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At which position would you like to see most improvement in 2018?


At which position would you like to see most improvement in 2018?  

82 members have voted

  1. 1. At which position would you like to see most improvement in 2018?

    • Defensive Line
      39
    • Linebacker
      12
    • Offensive Line
      23
    • Special Teams
      0
    • Defensive Backs
      8


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I voted O-Line

Mason was the third most sacked QB in College Football last year with 39. If Mason can get more protection and time to throw, this offense is going to run wild and it will open up the running game that which will control the game. It wont matter how much the other team scores when we score every time we get the ball.

 

DLine would be my second choice

The Defense had only 23 sacks last year which ranked in the high 80's in the nation. I know you cant drop all that on just the DLine but if they can get more pressure on the Qb, that will help the secondary tremendously.

 

In the end, GO MEAN GREEN, CHASE THAT DUB

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11 minutes ago, Withers940 said:

I voted O-Line

Mason was the third most sacked QB in College Football last year with 39. If Mason can get more protection and time to throw, this offense is going to run wild and it will open up the running game that which will control the game. It wont matter how much the other team scores when we score every time we get the ball.

 

DLine would be my second choice

The Defense had only 23 sacks last year which ranked in the high 80's in the nation. I know you cant drop all that on just the DLine but if they can get more pressure on the Qb, that will help the secondary tremendously.

 

In the end, GO MEAN GREEN, CHASE THAT DUB

I did too however, here's the problem as my compadre stated last night.  Could our offensive line be as good as it was last season?  Sure.  Getting Mayfield back helps that cause for sure.  What are the real chances it would be better though?  Mose is working his way back into the rotation sure but will he be 100%?   IE what additions or development players will make the line better?  Could the scheme be improved?  Is moving big boy back to guard going to work better?  Is Jacob Brammer going to make a huge difference in his first season on the field.  There are a lot of question marks.

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D-Line no doubt. 

Having a dominant D-Line covers up a lot of problems, if our D-Line were to improve enough, it would automatically make the LB's and DB's look better.

We won a good chunk of games last year in spite of our o-line, but watching our D-Line get pushed around by Iowa, FAU and Army is not fun. Had we had a better D-line, those games would have been muuuuch tighter

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4 minutes ago, Harry said:

I did too however, here's the problem as my compadre stated last night.  Could our offensive line be as good as it was last season?  Sure.  Getting Mayfield back helps that cause for sure.  What are the real chances it would be better though?  Mose is working his way back into the rotation sure but will he be 100%?   IE what additions or development players will make the line better?  Could the scheme be improved?  Is moving big boy back to guard going to work better?  Is Jacob Brammer going to make a huge difference in his first season on the field.  There are a lot of question marks.

All very solid questions that we will find out September 1st and beyond. I hope they can maintain what they had last and hopefully get better than last year. Mason has put on a lot of Beef since last year but he is just one hit away from changing the entire landscape of our offense.

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Oline:  Mason Fine is, without a doubt, the most important player we have. We've got to improve up front to keep him upright and healthy for the next two years if we want to get the program to the heights we all think are possible. The sack totals @Withers940 pointed out above wont cut it.  FAU and Troy, along with UTSA, just trashed our offensive line last year.

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Everyone saying O-Line must have forgotten how incredibly maddening 3rd downs were for the defense.   It all started up front.

The offense, despite the shaky OL, was still putting up gobs of points. 

The subpar DL play was affecting LB play (unable to force double-teams so blockers could release to take LBs) & Secondary play (can't force your DBs to cover dudes that long).

We must see improvement up front on defense.

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15 minutes ago, MeanGreenTexan said:

The offense, despite the shaky OL, was still putting up gobs of points. 

There are 129 teams in FBS, 122 did a better job of protecting the QB than we did last year.  Fine didn't get through his freshman season without injury, its a near miracle he took 39 sacks last year and didn't get injured.  We give up that many again an he probably won't get through his junior year.  

That offense isn't going to be anywhere near as effective (Cue SilverEagle) if Mason Fine is on the sidelines in a cast.  Protecting him has to be job #1.

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31 minutes ago, MeanGreenTexan said:

Everyone saying O-Line must have forgotten how incredibly maddening 3rd downs were for the defense.   It all started up front.

The offense, despite the shaky OL, was still putting up gobs of points. 

The subpar DL play was affecting LB play (unable to force double-teams so blockers could release to take LBs) & Secondary play (can't force your DBs to cover dudes that long).

We must see improvement up front on defense.

If Mason goes down you can forget about the gobs of points you mentioned.  Last I checked you win the game by having more points than the other team.  LOL

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Fine could go down at any time for any reason.  Not just because of a sack.   
Heck, Heisman hopeful Will Grier jacked his finger while scoring a TD last season.  Fine has very apparently bulked up quite a bit from his Freshman season.  Tough, Strong Dude. 
Plus, he'll have another offseason of timing with his WRs.  I expect pass plays to develop slightly quicker this season.

And it's infinitely easier to score more points than the other team (especially with this offense) if you have a defense that can stop the other team from scoring 35+pts/gm.

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I went with D-line. My thinking is that if we can control the line and get pressure then that will take a little pressure off the LB's and DB's.  I was very close on the O-Line, but with a stronger D my thought was that we would not always be in the situation where we were  trying to outscore everyone and would be able to control the ball a little more and that could help take some of the pressure off the O-line

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10 minutes ago, greenminer said:

Better 3rd down defense

I couldn’t agree more. There were so many instances last year where the defense held opponents to 3rd and long situations, only to see the defense completely melt away on 3rd down and give up a big play that led to a score. 

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I don't know how we can expect offensive linemen to hold blocks for five or six seconds so why are they being blamed for all of the sacks?  Some of the sacks were caused by more rushers than blockers.  I admit that Wilson was good at picking up the sixth rusher a lot.  And a good offensive line is often an extremely great need in an offense.  But, with their weaknesses we were still one of the best offenses in the nation.

On the other hand, our defense was not good often.  We gave up 35 rushing touchdowns...the most in conference USA.  Don't forget, that included UTEP and Rice.  We also tied with two others for the worst by giving up 24 passing touchdowns.  

I understand the sacks and the concern for Mason Fine's safety but the defense was our Achilles' heel last year.  We can't expect to be a highly-rated team by giving up 35 points per game and since we gave up a lot more TDs on the ground than in the air I believe that the defensive line needs the most improvement.  Fortunately, if English can return to form, and a jewel or two can be found among the new faces, this problem could go away fast.

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6 hours ago, golfingomez said:

D-Line no doubt. 

Having a dominant D-Line covers up a lot of problems, if our D-Line were to improve enough, it would automatically make the LB's and DB's look better.

We won a good chunk of games last year in spite of our o-line, but watching our D-Line get pushed around by Iowa, FAU and Army is not fun. Had we had a better D-line, those games would have been muuuuch tighter

You could have substituted the Cowboys D-Line and FAU would have still blown us out. Both contests we were outclassed and beaten unmercifully.

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5 hours ago, Cerebus said:

There are 129 teams in FBS, 122 did a better job of protecting the QB than we did last year.  Fine didn't get through his freshman season without injury, its a near miracle he took 39 sacks last year and didn't get injured.  We give up that many again an he probably won't get through his junior year.  

That offense isn't going to be anywhere near as effective (Cue SilverEagle) if Mason Fine is on the sidelines in a cast.  Protecting him has to be job #1.

Actually, not sure that the ol did that bad a job.  NT gave up 39 sacks which was 112 most out of 120 teams.  However NT passed 520 times which was eighth in the nation.  So passing more than 121 teams puts the sack stats in a more favorable light.   

There is obviously room to improve, but overall the ol was not near as bad as they are often portrayed.   

An above post questioned how the offensive line could improve with basically the same cast.   Easy, most players get better with playing time.  

I really think that linebackers were the weakest position on the team last year.  It can be argued that a suspect dl offered the linebackers little protection.  However, I saw a lot of missed tackles, and a lot of failures to get off blocks.  There are only three defensive lineman in most plays, and there is no way they are going to be able to absorb 5 or 6 blockers.  

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Fine was sacked a lot, yes. 

Not all of those were the OL. 

Fine still managed to be upright enough to throw for 4,000 yards. 

Our OL produced a 1k back. 

Our secondary back toted it for a very quite 684 yards. 

 

Our 3rd down defense without question needs to be the biggest improvement on this team. So, with that, I voted secondary. But better DL play and LB drop backs into the intermediate windows all play a part in improving 3rd down D.  And it must improve. 

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3 hours ago, DallasGreen said:

You could have substituted the Cowboys D-Line and FAU would have still blown us out. Both contests we were outclassed and beaten unmercifully.

They were waaaayyyyy better than us. It’s ok to admit that...

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27 minutes ago, Ben Gooding said:

Fine was sacked a lot, yes. 

Not all of those were the OL. 

Fine still managed to be upright enough to throw for 4,000 yards. 

Our OL produced a 1k back. 

Our secondary back toted it for a very quite 684 yards. 

 

Our 3rd down defense without question needs to be the biggest improvement on this team. So, with that, I voted secondary. But better DL play and LB drop backs into the intermediate windows all play a part in improving 3rd down D.  And it must improve. 

3rd down is the worst down for a MG fan—I feel like we never get stops against good offenses on 3rd down (probably because we blitz a lot to overcompensate for a lack of pash rush).

And our 3rd down efficiency on offense is ok, which is not unusual but a bad defense can make you feel even more tense about the missed 3rd down conversion on offense...

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20 hours ago, GrayEagle said:

I don't know how we can expect offensive linemen to hold blocks for five or six seconds so why are they being blamed for all of the sacks?  Some of the sacks were caused by more rushers than blockers.  I admit that Wilson was good at picking up the sixth rusher a lot.  And a good offensive line is often an extremely great need in an offense.  But, with their weaknesses we were still one of the best offenses in the nation.

On the other hand, our defense was not good often.  We gave up 35 rushing touchdowns...the most in conference USA.  Don't forget, that included UTEP and Rice.  We also tied with two others for the worst by giving up 24 passing touchdowns.  

I understand the sacks and the concern for Mason Fine's safety but the defense was our Achilles' heel last year.  We can't expect to be a highly-rated team by giving up 35 points per game and since we gave up a lot more TDs on the ground than in the air I believe that the defensive line needs the most improvement.  Fortunately, if English can return to form, and a jewel or two can be found among the new faces, this problem could go away fast.

Couldn't agree more. 

Lets have our own version of the defense that inspired our famous nickname....THE MEAN GREEN. 

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15 hours ago, untjim1995 said:

They were waaaayyyyy better than us. It’s ok to admit that...

Has anyone on the board gone back and broken down those two FAU games?  I couldn't stomach going back through them back when I had them on DVR, but the thing I remember most was just how quickly they played, both between plays and getting the ball out.  When they threw the ball it seemed like the QB had it out of his hands inside of 3 seconds, if not less, every time.  Hard for a dline to disrupt much in that amount of time.  

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9 minutes ago, TIgreen01 said:

Has anyone on the board gone back and broken down those two FAU games?  I couldn't stomach going back through them back when I had them on DVR, but the thing I remember most was just how quickly they played, both between plays and getting the ball out.  When they threw the ball it seemed like the QB had it out of his hands inside of 3 seconds, if not less, every time.  Hard for a dline to disrupt much in that amount of time.  

I have and it's basically they beat us at the line of scrimmage on both sides.  Their running back is top notch and their roster is littered with top notch transfer and juco talent at pretty much every position.

I think it is a noble goal to just compete with them better this season.  I honestly think they are as loaded as any G5 in the country.  The problem they seem to have this season is the same as last, chemistry.  It may take a few games for them to settle on a new QB etc.  I don't think their game against OU early will be a good barometer of where they will be mid season.  If they have a good showing against OU they could be one of the best teams to ever come out of C-USA.

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11 minutes ago, Harry said:

I have and it's basically they beat us at the line of scrimmage on both sides.  Their running back is top notch and their roster is littered with top notch transfer and juco talent at pretty much every position.

I think it is a noble goal to just compete with them better this season.  I honestly think they are as loaded as any G5 in the country.  The problem they seem to have this season is the same as last, chemistry.  It may take a few games for them to settle on a new QB etc.  I don't think their game against OU early will be a good barometer of where they will be mid season.  If they have a good showing against OU they could be one of the best teams to ever come out of C-USA.

It's more than they beat us at the LOS. They out coached us. When Reffet thought a fastball was coming, Kiffin would throw a slider and vice versa. 

They also dictated their offensive tempo all over us, and pressed us on D using multiple schemes. 

We were out coached and out played in both games, but in my opinion more so out coached. They put their QB in great position to make positive plays. They don't just route tree their WR's and expect their QB to go through the progressions like a pro. They often dictate what their QB does with the ball on given plays more so than letting the defense dictate where their QB goes with the ball. They micromanage their QB quite a bit, because they have a strong running game and it makes their passing game lethal. It also eliminates tons of mistakes. 

But they don't just put their offensive players in the best positions to make plays, they have great defensive placement on the field with their guys. 

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