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Do we need an upgrade at NT?

Do we need an upgrade at NT?

Originally posted by TexasNiner:
Originally posted by NinerNay20:
Originally posted by bigmike55:


I wouldn't mind this guy being our starting NT

Terrence Cody
Alabama DT, 6-5 / 365

We should draft this guy next year.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wNCdVEfoBEo

I am totally on the "Mt. Cody" bandwagon. We absolutely need an upgrade a NT. Our D will never be complete until we have at least an above average NT, if not a dominant one.

And since it looks unlikely to addressed before next year's off season, Cody is definately a player we should be watching very closely.

I think Cody will be a great run stuffer for patrick willis and our D. He could take on double teams, maybe even triple teams. I wouldn't mind him losing maybe 20 lbs. or so to gain a little more quickness... heck, he'd still be 345lbs... heavier than your average NFL offensive lineman.
Originally posted by oldman9er:
Originally posted by ruthless49er:
Originally posted by oldman9er:
Originally posted by TheG0RE49er:
Well I wanted Raji more than any other player in the draft...but if Franklin can play like he played when Sing took over, than I don't see a reason for trying to find an "upgrade"

Why on earth would you want Raji if Franklin, in your opinion, played so well? I mean, I feel the same way about wanting Raji over anyone.... but that's because Franklin sucks. Sucked a little less down the stretch, but still is below average.
(not arguing with you, just asking for clarification)

im actually with him on this old. I like Franklin. I think he does a good enough job. i mean Willis and Spikes were racking up tackles. Without a good enough line that wouldnt happen. and it wasnt like Patrick's rookie season where most of the tackles were cause the D was on the field so damn much.. Nah Franklin does a good enough job. However if we had a chance at a guy like Raji whos projected to be the next dominant NT then hell yeah i want him.

In fact if Raji was available and Crabtree was too i think Raji should be the pick.

See, this is what I don't get. Teams rarely draft a NT early, and certainly wouldn't take one at #10 if they already had one that they regarded as "doing a good enough job." I think if you decide to focus exclusively on the NT this year (if Franklin starts), you will change your mind about him. One can't first say that Franklin can't take double teams, and then say he does a good enough job. It's a contradiction in terms.

Holding the POA... being worthy of multiple OL attention, and getting push/penetration up the gut IS the job. Franklin fails to do any of that 9 times out of 10. I could give you an easy dozen sources that state that a 3-4 D must have a good NT. I think because of the excellent ILBs we have... because we played spiraling teams that had conversion issues... that fans are overrating our run defense, and also overlooking that a D needs pressure up the gut to allow better outside rush. We had some games where our D kept rushes to 3 or 4 yards a pop (thanks Willis/TKO/Lewis), but it still sucks to be looking at 3rd down and 2 to go. Some running backs down the stretch gashed us for big averages, where others we contained well at the expense of passing yards.

Okay, okay, I'm done... haha... Sorry about that rant.

I totally agree with this though the best teams do draft NT's in the first round or get players such as Jamal Williams who play at a first round talent. Franklin was a 3rd string NT for Baltimore when we got him and they still drafted Ngata who's 350 pounds of NT/DT. Linebackers know the importance of having a dominant d-line in front of them esp. at the NT position (Ngata was Ray Lewis' pick).

With Baltimore drafting Ngata, IMHO, he added a few more years to Lewis' career.
[ Edited by NCommand on Jul 23, 2009 at 11:18 AM ]
There really are only a few positions we couldn't use an upgrade at and an upgrade at NT might just put us over the top.
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Originally posted by oldman9er:
Originally posted by Kolohe:
Yes we do, but it won't happen this year unless by some miracle the Pats decided to trade Wilfork, but I don't see that happening. I think Sing is gonna let this group (Sopoaga, Franklin, Balmer, Mitchell) play out the year. At worst we could come out this year with a decent rotation at the Nose, but with no real threat in the middle. We should all hope for Ron Brace to do good this year for the Pats, and maybe just maybe they will part with Wilfork. But we could always go the cheap way through the draft and pick up someone there, gonna keep my eye on Dan Williams of Tenn this year, and there's always Boo Robinson, Al Woods, Kade Weston and Trey Bryant of Baylor (yay Sing).

But with an upgrade at NT, I think we would solidify our defense as a true 3-4. You could actually say we are one right now, but lets face it, we're gonna be looking to upgrade the NT position until we find ourselves a Wilfork, Ted Washington, Kris Jenkins, Shaun Rogers or a Casey Hampton type player. I wonder if we would've taken Ron Brace if he were available at #43??

Also agree on this overall assessment. My hope comes from Sopoaga perhaps returning to NT. He was said to be our quickest DL off the snap, and we know he's strong. Hopefully, playing more 1-gap instead of 2 will benefit him and SF in the middle. This could help lessen our need at NT, which I would classify as a huge one. I'm not writing off the other NT options on the roster, but very doubtful for starting quality to emerge. Would LOVE to have traded for Wilfork, and had some interest in Brace with our 2nd rounder. Didn't read about it, if they had interest in Brace. I remember there was strong interest in CB Byrd/Butler, and had considered Unger as a possibility.

Knight hawk, I wouldn't worry much about our secondary. If we can get a better pass rush going, we have enough in the secondary to handle business. I expect SF to be looking at CB early in next year's draft, but that's a long ways away.

Problem with Sopoaga is that hes all brute force and very little technique. If he could just learn to stay low and/or use his hands more to shed blocks instead of just trying to use your strength to get off them, then I'd have no doubt he could be comparable to the same caliber NT Wilfork is. Until then Sopoaga will just be another average D-lineman. Maybe that's the reason it took Ted Washington so long to become a force (besides being over weight). But as for Ron Brace that was mainly curiosity from me, I also didn't hear or read about any inquiry about Brace from the 49ers staff....its too bad though. But like I said, it all depends on Brace whether or not, the Pats decide to let Wilfork walk via trade or free agency.
Originally posted by Kolohe:
Originally posted by oldman9er:
Originally posted by Kolohe:
Yes we do, but it won't happen this year unless by some miracle the Pats decided to trade Wilfork, but I don't see that happening. I think Sing is gonna let this group (Sopoaga, Franklin, Balmer, Mitchell) play out the year. At worst we could come out this year with a decent rotation at the Nose, but with no real threat in the middle. We should all hope for Ron Brace to do good this year for the Pats, and maybe just maybe they will part with Wilfork. But we could always go the cheap way through the draft and pick up someone there, gonna keep my eye on Dan Williams of Tenn this year, and there's always Boo Robinson, Al Woods, Kade Weston and Trey Bryant of Baylor (yay Sing).

But with an upgrade at NT, I think we would solidify our defense as a true 3-4. You could actually say we are one right now, but lets face it, we're gonna be looking to upgrade the NT position until we find ourselves a Wilfork, Ted Washington, Kris Jenkins, Shaun Rogers or a Casey Hampton type player. I wonder if we would've taken Ron Brace if he were available at #43??

Also agree on this overall assessment. My hope comes from Sopoaga perhaps returning to NT. He was said to be our quickest DL off the snap, and we know he's strong. Hopefully, playing more 1-gap instead of 2 will benefit him and SF in the middle. This could help lessen our need at NT, which I would classify as a huge one. I'm not writing off the other NT options on the roster, but very doubtful for starting quality to emerge. Would LOVE to have traded for Wilfork, and had some interest in Brace with our 2nd rounder. Didn't read about it, if they had interest in Brace. I remember there was strong interest in CB Byrd/Butler, and had considered Unger as a possibility.

Knight hawk, I wouldn't worry much about our secondary. If we can get a better pass rush going, we have enough in the secondary to handle business. I expect SF to be looking at CB early in next year's draft, but that's a long ways away.

Problem with Sopoaga is that hes all brute force and very little technique. If he could just learn to stay low and/or use his hands more to shed blocks instead of just trying to use your strength to get off them, then I'd have no doubt he could be comparable to the same caliber NT Wilfork is. Until then Sopoaga will just be another average D-lineman. Maybe that's the reason it took Ted Washington so long to become a force (besides being over weight). But as for Ron Brace that was mainly curiosity from me, I also didn't hear or read about any inquiry about Brace from the 49ers staff....its too bad though. But like I said, it all depends on Brace whether or not, the Pats decide to let Wilfork walk via trade or free agency.

And didn't the Pats jump up right in front of us to take Brace? God I hate the Pats - they're always making the right moves esp. at NT!
Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by Kolohe:
Originally posted by oldman9er:
Originally posted by Kolohe:
Yes we do, but it won't happen this year unless by some miracle the Pats decided to trade Wilfork, but I don't see that happening. I think Sing is gonna let this group (Sopoaga, Franklin, Balmer, Mitchell) play out the year. At worst we could come out this year with a decent rotation at the Nose, but with no real threat in the middle. We should all hope for Ron Brace to do good this year for the Pats, and maybe just maybe they will part with Wilfork. But we could always go the cheap way through the draft and pick up someone there, gonna keep my eye on Dan Williams of Tenn this year, and there's always Boo Robinson, Al Woods, Kade Weston and Trey Bryant of Baylor (yay Sing).

But with an upgrade at NT, I think we would solidify our defense as a true 3-4. You could actually say we are one right now, but lets face it, we're gonna be looking to upgrade the NT position until we find ourselves a Wilfork, Ted Washington, Kris Jenkins, Shaun Rogers or a Casey Hampton type player. I wonder if we would've taken Ron Brace if he were available at #43??

Also agree on this overall assessment. My hope comes from Sopoaga perhaps returning to NT. He was said to be our quickest DL off the snap, and we know he's strong. Hopefully, playing more 1-gap instead of 2 will benefit him and SF in the middle. This could help lessen our need at NT, which I would classify as a huge one. I'm not writing off the other NT options on the roster, but very doubtful for starting quality to emerge. Would LOVE to have traded for Wilfork, and had some interest in Brace with our 2nd rounder. Didn't read about it, if they had interest in Brace. I remember there was strong interest in CB Byrd/Butler, and had considered Unger as a possibility.

Knight hawk, I wouldn't worry much about our secondary. If we can get a better pass rush going, we have enough in the secondary to handle business. I expect SF to be looking at CB early in next year's draft, but that's a long ways away.

Problem with Sopoaga is that hes all brute force and very little technique. If he could just learn to stay low and/or use his hands more to shed blocks instead of just trying to use your strength to get off them, then I'd have no doubt he could be comparable to the same caliber NT Wilfork is. Until then Sopoaga will just be another average D-lineman. Maybe that's the reason it took Ted Washington so long to become a force (besides being over weight). But as for Ron Brace that was mainly curiosity from me, I also didn't hear or read about any inquiry about Brace from the 49ers staff....its too bad though. But like I said, it all depends on Brace whether or not, the Pats decide to let Wilfork walk via trade or free agency.

And didn't the Pats jump up right in front of us to take Brace? God I hate the Pats - they're always making the right moves esp. at NT!

Exactly that why they can groom Brace and not have to pay a s**tload of money to Wilfork.
Originally posted by lamontb:
Exactly that's why they can groom Brace and not have to pay a s**tload of money to Wilfork.

Patsturds!
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Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by Kolohe:
Originally posted by oldman9er:
Originally posted by Kolohe:
Yes we do, but it won't happen this year unless by some miracle the Pats decided to trade Wilfork, but I don't see that happening. I think Sing is gonna let this group (Sopoaga, Franklin, Balmer, Mitchell) play out the year. At worst we could come out this year with a decent rotation at the Nose, but with no real threat in the middle. We should all hope for Ron Brace to do good this year for the Pats, and maybe just maybe they will part with Wilfork. But we could always go the cheap way through the draft and pick up someone there, gonna keep my eye on Dan Williams of Tenn this year, and there's always Boo Robinson, Al Woods, Kade Weston and Trey Bryant of Baylor (yay Sing).

But with an upgrade at NT, I think we would solidify our defense as a true 3-4. You could actually say we are one right now, but lets face it, we're gonna be looking to upgrade the NT position until we find ourselves a Wilfork, Ted Washington, Kris Jenkins, Shaun Rogers or a Casey Hampton type player. I wonder if we would've taken Ron Brace if he were available at #43??

Also agree on this overall assessment. My hope comes from Sopoaga perhaps returning to NT. He was said to be our quickest DL off the snap, and we know he's strong. Hopefully, playing more 1-gap instead of 2 will benefit him and SF in the middle. This could help lessen our need at NT, which I would classify as a huge one. I'm not writing off the other NT options on the roster, but very doubtful for starting quality to emerge. Would LOVE to have traded for Wilfork, and had some interest in Brace with our 2nd rounder. Didn't read about it, if they had interest in Brace. I remember there was strong interest in CB Byrd/Butler, and had considered Unger as a possibility.

Knight hawk, I wouldn't worry much about our secondary. If we can get a better pass rush going, we have enough in the secondary to handle business. I expect SF to be looking at CB early in next year's draft, but that's a long ways away.

Problem with Sopoaga is that hes all brute force and very little technique. If he could just learn to stay low and/or use his hands more to shed blocks instead of just trying to use your strength to get off them, then I'd have no doubt he could be comparable to the same caliber NT Wilfork is. Until then Sopoaga will just be another average D-lineman. Maybe that's the reason it took Ted Washington so long to become a force (besides being over weight). But as for Ron Brace that was mainly curiosity from me, I also didn't hear or read about any inquiry about Brace from the 49ers staff....its too bad though. But like I said, it all depends on Brace whether or not, the Pats decide to let Wilfork walk via trade or free agency.

And didn't the Pats jump up right in front of us to take Brace? God I hate the Pats - they're always making the right moves esp. at NT!

That's exactly what I was thinking, and they chose Butler who we were targeting. They probably thought or knew we wanted one of them so they chose both, with the fear that one of them might not be there with their 58th pick, since basically we were the only 3-4 team in their way.
Originally posted by Kolohe:
Originally posted by oldman9er:
Originally posted by Kolohe:
Yes we do, but it won't happen this year unless by some miracle the Pats decided to trade Wilfork, but I don't see that happening. I think Sing is gonna let this group (Sopoaga, Franklin, Balmer, Mitchell) play out the year. At worst we could come out this year with a decent rotation at the Nose, but with no real threat in the middle. We should all hope for Ron Brace to do good this year for the Pats, and maybe just maybe they will part with Wilfork. But we could always go the cheap way through the draft and pick up someone there, gonna keep my eye on Dan Williams of Tenn this year, and there's always Boo Robinson, Al Woods, Kade Weston and Trey Bryant of Baylor (yay Sing).

But with an upgrade at NT, I think we would solidify our defense as a true 3-4. You could actually say we are one right now, but lets face it, we're gonna be looking to upgrade the NT position until we find ourselves a Wilfork, Ted Washington, Kris Jenkins, Shaun Rogers or a Casey Hampton type player. I wonder if we would've taken Ron Brace if he were available at #43??

Also agree on this overall assessment. My hope comes from Sopoaga perhaps returning to NT. He was said to be our quickest DL off the snap, and we know he's strong. Hopefully, playing more 1-gap instead of 2 will benefit him and SF in the middle. This could help lessen our need at NT, which I would classify as a huge one. I'm not writing off the other NT options on the roster, but very doubtful for starting quality to emerge. Would LOVE to have traded for Wilfork, and had some interest in Brace with our 2nd rounder. Didn't read about it, if they had interest in Brace. I remember there was strong interest in CB Byrd/Butler, and had considered Unger as a possibility.

Knight hawk, I wouldn't worry much about our secondary. If we can get a better pass rush going, we have enough in the secondary to handle business. I expect SF to be looking at CB early in next year's draft, but that's a long ways away.

Problem with Sopoaga is that hes all brute force and very little technique. If he could just learn to stay low and/or use his hands more to shed blocks instead of just trying to use your strength to get off them, then I'd have no doubt he could be comparable to the same caliber NT Wilfork is. Until then Sopoaga will just be another average D-lineman. Maybe that's the reason it took Ted Washington so long to become a force (besides being over weight). But as for Ron Brace that was mainly curiosity from me, I also didn't hear or read about any inquiry about Brace from the 49ers staff....its too bad though. But like I said, it all depends on Brace whether or not, the Pats decide to let Wilfork walk via trade or free agency.

If his problem is just technique,then it should be easily corrected.My question is what is keeping him from learning technique,is it him or is it the coaching?Manusky should focus on him if all he needs is work on his technique.If he was as strong fundamentally as he is physically,he would be a one man wrecking crew.
Originally posted by Kolohe:
That's exactly what I was thinking, and they chose Butler who we were targeting. They probably thought or knew we wanted one of them so they chose both, with the fear that one of them might not be there with their 58th pick, since basically we were the only 3-4 team in their way.

Yup! I remember when we used to have a front office that worked like that. Ahhhh, the glory days. Haha
Originally posted by Memphis9er:
If his problem is just technique,then it should be easily corrected.My question is what is keeping him from learning technique,is it him or is it the coaching?Manusky should focus on him if all he needs is work on his technique.If he was as strong fundamentally as he is physically,he would be a one man wrecking crew.

I see Sopoaga's problems as being the equal to Manny Lawson's in terms of development (or lack thereof). Sopoaga comes in as a LEAN and athletic 320 pound NT who's got a quick first step. He's raw and got a late start due to a serious back injury.

Then, we shift back and forth between a 4-3 and 3-4, move him from DT to NT, from starter to backup, from NT to LDE and now from LDE back to NT as, perhaps, a backup to Franklin?

The bottom line is he actually played pretty well last year at LDE and if he continues to play there and develop and not have to worry about also playing the NT position, he may become a good LDE, one where Manny can rush behind (or next too).

The interchangeable perspective behind our coaching staff of a DE & NT is really setting player development back IMHO. Have they NOT learned anything from the Nolan regime?
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Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by Memphis9er:
If his problem is just technique,then it should be easily corrected.My question is what is keeping him from learning technique,is it him or is it the coaching?Manusky should focus on him if all he needs is work on his technique.If he was as strong fundamentally as he is physically,he would be a one man wrecking crew.

I see Sopoaga's problems as being the equal to Manny Lawson's in terms of development (or lack thereof). Sopoaga comes in as a LEAN and athletic 320 pound NT who's got a quick first step. He's raw and got a late start due to a serious back injury.

Then, we shift back and forth between a 4-3 and 3-4, move him from DT to NT, from starter to backup, from NT to LDE and now from LDE back to NT as, perhaps, a backup to Franklin?

The bottom line is he actually played pretty well last year at LDE and if he continues to play there and develop and not have to worry about also playing the NT position, he may become a good LDE, one where Manny can rush behind (or next too).

The interchangeable perspective behind our coaching staff of a DE & NT is really setting player development back IMHO. Have they NOT learned anything from the Nolan regime?

Good post I agree, and luckily I scrolled down to read yours, I was about to post something similar. The staff needs to figure out where they want him, so far hes gone from A and B gap control to, controlling the L-side and the OT, than to a one-gap, playing inside on a 4-2-5. I'm sure he's willing to play wherever they need him to, but I'd like to see for once, Sopoaga settle down at one position of the O-Line. He's pretty much the Adam Snyder of the defensive line.
I wish we could have got one of them two
Originally posted by Kolohe:
Good post I agree, and luckily I scrolled down to read yours, I was about to post something similar. The staff needs to figure out where they want him, so far hes gone from A and B gap control to, controlling the L-side and the OT, than to a one-gap, playing inside on a 4-2-5. I'm sure he's willing to play wherever they need him to, but I'd like to see for once, Sopoaga settle down at one position of the O-Line. He's pretty much the Adam Snyder of the defensive line.

Thanks. I'm glad you added the two-gap vs. one-gap point too! Changes along the d-line coaches, etc. That's a very good example in comparing him to Synder.
Originally posted by oldman9er:
Originally posted by ruthless49er:
Originally posted by oldman9er:
Originally posted by TheG0RE49er:
Well I wanted Raji more than any other player in the draft...but if Franklin can play like he played when Sing took over, than I don't see a reason for trying to find an "upgrade"

Why on earth would you want Raji if Franklin, in your opinion, played so well? I mean, I feel the same way about wanting Raji over anyone.... but that's because Franklin sucks. Sucked a little less down the stretch, but still is below average.
(not arguing with you, just asking for clarification)

im actually with him on this old. I like Franklin. I think he does a good enough job. i mean Willis and Spikes were racking up tackles. Without a good enough line that wouldnt happen. and it wasnt like Patrick's rookie season where most of the tackles were cause the D was on the field so damn much.. Nah Franklin does a good enough job. However if we had a chance at a guy like Raji whos projected to be the next dominant NT then hell yeah i want him.

In fact if Raji was available and Crabtree was too i think Raji should be the pick.

See, this is what I don't get. Teams rarely draft a NT early, and certainly wouldn't take one at #10 if they already had one that they regarded as "doing a good enough job." I think if you decide to focus exclusively on the NT this year (if Franklin starts), you will change your mind about him. One can't first say that Franklin can't take double teams, and then say he does a good enough job. It's a contradiction in terms.

Holding the POA... being worthy of multiple OL attention, and getting push/penetration up the gut IS the job. Franklin fails to do any of that 9 times out of 10. I could give you an easy dozen sources that state that a 3-4 D must have a good NT. I think because of the excellent ILBs we have... because we played spiraling teams that had conversion issues... that fans are overrating our run defense, and also overlooking that a D needs pressure up the gut to allow better outside rush. We had some games where our D kept rushes to 3 or 4 yards a pop (thanks Willis/TKO/Lewis), but it still sucks to be looking at 3rd down and 2 to go. Some running backs down the stretch gashed us for big averages, where others we contained well at the expense of passing yards.

Okay, okay, I'm done... haha... Sorry about that rant.

See i think what Franklin does well enough is hold the POA. what he doesnt get too much is that push/penetation. but that might also be the scheme. Our ILBs are all-world i agree but they wont be making much tackles if theyre constantly having to go through an offensive lineman so I really do think Franklin doesnt get as much credit as he deserves.

Now on the subject of Raji, its alot like the situation with Crabtree. at #10 we wouldnt have dreamt of taking any other wide reciever i dont think. We just paid a ton to Jones, Morgan was bieng looked at as the next #1, Jason Hill as the future slot while we still had Bruce. Good enough to do the job...but you get a chance at potential like Crabtree...well you gotta go get it. Just like that. if we had a chance to get potential like Raji we go get it. BPA i guess lol
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