Defensive Coordinator Robert Saleh

Originally posted by Heroism:
This is the question I have going into this week's game: Are we going to see a wide 9 snickel package(ie Armstead and Solly at edge in nickel)???


  • Giedi
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Originally posted by thl408:
Originally posted by Heroism:
Goooood stuff, thl! The LBs are designated exactly how we discussed.

Does this mean Fred Warner is now technically a "SAM" in this new scheme? Same position, but new name?

Extremely similar. The SAM and MIKE are now much more similar to each other than they are to the WILL if I understand it correctly. I'm talking pass coverage. Last season, the MIKE and WILL were very similar.

To me, the Sam and Mike are the *1* in the 4-1-6 defense (in a sense) with the 4 rush men, the WLB dropping in coverage and the SS dropping in coverage, and *either* of the Mike or Sam dropping into coverage, but not both.

I'm getting the sense that instead of getting a hybrid Safety/Linebacker to come in from the DB/Safety side to thump against the running plays, they have instead opted for coverage linebackers (due to the NFL's don't hit the WR's rules) by having the LB's be smaller than regular sized 4-3 LB's and have them basically drop and cover like safeties. I like the design, and the tradeoff for weakening the defense against the run is reasonable if you have good DT's that have the quickness to squeeze the holes or clog the run lanes enough to slow the RB down. The smaller quicker LB's can come in and gang tackle the RB. The strong Safety right there with the LB's is kind of another LB that can help gang tackling against the run too.

I'd love to have another Dre Greenlaw in next years draft to play the Strong Safety position, as a heavier alternative to the traditional safeties we have on defense today. Again, I love Dre Greenlaw's safety and coverage background. He's (I think) the closest we have to a John Lynch kind of thumper that can cover also.
Originally posted by Giedi:
To me, the Sam and Mike are the *1* in the 4-1-6 defense (in a sense) with the 4 rush men, the WLB dropping in coverage and the SS dropping in coverage, and *either* of the Mike or Sam dropping into coverage, but not both.

They're still running the same Seattle-style cover 3 with the two inside LBs playing hook zones and pattern matching crossers. SS takes the TE if he goes outside* or vertical. However, this is not always the SS now. It can be the other safety if the coverage rolls. Same rules apply in this cover 3 scheme, tho.

So same rules as before. The only change is the assignments. It appears the WILL is now a curl-flat player instead of a weak hook player, and the SAM is a strong hook player instead of a force and curl-flat player.

btw smaller athletic LBs is a definitive trait of this scheme. When Pete Carroll came back to the NFL, he prioritized LBs with speed and athleticism over size to play fast in a simple scheme and be able to run with WRs against cover 3 beaters. It's one of the reasons I've had so much success with identifying the LBs they will target in the draft and free agency. It's now becoming a trend across the league, tho.
[ Edited by Heroism on Aug 13, 2019 at 4:50 PM ]
This is virtually the same type of cover 3 I played in high school. I believe it's commonly called cover 3 sky. I don't remember exactly. It's been a minute lol.

Except for the fancy pattern matching. spotdrop4life

Originally posted by NCommand:


Let's pray we've seen the end of the snickel.
[ Edited by Heroism on Aug 13, 2019 at 4:09 PM ]
Originally posted by Heroism:
This is virtually the same type of cover 3 I played in high school. I believe it's commonly called cover 3 sky. I don't remember exactly. It's been a minute lol.

Except for the fancy pattern matching. spotdrop4life

Originally posted by NCommand:


Let's pray we've seen the end of the snickel.

My man, I will all day long with you on that.
[ Edited by NCommand on Aug 13, 2019 at 4:35 PM ]
  • Giedi
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Originally posted by Heroism:
Originally posted by Giedi:
To me, the Sam and Mike are the *1* in the 4-1-6 defense (in a sense) with the 4 rush men, the WLB dropping in coverage and the SS dropping in coverage, and *either* of the Mike or Sam dropping into coverage, but not both.

They're still running the same Seattle-style cover 3 with the two inside LBs playing hook zones and pattern matching crossers. SS takes the TE if he goes inside or vertical. However, this is not always the SS now. It can be the other safety if the coverage rolls. Same rules apply in this cover 3 scheme, tho.

So same rules as before. The only change is the assignments. It appears the WILL is now a curl-flat player instead of a weak hook player, and the SAM is a strong hook player instead of a force and curl-flat player.

btw smaller athletic LBs is a definitive trait of this scheme. When Pete Carroll came back to the NFL, he prioritized LBs with speed and athleticism over size to play fast in a simple scheme and be able to run with WRs against cover 3 beaters. It's one of the reasons I've had so much success with identifying the LBs they will target in the draft and free agency. It's now becoming a trend across the league, tho.
One weakness I see is if the offense can't ball hog. The smaller defensive players will eventually get worn down if they are out there too long. Speed and Athleticism always meant a turnover centric football defense to me. Walsh adopted a lot of Al Davis' defensive concepts on speed and athleticism vs power and agility - with the old Raider defenses... but the key was being able to ball control and ball hog on offense.

McGee would fill the role as a designated pass rusher on third down when opponents went to three wide receivers and the Patriots responded with four defensive linemen and five defensive backs. And fill it he did, averaging around 10 sacks per season from 1974-80.[…]
in [Raiders] Sumner's "Pirate" defense, James Davis would play nickle as both inside linebackers would come off, and Greg Townsend would play left defensive end, Bill Pickell would play left defensive tackle and Howie Long would play right defensive tackle (usually a 3 technique) in this extremely effective set. When Alzado would get nicked or needed some air, Long would played right defensive end and Townsend or Pickell would played left defensive end. And to isolate Howie Long on the center, as the Bears Buddy Ryan would do with Dan Hampton, Long would play nose tackle in a 5-man line. In the 'Desparado" defense, it was the four best pass rushers and seven defensive backs on the field for the Raiders. ("Renegade was the dime or six-man secondary).
http://nflfootballjournal.blogspot.com/2015/04/charlie-sumner-his-place-in-resurgance.html
I never knew Saleh worked under Fangio for a season.
https://www.49erswebzone.com/articles/127216-transcript-discusses-linebackers-tarvarius-scangarello-practicing-against-broncos/

Did DL Solomon Thomas get a couple sacks on the two interceptions in the red zone that Garoppolo threw in that practice?

"He may have. My eyes were in the backfield, so he may have."

Is this normal? Would a typical DC not know if one of his players had would be sacks? Should Saleh have noticed this while watching film afterwards? Is this why Solly didn't get that many reps last year, because Saleh literally didn't see what he could do?

Not hating, legit asking since I have zero coaching experience.
  • Giedi
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Originally posted by Heroism:
I never knew Saleh worked under Fangio for a season.

I don't know about that, but I do like the base concept of 3-3-5 defense as a base defense that (I think) either you or somebody else mentioned that Belicheat used against McVay in the Lombardi game.

Heck that *don't hit the WR* penalty by Colbert in the Dallas game, would make me, as a defensive coach, to go all the way to a 2-3-6 defense if the officials keep calling those against the defense instead of letting it go.

As for Saleh's defense. I just like the fact that he's putting faster players like Bosa and Ford on the D Line and they are getting LB's like Warner and Greenlaw - who (In my view) are hybrid Linebacker/Strong Safety types that can cover and big enough to take on the average NFL arby. Fast players against the spread offense - I think - offer the best combination of coverage against the pass and strong enough to slow or stop the run concepts from the 11 man personnel sets. Specially when the refs call those namby pamby *don't hit the wr* penalties.
Originally posted by Heroism:
I never knew Saleh worked under Fangio for a season.

Quality control, right? In typical Fangio fashion, lazer focused and never said a word to him until week 8. LOL. Start'n at the bottom, now I'm here!

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Originally posted by NCommand:
Quality control, right? In typical Fangio fashion, lazer focused and never said a word to him until week 8. LOL. Start'n at the bottom, now I'm here!

I remember Siefert vs Fangio during the Bobby Herbert years with Nawleans. I've always felt Fangios defense was more geared to the run, whereas the Seifert defense more geared to the pass. Siefert never really had hall of fame Linebackes like Fangio had. Where Seiferts hall of famers were, was at DB and DLine. I bet Seifert, in this day of the pass happy NFL, his original schemes still kick butt, whereas Fangios schemes have been adjusting to be more like the Seifert defense.

I think the current personnel we have are very comparable to the defenses during the dynasty years, in terms of athleticism and speed. The old Fangio defenses under Harbaugh were more like the New Orleans defenses during the late '80s and '90's. Geared to stop the run, vs to stop the pass.
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I liked Saleh's take on Fred and Quinten Rollins. Maybe this guy Rollins has a chance to make the team. Also liked the fact that Fred continues to evolve and get better. That's, I think, looking to be a very solid LB corps. Fred, Kwon and Dre.

What did you see out of CB Quinten Rollins? It seemed like he made a play there?
"Yeah, he made a pass break up. Quinten had a great college career, was a second-round pick, so he's got good history, he's had some injuries to him, but he feels good, feels healthy. And so, it's the same thing, he's got his foot in the door and it's his job to, along with us, to help him, coach him to blow that door open."
Did Fred have a forced fumble there?
"Yeah, Fred started it with a forced fumble. He's starting to get a knack for that so it's pretty cool.
https://www.49erswebzone.com/articles/127216-transcript-discusses-linebackers-tarvarius-scangarello-practicing-against-broncos/
Originally posted by Giedi:
I liked Saleh's take on Fred and Quinten Rollins. Maybe this guy Rollins has a chance to make the team. Also liked the fact that Fred continues to evolve and get better. That's, I think, looking to be a very solid LB corps. Fred, Kwon and Dre.

What did you see out of CB Quinten Rollins? It seemed like he made a play there?
"Yeah, he made a pass break up. Quinten had a great college career, was a second-round pick, so he's got good history, he's had some injuries to him, but he feels good, feels healthy. And so, it's the same thing, he's got his foot in the door and it's his job to, along with us, to help him, coach him to blow that door open."
Did Fred have a forced fumble there?
"Yeah, Fred started it with a forced fumble. He's starting to get a knack for that so it's pretty cool.
https://www.49erswebzone.com/articles/127216-transcript-discusses-linebackers-tarvarius-scangarello-practicing-against-broncos/

Then why not bring in players like this early instead of wasting an entire off season on weak ass players like Mabin and Johnson when you know damn well they won't be making the team?

What exactly was the end-goal with that strategy?

Same concept with Ward. Thankfully we found Moore but Ward occupies a roster spot that could have gone towards someone who could have been developed over time and provided real depth/competition/upside.
[ Edited by NCommand on Aug 17, 2019 at 5:46 AM ]
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Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by Giedi:
I liked Saleh's take on Fred and Quinten Rollins. Maybe this guy Rollins has a chance to make the team. Also liked the fact that Fred continues to evolve and get better. That's, I think, looking to be a very solid LB corps. Fred, Kwon and Dre.

What did you see out of CB Quinten Rollins? It seemed like he made a play there?
"Yeah, he made a pass break up. Quinten had a great college career, was a second-round pick, so he's got good history, he's had some injuries to him, but he feels good, feels healthy. And so, it's the same thing, he's got his foot in the door and it's his job to, along with us, to help him, coach him to blow that door open."
Did Fred have a forced fumble there?
"Yeah, Fred started it with a forced fumble. He's starting to get a knack for that so it's pretty cool.
https://www.49erswebzone.com/articles/127216-transcript-discusses-linebackers-tarvarius-scangarello-practicing-against-broncos/

Then why not bring in players like this early instead of wasting an entire off season on weak ass players like Mabin and Johnson when you know damn well they won't be making the team?

What exactly was the end-goal with that strategy?

Same concept with Ward. Thankfully we found Moore but Ward occupies a roster spot that could have gone towards someone who could have been developed over time and provided real depth/competition/upside.


There could be some politics involved. In other words Woods is the new DB coach and it could have been a while before he got a bit more power to bring in players or make decisions on players. Who knows. But Woods and Kocureck were brought in for a reason, and my own take on that is that Saleh's wasn't getting the job done last year. They let Hafley and Zgonina go - and I'm betting Hafley and Zgonina were Saleh's guys and Woods and Kocureck were more Kyle's guys. So my read is that basically Woods had to appeal to Kyle and maybe Kyle basically overrode Saleh and Woods was finally able to bring his type of guys in. Who knows.
Originally posted by Giedi:
There could be some politics involved. In other words Woods is the new DB coach and it could have been a while before he got a bit more power to bring in players or make decisions on players. Who knows. But Woods and Kocureck were brought in for a reason, and my own take on that is that Saleh's wasn't getting the job done last year. They let Hafley and Zgonina go - and I'm betting Hafley and Zgonina were Saleh's guys and Woods and Kocureck were more Kyle's guys. So my read is that basically Woods had to appeal to Kyle and maybe Kyle basically overrode Saleh and Woods was finally able to bring his type of guys in. Who knows.

Not sure I agree. Keep in mind when Kyle was hired and who was available for Saleh to hire for his staff when he was named DC. The coaching pool was tiny. Hafley is also a holdover from the dumbass Jim O'Neil. I know Kyle and Saleh are firm believers in continuity for their players' sakes. But Kocurek and Woods became available this offseason, and Niners jumped on it. I really don't think it's any deeper than that.
[ Edited by Heroism on Aug 17, 2019 at 12:17 PM ]
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