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What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

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Old 10-18-2010, 12:20 PM   #1
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What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

I think it is important to always look to the future of our team. What do you guys think is our biggest weakness that we must address to be raised to the next level? Of course there is room for improvement at most positions, but it is unrealistic to be able to address all our areas of weakness in a reasonable amount of time. I think we are 2 positions away from becoming real contenders; I feel like we are weakest on the OL and DL (more DL).
I'll be the first to admit that I said in the offseason that our WR's were atrocious and unable to produce, I also said that the McNabb trade was not worth the second and third picks, but I have had a change of heart. I still think we are among the worst receiving cores in the league, but I do not think it matters as much as I used to because McNabb has been absolutely incredible. He makes our passing game at least respectable despite having almost nothing to work with.
So back to where we need to improve to be raised into legitimate contenders. The DL and OL. From what I can see the DL is getting zero push. Teams are able to pass all over us because the quarterbacks are not getting the pocket collapsed on them in time. Our blitzes are also not as effective because of the weak push in the trenches. I watch the push that other teams get on us and it upsets me that we seem to never collapse the pocket like others seem to do to us. Fortunately we have McNabb who has be phenomenal at avoiding the pressure, but I can't help but think that we'd put up another td every game if we had a stronger OL push to help us with the run game (I do not think we get adequate push there either...Indy was an exception because they are so small) and give McNabb more time. I also feel that we have gotten extremely lucky on defense so far. It seems that offenses are able to drive on us every game, but somehow something always happens where their points don't reflect how they are dominating us. I feel that if we had a stronger DL everything would change. Our LB's DB's WR's RB's TE's QB's and FB's might not all be perfect, but I feel as if they are good enough that if we improve in the trenches we should be a legitimate playoff team, no questions asked.
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Old 10-18-2010, 12:29 PM   #2
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Re: What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

The easy answer is:

1) 1 or 2 more years of adding the right personnel
2) 1 or 2 more years of the players playing in the same scheme

pretty much what we knew before the regular season began.
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Old 10-18-2010, 12:32 PM   #3
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Re: What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

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I think it is important to always look to the future of our team. What do you guys think is our biggest weakness that we must address to be raised to the next level? Of course there is room for improvement at most positions, but it is unrealistic to be able to address all our areas of weakness in a reasonable amount of time. I think we are 2 positions away from becoming real contenders; I feel like we are weakest on the OL and DL (more DL).
I'll be the first to admit that I said in the offseason that our WR's were atrocious and unable to produce, I also said that the McNabb trade was not worth the second and third picks, but I have had a change of heart. I still think we are among the worst receiving cores in the league, but I do not think it matters as much as I used to because McNabb has been absolutely incredible. He makes our passing game at least respectable despite having almost nothing to work with.
So back to where we need to improve to be raised into legitimate contenders. The DL and OL. From what I can see the DL is getting zero push. Teams are able to pass all over us because the quarterbacks are not getting the pocket collapsed on them in time. Our blitzes are also not as effective because of the weak push in the trenches. I watch the push that other teams get on us and it upsets me that we seem to never collapse the pocket like others seem to do to us. Fortunately we have McNabb who has be phenomenal at avoiding the pressure, but I can't help but think that we'd put up another td every game if we had a stronger OL push to help us with the run game (I do not think we get adequate push there either...Indy was an exception because they are so small) and give McNabb more time. I also feel that we have gotten extremely lucky on defense so far. It seems that offenses are able to drive on us every game, but somehow something always happens where their points don't reflect how they are dominating us. I feel that if we had a stronger DL everything would change. Our LB's DB's WR's RB's TE's QB's and FB's might not all be perfect, but I feel as if they are good enough that if we improve in the trenches we should be a legitimate playoff team, no questions asked.
Sorry forgot to add what I wanted to say about how much improvement is needed. I think that we need two quality interior linemen (doesnt matter which positions), and one impact DL and one quality DL (doesn't matter what positions).
I think our OL doesn't need to dominate anything, they just need to be good enough so that Mcnabb can do his thing and so that we have a little more confidence in our run game. I am not worried so much about Brown or Williams for next year, they will both improve, just the interior who I do not see getting anything but worse.
I think that we need one DL which will wreak havoc and push the pocket/draw the double team, and one DL which can benefit from the other wreaking havoc. The second DL needs to just be good enough that he can get a reasonable amount of push, and I do not see anyone on our roster that is adequate to fill either of these roles in my mind (this is all said assuming Haynsworth is gone next year).
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Old 10-18-2010, 12:37 PM   #4
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Re: What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

I think we need to keep working on the O-line.

We are set at quarterback for the next season or 2.

We have a bona fide starter and feature back in Ryan Torain, who is still very young.
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Old 10-18-2010, 12:38 PM   #5
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Re: What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

With the parity in the NFL these day anything could happen.
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Old 10-18-2010, 12:44 PM   #6
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Re: What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

Torain is going to have to play well for the entire season (and perhaps then some) before I check feature runningback off my list of player needs. Not saying he cant be a good player or hasnt shown some promise thus far but I dont want to crown the kid just yet just like Horton was overly praised a few years ago.
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Old 10-18-2010, 12:47 PM   #7
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Re: What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

More than anything, we need more time with the new systems. More playmakers on both sides is a given.

As far as Torain goes, I'm a fan but I'm not convinced he's the long term answer as the starter either. He's a grinder, but not a home run threat. It would be nice to find someone that can really scare a D with big play ability.
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Old 10-18-2010, 01:01 PM   #8
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Re: What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

2-3 years of solid drafts. Quantity and quality. And of course time in this system.
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Old 10-18-2010, 01:02 PM   #9
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Re: What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

I think we missed a great opportunity to bring Lynch here. Coulda been a great fit. That said, this team is either beating or hanging with tough opponents week in and week out, we're not that far off.
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Old 10-18-2010, 01:04 PM   #10
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Re: What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

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I think we missed a great opportunity to bring Lynch here. Coulda been a great fit. That said, this team is either beating or hanging with tough opponents week in and week out, we're not that far off.
I don't know. Haven't we traded enough draft picks for others trash over the years? Lynch isn't any good.
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Old 10-18-2010, 01:15 PM   #11
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Re: What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

Last night, the Skins made mistakes and blew big opportunities throughout the game. And we were all like damn, not again.

But when the Colts threw interceptions, dropped the football, missed field goals the thinking was "that's not like the Colts at all"

For us to get to the next level, we have to make mistakes the exception not the norm.
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Old 10-18-2010, 01:20 PM   #12
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Re: What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

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I don't know. Haven't we traded enough draft picks for others trash over the years? Lynch isn't any good.
Agreed. Lynch would have made a lot of sense for the Pack, but I don't think we needed to give up picks for him. Better guys can be had next year in the draft for a lot less.
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Old 10-18-2010, 01:29 PM   #13
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Re: What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

We pretty clearly don't yet have all the personnel to play the system the coach's want. That means good drafting and FA pickups are a must. Even without the right personnel, we're not as bad as last year, not by a long shot.

And for all that, we're clearly leaving points, TOs, etc. on the field each game. So that points to execution, which points to practice and comfort in a system, as everyone's been pointing out.

We were a 4-12 team, the oldest in league, with few draft picks. It's gonna take time folks. Thanks, Vinny!
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Old 10-18-2010, 01:33 PM   #14
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Re: What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

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I don't know. Haven't we traded enough draft picks for others trash over the years? Lynch isn't any good.
Forsett outgained him despite getting a smaller workload. Just pointing that out.

Lynch = 17 for 44, TD

Forsett = 10 for 67, TD



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Old 10-18-2010, 01:40 PM   #15
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Re: What is necessary for us to be raised to the next level?

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Torain is going to have to play well for the entire season (and perhaps then some) before I check feature runningback off my list of player needs. Not saying he cant be a good player or hasnt shown some promise thus far but I dont want to crown the kid just yet just like Horton was overly praised a few years ago.
I agree with your assessment on Terain. He's shown flashes and he also has his limitations. (1) demonstrate he can stay reasonably healthy for a season, (2) duplicate his best efforts on a consistent basis so he dosen't slip into that "hero" with accolades one week to he "sucks" the next.

The team needs a lot before it reaches the point where it's considered a legitimate contender on a consistent basis. Our areas of need are well documented, but just how we'll go about acquiring the personell necessary to fulfill those needs remains a mystery. The draft is not exactly a cure all unless we're talking about multiple ones.
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