The Saints defense is on pace the become the worst defense in NFL history only one season removed from having the best offense in NFL history. One would argue that the defense actually improved in the off-season. After all the Saints replaced the stubborn minded Mike Martz defensive clone Gregg Williams-- that's right -- Tripple G.
Surely, the guy who sends more blitzes than anyone else; the guy who, despite having the lowest rate of success with the blitz, STILL sends everyone after Alex Smith (who only averaged 189 yards per game for the SEASON) while forgetting to cover the only weapon (Vernon Davis) who has beaten the Saints all throughout the game SINGLE-HANDED-- TWICE IN THE LAST 5 MINUTES. TWICE WHEN ALL HE NEEDED TO DO WAS PLAY IT SAFE, FORCE THEM TO NICKLE AND DIME YOU WHILE PRECIOUS TIME BURNS OFF THE CLOCK, FORCING THEM TO USE THEIR LAST TIMEOUT AND SETTLE FOR A FIELD GOAL AT BEST, YOU KNOW, THE SMART THING-- INSTEAD OF DOING THAT TRIPPLE ****ING G KNOWS BEST AND THE SAINTS LOSE THE CHANCE TO HOST THEIR 3RD NFC CHAMPIONSHIP UNDER BREES/PAYTON.
That guy quit on the Saints with 5 minutes left, wasting another prime year for Drew Brees, wasting the best offensive season in history, wasting all the effort, blood, sweat and tears of a year rolled into the greatest comeback in play-off history, the TEAM that OVERCAME 5 turnovers ON THE ROAD as well as injury to their players who were deliberately targeted like Pierre Thomas, the team that took the lead TWICE in the last 5 minutes against all odds while facing one of the NFL's best defenses.
The guy whose inflammatory words in the presence of a self-promoting wanna-be journalist/quasi-documentary maker AND HIS CAMERA; the guy who took a sophisticated pay-for-performance system with him to every place he's ever coached-- THAT GUY.
Spags replaced him. We got a coach just as innovative, but not as stubborn, not willing to leave himself exposed while blitzing 9 men into a brick wall over and over without effect on the quaterback. Spags is an upgrade over Williams right? And speaking of upgrade, Broderick Bunkley the run stuffer is just what the doctor ordered, along with rookie steal Hicks right? While we're talking defensive line, Spags will find away to extract the potential from Jordan, Martez, and Junior in the same way he unearthed the Giants' defensive line in 2007, right? Let's not forget the secondary being much improved with the zone and pressure, with youngsters like P-Rob stepping up, and Jenkins showing what we expected when we drafted him, right? And the Saints finally got a talented group of linebackers who are legit, quality starters they havent seen in almost two decades, right?
Want to hear a secret? The personnel isn't that bad. The problem isn't with lack for any skill-set or athletic shortcoming. The defense has enough talent to be top ten. Wilson, Jordan, and Gallette can all have 7 or more sacks. Patrick Robinson, Malcom Jenkins, Roman Harper, and Jabari Greer can certainly catch the ball and make momentum changing interceptions. The line-backers can play side-line to side-line and make sure tackles, forcing the occasional fumble.
It's not the coaching either-- well, not in the X's and O's sector to be certain. It has nothing to do with schematic change or in game adjustments from the defensive staff. It has everything to do with motivational tactics-- not the rah-rah get you up for game-day kind, but the BOOM ****ING BOOM fire breathing unquenchable passion in their bellies that fuels the season and unifies every player into one cause, one source, one focus for all their anger and frustration, from the fabrication of "Bounty Gate" by Roger Goodell who had GGG handcuffed to a fabricated "apology" that legitimized the bomb Roger just had to ignite to look good at taking a safety initiative.
But they don't. They don't because they are trying their best to not look dirty. They hesitate and don't want to make that devastating blind-side sack/strip or Suh-style body slam on the quaterback. They don't want to blow up the running back Donte Whitnar-style, causing a fumble and unconsciousness to the ball carrier. They don't want to take out a WR in the middle of the field and teach him a lesson, causing alligator arms. They don't want to make a legal full speed hard hit required of all defensive players because they are innocent of any bounty program and never tried to intentionally hurt a player, and they are trying to prove it on the field.
Here's the reason why we were right-- the reason why it can be fixed and the upgrades actually can work and not be the worst defense in history. .
It's psychological-- Goodell's in their head --and the best coach we have to push those hidden buttons and reach into the player's subconsciousness and fix things -- is suspended the entire season. The players think they are properly motivated, as do the coaches believe in their scheme and methods, but they are making a fatal mistake. By not accepting the bounty allegations, and remaining at peace because they know who they are no matter what anyone says, they're becoming a slave to the yoke of the word "BOUNTY".
It's the 800lb pink gorilla in the room with permanent perch on the back, kicking your *** every step you take. They simply cannot do what is expected and fundamentally taught to all defensive players at every level of football because they are being defensive- in the way of someone wrongfully accused, magnified exponentially from being convicted in a court of (a very) public opinion.
Instead of automatically reacting offensively and violently with intensity -- like any male would do to someone who raped and sodomized his 6 year old daughter, son, wife, mother, and grand-mother -- instead of fighting back vehemently to right a gross-mis-justice against an equally intimate and innocent relation (fellow players and Who Dat Nation)-- the players are acting like that innocent person who is overwhelmed by the means a menacing opponent will take to fulfill his goals and wallet. They're shocked at human nature. The're reacting the way the innocent Penn State players are reacting, the way the 99.9% of Catholic priests who AREN'T pedophiles reacted. Better yet, they're reacting the way some poor no-body reacts against tyranny-- like a sick person who's insurance company finds inventive ways to not pay them while making up the rules as law and rights are pointed out; or like a person trying to fight a just cause against an entire government or corporation (aren't they the same, governments and corporations?). They're trying to prove their innocence and instead look more guilty like a politician caught in a lie.
Here's the thing-- don't ignore the affect, embrace it. Instead of cowering into the fetal position and whispering with quivering chin "this meanie ruined my season" they can yell "THIS MOTHER****** IS GOING TO PAY, WE AINT GONNA PLAY NO DIFFERENT, LOOK AT THE TAPE *****- EVERY HIT WAS LEGAL. WE KNOW WHO WE ARE AND WHAT WE DID AND DID NOT DO AND WE AINT GOING TO GO QUIETLY. WERE GOING TO KICK SOME *** ALL THE WAY TO THE SUPER BOWL AND HOST DREW BREES' SECOND SUPER BOWL VICTORY AND FIRST NFL MVP, AND WERE GOING TO GET YOU FIRED".
They can still do it. They're getting media support nation-wide. Journalist who initially bought Goodell's story with the attached GW apology and WMD propaganda are now starting to see the facts don't match-up. A judge has gone on the record to say how unjust and completely biased and heavy handed the investigation and penalties have been. They have the support of their family - Who Dat Nation - and everyone can see the affect that's had. Instead of trying to "overcome" it and trying to ignore it, embrace it and become the bad guy on the field. I guarantee it if you start making mother ******* pay on the field, you'll have every old-school football player, coach, and fan cheering you on. And if you do it legally, like you've always done it, and make it your war cry, your badge of honor-- if you do that, you become a united, dangerous team no one wants to play.
You'll become that Super Bowl contender you already are, but with a bigger axe to grind. You'll become the 2007 Patriots, except you'll finish the deal.
While I’d love to take credit for that particular insight, I must say it came from my father. Someone get this to Vilma.
This FanPost was written by a reader and member of Canal Street Chronicles. It does not necessarily reflect the views of CSC and its staff or editors.