Originally Posted by Yachtzee
Well, I guess one way to get players to play faster is to dumb down the system. The other is to get players with the speed, intelligence and work ethic to handle a more complicated system. There are plenty of teams that run defenses with multiple looks, different moves based on reads, "fire zones" involving LBs and DBs rushing with DLs dropping into coverage. Those teams don't seem to have a problem with complicated defenses and their guys don't necessarily make a whole lot more money that members of the Bengals' D. IMO, the Bengals have always run a pretty straightforward D with differences based on the number of guys they rush. If they need to dumb it down to get better, then maybe they need to get better players. Bresnahan had a hand in scouting and identifying players who could help the team.
I can somewhat see his point on the disparity between the money spent on offense vs. the money spent on defense. However, I think 3 of the 4 top money makers on D (Smith, Thornton, and O'Neal) weren't really playing up to their contracts anyway. If the Bengals let two of those guys go, they'd probably have been able to sign a difference maker on D and the team would have been better even without equal money spent on both sides of the ball. Bengals' coaches have a lot of input on personnel decisions, or so I've heard, so Bresnahan has to take some of the blame for the players on the team and their level of preparedness.
Sounds to me like "Bam Bam" likes to pass the buck.
I agree with most of the 1st part and to some extent the 2nd part. 1st off the coaches have done much less scouting since we added a few guys a couple of years back. He may have had some input but I doubt it was enough to give him a share of the blame w/ regards to scouting. Even if he had more input he doesn't have the ultimate say, and if Marvin is putting that much stock in what an overworked non-scout is saying he needs his brain checked. That said regardless of the money involved it's still a matter of development which is his responsibility to oversee and it's a cop out on his part. Good riddence Chuck!
Thornton was double teamed quite often, which indicates that the opposition felt he was the guy who could give them the most problems on that line. In that case he's doing his job in taking up multiple blockers, and it was then up to his teammates to take advantage of their one on one assignments. Justin Smith may have not been worth what they are paying him but that's hardly his fault. He is what he is, he's 3-4 DE or a run stuffing 4-3 DE. You don't pay those guys franchise DE type wages, but they did and he played pretty much as well as he usually does. He applied plenty of pressure but didn't often come up with sacks. That is based much more on gaping holes in coverage than a lack of rush from him. Deltha O'neal I'll give ya he was the worst cancer on the team.
Hunley makes an excellent point and something I have been thinking for some time. Something is dumb in the system and it's the players for the most part. Not all of them mind you but enough to continually be doing something that they are not supposed to be doing. Guys who are not often stand out as playmakers Thornton, Smith, Landon, Brian Robinson etc. Some guys however are proving to be dumb and that list is lead by O'neal, Brooks, Maybe Madieu and Jeanty as well.