This group gets its own post because discussing them will tie together everything we’re trying to do on defense.
Expect complexity in 2010. Defensive Proust and Joyce with a dash of Faulkner. Subtext, stream of consciousness, and like, imagery and shit. Imagery such as Landry Jones being decapitated wearing jean shorts, Muschamp mosh-pitting with LBs, and Taylor Potts’ head on a pike.
In 2008, our complexity level was a 2.5 on a 10 point scale out of sheer necessity. Last year it was a 6.0. Expect 9.0 in 2010. This is the 3rd year in the system, several of these guys have comprehension levels beyond their immediate assignment, and we have intelligent LBs that we can trust to understand switch rules and when to call off a blitz. We also have DEs that excel at zone blitzing/coverage and can actually make a play on the ball in the flat on a lazy hot route. Coverage is more than just DBs and the parts all work.
Smart defense is a really big deal when you’ve got the afo’letes. Just watch LSU or Florida State play if you don’t believe me.
The physical nature of the entire defensive backfield - particularly Aaron Williams, Christian Scott, Kenny Vaccaro - is allowing us a lot of schematic flexibility in the big nickel. We can line up cover personnel but still feel like we’re getting run support and physical play.
Christian Scott is lighting up teammates in practice to the extent that the coaches have asked him to dial it down. They don’t want to squash his natural aggression, but they’d also like to avoid injuries to offensive starters before the season begins. Scott may not grab 8 interceptions, but 4 forced fumbles and 3 picks will work just fine.
I’ve read concerns about Scott’s speed, so I want to clarify: Scott is one of the fastest straight line players on the team, so pure speed is no issue, but big safeties always have trouble breaking their hips and can’t cover the lateral ground of an Earl Thomas. That’s what happens when you’re 6-1 215. It’s a bio-mechanical certainty for every person on the planet except Nnamdi Asomugha and Night Train Lane. Scott covers pretty well for a big dude.
Kenny Vaccaro got the same “please stop killing teammates” talk as Scott. Our receivers fear him. Drunk fraternity guys fear him. Brock Lesnar...does not fear him. I mentioned in my practice report that I saw Vaccaro man up in the slot and acquit himself pretty well.
Aaron Williams is the best player on the defense. He got a lot stronger in the offseason. If you play DB for Akina, he will harden you and challenge you to get more physical. See Michael Huff, Cedric Griffin, Aaron Ross. AJ always enjoyed contact, he just didn’t have the frame to always bring it. Now he does.
Chykie Brown -
And You May Ask Yourself
Did we call Man-Under, I Think I Forgot?
And You May Ask Yourself
Why Have I Gotten Slower Since My Freshman Year?
And You May Tell Yourself
I Just Made Three Good Plays And One Bad!
And You May Tell Yourself
I Think It’s Because I Was Thinking About Pussy.
Same As It Ever Was. Same As It Ever Was. Same As It Ever Was...
Chykie is the #3 CB. Same as it ever was. Akina has been hammering him for his lack of physical play and mental lapses, so we’ll see if he understands that this is a contract year.
Curtis Brown: Kooler than Kurtis Blow?
Curtis Brown is the quickest guy on the roster. Expect a good year. Curtis was good last year, not that half of our fans noticed. Fucking knuckleheads. Want to see me go apeshit? Opine that Curtis Brown sucks or that Kenny Chesney is awesome. But Scipio, I once saw Michael Crabtree work him over two years ago! It's impossible for players to improve!
Gideon’s shoulder issues are mostly resolved. We understand what he gives us and what he takes away, but Muschamp’s belief is that this secondary is more likely to give up a big play on a cheap busted assignment than being physically overwhelmed. So The Gideon Calculus (sounds like a Bourne Identity spinoff) makes sense. I expect him to play center field, grab another 5-6 picks. But he’ll be our 5th best DB. Writers who don’t understand scheme will vote him All-Big 12. Rinse, repeat.
The coaches trust Nolan Brewster and they think they think we can win games with him just fine if we get dinged up at safety.
The freshmen DBs have surprised with their quality.
AJ White is scrappy, fearless and CB #4. He plays.
Carrington Byndom came in stronger than expected and the coaches loves his instincts and teachability. He plays. I love him long
Adrian Phillips is physical with balls skills. Some Michael Griffin vibe. He plays and could be a special teams cover star. I thought he was underrated as a recruit and I’ll follow his career with interest.
Bryant Jackson is skinny and needs to add some weight and strength, but he can cover ground laterally. Basketball player at safety. Camisa Roja! Or Camiso Rojo. Someone help me. I only speak jive.
Eryon Barnett has been passed up. Buh-bye.