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Ziggy
05-02-2008, 04:12 PM
Who Shut Down the Mastermind?

Much has been made about the lack of creativity in the Broncos offensive scheme. Much has been made about the struggles in the red zone, and rightly so. Mike Shanahan is the head coach. He was nicknamed the ‘mastermind’ for his ability to break down any defense thrown against his offenses. Yet in recent years, the Broncos offense has not exactly put fear into the hearts of opponents. The mastermind has been shut down. Who’s the culprit? Let’s take a closer look to figure it out.

Shanahan’s greatest day as an offensive coordinator came in Super Bowl XXIVX while calling plays for the San Francisco 49'ers. San Fran scored 49 points, and racked up 455 yards and 7 TD's. That 49’ers offense had 9 starters on the offensive side of the ball that were in the pro bowl at one time in their career.

He began his Denver Broncos head coaching career in 1995. Within 4 years he had compiled a record of 47-17 with 2 Super Bowl victories. Denver also had 9 starters on the offensive side of the ball that were in the pro bowl at one time in their career.

In the years following the Broncos two Super Bowl victories, Denver has placed just 4 offensive players in the Pro Bowl that were not part of their Super Bowl teams. 4 players in 9 years. Despite the severe drop off in talent on both sides of the ball, the Broncos have had only 2 losing seasons in those 9 years. Mike Shanahan can win with the proper talent. As a matter of fact, he’s proven that he can win it all with the proper talent. The problem is that Denver’s talent base has been so diminished over that last 9 years, that he has spent most of his offensive prowess covering up for the deficiencies of the players on the field. For instance, Jake Plummer was one of the best scrambling quarterbacks in the NFL. He could complete a pass on the run as well as anyone. Set him back in the pocket, however, and you were normally assured of quite a different outcome. The bootleg became the staple of Denver’s offense. Not out of creativity, but necessity. Along comes Jay Cutler, and Denver once again has a pocket quarterback. Cutler can scramble, but his skills are best utilized in the pocket. The problem? Denver doesn’t have an offensive line capable of holding a pocket against a good defense. Have these been the only problems with the offense? No. The list goes on and on. These are just 2 examples of why Mike Shanahan has not been able to utilize his creativity in play calling like he did with San Fransisco and Denver during the Super Bowl years.

Who’s to blame? Why, the man making personnel decisions of course. That would be Mike Shanahan, the man who has the final say in all draft choices and free agent signings. One may argue that he trusts the research of his underlings. If so, these underlings should have been looking for new employers long ago. Whose decision was it to keep them for so long? None other than Mike Shanahan himself.

There is truly only one person that could have shut down the mastermind. That would be the mastermind himself. For now, the Broncos have the right man in charge of the offense. When will Shanahan win another Super Bowl? When he has the proper tools to work with. So should we fire Shanahan the personnel guy? That, my friends, is a debate for another day.

Retired_Member_001
05-02-2008, 04:20 PM
Great article!

I agree that if the right decisions were made when it came to FA signings and Draft picks, this team would be completely different. I think if we had two good drafts since 2000 to go with the last two drafts, we would be a completely different team. At the end of the day, Shanahan's decisions have cost us BIG TIME. Hopefully either his draftinb ability gets alot better/ has gotten alot better or we get a real GM.

tubby
05-02-2008, 05:01 PM
Shanahan’s greatest day as an offensive coordinator came in Super Bowl XXIV while calling plays for the San Francisco 49’ers. After cutting through the Denver Broncos defense like a hot knife through butter, the Niners’ offense had set numerous Super Bowl records on their way to a 55-10 win. Besides the 55 points, San Fran racked up 461 net yards and 7 Super Bowl records that still stand to this day. That 49’ers offense had 9 starters on the offensive side of the ball that were in the pro bowl at one time in their career.




Not true. He was on the Broncos sideline in SB XXIV as the QB coach.

He was the OC for the 49ers in SB XXIX when they scored 49 points and Steve Young had 6 touchdown passes.

BroncoJoe
05-02-2008, 05:02 PM
Not true. He was on the Broncos sideline in SB XXIV as the QB coach.

He was the OC for the 49ers in SB XXIX when they scored 49 points and Steve Young had 6 touchdown passes.

Good catch, tubster.

Rex
05-02-2008, 05:02 PM
Not true. He was on the Broncos sideline in SB XXIV as the QB coach.

He was the OC for the 49ers in SB XXIX when they scored 49 points and Steve Young had 6 touchdown passes.

uh oh. Gonna need a ruling here.

Ziggy
05-02-2008, 05:14 PM
Not true. He was on the Broncos sideline in SB XXIV as the QB coach.

He was the OC for the 49ers in SB XXIX when they scored 49 points and Steve Young had 6 touchdown passes.

It's close, but I gave the edge to Super Bowl XXIV:

Super Bowl XXIV:
461 Yards
8 TD's: 5 passing, 3 rushing
55 points

Super Bowl XXIX:
455 yards
7 TD's: 6 passing, 1 rushing
49 points

Medford Bronco
05-02-2008, 05:16 PM
Great article :D

bring in a real GM to work with Shanny the coach :D

BroncoJoe
05-02-2008, 05:20 PM
It's close, but I gave the edge to Super Bowl XXIV:

Super Bowl XXIV:
461 Yards
8 TD's: 5 passing, 3 rushing
55 points

Super Bowl XXIX:
455 yards
7 TD's: 6 passing, 1 rushing
49 points

I think he's referring to the fact that Shanahan was with the Broncos, not the 49'ers during SB XXIV.

Ziggy
05-02-2008, 05:29 PM
I think he's referring to the fact that Shanahan was with the Broncos, not the 49'ers during SB XXIV.

Yes, good catch Tubby. I'm going to sit in the corner with the dunce cap on now.

tubby
05-02-2008, 05:31 PM
Yes, good catch Tubby. I'm going to sit in the corner with the dunce cap on now.

It happens. Just swap out that paragraph with the SB XXIX stuff. :D

Rex
05-02-2008, 05:32 PM
Yes, good catch Tubby. I'm going to sit in the corner with the dunce cap on now.

You will have to borrow the cap from Joe.:salute:

BroncoJoe
05-02-2008, 05:34 PM
You will have to borrow the cap from Joe.:salute:

It really needed a good cleaning from cswil's overuse.

tubby
05-02-2008, 05:34 PM
You will have to borrow the cap from Joe.:salute:

Hold on. Let me grab my sunglasses. :D

topscribe
05-02-2008, 05:34 PM
Great article, Ziggy, in the way you laid it out and wrote it. Congrats! I
expect nothing less of you. I also respect your knowledge and opinions on the
board.

However, once again, are we not dealing with history here? I mean, the
drafting years 2001-2004 just stunk, outside D.J. Williams. However, the
2005 draft was a pretty good one, and it has seemed to get better since.

Shanny's FA moves have been pretty decent, too (although I'm not happy
with his letting go of a couple players).

You wouldn't be writing this two to three years late, would you?

-----

Ziggy
05-02-2008, 05:38 PM
It's edited and correct. Still 9 pro bowlers on that offense. Thanks for the catch Tubby.

Ziggy
05-02-2008, 06:04 PM
Great article, Ziggy, in the way you laid it out and wrote it. Congrats! I
expect nothing less of you. I also respect your knowledge and opinions on the
board.

However, once again, are we not dealing with history here? I mean, the
drafting years 2001-2004 just stunk, outside D.J. Williams. However, the
2005 draft was a pretty good one, and it has seemed to get better since.

Shanny's FA moves have been pretty decent, too (although I'm not happy
with his letting go of a couple players).

You wouldn't be writing this two to three years late, would you?

-----

Thanks Top. It is history, but unfortunately that history affects the team as it stands today. It looks as if the Broncos are turning the corner on the draft, and they took a very conservative approach to free agency this season. Even though this draft looks good now though, we won't know for a year or 3. Last year's draft is still up in the air as far as I'm concerned. This season should tell us whether it was a good draft or not.

Being a LONG time Broncos fan, I remember what it was like pre-Orange Crush days. Some of the newer fans think that we're going through hard times now. They have no idea what hard times as a Bronco fan really are. That being said, I think we're on our way back to success.:beer:

topscribe
05-02-2008, 08:00 PM
Thanks Top. It is history, but unfortunately that history affects the team as it stands today. It looks as if the Broncos are turning the corner on the draft, and they took a very conservative approach to free agency this season. Even though this draft looks good now though, we won't know for a year or 3. Last year's draft is still up in the air as far as I'm concerned. This season should tell us whether it was a good draft or not.

Being a LONG time Broncos fan, I remember what it was like pre-Orange Crush days. Some of the newer fans think that we're going through hard times now. They have no idea what hard times as a Bronco fan really are. That being said, I think we're on our way back to success.:beer:

Are you kidding? When I watched the Broncos, in their striped socks and
baby-shit brown colors, beat the Boston Patriots 13-10 on 9 September
1960, I had no idea it would be 14 long years before the Broncos would
have a winning season. :tsk:

Yes, we know, don't we?

But I'll tell you, I don't ever want to go through a stretch like that again.
Had we continued the type of drafts we saw 2001-2004, however, that is
exactly what would have happened.

I don't need anymore of that. I already root for the Cubs. That's enough.

-----

Lonestar
05-05-2008, 07:41 PM
Thanks Top. It is history, but unfortunately that history affects the team as it stands today. It looks as if the Broncos are turning the corner on the draft, and they took a very conservative approach to free agency this season. Even though this draft looks good now though, we won't know for a year or 3. Last year's draft is still up in the air as far as I'm concerned. This season should tell us whether it was a good draft or not.

Being a LONG time Broncos fan, I remember what it was like pre-Orange Crush days. Some of the newer fans think that we're going through hard times now. They have no idea what hard times as a Bronco fan really are. That being said, I think we're on our way back to success.:beer:


I remember a few games that our only score was a Kick off return for a TD 49-7 that day I think it was Goldie sellers making the return..

The Raider or Chiefs I do not remember which because frankly almost all of the games were lopsided and we did not have a chance in them.

I sat in the Southstands most of that time.. The other team would punt at a certain time in the game because in the 4th quarter. they did not want to get within battery range of the south standers.. did not run up the score cause they knew they could.. about the only class thing the raiders every did.. But both OAK and KC beat up on us like we was a HS all star team....

Many a game they had to have a police escort into the locker room that was under those south stands.. They would also place police in the aisles of the stands to watch for folks throwing stuff.

This group of newbies has no clue on what a losing season looked like..

Cugel
05-06-2008, 11:56 PM
You have to look at what Shanahan himself said in response to this direct criticism of his drafting during his exit interview this year. It was an eye opener to say the least. You could watch the original still on the Broncos.com website.

(Paraphrase)
Q: Virtually none of your draft picks from 2001-05 are even still no the team. What impact has that had on your success?

A: That's the difference between 13-3 and 10-6. 10-6 and you get into the playoffs and anything can happen.

He blamed last season not on the lack of talent but "if I had coached the way I should have."

He's certainly an arrogant *******, which you definitely need in a coach. He openly thinks that he can take any team with a smattering of talent to 10-6 and a playoff berth, and if he gets into the playoffs "anything can happen."

However, he's rather blase about the total drafting failures. Those failed drafts between 2001-05 should be the core of the team. They ARE the core of the team for teams like the Patriots, but not the Broncos.

We'll have to see over the next few years what impact the firing of Ted Sundquist will have. Ted was not the sharpest tool in the box, but his firing leaves Denver without any GM at all. NO top GM would want to come here. So, Shanahan is making do with promoting a scout to assistant GM. It looked on draft day like he was able to execute his plan.

You could criticize the plan (taking Royal in the 2nd round might or might not look like a good move in 2 or 3 years). But, he got the players that he wanted.

The problem is that despite all the moves to solidify the team taken in the last 3 years there is still a big talent gap between the Broncos and the top AFC teams like the Steelers, Chargers, Patriots and Colts (and now the Jaguars look to be emerging too).

I don't care a damn what Shanahan the coach thinks about "10-6 and anything can happen." You're just not going to beat those teams to GET to the Super-Bowl from the AFC unless you have elite talent.

He has the most important piece now in Cutler, but remember that Denver won those championships with not just pro-bowl, but Hall of Fame talent. They had 4 offensive players who are or should be Hall of Famers: TD, Elway, Gary Zimmerman and Shannon Sharpe.

Not one player on the current squad comes close to that level right now. Some have some potential, but not one player is currently considered Hall of Fame material.

So, Shanahan's thesis is simply unproven. He's NEVER won a SB without Hall of Famers on the team and right now he doesn't have any. :coffee:

I'd say realistically it's going to take a couple of more years before Denver will be ready to compete for a championship again. If the Broncos were in the NFC things might well be different. The Giants frankly weren't very good early in the season, turned it around later, got into the playoffs at 10-6 and then got hot and won a SB. Eli Manning finally proved worth the #1 overall pick and their DL was dominant.

I don't see that happening in the AFC though. There are just too many elite teams you have to beat and at least one or two of them are going to be hot in the playoffs. If Pittsburgh is having an off-year, the Chargers are coming on. If the Colts lost a step last year, the Jaguars look like taking it up a notch. If you don't have elite talent across the board to match up with them you won't win an AFC Championship game to get to the SB.

I expect Denver to be better this season, but how good remains to be seen. A wild-card is not out of the question, but they'll have to show a lot they didn't last year.

omac
05-07-2008, 01:03 AM
It was only 2005, not long ago, when Denver was 5th overall in scoring TDs, 25 of their 46 being rushing TDs, and 20 of those rushing TDs came from players they drafted, Mike Anderson and Tatum Bell. Our RBs and OL were healthy that season. Let's see how a healthy OL and healthy RBs would do this season.

omac
05-07-2008, 01:21 AM
He has the most important piece now in Cutler, but remember that Denver won those championships with not just pro-bowl, but Hall of Fame talent. They had 4 offensive players who are or should be Hall of Famers: TD, Elway, Gary Zimmerman and Shannon Sharpe.

Not one player on the current squad comes close to that level right now. Some have some potential, but not one player is currently considered Hall of Fame material.

Problem with that thinking is, it was only Elway who was assured of the Hall of Fame. TD was extremely talented, but it was still too early in his career to call him hall of fame, and so was Sharpe. Plus, though Elway was a shoe-in for the Hall, talentwise, he wasn't as good as he used to be because of age. He did become a much smarter quarterback under Shanny, who tamed him down a bit, making him take less risks, and focussing on the ground game.

For a young team, just how can you tell if a player has Hall of Fame talent? Though people know Brady will be in the Hall, people didn't think that way about him at all when the Pats won their 1st superbowl.

We have a few talented young skills players who, if they continue to progress, could have hall of fame careers. If Sceffler becomes a HOF after he retires, people will say Denver had HOF talent at that time, but the truth is, we couldn't have known during that time. If Derek Anderson continues to progress, he could go into the HOF, and people would say the Browns had HOF talent in hindsight. But if Anderson becomes a 1 year wonder, that's another thing.

To say a person has HOF talent takes some years to evaluate. Randy Moss was being written off, then he has a great season with the Pats. Is Chad Johnson a HOF talent? Is TJ? Owens could enter the HOF, but he's been in the league pretty long, so his talent level could be measured properly.

Cutler, Scheffler, Marshall ... they may be compared to Elway, Sharpe, and Smith in the future, who knows? But to write them off as surely not having HOF talent is jumping the gun.

Cugel
05-07-2008, 12:57 PM
You totally ignored the last sentence I wrote where I said "some have potential." :coffee:

Of course there's no way to know right now whether Cutler or Brandon Marshall or Dumervil or hell, any of last year's draft picks, could wind up in the hall of fame. It's possible.

But, based on the veterans who have been on the team long enough to gauge their talent not one comes close.

As for Shannon Sharpe and Zimm, Zimm's in and Shannon will be next year. They both deserve to be. TD you can argue about. Certainly he might never get in because his career was too short, but during that career he was as dominant as L.T. is now -- and if there's a consensus Hall of Fame candidate RB it's L.T. He would need to continue to excel for a few more years but you'd have to say he's got a real shot, as does Antonio Gates. Tony Gonzalez is the other current player from this division who comes to mind as a probable Hall of Famer.

Can Shanahan win a championship without Hall of Fame players? Sure. It's possible, other teams have managed, (do the 2002 Tampa Bay Bucs or the Steelers have any candidates?) he just hasn't done it yet.

Ziggy
05-07-2008, 02:01 PM
You have to look at what Shanahan himself said in response to this direct criticism of his drafting during his exit interview this year. It was an eye opener to say the least. You could watch the original still on the Broncos.com website.

(Paraphrase)
Q: Virtually none of your draft picks from 2001-05 are even still no the team. What impact has that had on your success?

A: That's the difference between 13-3 and 10-6. 10-6 and you get into the playoffs and anything can happen.

He blamed last season not on the lack of talent but "if I had coached the way I should have."

He's certainly an arrogant *******, which you definitely need in a coach. He openly thinks that he can take any team with a smattering of talent to 10-6 and a playoff berth, and if he gets into the playoffs "anything can happen."

However, he's rather blase about the total drafting failures. Those failed drafts between 2001-05 should be the core of the team. They ARE the core of the team for teams like the Patriots, but not the Broncos.

We'll have to see over the next few years what impact the firing of Ted Sundquist will have. Ted was not the sharpest tool in the box, but his firing leaves Denver without any GM at all. NO top GM would want to come here. So, Shanahan is making do with promoting a scout to assistant GM. It looked on draft day like he was able to execute his plan.

You could criticize the plan (taking Royal in the 2nd round might or might not look like a good move in 2 or 3 years). But, he got the players that he wanted.

The problem is that despite all the moves to solidify the team taken in the last 3 years there is still a big talent gap between the Broncos and the top AFC teams like the Steelers, Chargers, Patriots and Colts (and now the Jaguars look to be emerging too).

I don't care a damn what Shanahan the coach thinks about "10-6 and anything can happen." You're just not going to beat those teams to GET to the Super-Bowl from the AFC unless you have elite talent.

He has the most important piece now in Cutler, but remember that Denver won those championships with not just pro-bowl, but Hall of Fame talent. They had 4 offensive players who are or should be Hall of Famers: TD, Elway, Gary Zimmerman and Shannon Sharpe.

Not one player on the current squad comes close to that level right now. Some have some potential, but not one player is currently considered Hall of Fame material.

So, Shanahan's thesis is simply unproven. He's NEVER won a SB without Hall of Famers on the team and right now he doesn't have any. :coffee:

I'd say realistically it's going to take a couple of more years before Denver will be ready to compete for a championship again. If the Broncos were in the NFC things might well be different. The Giants frankly weren't very good early in the season, turned it around later, got into the playoffs at 10-6 and then got hot and won a SB. Eli Manning finally proved worth the #1 overall pick and their DL was dominant.

I don't see that happening in the AFC though. There are just too many elite teams you have to beat and at least one or two of them are going to be hot in the playoffs. If Pittsburgh is having an off-year, the Chargers are coming on. If the Colts lost a step last year, the Jaguars look like taking it up a notch. If you don't have elite talent across the board to match up with them you won't win an AFC Championship game to get to the SB.

I expect Denver to be better this season, but how good remains to be seen. A wild-card is not out of the question, but they'll have to show a lot they didn't last year.

I'm assuming you mean that we have no hall of fame talent on the offensive side of the ball. Great post, however, you need to remember that it's way too early to tell if some of our young players on offense have that kind of talent. Our core offensive players, Marshal, Cutler, Scheffler, and now Clady are too early in thier careers to make those kinds of assessments. Noone was putting Elway, Zimmerman, Davis, and certainly not Sharpe in the Hall of fame in thier first 2 and 3 years. You also said that Shanahan has not won a Super Bowl without a Hall of Famers on the team. Which coaches have?

Having said that, I agree that we are way behind the AFC powers in overall talent. We have been for quite some time, but things have begun to look up over the last few years.:beer:

omac
05-08-2008, 04:09 AM
You totally ignored the last sentence I wrote where I said "some have potential." :coffee:

Of course there's no way to know right now whether Cutler or Brandon Marshall or Dumervil or hell, any of last year's draft picks, could wind up in the hall of fame. It's possible.

But, based on the veterans who have been on the team long enough to gauge their talent not one comes close.

As for Shannon Sharpe and Zimm, Zimm's in and Shannon will be next year. They both deserve to be. TD you can argue about. Certainly he might never get in because his career was too short, but during that career he was as dominant as L.T. is now -- and if there's a consensus Hall of Fame candidate RB it's L.T. He would need to continue to excel for a few more years but you'd have to say he's got a real shot, as does Antonio Gates. Tony Gonzalez is the other current player from this division who comes to mind as a probable Hall of Famer.

Can Shanahan win a championship without Hall of Fame players? Sure. It's possible, other teams have managed, (do the 2002 Tampa Bay Bucs or the Steelers have any candidates?) he just hasn't done it yet.

Nah, I didn't ignore it. My post just focussed on your assesment regarding HOF talent. My point was, though those guys were really good, to call them HOF material at that time would be jumping the gun. TD had only been in the league 3 years. Sharpe had been in the league 8 years then, with 4 of those seasons being very impressive, but at that time, you'd be jumping the gun to call them HOF talent.

The only guy who was a definite HOF at that time was Elway, and like I said, he was on the way down talentwise, because of his age. The young Farve outplayed him and made better decisions despite losing the superbowl.

Basically, I'm saying the same things Ziggy said in the post above.

Right now, us not making the superbowl has nothing to do with HOF talent. It has, instead, more to do with seasoning for our talented starters, and plugging the holes in our OL and DL.

The reason Cutler gets compared to Elway is because he does have great talent. The talent in Marshall and Scheffler are definitely easily evident. Just like the talent in Elway was evident, even in his early career.

We do have talented players who could be some of the best in the league. It's seasoning, not lack of talent, that is preventing us from winning a superbowl.

And if you're talking about Shanny not being able to win without HOF talent (which usually is assesed after a career), then you can put Bellichick in there too; he's never won as a head coach without Brady; Dungy's never won without Peyton; the great Bill Walsh has never won without a HOF in his team, whether Montana or Rice. All coaches need good players to win. If (or when) Shanny wins a superbowl with this team, and if Cutler and company have a great career, then people will be posting, "yeah, but he needed HOF talent to win".

It's not HOF talent that this team lacks, and I'm not saying we have HOF'ers in this team. What I am saying is it's the seasoning, and the fixing of the holes in our team that will make us superbowl champs.

Ziggy
05-08-2008, 04:47 AM
I went back from the first Super Bowl in 1967 to the 93 Super Bowl. I figured that was a fair assessment since some of the players between 93 and now haven't had the required wait to go into the Hall yet. Not a single Super Bowl winning team has done it without Hall of Famers.

Tned
05-08-2008, 08:27 AM
10-6 and you get into the playoffs and anything can happen.

He blamed last season not on the lack of talent but "if I had coached the way I should have."


This is what I have been saying for two years. "Broken record Tned" needs to become my nickname.

While I am all for elite talent on the field, I think a lot of fans lose sight of the fact that the Broncos haven't had a top 10 pick in 18 years or so. Have only had 3 (I think, one of which was traded up for) top 15 picks in the last 15+ years, etc. The team has had only two losing seasons (including one last year) in the last 15 years or so.

Therefore, Shanny has been constantly "rebuilding on the fly" -- turning the roster over while still pumping out winning, and playoff seasons. That type of rebuilding, which is almost unheard of in the NFL means it is VERY hard to judge his drafting and FA activity. Most teams go through cycles, where they have a run of VERY bad years (low, single digit wins -- multiple top 5/10 draft picks) and get to replenish their team with high grade talent, without the pressure of expecting to win 'that' season.

The Broncos have been expected to win every season (except possibly last/this season), so therefore have been in a position to reach more than say SF, Dallas, Cincy, Cleveland, etc, etc, etc. and even NE just prior to their series of SB wins.

So, it isn't really fair to compare Shanny's drafting results to other teams, because no other team managed to do what he didin the first 13 years or so, which was two win two SB's (granted with hall of famers), but also manage to be the only team in the league to completely turnover the roster at least once, without a series of losing seasons (i.e. high draft picks) and still only having one losing season (1999) prior to last year.

So, as I have said before, "Broncos fans are the most spoiled in the NFL" because they have not experienced the pain the Dallas, Indy, NE, Cleveland, SF, Miami, Chicago, Oakland, AZ, St. Louis, etc., etc., etc. fans have in the last 20 years, which is to go through traditional NFL cycles which include 2-5 year periods of low, single digit wins resulting in high, sure draft picks with NO EXPECTATIONS to win right away as the team 'rebuilds'.

Broncos fans haven't had to endure what those other fans have, which is to call the talk radio shows and say, "I think we can get to .500 this year" and hear the NFL Analysts reply, "I think that's wishful thinking, the Cowboys (or Raiders, or NE or Miami or Chicago, etc., etc.) can probably win 6 games if things go well." Endure years of that 'hope' just to have a .500 season before their team once again rises from the ashes to become a playoff team, forget being a SB team or SB winning team.

Broncos fans over the last two decades have seen only a handful (3 or 4) losing seasons smattered over a 20+ year period. Broncos fans have seen their team in the playoffs, in the SBs more than just about any team in the NFL. We have become spoiled in two ways:


We aren't used to losing seasons.
We had the benefit of Elway for 15 years and TD for a great 4-5
We 'think' that our team is a failure if it doesn't win the SB, BECAUSE we have become spoiled by so few losing seasons, and almost no low single digit win seasons in recent memory.


So, the answer to who shut down the mastermind, was himself, but not in his drafting/FA moves. Those are easily justified if you realize that the Broncos have avoided a traditional 'rebuilding' cycle and still pumped out winning season after winning season, made playoff appearances, AFCCG appearance, etc.

What stopped the mastermind was not realizing that it was time to transform the teams offense and defense in order to get back to the SB, but instead what stopped him was HOW he attempted to do it. He put that transformation in the hands of Bates and Heimerdinger and they tried to force change through before we had actually transformed the roster.

The to assistant head coaches, hand picked by the mastermind, didn't run schemes suited to the talent on the field. End of story. It is easy to see what has gone wrong. If the talent had continued to be used in a fashion where they had a chance to succeed, WHILE still transforming the roster with picks like Cutler, Marshall, Clady, Dumervil, Moss, Thomas, etc. then the Broncos would likely have been in the playoffs the last two years and as the mastermind said, once you get in the playoffs, anything can happen.

As spoiled Broncos fans, we call Shanny arrogant for saying anything can happen once you get to the playoffs, or with better coaching we would have been in the playoffs the last two years. HOWEVER, that is what the fans of other teams know. Get to the playoffs, and ANYTHING can happen. The key is just getting to the post season.

Cugel
05-08-2008, 11:32 AM
This is what I have been saying for two years. "Broken record Tned" needs to become my nickname.

While I am all for elite talent on the field, I think a lot of fans lose sight of the fact that the Broncos haven't had a top 10 pick in 18 years or so. Have only had 3 (I think, one of which was traded up for) top 15 picks in the last 15+ years, etc. The team has had only two losing seasons (including one last year) in the last 15 years or so.

Therefore, Shanny has been constantly "rebuilding on the fly" -- turning the roster over while still pumping out winning, and playoff seasons. That type of rebuilding, which is almost unheard of in the NFL means it is VERY hard to judge his drafting and FA activity. Most teams go through cycles, where they have a run of VERY bad years (low, single digit wins -- multiple top 5/10 draft picks) and get to replenish their team with high grade talent, without the pressure of expecting to win 'that' season.

One small problem with this thesis: the Patriots! The Patriots have won 86 regular season games and lost 26 since Belichek came to town, a .768 winning percentage. They've picked at or near the bottom of every draft, yet their roster is just stocked FULL of talent.

Why? Because they have an director of player personnel in Scott Pioli who has assembled a top-notch team of talent evaluators.

They stay disciplined in the draft, acquiring players who fill a role and not gambling or reaching for players based on "hope" that has been Shanahan's trademark for all too long. You would never have found Pioli suggest drafting a Darius Watts in the 2nd round. :coffee:

Since Belichek came to town here are their 1st round draft picks as an example:

2001 #6 Richard Seymour DT Georgia
2002 #21 Daniel Graham TE Colorado
2003 #13 Ty Warren DT Texas A&M
2004 #21 Vince Wilfork DT Miami (FL)
______#32 Benjamin Watson TE Georgia
2005 #32 Logan Mankins OG Fresno State
2006 #21 Laurence Maroney RB Minnesota
2007 #24 Brandon Meriweather S Miami (FL)
2008 #10 Jerod Mayo LB Tennessee

Every single one of those players (with the exception of Mayo who is promising) has been good and all contributed to their success. Not one bust!

Notice that you don't see busts like:

2003 #20 George Foster T Georgia
2002 #19 Ashley Lelie WR Hawaii
2001 #24 Willie Middlebrooks CB Minnesota

That is exactly why the Broncos are so far deficient in talent to the top NFL teams right now. You can't have 3 busted first round picks in a row! While Richard Seymour and Ty Warren have been mainstays of the Patriots success for years, and Daniel Graham was good enough to get a huge FA contract with the Broncos, Foster, Lelie and Middlebrooks are ancient memories.

If we were to compare the Patriots 2nd and 3rd round draft picks to the Broncos the comparison would be much, much worse, because then we'd have to talk about busted picks like Paul Toviesi, Tatum Bell, Terry Pierce, and Darius Watts.

Here's Pioli's bio:



Scott Pioli is in his eighth season with the Patriots and along with Head Coach Bill Belichick has instilled a football philosophy designed to create a consistent championship contender in New England. Their work has produced an NFL-best three Super Bowl championships, three conference titles and five division crowns since 2001.

Pioli's primary personnel objective is to build a team, not to simply collect individual talent. As a result, the Patriots have been able to prosper despite the NFL realities of injuries and the salary cap, which have proven in many cases to be impediments to long-term success in pro football. The depth and versatility of the clubs that Pioli and Belichick have assembled have been integral to the Patriots' success, as players from a wide spectrum of previous experience have played important roles in the team's achievements.

Once Pioli and Belichick arrived in New England in 2000, it took the pair just two seasons to rebuild the foundation of the team. Since orchestrating the franchise's first Super Bowl victory following the 2001 season, Pioli and Belichick have produced consistently solid results, becoming the only personnel director/head coach tandem in NFL history to win three Super Bowls in a four-year span (2001-04). The Patriots are the only NFL team to win at least one playoff game in each of the last four seasons (2003-06) and are the only team in the league to win nine or more games in each of the last six seasons (2001-06). Additionally, New England's 12 playoff wins over the last six seasons are tied for the second-highest total by a team over any six-year span in NFL history.

In recognition of his achievements, Pioli was awarded The Sporting News' George Young NFL Executive of the Year award (voted on by NFL executives) following the 2003 and 2004 seasons. He is one of just three NFL executives, along with Bill Polian and Bobby Beathard, to win the award in consecutive years. Pioli is the youngest executive to win the award.

In each of the last four seasons, the depth and versatility of New England's roster helped overcome key injuries to win four straight AFC East titles. The Patriots have used an average of nearly 42 different starters over the last four seasons, and claimed two NFL records for success in that category. In 2005, the Patriots set a post-merger league record for a division champion by utilizing 45 different starters. In 2003, the Patriots won Super Bowl XXXVIII despite using 42 different starters, the most in league history by a Super Bowl champion. In 2004, the Patriots employed 40 different starters as they won their second consecutive Super Bowl, and in 2006 won their fourth straight AFC East title while using 39 different starters. Of the 53 players on the Patriots' 2006 AFC Championship Game roster, 43 were acquired after the team's first championship in 2001 and 28 were acquired since the team's third title in 2004.

The Patriots have used an effective combination of free agent signings, trades and draft picks to acquire championship- caliber players. Players drafted by Belichick and Pioli have earned a total of three Super Bowl MVP awards and nine Pro Bowl berths, while Tom Brady (a sixth round pick in 2000) and Richard Seymour (a first-rounder in 2001) are widely considered to be among the NFL's elite players. Veteran free agents signed by Belichick and Pioli include defensive co-captain Rodney Harrison, outside linebackers Mike Vrabel and Rosevelt Colvin and three-time Pro Bowl special teams captain Larry Izzo among dozens of other contributors to New England's championship squads. New England's trades have netted improvement in drafting position that led to the ability to exchange draft picks for key veterans such as Corey Dillon, who set the Patriots' singleseason rushing record in 2004, and Ted Washington, an important contributor to the 2003 title team.

Pioli was honored with Executive of the Year honors from national media outlets following the 2001, 2003 and 2004 seasons. Following the Patriots' first Super Bowl victory, the Dallas Morning News picked him as the league's top executive. Two seasons later, following Super Bowl XXXVIII, he earned Executive of the Year honors from Pro Football Weekly (voted on by the media), The Sporting News (voted on by NFL executives) and Sports Illustrated. In 2004, Pioli's accolades included the NFLPA's Award for Executive Achievement and NFL Executive of the Year awards from The Sporting News, USA Today, the San Francisco Chronicle and SI.com.

Lonestar
05-08-2008, 01:49 PM
One small problem with this thesis: the Patriots! The Patriots have won 86 regular season games and lost 26 since Belichek came to town, a .768 winning percentage. They've picked at or near the bottom of every draft, yet their roster is just stocked FULL of talent.

Why? Because they have an director of player personnel in Scott Pioli who has assembled a top-notch team of talent evaluators.

They stay disciplined in the draft, acquiring players who fill a role and not gambling or reaching for players based on "hope" that has been Shanahan's trademark for all too long. You would never have found Pioli suggest drafting a Darius Watts in the 2nd round. :coffee:

Since Belichek came to town here are their 1st round draft picks as an example:

2001 #6 Richard Seymour DT Georgia
2002 #21 Daniel Graham TE Colorado
2003 #13 Ty Warren DT Texas A&M
2004 #21 Vince Wilfork DT Miami (FL)
______#32 Benjamin Watson TE Georgia
2005 #32 Logan Mankins OG Fresno State
2006 #21 Laurence Maroney RB Minnesota
2007 #24 Brandon Meriweather S Miami (FL)
2008 #10 Jerod Mayo LB Tennessee

Every single one of those players (with the exception of Mayo who is promising) has been good and all contributed to their success. Not one bust!

Notice that you don't see busts like:

2003 #20 George Foster T Georgia
2002 #19 Ashley Lelie WR Hawaii
2001 #24 Willie Middlebrooks CB Minnesota
2000 15 Deltha O'Neal HC
1998 30 Marcus Nash WR

That is exactly why the Broncos are so far deficient in talent to the top NFL teams right now. You can't have 3 busted first round picks in a row! While Richard Seymour and Ty Warren have been mainstays of the Patriots success for years, and Daniel Graham was good enough to get a huge FA contract with the Broncos, Foster, Lelie and Middlebrooks are ancient memories.

If we were to compare the Patriots 2nd and 3rd round draft picks to the Broncos the comparison would be much, much worse, because then we'd have to talk about busted picks like Paul Toviesi, Tatum Bell, Terry Pierce, and Darius Watts.

Here's Pioli's bio:

Outstanding post

I want to mention that Tneds biggest statement is like Bate was trying to force the DEF with out the players to run it the same thing happened in 2006 mikey tried to run a drop back passing attack without the OLINE that it needed to protect the QB.. Also tried to for a round snake into square hole he was not at all suited for..

BTW you forgot Nash and IMO Oneal while being a great athlete was to big a head case to play CB.

omac
05-08-2008, 03:00 PM
Outstanding post

I want to mention that Tneds biggest statement is like Bate was trying to force the DEF with out the players to run it the same thing happened in 2006 mikey tried to run a drop back passing attack without the OLINE that it needed to protect the QB.. Also tried to for a round snake into square hole he was not at all suited for..

BTW you forgot Nash and IMO Oneal while being a great athlete was to big a head case to play CB.

Bates run defense just plain sucked. He knew the players he had, got rid of those he didn't want, and acquired those he wanted. Despite this full control, the run defense sucked.

Now it's true that Jake and the OL weren't comfortable with pocket passing, but Shanny believed we needed to add that aspect so that our offense would become more of a threat, and less predictable. We could've kept Jake and never really embraced pocket passing, but I'm likely to believe the debacle against Pittsburgh in the AFCCG would've happened again. The team needs to go forward, and sometimes that means taking a step back first. Our OL wasn't so prepared for pocket passing, but despite that and their injuries, Jay still passed for 20 TDs and around 3,500 yards in his first full season. Now, we've drafted a potential franchise LT, and 2 of our veterans are back and healthy on the line. We also have more depth than before.

Pocket passing is not an experiment; it's a needed weapon for our arsenal. We now have a QB who can pass either in the pocket, or on the move. Our OL is better acquainted with pocket pass protection. It's more an expansion of our breadth of plays.

Lonestar
05-08-2008, 03:29 PM
Bates run defense just plain sucked. He knew the players he had, got rid of those he didn't want, and acquired those he wanted. Despite this full control, the run defense sucked.

Now it's true that Jake and the OL weren't comfortable with pocket passing, but Shanny believed we needed to add that aspect so that our offense would become more of a threat, and less predictable. We could've kept Jake and never really embraced pocket passing, but I'm likely to believe the debacle against Pittsburgh in the AFCCG would've happened again. The team needs to go forward, and sometimes that means taking a step back first. Our OL wasn't so prepared for pocket passing, but despite that and their injuries, Jay still passed for 20 TDs and around 3,500 yards in his first full season. Now, we've drafted a potential franchise LT, and 2 of our veterans are back and healthy on the line. We also have more depth than before.

Pocket passing is not an experiment; it's a needed weapon for our arsenal. We now have a QB who can pass either in the pocket, or on the move. Our OL is better acquainted with pocket pass protection. It's more an expansion of our breadth of plays.

I agree but you can't make a silk purse out of a sows ear either..

With eh smaller OLINE with less talent than we had in the glory years. Mikey's playbook evolved into the roll outs that Jake was able to do well. Even greasy was here we were moving to it because we simply could not protect from the pocket like we could during the Zimmerman time frame.. where everything worked because of the balance..

The ZIM and friends retired one by one replaced with smaller less talented clones, then TD and Sharpe left and all of a sudden we have tater running behind Nalen the only one left from the era..

mikey reading his press clippings about how anyone could get a 1000 yards behind our OLINE. Between the 20's I could have gotten those kinda of yards..

We came to the conclusion in the PIT playoff game that changes were needed, Jake had to go because he limited our O to the shorter passes.. SO Jay was drafted to throw the longer passes.. only to find out that neither Jake or Jay could pass behind the mini-ZIMS because they simply did not pocket pass protect well...

Just like when mikey loaded the team up with CB to beat manning only to find out the biggest problem was DL and not pass rush..

We have been reacting to the other teams with our drafts, instead of being proactive, drafting for backup and eventual starters. We are now grasping at straws trying to get instant starters on the field day one..

That is how low our talent pool has become.. One starter goes down and our season is on the rocks two go out and we are playing guys that can get your franchise QB in coma..

Tned
05-08-2008, 08:42 PM
One small problem with this thesis: the Patriots! The Patriots have won 86 regular season games and lost 26 since Belichek came to town, a .768 winning percentage. They've picked at or near the bottom of every draft, yet their roster is just stocked FULL of talent.

Why? Because they have an director of player personnel in Scott Pioli who has assembled a top-notch team of talent evaluators.

They stay disciplined in the draft, acquiring players who fill a role and not gambling or reaching for players based on "hope" that has been Shanahan's trademark for all too long. You would never have found Pioli suggest drafting a Darius Watts in the 2nd round. :coffee:

Since Belichek came to town here are their 1st round draft picks as an example:

2001 #6 Richard Seymour DT Georgia
2002 #21 Daniel Graham TE Colorado
2003 #13 Ty Warren DT Texas A&M
2004 #21 Vince Wilfork DT Miami (FL)
______#32 Benjamin Watson TE Georgia
2005 #32 Logan Mankins OG Fresno State
2006 #21 Laurence Maroney RB Minnesota
2007 #24 Brandon Meriweather S Miami (FL)
2008 #10 Jerod Mayo LB Tennessee

Every single one of those players (with the exception of Mayo who is promising) has been good and all contributed to their success. Not one bust!

Notice that you don't see busts like:

2003 #20 George Foster T Georgia
2002 #19 Ashley Lelie WR Hawaii
2001 #24 Willie Middlebrooks CB Minnesota

That is exactly why the Broncos are so far deficient in talent to the top NFL teams right now. You can't have 3 busted first round picks in a row! While Richard Seymour and Ty Warren have been mainstays of the Patriots success for years, and Daniel Graham was good enough to get a huge FA contract with the Broncos, Foster, Lelie and Middlebrooks are ancient memories.

If we were to compare the Patriots 2nd and 3rd round draft picks to the Broncos the comparison would be much, much worse, because then we'd have to talk about busted picks like Paul Toviesi, Tatum Bell, Terry Pierce, and Darius Watts.

Here's Pioli's bio:

Some friends and I were talking about the cyclical nature of the NFL and how amazing NE's run has been. There is no question that they have done an amazing job since their last down stretch. Something that many thought was not possible in the FA era.

omac
05-09-2008, 04:09 AM
I agree but you can't make a silk purse out of a sows ear either..

With eh smaller OLINE with less talent than we had in the glory years. Mikey's playbook evolved into the roll outs that Jake was able to do well. Even greasy was here we were moving to it because we simply could not protect from the pocket like we could during the Zimmerman time frame.. where everything worked because of the balance..

The ZIM and friends retired one by one replaced with smaller less talented clones, then TD and Sharpe left and all of a sudden we have tater running behind Nalen the only one left from the era..

mikey reading his press clippings about how anyone could get a 1000 yards behind our OLINE. Between the 20's I could have gotten those kinda of yards..

We came to the conclusion in the PIT playoff game that changes were needed, Jake had to go because he limited our O to the shorter passes.. SO Jay was drafted to throw the longer passes.. only to find out that neither Jake or Jay could pass behind the mini-ZIMS because they simply did not pocket pass protect well...

Just like when mikey loaded the team up with CB to beat manning only to find out the biggest problem was DL and not pass rush..

We have been reacting to the other teams with our drafts, instead of being proactive, drafting for backup and eventual starters. We are now grasping at straws trying to get instant starters on the field day one..

That is how low our talent pool has become.. One starter goes down and our season is on the rocks two go out and we are playing guys that can get your franchise QB in coma..

The problem before Bates came in was how to put consistent pressure on the QB, and that's why we drafted all these ends. We added problems to our DL when we got rid of and acquired players for that DL based on Bates scheme. Because of that, our DL became attrocious against the run. Had we not shifted to the Bates paradigm, and instead relied on the added depth of DEs from the draft, we might have had a decent, if not good, defense, that not only was good against the run, but could also put significant pressure on the QBs. It may not be too difficult to believe, since Elvis was one of the premiere DEs when talking about sacks. That ofcourse, is just pure speculation; what isn't speculation is that pre-Bates, our defense was good against the run.

Our offensive line allowed us to rush for 25 TDs as recently as 2005, and become 2nd in the league in rushing yardage. That was behind Mike Anderson and Tatum Bell. Unless you believe either are upper echelon talents, I'd say the OL did a pretty good job.

The problem was that we had a weakness in our QB that forced us to not develop the other aspects of the offense, primarily pocket passing. Who'se to say, if that OL was still in their prime, and if pocket passing was a significant part of our arsenal, that the OL couldn't get good at it. That aspect hadn't been developed, because we didn't have a quarterback who could pass in the pocket anyway. Pocket passing will be part of the offense, as will the zone blocking and roll-outs, etc, and this OL will get much better at it.

Regarding drafts, we've gotten some good players out of it and some bad ones out of it. So have a lot of teams. You're still harping on the draft choices, yet you've already seen some of the fruits from the recent drafts. You were criticizing the picks of Cutler and Elvis, yet they turned out to be pretty good. I don't recall if you were for or against picking a WR, Brandon Marshall, or a TE, Scheffler, or not.

This season, I wanted Williams, but Clady seemed fine. Royal would not have been my round 2 pick, and don't think it's yours, but if he greatly upgrades our field possition, then that's a huge weakness addressed.

You've been wanting to fix the OL and DL, and Shanny has been addressing them these past few drafts, and even in free agency. You wanted depth, and now we have depth.

San Diego had to suck in order to stockpile quality players; KC is asking their fans for patience in their rebuilding process, basically asking permission to suck for a while. That was never an option in Denver.

We have a pretty good nucleus of young players right now; let's see how they perform, and enjoy the show. :cheers:

Northman
05-09-2008, 05:38 AM
Cant really argue with that. But Shanahan will never step down from his GM duties. With that said, i think he is on the right track with a couple of nice drafts the last couple of years so we shall see how it plays out.

Cugel
05-09-2008, 01:48 PM
Outstanding post

I want to mention that Tneds biggest statement is like Bate was trying to force the DEF with out the players to run it the same thing happened in 2006 mikey tried to run a drop back passing attack without the OLINE that it needed to protect the QB.. Also tried to for a round snake into square hole he was not at all suited for..

BTW you forgot Nash and IMO Oneal while being a great athlete was to big a head case to play CB.

I only compared the Broncos #1 picks since 2001 when Belichek came to New England, so I ignored the drafting of WR Marcus Nash. It's unfair to compare Shanahan (who kept his job after all) with the previous Pats management who got fired.

Normally, when a GM fails miserably at drafting for multiple years (like say blowing 3 first round picks in a row) he gets fired. Then the owner brings in someone new. :coffee:

Lonestar
05-09-2008, 01:55 PM
The problem before Bates came in was how to put consistent pressure on the QB, and that's why we drafted all these ends. We added problems to our DL when we got rid of and acquired players for that DL based on Bates scheme. Because of that, our DL became attrocious against the run. Had we not shifted to the Bates paradigm, and instead relied on the added depth of DEs from the draft, we might have had a decent, if not good, defense, that not only was good against the run, but could also put significant pressure on the QBs. It may not be too difficult to believe, since Elvis was one of the premiere DEs when talking about sacks. That ofcourse, is just pure speculation; what isn't speculation is that pre-Bates, our defense was good against the run.

Our offensive line allowed us to rush for 25 TDs as recently as 2005, and become 2nd in the league in rushing yardage. That was behind Mike Anderson and Tatum Bell. Unless you believe either are upper echelon talents, I'd say the OL did a pretty good job.

The problem was that we had a weakness in our QB that forced us to not develop the other aspects of the offense, primarily pocket passing. Who'se to say, if that OL was still in their prime, and if pocket passing was a significant part of our arsenal, that the OL couldn't get good at it. That aspect hadn't been developed, because we didn't have a quarterback who could pass in the pocket anyway. Pocket passing will be part of the offense, as will the zone blocking and roll-outs, etc, and this OL will get much better at it.

Regarding drafts, we've gotten some good players out of it and some bad ones out of it. So have a lot of teams. You're still harping on the draft choices, yet you've already seen some of the fruits from the recent drafts. You were criticizing the picks of Cutler and Elvis, yet they turned out to be pretty good. I don't recall if you were for or against picking a WR, Brandon Marshall, or a TE, Scheffler, or not.

This season, I wanted Williams, but Clady seemed fine. Royal would not have been my round 2 pick, and don't think it's yours, but if he greatly upgrades our field possition, then that's a huge weakness addressed.

You've been wanting to fix the OL and DL, and Shanny has been addressing them these past few drafts, and even in free agency. You wanted depth, and now we have depth.

San Diego had to suck in order to stockpile quality players; KC is asking their fans for patience in their rebuilding process, basically asking permission to suck for a while. That was never an option in Denver.

We have a pretty good nucleus of young players right now; let's see how they perform, and enjoy the show. :cheers:

Bates IMO was and probably still is a quality DC with a plan.. It did not have the quality players needed to be implemented.. When the Biggy DTs did not pan out we were left with lots of rookies or second year players that had the scheme switched mid year.

It was doomed for failure..

I was critical of drafting Jay for a couple of reason mostly because IMO it was not a position of need at the time we still needed DT which was finally addressed this year via other means and a later round choice..

Dumervil IMO did not fit the profile of DE I was wrong in this area which I have said a few times before..I did not think a midget at DE would make it in the NFL against quality OT's. As an every down DE he is nothing special as a Pass rushing guy pretty good.. But because we were so bad against the run last year his playing time other than by necessity was limited..

The OLINE was not capable of playing straight pocket pass protection.. When Dinger came to town and made those changes IMO and many others they made a mistake thinking they could transition from a ZBS finesse and rollout type OLINE to a power drop back pocket protection scheme. Two totally different models.. One in which your rely on finesse (smoke and mirrors) to get the DLine working against its self and you finessing them out of the play, and pass protection where it is more one on one. The lack of running backs that scared anyone, Lepsis being a shell of himself, losing Hamilton and Nalen. doomed the pocket scheme.. As coaches they did not adjust they kept putting Jay at risk..

It was plane to see by anyone that Lepsis was beat week after week. That he was not Lepsis anymore.. It was time to get backups playing experience, which they did not do..

Foster was the first shell fired at getting a bigger OLINE they saw the need way back then, but he was an abject failure and with all of the other positions of need mikey did not want to dive back into the pool until. This year.. IMO

IMO we should never waste another draft choice on WR, the odds of one making the grade before there rookie contract runs out as slim. so far about 1-15 with Marshall being the one and him still being a maybe.. With the injury hanging over his head, maturity issues as well as can we get him to resign after his rookie contract is up he still may not make it..

If we had not sucked in the draft so bad for so long we would not be having to hit home runs every year to make up for BASIC play.. The past 3 drafts all look pretty good. Just think what the team would have been like had the some of the DAFT choices of the previous 4-5 years still been on the team..

Lonestar
05-09-2008, 02:00 PM
I only compared the Broncos #1 picks since 2001 when Belichek came to New England, so I ignored the drafting of WR Marcus Nash. It's unfair to compare Shanahan (who kept his job after all) with the previous Pats management who got fired.

Normally, when a GM fails miserably at drafting for multiple years (like say blowing 3 first round picks in a row) he gets fired. Then the owner brings in someone new. :coffee:


OK that makes sense, although those other are also albatrosses he should have to be accountable for..

There is no doubt that other stable franchises have kicked our ass on draft day and FA acquisitions.. Even a few that have had to rebuild from ground zero.. their biggest problem is getting a great HC on board to make the players mesh together..


Everyone forgets that when we hired mikey he had a pretty good allotment of players on board, ready to embrace his system.. He hit the jackpot with a couple of FA and TD in the draft.. But since then it has been a continuous downward spiral personnel wise..

Cugel
05-09-2008, 02:06 PM
Bates run defense just plain sucked. He knew the players he had, got rid of those he didn't want, and acquired those he wanted. Despite this full control, the run defense sucked.

Bates tried everything he could. His defenses have been VERY good in places like Green Bay, Minnesota and Miami (during his tenure).

The problem is that there were NO decent NTs to be had and he tried every single one the Broncos could get.

Jimmy Kennedy, Gerrard Warren, Sam Adams, Antwon Burton, Amon Gordon. . . the beat goes on.

You can say "he got everybody he wanted." Well, he tried everybody he could get, but he couldn't get anybody good.

To pretend that this formerly highly successful DC suddenly became an idiot when he came to Denver is just fantasy. The Broncos have had horrible DTs for years, and overall their entire DL fell completely apart after the 2005 season.

Courtney Brown retired. Trevor Pryce left via FA. Gerrard Warren got his contract bonus and went back to napping on game-day. There was ZERO talent left on the d-line.

So, in 2006 they tried a variety of things, but none of them worked. Warren (injured) and Mike Myers sucked and their backups were worse. So, after an 8-8 season, Shanahan decided to hire Bates.

Well, I don't see how you can blame Bates for not coaching 4 rookies and a bunch of over-the-hill failures (Sam Adams and Simeon Rice), plus a pile of scrubs (Antwon Burton, Kenny Peterson, Amon Gordon, Josh Mallard) to become a good defense.

I don't care how good the coach is, if the talent level is like a bunch of high-school players, the defense is going to suck. Period. :coffee:

He tried every player Shanahan could get him and the all sucked.

Lonestar
05-09-2008, 02:24 PM
Bates tried everything he could. His defenses have been VERY good in places like Green Bay, Minnesota and Miami (during his tenure).

The problem is that there were NO decent NTs to be had and he tried every single one the Broncos could get.

Jimmy Kennedy, Gerrard Warren, Sam Adams, Antwon Burton, Amon Gordon. . . the beat goes on.

You can say "he got everybody he wanted." Well, he tried everybody he could get, but he couldn't get anybody good.

To pretend that this formerly highly successful DC suddenly became an idiot when he came to Denver is just fantasy. The Broncos have had horrible DTs for years, and overall their entire DL fell completely apart after the 2005 season.

Courtney Brown retired. Trevor Pryce left via FA. Gerrard Warren got his contract bonus and went back to napping on game-day. There was ZERO talent left on the d-line.

So, in 2006 they tried a variety of things, but none of them worked. Warren (injured) and Mike Myers sucked and their backups were worse. So, after an 8-8 season, Shanahan decided to hire Bates.

Well, I don't see how you can blame Bates for not coaching 4 rookies and a bunch of over-the-hill failures (Sam Adams and Simeon Rice), plus a pile of scrubs (Antwon Burton, Kenny Peterson, Amon Gordon, Josh Mallard) to become a good defense.

I don't care how good the coach is, if the talent level is like a bunch of high-school players, the defense is going to suck. Period. :coffee:

He tried every player Shanahan could get him and the all sucked.


One of the best posts of the year.. certainly the best in this thread..

Ziggy
05-09-2008, 03:40 PM
Bates tried everything he could. His defenses have been VERY good in places like Green Bay, Minnesota and Miami (during his tenure).

The problem is that there were NO decent NTs to be had and he tried every single one the Broncos could get.

Jimmy Kennedy, Gerrard Warren, Sam Adams, Antwon Burton, Amon Gordon. . . the beat goes on.

You can say "he got everybody he wanted." Well, he tried everybody he could get, but he couldn't get anybody good.

To pretend that this formerly highly successful DC suddenly became an idiot when he came to Denver is just fantasy. The Broncos have had horrible DTs for years, and overall their entire DL fell completely apart after the 2005 season.

Courtney Brown retired. Trevor Pryce left via FA. Gerrard Warren got his contract bonus and went back to napping on game-day. There was ZERO talent left on the d-line.

So, in 2006 they tried a variety of things, but none of them worked. Warren (injured) and Mike Myers sucked and their backups were worse. So, after an 8-8 season, Shanahan decided to hire Bates.

Well, I don't see how you can blame Bates for not coaching 4 rookies and a bunch of over-the-hill failures (Sam Adams and Simeon Rice), plus a pile of scrubs (Antwon Burton, Kenny Peterson, Amon Gordon, Josh Mallard) to become a good defense.
I don't care how good the coach is, if the talent level is like a bunch of high-school players, the defense is going to suck. Period. :coffee:

He tried every player Shanahan could get him and the all sucked.



I don't blame Bates for the personnel not fitting his scheme. I blame Bates for the not trying to make a scheme that fits the personnel. Anyone watch New England's defense over the last 5 or so years? They adjust it to the personnel on the roster. You might see 2 D-lineman and 6 LB'ers on the field. You might see a WR playing CB. They adjust to the personnel on both offense and defense. It's one of the reasons that they have had such a great run.

A great coordinator will work with the tools he has and adjust the scheme to play on the strengths of those tools. Bates came in with a system that didn't fit the people we had, and tried to force a square peg into a round hole.

Lonestar
05-09-2008, 03:51 PM
I don't blame Bates for the personnel not fitting his scheme. I blame Bates for the not trying to make a scheme that fits the personnel. Anyone watch New England's defense over the last 5 or so years? They adjust it to the personnel on the roster. You might see 2 D-lineman and 6 LB'ers on the field. You might see a WR playing CB. They adjust to the personnel on both offense and defense. It's one of the reasons that they have had such a great run.

A great coordinator will work with the tools he has and adjust the scheme to play on the strengths of those tools. Bates came in with a system that didn't fit the people we had, and tried to force a square peg into a round hole.



Perhaps he was just lucky in the past few jobs he had, but he was teaching the system he knew.. What he was hired to do..

Now who is really at fault for hiring him? Or not allowing the system to take root and grow..

Were they that niave that they could turn a lousy D devoid of talent on the DLine around overnight while changing the system?

Either that was mikey or Pat you chose..

Ziggy
05-09-2008, 05:18 PM
Perhaps he was just lucky in the past few jobs he had, but he was teaching the system he knew.. What he was hired to do..

Now who is really at fault for hiring him? Or not allowing the system to take root and grow..

Were they that niave that they could turn a lousy D devoid of talent on the DLine around overnight while changing the system?

Either that was mikey or Pat you chose..

So what you're saying is that he's a one trick pony? If so, it was a bad hire.

Tned
05-09-2008, 07:08 PM
I don't blame Bates for the personnel not fitting his scheme. I blame Bates for the not trying to make a scheme that fits the personnel. Anyone watch New England's defense over the last 5 or so years? They adjust it to the personnel on the roster. You might see 2 D-lineman and 6 LB'ers on the field. You might see a WR playing CB. They adjust to the personnel on both offense and defense. It's one of the reasons that they have had such a great run.

A great coordinator will work with the tools he has and adjust the scheme to play on the strengths of those tools. Bates came in with a system that didn't fit the people we had, and tried to force a square peg into a round hole.

I agree 100%. Bates needed to adjust his scheme until he had the players 'capable' of running the scheme he wanted/believed in.

It is also the point I have been making about Heimerdinger. Both assistant head coaches failed to adjust their schemes to fit the talent they had on the field.

Lonestar
05-09-2008, 08:00 PM
So what you're saying is that he's a one trick pony? If so, it was a bad hire.

Bingo!!

If mikey or Pat or whoever hired him expected something other than his almost patented D, they were wrong in thinking he would adjust mid stream. Should he have made those adjustments after seeing what his talent level is probably, but not having the KEY to his defense BIGGY DT was the killer. And we really did not know this FOR SURE till the 3-4 game of the season..

I also wonder when he was hired if they told him they were gonna kill the offense ALSO.. I suspect he was expecting the O to help bail out the total lack of DL.. Considering mikey Offenses have been top ten for more than a decade..

I look at the 2007 season as comedy of errors to high of expectations considering all of the changes made coupled together with the decline in talent levels and the the back breaker all of the injuries..

omac
05-09-2008, 08:01 PM
I don't blame Bates for the personnel not fitting his scheme. I blame Bates for the not trying to make a scheme that fits the personnel. Anyone watch New England's defense over the last 5 or so years? They adjust it to the personnel on the roster. You might see 2 D-lineman and 6 LB'ers on the field. You might see a WR playing CB. They adjust to the personnel on both offense and defense. It's one of the reasons that they have had such a great run.

A great coordinator will work with the tools he has and adjust the scheme to play on the strengths of those tools. Bates came in with a system that didn't fit the people we had, and tried to force a square peg into a round hole.

Exactly! The bottom line is still that Bates was hired to do a job here, and the result was that our defense became much, much, much worse. Many criticize Coyer (and probably rightly so) that he couldn't make adjustments when needed. Same with Bates, regarding our players. And though he couldn't find the NT he wanted, he did release one of our better run stuffing DTs, and the ones we were left with didn't get the job done as good.

Also, I'm not the only one here to note that though some of his other teams' overall defenses were good, some of those run defenses were ranked near the bottom of the league, so it's probably no coincidence that it could be a weakness in his scheme.

omac
05-09-2008, 08:08 PM
Perhaps he was just lucky in the past few jobs he had, but he was teaching the system he knew.. What he was hired to do..

Now who is really at fault for hiring him? Or not allowing the system to take root and grow..

Were they that niave that they could turn a lousy D devoid of talent on the DLine around overnight while changing the system?

Either that was mikey or Pat you chose..

Hey, Shanny took full responsibility for the defense being bad when asked in a press conference. It was his hire. Now a whole lot of fans rejoiced when we got Bates, thinking he was going to be good for Denver's defense. I was one of them. But at least, like Shanny, I can admit when I'm wrong. Bates did a terrible job, and people should stop making excuses for him. With the personnel we had, Coyer did a much better job than Bates. Stop trying to blame Shanny for Bates failure here.

omac
05-09-2008, 08:28 PM
Bingo!!

If mikey or Pat or whoever hired him expected something other than his almost patented D, they were wrong in thinking he would adjust mid stream. Should he have made those adjustments after seeing what his talent level is probably, but not having the KEY to his defense BIGGY DT was the killer. And we really did not know this FOR SURE till the 3-4 game of the season..

I also wonder when he was hired if they told him they were gonna kill the offense ALSO.. I suspect he was expecting the O to help bail out the total lack of DL.. Considering mikey Offenses have been top ten for more than a decade..

I look at the 2007 season as comedy of errors to high of expectations considering all of the changes made coupled together with the decline in talent levels and the the back breaker all of the injuries..

Wow, now it's the offense that should've done a better job for the defense? Just how many times did we have the game in hand, only to let the defense give up a lot of points and make it close or beat us? How many times did the offense have to stay cold on the bench while teams used up clock marching down our endzone? Despite our injuries at OL, RB, WR, and even TE early on, we were still 9th in rushing and 13th in passing, and if not for the injuries and very poor field position, as well as not having as many opportunities because of the defense, we might've been better than 21st in scoring.

Our woes last season had to do with the defense. If they were even just decent, who knows how many more games we could've won. The Giants showed us how a low scoring game could be won against a great team. We used the same approach with the Colts, we struck first, though we couldn't get a TD, we used like a running wall. We stopped them on their earlier possesions .... until they decided to really run the ball ... then it was ridiculously easy for them. Our defense put a whole lot of pressure on our offense, because they knew that if they could not score, the opponent would.

Lonestar
05-09-2008, 08:33 PM
Exactly! The bottom line is still that Bates was hired to do a job here, and the result was that our defense became much, much, much worse. Many criticize Coyer (and probably rightly so) that he couldn't make adjustments when needed. Same with Bates, regarding our players. And though he couldn't find the NT he wanted, he did release one of our better run stuffing DTs, and the ones we were left with didn't get the job done as good.

Also, I'm not the only one here to note that though some of his other teams' overall defenses were good, some of those run defenses were ranked near the bottom of the league, so it's probably no coincidence that it could be a weakness in his scheme.



He released warren when it became apparent he did not want to play in DEN just wanted the signing bonus..

Lonestar
05-09-2008, 08:38 PM
Wow, now it's the offense that should've done a better job for the defense? Just how many times did we have the game in hand, only to let the defense give up a lot of points and make it close or beat us? How many times did the offense have to stay cold on the bench while teams used up clock marching down our endzone? Despite our injuries at OL, RB, WR, and even TE early on, we were still 9th in rushing and 13th in passing, and if not for the injuries and very poor field position, as well as not having as many opportunities because of the defense, we might've been better than 21st in scoring.

Our woes last season had to do with the defense. If they were even just decent, who knows how many more games we could've won. The Giants showed us how a low scoring game could be won against a great team. We used the same approach with the Colts, we struck first, though we couldn't get a TD, we used like a running wall. We stopped them on their earlier possesions .... until they decided to really run the ball ... then it was ridiculously easy for them. Our defense put a whole lot of pressure on our offense, because they knew that if they could not score, the opponent would.


I hardly think a few points lead is or was "game in hand". Most of our loses were later in the year when we were back to mikeys defense.. remember we stitched during the bye week week 4 if I remember correctly..


Look there were lots of mistakes made last year in personnel, players and coaches IMO..

But lets not put it all in Jim Bates hind pocket.

omac
05-09-2008, 09:54 PM
He released warren when it became apparent he did not want to play in DEN just wanted the signing bonus..

Warren didn't want to play Bates defense, that's why he was let go. He wanted to penetrate, not stand and occupy.

omac
05-09-2008, 10:22 PM
I hardly think a few points lead is or was "game in hand". Most of our loses were later in the year when we were back to mikeys defense.. remember we stitched during the bye week week 4 if I remember correctly..


Look there were lots of mistakes made last year in personnel, players and coaches IMO..

But lets not put it all in Jim Bates hind pocket.

We started out 2-3 before the bye; then we went 3-2; then we went 2-4. Our losses were pretty spread out.

The adjustment was made because Bates defense wasn't getting the job done. We did try to switch to a more traditional Bronco defense, but we'd already lost Warren, and we had a bunch of big guys who couldn't play, from trying to acquire Bates-style players.

Against Chicago, the offense provided Denver a 2 TD cushion with 7 minutes to go. That sounds good. With 3 minutes left, Denver was still ahead by 7; the pressure should've been on their offense to score, yet it felt like the pressure was on our defense. The defense lost that game. Just how much of a lead must the offense generate for the defense to protect it? 21 points in the last 7 minutes maybe?

You're right, though, it's not all on Bates, but we have to admit that he was a large part of it. Shanny has accountability with the lack of talent on the DL, but Bates contributed heavily to the collapse of our run defense.

Lonestar
05-09-2008, 11:18 PM
We started out 2-3 before the bye; then we went 3-2; then we went 2-4. Our losses were pretty spread out.

The adjustment was made because Bates defense wasn't getting the job done. We did try to switch to a more traditional Bronco defense, but we'd already lost Warren, and we had a bunch of big guys who couldn't play, from trying to acquire Bates-style players.

Against Chicago, the offense provided Denver a 2 TD cushion with 7 minutes to go. That sounds good. With 3 minutes left, Denver was still ahead by 7; the pressure should've been on their offense to score, yet it felt like the pressure was on our defense. The defense lost that game. Just how much of a lead must the offense generate for the defense to protect it? 21 points in the last 7 minutes maybe?

You're right, though, it's not all on Bates, but we have to admit that he was a large part of it. Shanny has accountability with the lack of talent on the DL, but Bates contributed heavily to the collapse of our run defense.

Lets see how they got those points.. actually is was 10:38 seconds not 7 minutes and during that time we had the ball once on their 36 yard line after the defense sacked and recovered a fumble.. only to have to punt 5 plays later from the CHI 46 Hmm that is going back wards..

Had the ball one more time and got a whooping 7 yards in 5 more plays..


1-10-DEN 18 (7:14) 29-A.Peterson right guard to DEN 15 for 3 yards (47-J.Lynch).
2-7-DEN 15 (6:43) 8-R.Grossman pass short left to 82-G.Olsen to DEN 5 for 10 yards (22-D.Foxworth).
1-5-DEN 5 (6:05) 8-R.Grossman pass short right to 85-J.Gilmore to DEN 4 for 1 yard (24-C.Bailey).
2-4-DEN 4 (5:31) 29-A.Peterson left tackle for 4 yards, TOUCHDOWN.
9-R.Gould extra point is GOOD, Center-65-P.Mannelly, Holder-4-B.Maynard.
DEN 34 CHI 27 Plays: 4 Possession: 1:57


18 yards yep that is a stretch..

1-10-CHI 35 (2:58) (Shotgun) 8-R.Grossman pass short right to 23-D.Hester pushed ob at CHI 36 for 1 yard (52-I.Gold).
2-9-CHI 36 (2:51) (Shotgun) 8-R.Grossman pass incomplete short right to 82-G.Olsen.
3-9-CHI 36 (2:47) (Shotgun) 8-R.Grossman pass incomplete short right to 82-G.Olsen.
4-9-CHI 36 (2:42) (Shotgun) 8-R.Grossman pass incomplete deep middle to 87-M.Muhammad. PENALTY on DEN-32-D.Bly, Illegal Contact, 5 yards, enforced at CHI 36 - No Play.
1-10-CHI 41 (2:35) (Shotgun) 8-R.Grossman pass short middle to 80-B.Berrian to 50 for 9 yards (24-C.Bailey).
2-1- (2:16) (Shotgun) 29-A.Peterson left guard to CHI 48 for -2 yards (97-K.Peterson).
Two-Minute Warning
3-3-CHI 48 (2:00) 8-R.Grossman pass deep left to 81-R.Davis to DEN 31 for 21 yards (21-H.Abdullah).
1-10-DEN 31 (1:39) (No Huddle) 8-R.Grossman pass short middle to 87-M.Muhammad to DEN 18 for 13 yards (22-D.Foxworth).
1-10-DEN 18 (1:22) (No Huddle) 29-A.Peterson right guard to DEN 7 for 11 yards (55-D.Williams, 52-I.Gold).
1-7-DEN 7 (1:01) (No Huddle) 29-A.Peterson right tackle to DEN 4 for 3 yards (21-H.Abdullah).
2-4-DEN 4 (:42) (No Huddle) 29-A.Peterson right guard to DEN 3 for 1 yard (96-T.Crowder).
Timeout #3 by CHI at 00:36.
3-3-DEN 3 (:36) 8-R.Grossman pass incomplete short left to 80-B.Berrian (41-K.Paymah).
4-3-DEN 3 (:32) 8-R.Grossman pass short right to 80-B.Berrian for 3 yards, TOUCHDOWN. The Replay Assistant challenged the pass completion ruling, and the play was Upheld.
9-R.Gould extra point is GOOD, Center-65-P.Mannelly, Holder-4-B.Maynard.
DEN 34 CHI 34 Plays: 12 Possession: 2:30
65 yards in 2:30

Hester also scored two TD's in the second half 75 and 88 yards

I hardly think the defense completely lost this one.

http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/playbyplay?game_id=29359&displayPage=tab_play_by_play&season=2007&week=REG12

omac
05-10-2008, 11:36 AM
Lets see how they got those points.. actually is was 10:38 seconds not 7 minutes and during that time we had the ball once on their 36 yard line after the defense sacked and recovered a fumble.. only to have to punt 5 plays later from the CHI 46 Hmm that is going back wards..

Had the ball one more time and got a whooping 7 yards in 5 more plays..


1-10-DEN 18 (7:14) 29-A.Peterson right guard to DEN 15 for 3 yards (47-J.Lynch).
2-7-DEN 15 (6:43) 8-R.Grossman pass short left to 82-G.Olsen to DEN 5 for 10 yards (22-D.Foxworth).
1-5-DEN 5 (6:05) 8-R.Grossman pass short right to 85-J.Gilmore to DEN 4 for 1 yard (24-C.Bailey).
2-4-DEN 4 (5:31) 29-A.Peterson left tackle for 4 yards, TOUCHDOWN.
9-R.Gould extra point is GOOD, Center-65-P.Mannelly, Holder-4-B.Maynard.
DEN 34 CHI 27 Plays: 4 Possession: 1:57


18 yards yep that is a stretch..

1-10-CHI 35 (2:58) (Shotgun) 8-R.Grossman pass short right to 23-D.Hester pushed ob at CHI 36 for 1 yard (52-I.Gold).
2-9-CHI 36 (2:51) (Shotgun) 8-R.Grossman pass incomplete short right to 82-G.Olsen.
3-9-CHI 36 (2:47) (Shotgun) 8-R.Grossman pass incomplete short right to 82-G.Olsen.
4-9-CHI 36 (2:42) (Shotgun) 8-R.Grossman pass incomplete deep middle to 87-M.Muhammad. PENALTY on DEN-32-D.Bly, Illegal Contact, 5 yards, enforced at CHI 36 - No Play.
1-10-CHI 41 (2:35) (Shotgun) 8-R.Grossman pass short middle to 80-B.Berrian to 50 for 9 yards (24-C.Bailey).
2-1- (2:16) (Shotgun) 29-A.Peterson left guard to CHI 48 for -2 yards (97-K.Peterson).
Two-Minute Warning
3-3-CHI 48 (2:00) 8-R.Grossman pass deep left to 81-R.Davis to DEN 31 for 21 yards (21-H.Abdullah).
1-10-DEN 31 (1:39) (No Huddle) 8-R.Grossman pass short middle to 87-M.Muhammad to DEN 18 for 13 yards (22-D.Foxworth).
1-10-DEN 18 (1:22) (No Huddle) 29-A.Peterson right guard to DEN 7 for 11 yards (55-D.Williams, 52-I.Gold).
1-7-DEN 7 (1:01) (No Huddle) 29-A.Peterson right tackle to DEN 4 for 3 yards (21-H.Abdullah).
2-4-DEN 4 (:42) (No Huddle) 29-A.Peterson right guard to DEN 3 for 1 yard (96-T.Crowder).
Timeout #3 by CHI at 00:36.
3-3-DEN 3 (:36) 8-R.Grossman pass incomplete short left to 80-B.Berrian (41-K.Paymah).
4-3-DEN 3 (:32) 8-R.Grossman pass short right to 80-B.Berrian for 3 yards, TOUCHDOWN. The Replay Assistant challenged the pass completion ruling, and the play was Upheld.
9-R.Gould extra point is GOOD, Center-65-P.Mannelly, Holder-4-B.Maynard.
DEN 34 CHI 34 Plays: 12 Possession: 2:30
65 yards in 2:30

Hester also scored two TD's in the second half 75 and 88 yards

I hardly think the defense completely lost this one.

http://www.nfl.com/gamecenter/playbyplay?game_id=29359&displayPage=tab_play_by_play&season=2007&week=REG12

Yeah, I saw the game too, and I looked at that link too. It is tough to prevent a score when your opponent starts that close to the endzone. But even then, it was too easy. They completed every play they attempted. They didn't have a hard time at all. They walked all over our defense.

On their next possesion, with only 3 minutes left, they went 65 yards. We're talking Adrian Peterson-the other one (Cedric Benson before the injury earlier, actually looked good) and Rex Grossman. Come on!

As I said in my post, it's not all on the defense, but the defense was a huge part of our problems last season, easily more than our offense. That game, the Broncos scored 34 points and still lost, so it's tough to blame that one on them. Yes, in that game, ST played a huge part in the collapse, and the offense was playing too conservative, trying to protect a lead, and instead used up very little clock, and even went backwards. But ...

I'll repeat my point again. Shanny has accountability with the lack of talent on the DL, but Bates contributed heavily to the collapse of our run defense. There's no going around that.

Lonestar
05-10-2008, 11:51 AM
Yeah, I saw the game too, and I looked at that link too. It is tough to prevent a score when your opponent starts that close to the endzone. But even then, it was too easy. They completed every play they attempted. They didn't have a hard time at all. They walked all over our defense.

On their next possesion, with only 3 minutes left, they went 65 yards. We're talking Adrian Peterson-the other one (Cedric Benson before the injury earlier, actually looked good) and Rex Grossman. Come on!

As I said in my post, it's not all on the defense, but the defense was a huge part of our problems last season, easily more than our offense. That game, the Broncos scored 34 points and still lost, so it's tough to blame that one on them. Yes, in that game, ST played a huge part in the collapse, and the offense was playing too conservative, trying to protect a lead, and instead used up very little clock, and even went backwards. But ...

I'll repeat my point again. Shanny has accountability with the lack of talent on the DL, but Bates contributed heavily to the collapse of our run defense. There's no going around that.

Hey I've never said the defense was stellar last year and mikey was totally responsible for all of it O and D, that is unless he was forced to hire Bates it all falls on his shoulders..

This particular game could have been won with the offense taking time off the clock after the quick score by them we had the ball on there 36 Yards line and wound up kicking it away a few seconds later from there 46 and net loss on those plays of 10 yards.. there was plenty of blame to go around in that one but it was not all defense IMO..

omac
05-10-2008, 11:14 PM
Hey I've never said the defense was stellar last year and mikey was totally responsible for all of it O and D, that is unless he was forced to hire Bates it all falls on his shoulders..

This particular game could have been won with the offense taking time off the clock after the quick score by them we had the ball on there 36 Yards line and wound up kicking it away a few seconds later from there 46 and net loss on those plays of 10 yards.. there was plenty of blame to go around in that one but it was not all defense IMO..

Shanny admitted pretty early on the season that the D was his own fault, implying that it was he who hired Bates. There's the accountability. Now Bates run defense simply stunk, despite Shanny giving him practically free reigns over it before and during the early part of the season. They let go of and acquired personel based on his scheme. Bates had total control, and he couldn't deliver. Yet you'll focus most of the blame on the players Shanny didn't have for Bates defense, instead of how Bates failed in using the players he did have. In the press clippings, even Bowlen made a remark about the players they did acquire and release, saying something to the effect of "since we have Bates, we need hogs for his scheme". I think his actual quote had something to do with beef. You can blame Shanny for hiring Bates, but you have to blame Bates for the horrendous run defense, that other coordinators in Denver never had problems with, despite their players.

Lonestar
05-11-2008, 12:57 AM
Shanny admitted pretty early on the season that the D was his own fault, implying that it was he who hired Bates. There's the accountability. Now Bates run defense simply stunk, despite Shanny giving him practically free reigns over it before and during the early part of the season. They let go of and acquired personel based on his scheme. Bates had total control, and he couldn't deliver. Yet you'll focus most of the blame on the players Shanny didn't have for Bates defense, instead of how Bates failed in using the players he did have. In the press clippings, even Bowlen made a remark about the players they did acquire and release, saying something to the effect of "since we have Bates, we need hogs for his scheme". I think his actual quote had something to do with beef. You can blame Shanny for hiring Bates, but you have to blame Bates for the horrendous run defense, that other coordinators in Denver never had problems with, despite their players.


Yes Bates plan failed Do not believe I've said differently..

Did anyone really think he could turn the Def around in one year? regardless of the folks that were hired to play.. Lets see three rookies and second year man, out of what 8 or maybe 9 DL guys initially at the start of the season..
Sure he had pretty much a free hand in acquisitions

A brand newbie MLB that was supposed to be calling the plays as well as make plays. A new SAM and an OLD gold. a new to the Defense CB.

IN changing the style or scheme of the D with all the newbies in place do you think it might have been a bit ambitious and if so just 5 weeks to make it work?

Since none of Bates defenses were great the first year he installed them, if anyone really dreamed they would be top five after five weeks they were smoking something illegal..

Looks to me like it was a cluster **** to start with..

omac
05-11-2008, 08:30 AM
Yes Bates plan failed Do not believe I've said differently..

Did anyone really think he could turn the Def around in one year? regardless of the folks that were hired to play.. Lets see three rookies and second year man, out of what 8 or maybe 9 DL guys initially at the start of the season..
Sure he had pretty much a free hand in acquisitions

A brand newbie MLB that was supposed to be calling the plays as well as make plays. A new SAM and an OLD gold. a new to the Defense CB.

IN changing the style or scheme of the D with all the newbies in place do you think it might have been a bit ambitious and if so just 5 weeks to make it work?

Since none of Bates defenses were great the first year he installed them, if anyone really dreamed they would be top five after five weeks they were smoking something illegal..

Looks to me like it was a cluster **** to start with..

Well, we agree on that. Forget top 5, though; what I (and most people here) didn't expect was for it to be in the bottom of the league in stopping the run. That was a shocker.

Ziggy
05-12-2008, 01:14 PM
I'm still of the firm belief that to be a great or even good defensive coordinator, you have to adjust your schemes to the personnel that you have on the roster. The greatest coordinator in Broncos history and possibly the NFL was Joe Collier. His defense was constantly changing depending on who he had healthy at the time. When the Broncos had no talent, the defenses were always competitive. When he did have talent, he created the Orange Crush defense. The biggest mistake Dan Reeves made was letting Collier go. I remember Mecklenberg playing 7 different positions in 1 game under Colliers scheme. He did it at 6'3" 240 pounds. If Bates were the defensive coordinator at the time, not only does Mecklenberg sit on the bench, but he probably doesn't make it through his first training camp.

Collier epitomizes what a defensive coordinator should be. Bates is not that. He is a one trick pony, and was a bad fit in Denver. It was Shanny's fault for hiring him and letting him run his scheme regardless of the personnel on the roster, but wouldn't a decent coordinator stop trying to fit a square peg into a round hole eventually?

Cugel
05-12-2008, 02:22 PM
Hey, Shanny took full responsibility for the defense being bad when asked in a press conference. It was his hire. Now a whole lot of fans rejoiced when we got Bates, thinking he was going to be good for Denver's defense. I was one of them. But at least, like Shanny, I can admit when I'm wrong. Bates did a terrible job, and people should stop making excuses for him. With the personnel we had, Coyer did a much better job than Bates. Stop trying to blame Shanny for Bates failure here.

Coyer did a better job? When he had better players he did better. When he didn't have squat, he didn't do anything.

You can't make an omlet with rotten eggs. Period.

I don't care how you spin it, or how many posters quote the Patriots success! The Pats have Richard Seymour and Vince Wilfork on their DL. The Broncos since 2006 have had: Gerrard Warren (injured & then traded), Sam Adams, who played like he was older than President John Adams, Mike Myers (who sucked but was still probably better than the players who succeeded him), Antwon Burton and Amon Gordon -- scrubs who were cut week 8), Kenny Peterson & Josh Mallard -- who?

Warren is now sitting on the bench for the lowly Raiders. Notice that when every expert talks about the huge need for the Raiders to sign a DT to take the place of the retired Warren Sapp, they don't mention Gerrard Warren?


The rest of these players range from marginal NFL backups to time-to-polish-your-banking-resume types.

Not one impact player or even MARGINAL impact player.

Now here's the ten-million dollar question: How exactly do you "adapt your defense to the players on your roster" when the players on your roster all totally suck? :coffee:

Lonestar
05-12-2008, 02:24 PM
I'm still of the firm belief that to be a great or even good defensive coordinator, you have to adjust your schemes to the personnel that you have on the roster. The greatest coordinator in Broncos history and possibly the NFL was Joe Collier. His defense was constantly changing depending on who he had healthy at the time. When the Broncos had no talent, the defenses were always competitive. When he did have talent, he created the Orange Crush defense. The biggest mistake Dan Reeves made was letting Collier go. I remember Mecklenberg playing 7 different positions in 1 game under Colliers scheme. He did it at 6'3" 240 pounds. If Bates were the defensive coordinator at the time, not only does Mecklenberg sit on the bench, but he probably doesn't make it through his first training camp.

Collier epitomizes what a defensive coordinator should be. Bates is not that. He is a one trick pony, and was a bad fit in Denver. It was Shanny's fault for hiring him and letting him run his scheme regardless of the personnel on the roster, but wouldn't a decent coordinator stop trying to fit a square peg into a round hole eventually?

DO you really think that mike made this call without some help from above and I'm not talking about divine intervention here..

If Pat made the suggestion or than just a suggestion. DO you really believe that everyone bought into the hire and scheme from the get go?

I saw a few things that caught my eye last season about players really liking Slowik and less so about Bates.. Yet in all the cities that Bates coached his players really liked him.. IN fact in MIA they pushed real hard to get him as HC went eh old one was fired mid year..

DO you think that many of these players thought that Slowik was gonna get the job when coyer was fired? Thus somewhat reluctant to totally buy into the scheme..Which BTW while we attempted to get the guys he wanted was not enough..

Just like to hear other fans ideas on this.

Kaylore you have contacts inside Dove Valley was bringing Bates on Pats idea or mikeys?

Lonestar
05-12-2008, 02:29 PM
Coyer did a better job? When he had better players he did better. When he didn't have squat, he didn't do anything.

You can't make an omlet with rotten eggs. Period.

I don't care how you spin it, or how many posters quote the Patriots success! The Pats have Richard Seymour and Vince Wilfork on their DL. The Broncos since 2006 have had: Gerrard Warren (injured & then traded), Sam Adams, who played like he was older than President John Adams, Mike Myers (who sucked but was still probably better than the players who succeeded him), Antwon Burton and Amon Gordon -- scrubs who were cut week 8), Kenny Peterson & Josh Mallard -- who?

Warren is now sitting on the bench for the lowly Raiders. Notice that when every expert talks about the huge need for the Raiders to sign a DT to take the place of the retired Warren Sapp, they don't mention Gerrard Warren?


The rest of these players range from marginal NFL backups to time-to-polish-your-banking-resume types.

Not one impact player or even MARGINAL impact player.

Now here's the ten-million dollar question: How exactly do you "adapt your defense to the players on your roster" when the players on your roster all totally suck? :coffee:


Actaulluy IMO Coyer was a pretty god adapter to to desiginng defense when he had all week.. Making adjustments during the game seemed to be completley over his head.. that and having the players dislike him.. He had to go..

Ziggy
05-12-2008, 04:40 PM
Actaulluy IMO Coyer was a pretty god adapter to to desiginng defense when he had all week.. Making adjustments during the game seemed to be completley over his head.. that and having the players dislike him.. He had to go..

Well said. It seems like other teams offenses adjusted to our defense, and we did nothing to counter.

Lonestar
05-12-2008, 04:43 PM
Well said. It seems like other teams offenses adjusted to our defense, and we did nothing to counter.


Yes we countered we fired the guy..

Didn't you get the memo..

If not I'll make sure mikey puts you of the Zlist.

omac
05-13-2008, 01:25 AM
Coyer did a better job? When he had better players he did better. When he didn't have squat, he didn't do anything.

You can't make an omlet with rotten eggs. Period.

I don't care how you spin it, or how many posters quote the Patriots success! The Pats have Richard Seymour and Vince Wilfork on their DL. The Broncos since 2006 have had: Gerrard Warren (injured & then traded), Sam Adams, who played like he was older than President John Adams, Mike Myers (who sucked but was still probably better than the players who succeeded him), Antwon Burton and Amon Gordon -- scrubs who were cut week 8), Kenny Peterson & Josh Mallard -- who?

Warren is now sitting on the bench for the lowly Raiders. Notice that when every expert talks about the huge need for the Raiders to sign a DT to take the place of the retired Warren Sapp, they don't mention Gerrard Warren?


The rest of these players range from marginal NFL backups to time-to-polish-your-banking-resume types.

Not one impact player or even MARGINAL impact player.

Now here's the ten-million dollar question: How exactly do you "adapt your defense to the players on your roster" when the players on your roster all totally suck? :coffee:

Despite the talent that Denver did have, Larry Coyer 's defense in overall points given away from 2003 to 2006 at 9, 9, 3, & 8. Bates' in 2007 was ranked 28, only 4 teams gave away more points. In overall yards given away, they were ranked 4, 4, 15, & 14. Bates' was 19. Against rushing yardage, Coyer's defenses ranked 7, 4, 2, and 12; Bates' was 30, only 2 teams gave away more rushing yards.

Against passing yards allowed, Coyer's defense started out good the first 2 years, then tanked the next 2 at 6, 6, 29, 21; this is the only area where Bates ranked higher than Coyer at 7.

(*all stats from nfl.com and pro-football-reference)

Based on last season, though, we can all agree that it's better to have a poor pass defense than it is to have a poor rush defense. When the rush defense is bad, you give the game away too easy and it greatly affects your whole defense, as is evidenced in points allowed.

Larry Coyer didn't have a stable of great defensive players; like Jrwiz said, he was good at using the talent he had. With Bates, he cut a player that Coyer used effectively in his scheme, and brought in players who were supposed to be good for his (Bates) scheme, yet they were bad enough to later in the season get cut. Bottom line, as so many other posters have noted, Bates could not effectively use the players that he had, while Coyer could. It's a cop-out to say that Bates failed miserably because he didn't have players. There was no big talent gap in the defensive players between Coyer and Bates. It would've been nice to see what Bates (and Coyer, for the matter) could do with some real talent. The DL had mediocre talent with Coyer and Bates. Only Coyer could get better results.

Lonestar
05-13-2008, 01:41 AM
Despite the talent that Denver did have, Larry Coyer 's defense in overall points given away from 2003 to 2006 at 9, 9, 3, & 8. Bates' in 2007 was ranked 28, only 4 teams gave away more points. In overall yards given away, they were ranked 4, 4, 15, & 14. Bates' was 19. Against rushing yardage, Coyer's defenses ranked 7, 4, 2, and 12; Bates' was 30, only 2 teams gave away more rushing yards.

Against passing yards allowed, Coyer's defense started out good the first 2 years, then tanked the next 2 at 6, 6, 29, 21; this is the only area where Bates ranked higher than Coyer at 7.

(*all stats from nfl.com and pro-football-reference)

Based on last season, though, we can all agree that it's better to have a poor pass defense than it is to have a poor rush defense. When the rush defense is bad, you give the game away too easy and it greatly affects your whole defense, as is evidenced in points allowed.

Larry Coyer didn't have a stable of great defensive players; like Jrwiz said, he was good at using the talent he had. With Bates, he cut a player that Coyer used effectively in his scheme, and brought in players who were supposed to be good for his (Bates) scheme, yet they were bad enough to later in the season get cut. Bottom line, as so many other posters have noted, Bates could not effectively use the players that he had, while Coyer could. It's a cop-out to say that Bates failed miserably because he didn't have players. There was no big talent gap in the defensive players between Coyer and Bates. It would've been nice to see what Bates (and Coyer, for the matter) could do with some real talent. The DL had mediocre talent with Coyer and Bates. Only Coyer could get better results.

I have to find some issues here..

Bates lost Al Wilson from the mix, while not a superb player the past few years he was indeed the leader and QB on defense.. Which in itself was a huge upgrade over DJ, whom I really like, but might have been miscast.

When we lost him we tried to modify the assignments and had a down grade IMO AT SAM form DJ to Webster I think it was (not very memorable) gold was shadow of his pre knee injury days @ WILL. So overall the LB core which have been a pride and joy the year before was a mere shadow of itself..

DL was in shambles talent (or lack thereof) was brought in as FA not much on the market last year.

Since the DL is the total key to the Bates D he was screwed.. Most of which he caused himself.

I like think had he been given another year perhaps it might have worked..

But that did not happen so I'm hoping all the newbies that have been moved into new positions will gel quickly so we can win a few games this year..

Also hoping that slowlik does not screw the pooch like he did in GB..

omac
05-13-2008, 02:30 AM
I have to find some issues here..

Bates lost Al Wilson from the mix, while not a superb player the past few years he was indeed the leader and QB on defense.. Which in itself was a huge upgrade over DJ, whom I really like, but might have been miscast.

When we lost him we tried to modify the assignments and had a down grade IMO AT SAM form DJ to Webster I think it was (not very memorable) gold was shadow of his pre knee injury days @ WILL. So overall the LB core which have been a pride and joy the year before was a mere shadow of itself..

DL was in shambles talent (or lack thereof) was brought in as FA not much on the market last year.

Since the DL is the total key to the Bates D he was screwed.. Most of which he caused himself.

I like think had he been given another year perhaps it might have worked..

But that did not happen so I'm hoping all the newbies that have been moved into new positions will gel quickly so we can win a few games this year..

Also hoping that slowlik does not screw the pooch like he did in GB..

You're right, those are definitely good points. DJ was definitely good at getting tackles, but quarterbacking a defense is a different thing. Cugel made no mention of Wilson in the lack of talent ... he focused on the linemen, some of whom we cut, and some of who'm we acquired for Bates, so you're right, he did screw himself there by acquiring worse talent.

Besides some changes in the line, there were also changes in the scheme, with the DEs pretty wide. Could DJ have done a better job quarterbacking the defense if the line had the previous players, or if they used the previous scheme? Maybe, who knows, but Al Wilson was valuable.

In your posts before, you focus on the importance of the line, which would make even linebackers look better; I guess with Denver before, the linebackers might've the line look better.

After losing Al Wilson, was it Bates who decided to move DJ to the middle? Could they have tried to acquire a natural mike? I don't know, but the bottom line is, those were the players on the team, some of whom were acquired, cut, or moved based on Bates requirements. So yeah, I agree with you, he did screw himself. And Shanny has overall responsiblity.

Lonestar
05-13-2008, 12:13 PM
You're right, those are definitely good points. DJ was definitely good at getting tackles, but quarterbacking a defense is a different thing. Cugel made no mention of Wilson in the lack of talent ... he focused on the linemen, some of whom we cut, and some of who'm we acquired for Bates, so you're right, he did screw himself there by acquiring worse talent.

Besides some changes in the line, there were also changes in the scheme, with the DEs pretty wide. Could DJ have done a better job quarterbacking the defense if the line had the previous players, or if they used the previous scheme? Maybe, who knows, but Al Wilson was valuable.

In your posts before, you focus on the importance of the line, which would make even linebackers look better; I guess with Denver before, the linebackers might've the line look better.

After losing Al Wilson, was it Bates who decided to move DJ to the middle? Could they have tried to acquire a natural mike? I don't know, but the bottom line is, those were the players on the team, some of whom were acquired, cut, or moved based on Bates requirements. So yeah, I agree with you, he did screw himself. And Shanny has overall responsiblity.


What I was also trying to get at do you think that Bates was soley mikeys idea?

It seems awfully out of character for him to allow him this much player authority (acquiring and cutting).

Cugel
05-14-2008, 01:26 PM
You're right, those are definitely good points. DJ was definitely good at getting tackles, but quarterbacking a defense is a different thing. Cugel made no mention of Wilson in the lack of talent ... he focused on the linemen, some of whom we cut, and some of who'm we acquired for Bates, so you're right, he did screw himself there by acquiring worse talent.

Besides some changes in the line, there were also changes in the scheme, with the DEs pretty wide. Could DJ have done a better job quarterbacking the defense if the line had the previous players, or if they used the previous scheme? Maybe, who knows, but Al Wilson was valuable.

In your posts before, you focus on the importance of the line, which would make even linebackers look better; I guess with Denver before, the linebackers might've the line look better.

After losing Al Wilson, was it Bates who decided to move DJ to the middle? Could they have tried to acquire a natural mike? I don't know, but the bottom line is, those were the players on the team, some of whom were acquired, cut, or moved based on Bates requirements. So yeah, I agree with you, he did screw himself. And Shanny has overall responsiblity.

I only focused on the DL because that's where the defense starts. Of course, losing Al Wilson was HUGE in 2007. He was the heart of the defense and without him it just lacked fire and cohesion all year.

But, to pretend that Coyer and Bates had equally talented DL is just silly. Between 2001-04 Denver had players like Trevor Pryce, Bert Berry and Reggie Hayward for instance. Trevor Pryce alone was a better DT than any the Broncos have had since (although DeWayne Robertson MIGHT be as good this year).

In 2005 when the team had 1/2 decent DL the went to the AFC Championship (Courtney Brown was in his last healthy season, Gerrard Warren was healthy and putting on a salary drive, Trevor Pryce was healthy and putting on a salary drive before he hit FA). That's 3 former high first round picks, all of whom had undoubted talent.

In 2006, after Brown and Pryce left and Warren went back to sleep (and was injured when he wasn't napping), the Broncos fell to 8-8.

Things only got worse in 2007. Aside from Dumervil there wasn't ONE decent DL at all (and NO! John Engleberger doesn't count!) Marcus Thomas had a disappointing rookie year, Moss went on IR, Crowder did nothing but show his inexperience. The others (Sam Adams, Antwon Burton, Amon Gordon) were worse as I've detailed in previous posts.

Name ONE starting DT between 2000-2004 who was as bad as Amon Gordon or Antwon Burton and I'll agree that Coyer and Bates had equally bad DLs! :coffee:

EDIT: I forgot to add Ekuban who has been mediocre since he was cut by Dallas as a disappointment there, but he shines out by contrast to the other scrubs (ex: Engleberger) and rookies (Crowder, Moss) the Broncos have had on their DL. As Hunter S. Thompson said: "In a generation of swine, the one-eyed pig is king."

Lonestar
05-14-2008, 01:56 PM
I only focused on the DL because that's where the defense starts. Of course, losing Al Wilson was HUGE in 2007. He was the heart of the defense and without him it just lacked fire and cohesion all year.

But, to pretend that Coyer and Bates had equally talented DL is just silly. Between 2001-04 Denver had players like Trevor Pryce, Bert Berry and Reggie Hayward for instance. Trevor Pryce alone was a better DT than any the Broncos have had since (although DeWayne Robertson MIGHT be as good this year).

In 2005 when the team had 1/2 decent DL the went to the AFC Championship (Courtney Brown was in his last healthy season, Gerrard Warren was healthy and putting on a salary drive, Trevor Pryce was healthy and putting on a salary drive before he hit FA). That's 3 former high first round picks, all of whom had undoubted talent.

In 2006, after Brown and Pryce left and Warren went back to sleep (and was injured when he wasn't napping), the Broncos fell to 8-8.

Things only got worse in 2007. Aside from Dumervil there wasn't ONE decent DL at all (and NO! John Engleberger doesn't count!) Marcus Thomas had a disappointing rookie year, Moss went on IR, Crowder did nothing but show his inexperience. The others (Sam Adams, Antwon Burton, Amon Gordon) were worse as I've detailed in previous posts.

Name ONE starting DT between 2000-2004 who was as bad as Amon Gordon or Antwon Burton and I'll agree that Coyer and Bates had equally bad DLs! :coffee:

EDIT: I forgot to add Ekuban who has been mediocre since he was cut by Dallas as a disappointment there, but he shines out by contrast to the other scrubs (ex: Engleberger) and rookies (Crowder, Moss) the Broncos have had on their DL. As Hunter S. Thompson said: "In a generation of swine, the one-eyed pig is king."


Good points but let me add..

Yet that 2005 DL could not pressure BEN when we needed it.. Either so while it might have been our best one It still sucked when it needed to shine..

Cugel
05-14-2008, 04:38 PM
Good points but let me add..

Yet that 2003 DL could not pressure BEN when we needed it.. Either so while it might have been our best one It still sucked when it needed to shine..
I presume you mean 2005, the AFC Championship game, since Ben Roethlisberger was at Miami (Ohio) U. where the Broncos couldn't really be expected to "pressure him." :laugh:

That's true. The Broncos DL for 2005 wasn't great, it was simply better than at any other time in this decade.

That was the last gasp of the SB winning veterans with Rod Smith, Trevor Pryce, Tom Nalen, Matt Lepsis, Jason Elam, et al.

They couldn't get it done, so Shanahan was forced to rebuild, which they are currently in the process of doing.

I have to give them credit the last 2 years for getting solid draft choices (or at least players who appear to be solid choices).

But, that doesn't make up for the endless draft failures between 2001-05.

Shanahan said in his exit interview this season "that's the difference between 13-3 and 10-6." He's wrong. That's the difference between 12 or 13 wins and 7 or 8 wins -- as the Broncos proved last year.

Lonestar
05-14-2008, 09:09 PM
I presume you mean 2005, the AFC Championship game, since Ben Roethlisberger was at Miami (Ohio) U. where the Broncos couldn't really be expected to "pressure him." :laugh:

That's true. The Broncos DL for 2005 wasn't great, it was simply better than at any other time in this decade.

That was the last gasp of the SB winning veterans with Rod Smith, Trevor Pryce, Tom Nalen, Matt Lepsis, Jason Elam, et al.

They couldn't get it done, so Shanahan was forced to rebuild, which they are currently in the process of doing.

I have to give them credit the last 2 years for getting solid draft choices (or at least players who appear to be solid choices).

But, that doesn't make up for the endless draft failures between 2001-05.

Shanahan said in his exit interview this season "that's the difference between 13-3 and 10-6." He's wrong. That's the difference between 12 or 13 wins and 7 or 8 wins -- as the Broncos proved last year.

Your correct 2005 for BEN, it was 2003-04 for Manning, some of this crap is starting to blend together.. STDY Same Thing Different Year..

Yes mikey has been rebuilding since 2006's draft just very few of the die hards are willing to admit it..


still way to many fanatics that want to believe mikey has just been reloading..

Time for reality to check in..

omac
05-15-2008, 12:32 AM
I only focused on the DL because that's where the defense starts. Of course, losing Al Wilson was HUGE in 2007. He was the heart of the defense and without him it just lacked fire and cohesion all year.

But, to pretend that Coyer and Bates had equally talented DL is just silly. Between 2001-04 Denver had players like Trevor Pryce, Bert Berry and Reggie Hayward for instance. Trevor Pryce alone was a better DT than any the Broncos have had since (although DeWayne Robertson MIGHT be as good this year).

In 2005 when the team had 1/2 decent DL the went to the AFC Championship (Courtney Brown was in his last healthy season, Gerrard Warren was healthy and putting on a salary drive, Trevor Pryce was healthy and putting on a salary drive before he hit FA). That's 3 former high first round picks, all of whom had undoubted talent.

In 2006, after Brown and Pryce left and Warren went back to sleep (and was injured when he wasn't napping), the Broncos fell to 8-8.

Things only got worse in 2007. Aside from Dumervil there wasn't ONE decent DL at all (and NO! John Engleberger doesn't count!) Marcus Thomas had a disappointing rookie year, Moss went on IR, Crowder did nothing but show his inexperience. The others (Sam Adams, Antwon Burton, Amon Gordon) were worse as I've detailed in previous posts.

Name ONE starting DT between 2000-2004 who was as bad as Amon Gordon or Antwon Burton and I'll agree that Coyer and Bates had equally bad DLs! :coffee:

EDIT: I forgot to add Ekuban who has been mediocre since he was cut by Dallas as a disappointment there, but he shines out by contrast to the other scrubs (ex: Engleberger) and rookies (Crowder, Moss) the Broncos have had on their DL. As Hunter S. Thompson said: "In a generation of swine, the one-eyed pig is king."

Those are all actually very good points; I can't refute them.

In 2006, however, despite not having Brown and Pryce, and having a supposedly underachieving Warren, the Broncos defense was still nowhere close to as bad as it was under Bates; truth is, they('06) started off real good. With Bates, we let go of Warren, who some say was one of our better run stuffers, because of Bates. We brought in the player types according to Bates' specs. Even Jarvis Moss was picked because he was a prototypical end Bates liked.

We were forced to play rookies more because some of the vets we'd brought in for his system didn't pan out at all. All things considered, Thomas didn't do too bad a job; he was a rookie who, because of circumstances, had to play like a veteran.

No matter, despite all of that, the 2006 defensive team was much better than the 2007 defensive team. I'm not convinced that Bates could've done a better job on our run defense had he had the 2006 players initially; he'd probably still cut Warren for not wanting to play his scheme. He'd still try to bring in physically big veterans to fit his sheme. And he'd still have the DEs playing real wide. IMO, based on last season, our run defense would probably end up the same way. If you notice in some of Bates' other defensive teams, they weren't very good against the run, but they did have talented players.

Bates needed some drastic talent to make his scheme work for us, talent we didn't have, but he knew that when he got the job.

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