Sunday, October 18, 2009

I'm Not a Defensive Coordinator, But...

So, I'm at the Village Pour House on the Upper West Side, watching three games simultaneously, which is sort of like patting your head, rubbing your belly, and chewing gum at the same time. It's far more complicated than it looks. This is why John Madden is way smarter than I am.

Anyway, I'm not a defensive coordinator, but I do know a few things about defensive scheming.

The first thing I know about defense is that it wins championships. Op. cit. Baltimore Ravens January 28, 2001. Op. cit. Roethlisberger's first Super Bowl. Op. Cit. The first four Steelers Super Bowl victories.

And what I'm currently witnessing is that fat, lazy, inaccurate JaMarcus Russell dismantling the Eagles. While Tom Brady, stupid UM graduate, is simultaneously doing the same to the Titans.

I've never claimed to be His Majesty Buddy Ryan. Or the venerable Dick LeBeau. Or the Blessed Jim Johnson, but I know this.

If your secondary just stands around while anyone with an 80something on their jersey is holding onto a football, you're going to get beat. And if your linebackers are looking around for what to do, the play is already broke. And you will be too, once you get released from your team for letting the other team win.

Ever heard of closing on the ball?

Ever hear of tackling, Titans secondary?

Chuck Cecil, I'm talking to you. Sean McDermott, I'm talking to you too.

Here's what you do, in four down format:

1st. Put on the first DMX album.

2nd. Mix a little gunpowder, cayenne pepper, and paint thinner in a bottle. Shake it up. Give it to your players to drink. It'll make them mean, which is what you want.

3rd. Use verbs like destroy, emasculate, disembowel, demoralize, and finish with great frequency. At high volumes. You don't have to yell, but you have to get your players hungry. Remember what Lawrence Taylor said about playing like a bunch of mad dogs. If you're not in that zone of desire, you're wasting your time.

4th. Emphasize instinctive response. If you're looking around, it's too late. That's what film study is for. Am I the only one who saw Ray Lewis look Adrian Peterson in the eye, say "coming this way," and then stop him for a miniscule gain? That's what film study is for. You learn during the week. You execute during the game. Didn't Yoda say it best: "Do or do not. There is no try." Isn't it a title of a Roots tune: Respond/React? Don't make me say it a third time.

Jeff, Andy, I'm open to job offers. I'll work Special Teams, too, because they sure aren't pulling their weight today either.

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