"The crew at Playbook has taken to the film to find players who made marked improvements on the field. " In their third installment that looked at defensive tackles. They selected the three most improved defensive tackles—Sopoaga, Kyle Love from the Patriots, and Geno Atkins from the Bengals.
This is what they said about Sopoagba.
"He was tremendously disciplined while facing a variety of schemes. Against traps and wham-blocks, he had the wherewithal to hold his ground and properly take on the blocker while squeezing the hole. Sopoaga demonstrated athleticism and great footwork for a 330-pound man, able to move laterally against zone runs, get penetration and shuck blockers to make a play."
One minute they also picked Carlos Rogers and Alex Smith.
Carlos Rogers, 49ersRogers went from being a disappointment in Washington to a Pro-Bowler in San Francisco. The 49ers played a lot of man-to-man coverage in 2011, showcasing Rogers' athleticism and allowing him to focus on a single task: shutting down the man across from him. The former first-round pick was put in a position to succeed and ran with the opportunity.
Jim Harbaugh took Smith under his wing, a move that produced positive results from Week 1 on. San Francisco structured the offense to maximize his abilities and Smith discovered a newfound decisiveness, helping him take a big step in 2011.
The 49ers' passing game changed dramatically in 2011. Harbaugh did not ask Smith to step outside of his abilities; the quarterback attempted nearly seven fewer passes per game in 2011 than he did the previous season, but threw three more touchdowns and five fewer interceptions. The team took advantage of the underneath passing game and utilized Smith's mobility with bootlegs off of play-action. Smith also made better decisions, refraining from forcing balls and knowing when to throw it away.
[ Edited by buck on Feb 2, 2012 at 9:07 PM ]