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The Return of a True Nose Tackle

Discussion in 'Steelers Talk' started by STEELWINDS, Mar 15, 2020.

  1. STEELWINDS

    STEELWINDS Well-Known Member

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    Hi Everyone.

    I have been extremely busy after the season had ended but have kept all of you in my heart and mind. I have been constantly thinking about this topic and have finally found the time to post it. Given that, here I go.

    I have made this argument numerous times in a post but never as a thread. So I will put it out there on a bigger platform for us to discuss. I have heard all of the counter arguments against attaining a “Traditional Nose Tackle (NT)” in the prototype of Casey Hampton. I still maintain my position. The primary argument against it from some here is the limited amount of snaps that such a player would engage in. I have taken that into account in my position but I still stand my grounds.

    The foundation of my proposal is based on the premise of a “Mix and Match” concept. Some argue this type of player (Casey 2.0) is obsolete and antiquated. However, some teams are still employing the utilization of a “True” NT in their defenses. Please read my post below as I know I can be long-winded and wanted to break this up a bit.
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2020
  2. STEELWINDS

    STEELWINDS Well-Known Member

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    Hey STEELWINDS. Hey that is me (smile).

    Right now our Run Defense is not up to snuff and has not been for several years now; especially, compared to the years of the Casey Hampton era. Casey commanded multiple blockers to contain him. Given that, our defenses of yester-year had a very long streak of sub-100 yard performances against them.

    Javon Hargrave has done an excellent job for what he does. However he is no “Run-Stuffer”. He is a DE playing a NT position. Javon is constantly being pushed back on run plays and that is unacceptable. As someone stated here, it looks at times that Javon has skate wheels on as he is constantly being pushed back. Also, Big Dan never has, and probably never will, fill the shoes of Casey 2.0. either. He really is mediocre at best.

    I would have up to dig up the facts but we would consistently be in the top three run defenses in the league in the Casey days. A Casey Hampton NT type player does the following for an already much improved Defense. ONE THAT CAN BE ELEVATED TO EVEN GREATER HEIGHTS!

    • It requires the opposition to commit multiple blockers to said NT.

    • It allows our DC to become more creative. This frees up other Steeler players to create greater havoc in regards to blitzing packages or whatever the “Mad Scientist” DC can come up with. Just one more shiny new plaything in the toy chest for him to work with.

    • It puts the opposing teams in long second and third situations due to more sacks or plays for negative yardage. Even if the first and second downs do not create negative yardage outcomes, at worse we still put teams in more third and longs; let’s say 7-10 yard scenarios.

    • Whatever the results on first and second downs, we have now made the opposition more “One Dimensional” as they are forced to rely on the pass to continue their drives.

    Given my bullet points above, this is where the “Mix and Match” concept becomes implemented. We pull out our Casey 2.0. Sometimes on second down as this depends on what happened on first down. Hopefully a sack or a negative yardage play has been created. If not, we keep Casey 2.0 in there for second down as well. Hopefully, we create a sack, negative yardage play, or just a busted play, now leaving the opposing team in a third and long.

    NOW, we bring in the more athletic faster NT (hopefully Javon) to apply even greater pressure due to his speed and power. So, all depending on what transpires on first and second downs, will dictate who gets two snaps per series and who gets one. It will change throughout the ebb and flow of the game.

    So that is it folks. We know our Defense has vastly improved last year. The additions of players such as Fitzpatrick, Nelson, Haden, Barron and an improved Dupree have really made a big difference to have created this unit. Now let’s keep the petal to the metal and elevate it to even greater heights with the return of Casey 2.0.


    STEELWINDS AKA The East Side Kid
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2020
  3. strummerfan

    strummerfan Well-Known Member

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  4. steelersrule6

    steelersrule6 Well-Known Member

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    Their next NT won't be a Casey Hampton type, it doesn't matter who they get he will play 40% or less snaps because of subpackages.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  5. Roonatic

    Roonatic Well-Known Member

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    Should have got Calais & switched to a 4-3.
     
  6. mac daddyo

    mac daddyo Well-Known Member

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    Maybe they just keep big dan and use alualu too. Already under contract. Maybe then an udfa on the ps.:cool:
     
  7. STEELWINDS

    STEELWINDS Well-Known Member

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    Hey Everyone.

    No takers up to this point. I will keep checking in. Thank you for the feedback so far.


    STEELWINDS
    AKA The East Side Kid
     
  8. STEELWINDS

    STEELWINDS Well-Known Member

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    Hey steelersrule6.

    Long time my friend. Question though: Isn't my idea "Sub-Packaged" based? Depending on what happens on 1st and 2nd downs dictates who gets the more snaps for that given series. Or is it that you just do not want a Casey Hampton type NT? Take care.

    STEELWINDS AKA The East Side Kid
     
  9. Roonatic

    Roonatic Well-Known Member

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    Hey STEELWINDS,

    Would you not rather have a Joe Greene 2.0? Wouldn't the Steelers be more run efficient in a 4-3? Isn't Mikey's Tampa 2 based on the 4-3? Blitzburgh was great but the Steel Curtain was responsible for 4 Lombardis.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  10. steelersrule6

    steelersrule6 Well-Known Member

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    Those days of the Steelers having a Hampton type NT are long gone, and they aren't coming back.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  11. MojaveDesertPghFan

    MojaveDesertPghFan

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    As much as I was always a huge (snack) fan of Casey's in his day and acknowledge that the Steelers D dropped off significantly as his career wound down, I'm thinking that if it was still a plausible solution to position a fortress up the middle, they'd still be mimicking it. It seems the name of the game these days is versatility, lateral speed and ability to cover tight ends on pass plays over the middle. Again, I'm not opposed to what you're postulating, I'd love to see Hampton 2.0, but this implies that we armchair D coordinators know more than those getting paid the big bucks to consider these matters do. We're probably not even close.
     
  12. SteelersFanIrl

    SteelersFanIrl Well-Known Member

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    Nickel is essentially their base defence now, a true NT would hardly play. If you can get a useful NT in the later rounds then great but I would not be committing significant resources there. They need to find the next Hargrave, a guy who can play the nose position but also play in other packages. Could Alualu do a job there in the short term?

    I didn’t think their run defence was that terrible last season btw, especially as the season wore on. They allowed 109 YPG on the ground which is right in the middle of the pack. Improvement needed for sure but not a total disaster
     
  13. STEELWINDS

    STEELWINDS Well-Known Member

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    Hey steelersrule6.

    I really feel it could make a better "D" overall. Like I stated, we are not that great on the run "D" as in the past. Our Pass "D" has really turned the corner with what we have now. I cannot recall it ever being this good. You have to go back to the dasys of Cowher and Woodson, Lake and that crew. Personally, I just feel that having that having big body clogging up the middle could take this "D" to another level.

    Oh well. One can hope. I need to do some research to back-up my position of Pre vs. Post Casey data. I just remember how much more dominant we were against the run with him in there but the Passing "D" was still frustrating. Well the Passing "D" seems to have been corrected and big time at that. If we could shut down the run, which has not been good at for a while now, we could become an overall complete dominating 'D" IMO. Take care.


    STEELWINDS AKA The East Side Kid
     
  14. STEELWINDS

    STEELWINDS Well-Known Member

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    [QUOTE="strummerfan, post: 765841, member: 1036"]TL/DR


    No[/QUOTE]

    Hey strummerfan.

    I know it is lengthy but I just wanted to make it thorough to justify my stance. Why do you say "No"? We are not getting the job done with our current "D" against the run. As I stated, I do like Javon. However, he is not stout enough (IMO) to man down the NT for the run. Like I stated it would be sub-packaging (if that is your concern) based on what happens on 1st and 2nd downs. Thanks for the reply. Take care.


    STEELWINDS AKA The East Side Kid
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2020
  15. STEELWINDS

    STEELWINDS Well-Known Member

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    Hey SteelersFanIrl.

    Thank you for the data. I had just posted that I was going to look some of that up. I get what you are saying and I am not saying to break the bank. If the movement across the NFL is straying away from the traditional NT like Casey then there should be decent pickings in the draft. Not like now where we were the innovators of the 3-4 looking for those tweeners to convert to OLBs and we had a monopoly on the drafting of those type of players for a good time. However, as you know it is a "Copycat" league and that caught up with us once the "Cat" was out of the bag. Maybe in part that is why it has taken so long to find a matching set of "Bookends" for that part (OLBs) of our "D" to be established. Almost a decade now with the Jarvis Jones bust and it taken almost five years for Dupree to develop.

    Things do come full-circle as you know. It now seems that the running game is starting to "creep" its way back in where the Passing Game was/is the flavor for quite a while now. If teams are starting to get back to the running attack then we are going to need to be better at defending it. That in part is my vision for that Casey 2.0 guy. On top of that, broken record here, we got the Pass-D on lock down for the most part. Now, lets bump it a notch or two for the Run "D" and I say.... "Watch Out"! It looks like I am in the minority so far but I am still sticking to my position. It is not just about stopping the run. It will open things up in other ways as I have stated. Put teams in those third and longs (7+ yards at minimal) and with our Passing "D" we should be even that much more successful. Thank you for the input. Take care.


    STEELWINDS
    AKA The East Side Kid
     
    • Like Like x 1
  16. Da Stellars

    Da Stellars Well-Known Member

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    There are some great defenses who still use a NT type guy in the middle...

    I’m all for it.
     
  17. STEELWINDS

    STEELWINDS Well-Known Member

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    Hey mac daddyo.

    Yeah, I mean if the traditional NT is "dead" in a sense then we should be able to pick up one that fits the Casey mold with no problem via many routes: Draft, Free Agency, CFL, XFL, etc.. As I stated, Big Dan has the physical size but it has not translated into much of anything as to what I am envisioning here. Others here have stated the same. Once again it is about sub-packaging. Really it is just a simple substitution between the Hargrave type and the future Casey 2.0 type. No too much brain work has to be put into it. On a typical set of downs, the Casey 2.0 will get the 1st and 2nd downs and we bring in Hargrave (or whomever) to finish the job off once we get the opposition into a 3rd and long. Maybe we get a sack, loss yardage play on that 1st down and we bring in Hargrave for the next two downs to finish it up. That is how I am envisioning it. So in the end, the number of snaps for each of the two NTs should balance out to a degree. Thank you for the feedback. Take care.


    STEELWINDS AKA The East Side Kid
     
  18. STEELWINDS

    STEELWINDS Well-Known Member

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    Hey Roonatic.

    Man that would be awesome. I guess the concern that I have seen for years now is that to switch to a 4-3 would take some time for the transition. I am not sure how far we are away from finalizing and implementing that type of "D". Do you feel that we are close enough to make that type of transition without missing a beat? Obviously, with any change, for anything in life, has a timetable to consider. Even with my profession (Teaching) when we get a new Principal there is a timeline to consider as the new philosophy is integrated. Also, keep in mind regarding how much more time do we have left with Ben and the great Passing "D" that we have constructed. If the 4-3 move can be done relatively seamless then I might reconsider.

    Yes, Greene and company, the 4-3, they were super productive. Proof in the Pudding with the 4 Lombardis as you stated. However, I am not dismissing your idea at all. Just considering the Ben timeline as one factor. We finally have a great Passing D. Now lets get that Run-D to match and we are probably the Best "D" in the league hands down. Now, whether that is with a 3-4 or 4-3, I am open for either but still leaning towards that 3-4 Casey version. However, once again, do we have the personnel to make it happen seamlessly and Ben's timeline. We see what our "O" looks like without Ben and boy it sure is not pretty. Thank you for the feedback. Take care.


    STEELWINDS AKA The East Side Kid
     
  19. steelersrule6

    steelersrule6 Well-Known Member

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    It's a different game now, it's more of a passing league now, a Hampton type of NT isn't going to play on third downs.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  20. thorn058

    thorn058 Well-Known Member

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    It's not a bad idea but the money he was due would have gutted this team. The Ravens have made some shrewd moves going back 3 years to shed bloated contracts and sign young talent. Keeping Judon and giving Campbell new money is going to eat up some of the space they have left.
     
  21. jeh1856

    jeh1856 Hello

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    If Hargrave leaves, which it appears is a real possibility, Big Dan is almost guaranteed a roster spot. He may not be number 1, but they like to keep someone who knows the system.
     
    • Agree Agree x 1
  22. Roonatic

    Roonatic Well-Known Member

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    I hear ya. Their defense might be better than their offense next year. :eek:
     
  23. mac daddyo

    mac daddyo Well-Known Member

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    I really don't think there was as much difference between Hampton and hargraves. Both were picked for their quickness off the ball. Remember Casey was only 315- 325 when he first got here, he later put the weight on and became more of a clogger then a collapser. Hargraves started putting on some weight and still kept some mobility. Either way they want the pocket caved, blockers taken up and tackles made. With transformation of the pass game the sub packages were used more, but as we have seen, the playoff teams run the ball. We got away from our 3-4 DEs eating blockers and collapsing because we couldn't get enough pressure with the olb. When DLB left the stop the run first defense changed so did the use of a clogger in the middle. this definitely could change again since we have the lber s.:cool:
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2020
  24. Roonatic

    Roonatic Well-Known Member

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    Two defensive tackles to collapse the inside. Bush cleans up.:cool:
     
  25. STEELWINDS

    STEELWINDS Well-Known Member

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    Hey steelersrule6.

    I realize that my friend. That is why I stated the "Mix and Match" concept. AKA "Substitution". Let Casey 2.0 do the Lion's share of work on 1st and 2nd downs to set up the 3rd and long. The plan is to have his disruptive force cause direct and indirect chaos by needing two or more blockers to deal with him. This can lead to blitzes, sacks, and negative run yardage. All with the goal of placing the opposition in 3rd and long. Then let the Hargrave type come in on those 3rd and longs to finish it off with his more athletic skills (primarily speed).

    Also, the league is not as pass dominant as it was IMO. Sure it seems that way and probably is statistically. However, I feel a change to some degree coming. Look at what Tennessee is doing. Other teams are following similar suits because there just is not enough good QBs today to lead their teams with a pass dominant approach. I think a team like Tennessee, and there are several others last season, that were more balanced or started using the run more. I cannot say for sure but I just feel thatthere may start to be an Offensive change geared towards more running attacks coming down the road. Maybe not a total 180 degree turnabout but a change nonetheless. Tennessee is the best example I can give for now. Take care.


    STEELWINDS AKA The East Side Kid
     

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