubled than the offense is in trouble. And if they are getting doubled that's when the LBs(ILB or OLB) will break free to the QB.

It starts up front and color me very impressed after the first 2 games with our Dline. I also think we have pieces we can mix and match at LB to make that unit work better than in the recent past. That leads us to our secondary and I have seen some good and bad there.

Vaccaro will be around the play constantly. Just in these 2 games even if he wasn't making the play he was helping to finish it or getting to it by the time the whistle blew. This was the same thing I saw on his highlights and that along with his tackling had me extremely impressed from the start.

Greer doesn't appear to be getting thrown to and I'll take that as a sign that first our Dline is getting pressure and not leaving the CBs out to dry and second that he is finally fully healthy and playing like he did a few years back.

Lewis appears to be doing well enough and I'm not sure what the issue is but from time to time he seems to just let the WR loose. It's not happening often enough to set off alarm bells but he definitely isn't a shutdown corner(which I wasn't expecting).

Jenkins looks a little better but still has the same issue of appearing to be lost in space on several plays. There was one play that stood out where there was a short pass over the middle that Jenkins saw coming but stayed flat footed and didn't come close to making a play. This is the same play where Vaccaro flew "out of nowhere" and makes the tackle very shortly after the catch.

Harper is still getting picked on in coverage but I do see him staying step for step with his man at least. If he could learn some pass break up techniques maybe he could be more productive.

The rest of the secondary didn't really stand out either way but I didn't watch as closely as I did with the starters in.



This post was edited on 8/17 at 3:40 pm


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Patrick O Rly
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


I'm really shocked at the way Humber played. He seemed like he was being shot out of a cannon. He was just mean and nasty. I loved it.





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Cajun Revolution
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


quote:

--all good stuff, Jordan looks primed to take the next step toward being a truly special or dominant player. The switch to 3-4 is an improvement for him as much as anyone. --I'll never question Vaccaro over Jarvis Jones if he continues progressing as he has so far. Dude definitely is a playmaking gamer. After being one of the worst D's in history in 2012 we suddenly have some solid looking building blocks for long term improvement. It will be interesting to see how they perform against the Texans for 3 quarters.


I didn't see any of this in the report. Sounds like bluesnotes






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bonethug0108
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


Definitely Pat. I'm not sure if he'd be as effective as the WILB but I think he definitely needs to see playing time if he proves this wasn't a fluke.

I think him and Lofton could make a good pair.

Hawthorne didn't disappoint me, but he didn't impress me either.

I was happy to see Smith used primarily as a rusher this game and he showed he is still great at pushing the pocket and getting pressures even if he isn't getting the sack. He definitely cannot be used in coverage too often but I did see one play where he would have killed the RB after a catch but the RB missed it.

Richardson is also looking decent enough.

But I'm wondering how Galette and Wilson will look as the clearly are our fastest OLBs, which even if thy aren't great in coverage they can at least use that speed to end the play(unlike Smith).






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bonethug0108
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


quote:

-I'll never question Vaccaro over Jarvis Jones if he continues progressing as he has so far. Dude definitely is a playmaking gamer.


Regardless of what Jones does, Vaccaro was the player we needed in the secondary. Even if he doesn't get the INTs like Sharper, he always seems to have a nose for the ball like he did and I truly believe after Sharper got hurt we lost that piece on defense that actually made a huge difference.

Jenkins after 2 years clearly wasn't the answer and while I'm not sure what the future holds for him, it won't be as a play making safety. And yes I know Vaccaro is a SS, but his role is overlapping Jenkins' more than Harper's(and Harper can still make plays).

And I still have high hopes for Galette and Wilson and based on what I've seen and the other pieces we have, I think they could potentially "complete" this defense.






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Hoodoo Man
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


quote:

I think Humber and Lofton could make a good pair.


Yeah, I can definitely see that.

The thing is, if Humber continues to shine, I am not really sure we need Vilma anymore.
Especially with this most recent surgery.

I mean, we would already have Hawthorne and Chamberlain as back ups.






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bonethug0108
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


This is Vilma's final year regardless of what happens. He will make the 53(same as Smith despite how much I know it irks some people). But that doesn't mean he will start.

Frankly if we only keep 4 I see Lofton, Vilma, Hawthorne, and Humber making it. If we keep 5 it will come down to Herring or Chamberlain most likely(with Reddick going on the PS or IR unless he makes a huge impression very soon).

I think they want Hawthorne to start but if Humber outplays him Humber could sneak into a starting spot over both Hawthorne and Vilma and I would not have called that.






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NawlinsTiger9
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


quote:

The Saints missed just three tackles on defense


OHHHH SHITTTTT






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htran90
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


nice read-up and side notes.

I think this defense may need time to gel, but it is looking like it can be the best defense we field since '09.

I'm optimistic of fielding a starting line-up of
jordan-bunkley-hicks
wilson-lofton-humber/hawthorne-galette
lewis-jenkins-vaccaro-greer

My question for you guys now is: we seem to have a lot of DB's that need playing time to prove if they belong. I think its something like: greer, lewis, prob, white, IAQ, bush, harper, vaccaro, and jenkins. who do we play more often?






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Hoodoo Man
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


quote:

My question for you guys now is: we seem to have a lot of DB's that need playing time to prove if they belong. I think its something like: greer, lewis, prob, white, IAQ, bush, harper, vaccaro, and jenkins. who do we play more often?

I've been wondering this as well.

Greer. It's been a while since Greer has impressed me, but I think he can still play well.
Lewis should definitely start.
Prob...meh.
White. I really like White; I think he can contribute. Just not sure when.
IAQ. According to PFF, IAQ was our best coverage DB last year (But he struggled against the run). Did he get injured or has he just disappeared?
Bush. is very good, too. Better than Harper and Jenkins, I think.
Harper sucks. Should play near the middle, on the middle, or not at all. Can't cover.
Vaccaro. Really the only absolute starter (if it were up to me).
Jenkins. I see no reason to keep fooling with this guy (besides money).




This post was edited on 8/17 at 4:41 pm


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bonethug0108
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


I think we actually bring more safeties onto the 53 than corners. With Vaccaro and Jenkins acting as the nickel I only see the need to have 4 corners and only 3 guys have sewn up a spot(PRob makes it because he would cost us money to cut IIRC).

I think that leaves White, Carr, and Sweeting fighting for that last spot.

Either way, I rarely see us using a 3rd corner over a 3rd safety based on what they've said and shown. Vaccaro has been on the field a lot with Jenkins and Harper.

That said, I think we keep 5 or 6 safeties and I see Jenkins, Harper, Vaccaro, and Bush as locks. I think Leonhard will be the 5th as it seems like IAQ has fallen off a cliff this year. This leads me to believe we may just keep 5 but I think IAQ would be the 6th if we go that route.

Ryan also likes to use a lot of sub packages, especially nickel looks(3-3-5 is a staple of his) which I think you could see more of than our base 3-4. The added caveat to that is he likes to put a safety in the box on those plays so it is still almost like a 3-4 formation.

So I'd say our "starting" backfield would be Jenkins/Harper/Vaccaro at safety with Greer and Lewis at CB.

So far when only going with 2 safeties they have kept Harper and Jenkins in and with the way those 3 are playing(including Vaccaro) I'd say Jenkins would be the one to lose his job over Harper in 2 safety packages.

But again, they have been using a ton of 3 safety looks so I don't think that's a real issue.






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BigBrod81
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


quote:

Fellow end Glenn Foster did an equally impressive job on the Raiders backups, matching Jordan’s pressure profile exactly but on only 15 pass-rushing snaps to earn himself a +5.2 grade overall.


This guy's performances in both games have seemed to go unnoticed by many but he has been just as impressive as Hicks & J. Jenkins.

He's lived in the opponent's backfield harassing the opposing quarterback most of the snaps he's been on the field. He has a quick burst for a big guy & showcased his foot speed chasing down a scrambling Terrelle Pryor last night.






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bonethug0108
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


I think to many people had a meltdown after that dink and dunk first drive last week to notice anything else. The rest of that game and this game were very positive for the defense, especially the Dline.





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goatmilker
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


quote:

It will be interesting to see how they perform against the Texans for 3 quarters.






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Brettesaurus Rex
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


If Jordan progresses this year the way we all think he can, this dude is going to be the face of the defense for years to come. He's been extremely impressive. It's so refreshing to see the defense play so well, even if it is a preseason game.
Out defenses have had good games before, but this just feels different. It's a much more solid effort as oppose to feeling like they're just hanging on. In one short it feels like a whole new defense






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BigBrod81
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


I agree. The truth is this year's team has a lot of young talent upfront on D-Line. It's been impressive so far. The young guys have been physical at the point of attack. This is something we as fans haven't seen in long time from our defensive players.

The linebackers, both inside & outside still remain a question mark but Humber, Hawthorne & Reddick looked impressive as well. Everyone expects Lofton to be solid but there are question marks outside of him. After last night though, those questions appeared to have lessened somewhat.

I'm still holding out judgment on the OLB until Wilson & Galette see live action. While they haven't been bad, Richardson, Atkins, Johnson & company haven't made big impressions as pass rushers. If we get those edge rushers applying consistent pressure off the edge along with the big, active, physical young guys collapsing the pocket from the inside then the defense will have the opportunity to be pretty good.






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Sophandros
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Member since Feb 2005
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


quote:

My question for you guys now is: we seem to have a lot of DB's that need playing time to prove if they belong. I think its something like: greer, lewis, prob, white, IAQ, bush, harper, vaccaro, and jenkins. who do we play more often?



Here's one way to look at it. They do this every week, so next week will probably reveal a lot of what the coaches think.

From Canal Street Chronicles, snap count by position






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Patrick O Rly
New Orleans Saints Fan
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Member since Aug 2011
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re: PFF Oakland @ Saints Review


quote:

That said, I think we keep 5 or 6 safeties and I see Jenkins, Harper, Vaccaro, and Bush as locks. I think Leonhard will be the 5th as it seems like IAQ has fallen off a cliff this year. This leads me to believe we may just keep 5 but I think IAQ would be the 6th if we go that route.


In 2012, Rob kept 10 defensive backs. 5 cb's and 5 safeties. Right now that looks like

Lewis
Greer
Robinson
White
Carr (Sweating is a sleeper)

Jenkins
Harper
Vacarro
Bush
IAQ/Leonhard

He also kept 7 d-linemen.

Jordan
Hicks
Bunkley
Jenkins
Foster
Walker
Johnson

He kept 8 linebackers

Smith
Lofton
Vilma
Junior
Wilson
Humber
Hawthorne

The 8th linebacker spot is a mystery to me. Jay Richardson and Baraka Adkins have been ahead of Martin and Johnson, but I'd rather keep them.

Right now, I think that's what your defensive roster looks like.






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