Anyone that has read any of my posts knows how much I believe in smash mouth football. I strongly believe that being a power running team in buffalo is the right approach because of the weather conditions. I however have changed my opinion about Turk's approach, which is to use the passing game to establish the running game. The AFC East is a very dominating division comprised of 3-4 teams with the exception of the Bills. This division has amongst the best Nose Tackles in the league with Wilfork, Furgeson & Jenkins. The 3-4 scheme is primarily designed to funnel the runner to the middle, to essentially render the opposing team one dimensional.
The main reason why I really believe that we can be successful this year is because of what TO brings to the table. Our division is dominated by big Nose Tackles & defenses that are very stout against the run but not so dominant against the pass (Last year NE was 15th against the run and 11th against the pass, NY was 7th/29th and MIA was 16th/25th). Teams that need to establish the run to get the passing game going are not going to be that successful in our division. I find TO is a huge upgrade for us because he gives us two very good #1 receivers and we should be able to pick our division apart through the pass and by doing so, setup the run. Add the no huddle and you are really in business.
The Dolphins have lost Goodman to Denver and still have the old man Will Allen who is over 30. Although they drafted Vontae Davis in the first round, I still believe that their main weakness in 2009 will be the passing game.
The Jets are really designed to stop the run with Kris Jenkins and even though they have one of the best young CBs in Darrelle Revis, they still only managed to rank 29th against the pass, so clearly their main weakness is there.
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After taking a step back I have come to realize that the only way to establish ourselves offensively in the AFC East is through the passing game. As much as I hate to admit it, I was wrong last year. I love the running game and I really love the guys we have, Lynch is an awesome power runner that is impossible to bring down but unfortunately our division is designed to stop the onslaught over the middle... By designing a team around the quick arial strike, we should be able to open things up to the point where Lynch will be able to punish them with his relentless running style.
Luckly for us, the same holds true against the falcons & Titans - both power running teams that do not pass that much. Our quick strike approach is not something that they do so their defenses are not geared to stop it.
I know many Rumblers are concerned with our new re-vamped O-line and I must admit that I too have some concerns. I was a huge fan of Alex Mack and I was really disapointed when OBD decided to sign Hangman because I knew that it meant that we wouldn't draft Mack but I have come to accept it because I realized that it was critical to get a guy with experience in the pivot position, a guy that could make the calls on the line. I love the fact that we got two nasty Guards in the draft because I think ultimately it makes us that much better.