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  • #16
    Originally posted by cutlerfan View Post
    Inside Slant
    —The Broncos made an effort to get Brandon Marshall over the 100-catch plateau. He needed eight in the season finale to reach that milestone, and he got there in the third quarter Sunday.

    "I knew what he needed going into it, and I told him I was going to try, but if it didn't happen, it didn't happen," QB Jay Cutler said. "He got four or five before halftime, and I told him at halftime I'd probably be able to get him eight."

    Marshall became the third second-year receiver in NFL history to record 100 catches.
    Well, since theres already three or four threads talking JUST about Jim Bates, ill talk about something positive.

    I dont know about you guys, but that segment about Jay and Brandon trying to get him 100 catches, is EXACTLY what I want to hear our young players are doing. Jay and BMarsh were out there just having fun.

    "You need 8 passes? Sure why not, I'm that good"
    sigpic

    And THAT'S, the Cosmic Perspective.

    Comment


    • #17
      Originally posted by TheRealMoose View Post
      It's actually predicated on a couple things. Yes, a run-stuffing, blocker-eating DT is an important component, and you wouldn't be wrong to say it's the most important. However, of similar importance is the ability of a big, fast speed rusher on either side. We have Moss and Crowder. Granted, Moss is still an unknown quantity, but given a whole season I think he's going to be our long term answer at DE. Opposite Elvis, you've got two big pieces of the puzzle.

      If we can get a big DT in the draft, and not attempt to sign someone like Jaba the Adams off the scrap heap, I think we can do quite well. Obviously, Dorsey from LSU is the guy we want, but he won't fall to us at 12, and I think we have too many needs to mortgage our entire draft to get one player.

      Enter Frank Okam.

      Frank Okam Scouting Report
      Position: DT
      School & Year/Status: Texas - Senior
      Height & Weight: 6'5 - 320 lbs.

      2008 NFL Draft Prospect - Scouting Report
      Okam flirted with entering the draft after his junior season, but decided to return to school and widely projects as a solid first-round pick.

      With his massive frame, he seems best suited to be a brick wall against the run, but he has proven to be a solid pass rusher as he has shown in his senior year. Besides posting a career-best 49 tackles thus far, he has doubled his career sack total (with five) and he's also credited with 14 quarterback hurries.

      Instead of just being a gap filler who waits for the play to come to him, he gets into the backfield with regularity, with his ten tackles for loss this season a career-high.

      He seems to slot in behind LSU's Glenn Dorsey and USC's Sedrick Ellis as the third DT off the board, though ESPN's Mel Kiper, Jr. had Okam rated higher than Ellis before the season started. He could go anywhere from the top 15 (or higher, though that may be a reach) to the second, which would be a steep drop. It's unlikely the latter will happen, because his big body and obvious talent make him likely to be taken quickly. There are questions about his consistency and production as well. But, with the way that he's seemingly worked on being better as a pass rusher and the fact that he's had a career season in 2007, might mean there's nothing to worry about when it comes to getting his best every play. He'll likely end up somewhere in or around the top 20, but that may depend on where Ellis falls.

      Where he falls depends on how he showcases himself between now and then for the scouts and it's up to him to either help or hurt his status; whether or not he'll be a big-time pro or a bust. But make no bones about it, he does have great talent and even greater potential. If he puts in the work to silence any critics of his work ethic and desire, he'll be an excellent pro, especially if he continues to get better as a pass rusher. He could excel in an a 3-4 defense that allows its defensive tackles to roam, get in the backfield, and be an annoyance both as a pass rusher and a run stopper.

      Update (12/28/07): Okam finished out his collegiate career with a solid performance in Thursday's Holiday Bowl against Arizona St. Okam picked up three tackles, including one for loss, and was credited with two quarterback hurries in the Longhorns' 52-34 victory.

      He finished his senior season with 52 total tackles (25 solo, 27 assists, 11 for loss), five sacks, 16 quarterback hurries, and five pass breakups -- along with a forced fumble and a fumble recovery.

      Might be a very slight reach for him at 12, but if he's still there (after the combine, which could change the order completely), I think he's the perfect pick.

      Front line:
      Crowder - Okam - Thomas - Dumervil/Moss

      Looks pretty damn good to me.
      Wow. You've done you're homework - I'm impressed.

      The problem, however, is what happens if you don't get Okam? And what if Thomas remains a non-impact player on the line?

      I understand that a coach has to have players in order to be successful. But when you need specific players for specific positions that are hard to obtain and keep in order for the scheme to be successful, or there's the dramatic decline/drop-off we saw this past season, that has me worried, especially when the coach is unable to adapt/compensate properly through the regular season, as we saw with Bates.
      sigpic

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      • #18
        I'm kind of a draft nut. Once the Broncos season ends, I immerse myself completely in the draft. The only reason I watch college football is to see who the Broncos might draft.

        On my old board, I called the Broncos moving up to get Cutler a month before it happened. Didn't think it would be with the Rams, but I called us getting number 6.

        Anyway, with regard to Okam, I don't think getting him will be a problem unless we make a gamble and go after a safety or LB in that spot. I think, especially if Bates is retained, that the highest priority will be DT and we will get him. Like I said, he'd be considered a reach at 12, but not for us. A guy with that kind of size and ability, as it says in his scouting report, is exactly what we need at the position.

        If, for some reason Okam isn't there - and I think he'll be who we target from moment one of the draft prep - we will have to try and get a valuable big man in the second round, and maybe try for Dan Conner or James Laurinaitis in the first.

        As for Marcus Thomas, I think the kid made some strides this season, and I truly believe that he'll be a huge asset to this defense starting next season.

        The things needed for Bates' system to work:
        Big, two-gap DT (gimme OKAM!)
        Speed rushers on the outside (a la Jason Taylor, aka Jarvis Moss)
        Fast, agile linebackers (DJ Williams, Ian Gold if he learns to tackle again, and maybe someone like J Leman from Illinois in the second round)
        Strong, shutdown corners (Bly/Bailey)

        We have the tools and, as I've said, are only a couple players - and another off season filled with mini camps and training camp - away from having a very dangerous defense.
        In Manning I trust.

        Comment


        • #19
          Originally posted by TheRealMoose View Post
          I'm kind of a draft nut. Once the Broncos season ends, I immerse myself completely in the draft. The only reason I watch college football is to see who the Broncos might draft.

          On my old board, I called the Broncos moving up to get Cutler a month before it happened. Didn't think it would be with the Rams, but I called us getting number 6.

          Anyway, with regard to Okam, I don't think getting him will be a problem unless we make a gamble and go after a safety or LB in that spot. I think, especially if Bates is retained, that the highest priority will be DT and we will get him. Like I said, he'd be considered a reach at 12, but not for us. A guy with that kind of size and ability, as it says in his scouting report, is exactly what we need at the position.

          If, for some reason Okam isn't there - and I think he'll be who we target from moment one of the draft prep - we will have to try and get a valuable big man in the second round, and maybe try for Dan Conner or James Laurinaitis in the first.

          As for Marcus Thomas, I think the kid made some strides this season, and I truly believe that he'll be a huge asset to this defense starting next season.

          The things needed for Bates' system to work:
          Big, two-gap DT (gimme OKAM!)
          Speed rushers on the outside (a la Jason Taylor, aka Jarvis Moss)
          Fast, agile linebackers (DJ Williams, Ian Gold if he learns to tackle again, and maybe someone like J Leman from Illinois in the second round)
          Strong, shutdown corners (Bly/Bailey)

          We have the tools and, as I've said, are only a couple players - and another off season filled with mini camps and training camp - away from having a very dangerous defense.
          I agree. But again, the concern to me, at that point, is Shanahan. Shanahan is unpredictable in the draft, and I can see him taking a LB, Safety, or even a running back of a decent one is available with the 12th pick, instead of a DT.

          Furthermore, DTs tend to struggle their rookie season, so we can't expect much of Okam next season, even if we do land him. What happens with Bates if this team starts dropping 40 points to the Chargers or whoever? If you're Shanahan, do you take the risk and stick with Bates and hope it works out, or do you cut your ties now and go a different direction? Again, I'm not so much concerned over the fact that our defense had a drop off or that we weren't a great unit. I'm concerned with just how bad this defense got in just one season with more than enough talent to at least keep us respectable and non-embarrassing. And from what I saw between Buffalo win to the San Diego loss prior to us scrapping his scheme, is a defensive coach who was unable to adapt and compensate for what was happening to his defense and a unit that actually got progressively worse before the meltdown against San Diego.
          sigpic

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          • #20
            First, no way he takes a RB in the first round. No way. He truly believes that it's the system, not the player, and if he used a first round pick on a runner when we have so many other needs, especially on the other side of the ball, then it might be time for him to leave.

            Also, with him being so upset with the Denver D, there's no way he doesn't impact that side of the ball, as long as there's someone worthy of that pick still on the board.

            I'm not a mind reader. If we start dropping 40 points to teams next season, and we're not scoring 41, then yes, I would support giving Bates the heave ho. But I strongly believe that he has earned the chance to prove what his defense can do with a few of the right players in place. His reputation has earned him that much.

            Both Lynch and Bly agree. CBS4

            Not a huge ringing endorsement, but they both know he can coach, and both agree that giving a coordinator only one year is folly in the NFL.

            You say we have the talent to keep us non-embarrassing, and you're right. Before injuries, I'd say we did have a unit that was non-embarrassing. But I think Bates deserves a chance to see what his scheme can accomplish with a healthy Moss, Thomas in his second year, and a young, talented two-gap DT in place of the washed up whale of Sam Adams.
            In Manning I trust.

            Comment


            • #21
              Originally posted by TheRealMoose View Post
              First, no way he takes a RB in the first round. No way. He truly believes that it's the system, not the player, and if he used a first round pick on a runner when we have so many other needs, especially on the other side of the ball, then it might be time for him to leave.

              Also, with him being so upset with the Denver D, there's no way he doesn't impact that side of the ball, as long as there's someone worthy of that pick still on the board.

              I'm not a mind reader. If we start dropping 40 points to teams next season, and we're not scoring 41, then yes, I would support giving Bates the heave ho. But I strongly believe that he has earned the chance to prove what his defense can do with a few of the right players in place. His reputation has earned him that much.

              Both Lynch and Bly agree. CBS4

              Not a huge ringing endorsement, but they both know he can coach, and both agree that giving a coordinator only one year is folly in the NFL.

              You say we have the talent to keep us non-embarrassing, and you're right. Before injuries, I'd say we did have a unit that was non-embarrassing. But I think Bates deserves a chance to see what his scheme can accomplish with a healthy Moss, Thomas in his second year, and a young, talented two-gap DT in place of the washed up whale of Sam Adams.
              Here's my thing with the whole '1st round pick on a RB' debate...

              I agree that there's not necessarily a 'need' for the Broncos to draft a RB. They've seem to do just fine with mostly pedestrian backs under Shanahan's system (save for TD and Clinton Portis, who were/are game breakers).

              However, I think the biggest catalyst for our offensive red zone issues over the past 4 or 5 years have been our small offensive linemen within the scheme we run. We were able to compensate for this in the previously because we had CP and TD. But we've seen what has happened without those guys. Now, you can either draft bigger offensive linemen and run a different scheme (something that would take a few years to accomplish and a complete revamp of the O-line), or you finally find and stay with a franchise RB in the mold of TD or CP.

              I'm not a draft expert - it's not my strength when it comes to my knowledge of the game. I haven't heard of most of these guys until about a month before the draft. But it doesn't take an expert to figure out that the Broncos have drafted rather poorly overall, and that where they've failed is by drafting role and gap players than impact players (by gap I mean gap/hole on the roster), instead of the best player(s) available. They draft for need rather than for impact. The one notable exception has been the '06 draft, where it would be hard to argue that the Broncos needed to draft Cutler, Marshall, Dumervil, or Scheffler, as Plummer, Lelie, Pryce, and Putzier were doing pretty well within the system. But look how drafting those particular players have done for us now. No question they're outperforming their predecessors.

              I can't really comment on your evaluation on Okam, except that you did a really good job of evaluating him and researching him. However, if a situation came up in which a more talented running back was available with the 12th pick than a talented DT, I would rather Denver take the more talented RB than the lesser talented DT. To me, we need to start drafting the best players available.

              Now, having said that, I don't know if/believe there is a running back worth a 1st round pick at the Broncos spot. I think if you do that, the runner better be a Barry Sanders/Walter Payton-type player, who can get you 1,500 even with a sub-par offensive line. But regardless, I want Denver to go after impact players this season - not role fillers or players that will do well within the scheme.
              sigpic

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              • #22
                Originally posted by Gr3yStreet View Post
                Well, since theres already three or four threads talking JUST about Jim Bates, ill talk about something positive.

                I dont know about you guys, but that segment about Jay and Brandon trying to get him 100 catches, is EXACTLY what I want to hear our young players are doing. Jay and BMarsh were out there just having fun.

                "You need 8 passes? Sure why not, I'm that good"
                Jay and Brandon are both good and fun to watch!



                ----------------------------------------------
                I work at Vanderbilt University

                Where Jay Graduated!


                I tell you I love Elway! He was my hero growing up. I loved the way he threw the ball with velocity! I love that in a QB. This is why I am a Cutlerfan!!

                Comment


                • #23
                  Originally posted by cutlerfan View Post
                  Jay and Brandon are both good and fun to watch!
                  JC, Marshall and Scheffler seem to have GREAT chemistry on and off the field.

                  I can't wait to see what the future holds for these guys!!

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Originally posted by PowderAddict View Post
                    JC, Marshall and Scheffler seem to have GREAT chemistry on and off the field.

                    I can't wait to see what the future holds for these guys!!
                    Agree! I just hope our O-Line gets better!



                    ----------------------------------------------
                    I work at Vanderbilt University

                    Where Jay Graduated!


                    I tell you I love Elway! He was my hero growing up. I loved the way he threw the ball with velocity! I love that in a QB. This is why I am a Cutlerfan!!

                    Comment

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