Any idiot can say “Hey let’s sign every high-priced Free Agent on the market”. The 12 focuses on what we can do with what we already have, to fix or improve our team.
WEEK 15 against the giants. Our Defense was beaten for one uncontested Slant route after another. It looked almost like Eli Manning was out there playing catch with his receivers. Oh yeah, it also looked that way Week 2 vs the Chiefs.
The rest of the season didn’t look nearly as bad as those two weeks, but during the season two things became clear. 1) That the Slant was 7-11, if an opponent wanted it, and 2) That they could use the Slant, to set up the inside-out double-move on Go routes.
Our inside-out/double-move weakness, became glaringly, unsettlingly apparent in Week 15. It got to the point where we kept seeing teams try to exploit it, (especially against CB Jalen Mills) in the playoffs. Expect teams (especially division rivals) to write plays designed to attack that very Achilles Heel, in 2018. If we can’t take away the Slant, we’ll be setting our Secondary up for failure this year.
The best way to stop the Slant is to (PLEASE, DEAR GOD!!!!!!) play some man-press at the line. Yes, after a couple moments of press, the receiver will get into his route. That’s true. The Slant however, is a timing route. If the receiver is late to the spot, the QB is already on the next read in his progression. Pass rushers are closing in. The pressed route is defended.
The other way to defend the Slant is with a LB with no brakes, arriving just as the ball does. The message gets clearly sent, and receivers look for other ways to make money. Also opposing coaches would be less reckless with health of their QB’s favorite targets.
However, since the NFL likes handing out fines and suspensions, The smarter option is to focus on option one. Play some press. Disrupt opponent’s timing. Force opponents to learn the Eagles Defense all over again, then exploit their ignorance.