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Which defensive scheme would you prefer?


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Which Bills defensive scheme would you pick?  

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  1. 1. Of the defensive schemes the Bills have used between the '90s and today, which one do you think is the best?

    • Wade Phillips late '90s 3-4
    • Gregg Williams early 2000s 4-3
    • Dick Jauron 2006 Tampa 2
      0
    • Mike Pettine 2013 4-3
    • Jim Schwartz 2014 403
    • Sean McDermott Tampa 2
    • Other (please specify)


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I liked Schwartz's D but as others have said you need the horses up front to make it work and waves of pass rushers off the bench. 

 

It isn't fair to characterise the current D as a Tampa 2. We run some Tampa 2 concepts and Frazier definitely has some background in that style but McDermott is a cover 3 guy on the backend more than a Tampa 2 guy. That said haven't seen the breakdown of what coverages we were in last season. I know in 2019 cover 3 / cover 1 were our most common.

 

On the point about needing more variation.... they were definitely more vanilla in 2020 than 2019. I think a lot of that can be attributed to the fact they were one of the worst first down defenses in the entire league. Harder to get too creative when it is 2nd and short so often. 

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I think the players available and the coach's ability as a player manager, teacher and strategist have far more impact on how good a defense is that scheme. That being said, it I had to pick a scheme in a vacuum, I'd say Schwartz's 4-3. It's simple, aggressive, and can work with a couple of outstanding DL. If you get 4 together with one  good cover guy, like the Bills had, then you have the best defense in the league.

 

Wade had the best defense overall, but he had the best players and was the best coach too, so that's the main reason IMO.

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5 hours ago, Rochesterfan said:

Depends upon the players we have.  Do we get to utilize the players at the time or are we using our current talent?

 

Schwartz defense worked because of the DLine we had at the time.  That was a great DLine and allowed that defense to work.

 

If Schwartz coached this collection of players as DC - it would be much less successful as the DLine doesn’t have the horses at DE to be effective.  
 

With the current players - a Tampa 2 zone scheme seems to be best fit - so I would vote McD if we are talking about current players only - although I believe it is only the 3rd best defensive scheme listed.

 

The best DC was Phillips and he could probably get the most out of this collection also as he was a wiz at maximizing talent and scheme in his prime.  He has been less successful in these later years even with supremely talented teams.

 

Schwartz and McD are neck and neck - although I prefer the more aggressive Schwartz plans - as I said with this team it would be a failure.

 

I want nothing to do with Williams 🤮, Pettine, Jauron, and especially Rex 🤮🤮🤮.  
 

 

This exactly.  Schemes only work with the right personnel.

 

Most of the longtime Bills fans seem to lean towards Wade Phillips.  But don't forget that defense was absolutely stacked.

Bruce Smith was possibly the best pass rusher of all-time.  He was next to Ted Washington, who was possibly the best nose tackle ever.

Not to mention guys like Phil Hansen and a growing star in Sam Cowart (I was always so upset how injuries ruined his career).

 

Same with the Jim Schwartz Wide-9, which had an incredible D-Line with Mario Williams, Marcel Dareus, Kyle Williams and Jerry Hughes.

 

Honestly, I'm back and forth on Sean McDermott's scheme.  Sometimes it seems to have a strong balance of aggression.  Other times it seems way too passive.  Sometimes it seems versatile and adaptable, allowing us to make strong in-game adjustments.  Other times (like the AFC Championship for instance) I get frustrated that we continue to stick with the same coverages and pressure packages, when it clearly isn't stopping the opponent.  Sometimes our defense seems fundamentally sound, with the players in-sync and doing their jobs.  Other times, I feel like our guys completely forget things like tackling and gap integrity.

 

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7 hours ago, Rochesterfan said:

Depends upon the players we have.  Do we get to utilize the players at the time or are we using our current talent?

 

Schwartz defense worked because of the DLine we had at the time.  That was a great DLine and allowed that defense to work.

 

If Schwartz coached this collection of players as DC - it would be much less successful as the DLine doesn’t have the horses at DE to be effective.  
 

With the current players - a Tampa 2 zone scheme seems to be best fit - so I would vote McD if we are talking about current players only - although I believe it is only the 3rd best defensive scheme listed.

 

The best DC was Phillips and he could probably get the most out of this collection also as he was a wiz at maximizing talent and scheme in his prime.  He has been less successful in these later years even with supremely talented teams.

 

Schwartz and McD are neck and neck - although I prefer the more aggressive Schwartz plans - as I said with this team it would be a failure.

 

I want nothing to do with Williams 🤮, Pettine, Jauron, and especially Rex 🤮🤮🤮.  
 

 

 

 

Phillips has been less successful in later years?   His Denver defense that beat McD's Panthers 11 months before he took the Bills job was great.    The 2018 Rams defense played well enough to win that SB versus NE as well.   Yes.......he's been around........his first #1 defense was with the Saints in 1983 and he had 5 more top 5 defenses between 86'-91' in addition to the time most of us remember him from in the 90's thru today.......but he was still outstanding in recent years.

 

In traditional defensive rankings he's been great.   And thru 2017 in the more "modern" measure of DVOA he was still the best DC of the past 25 years(and that didn't count his defenses when he was a HC so not even the best Bills defenses).   

 

Schwartz and McD have fielded a lot of bad to mediocre defenses between the two of them.   Schwartz first 6 seasons as DC in Tennessee were bad to mediocre,   his Detroit D's were bad.  

 

McD has had his ups and downs and even got fired for poor performance as DC in Philly.......and replaced by Juan Castillo. :lol:

 

McD and Schwartz are good DC's but nowhere near Wade's class and even now I wouldn't take either of their defensive minds or systems over Wade.   

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Not trying to be difficult, but the defense ultimately is built around the players they have or chosen.

 

if we had Ted Washington, Wiley, Paul, Speilman than yeah Wade’s defense was awesome.

 

If we had Super Mario, Hughes in his prime, And so on we should use the wide 9.

 

we now have this staff so McD’s defense makes the most sense.  For McD who is capable of doing it can rebuild an entire defense and suffer the years it would take to change then changing the defense makes sense.  Not saying the question is to change just you’re favorite.  All were good, but we have a top secondary. He’s doing what he needs to do with this defense.

 

it is nice to reminisce, but we have McD.  Now if he can plug a couple holes in this draft, we could go back to being special.  We were 4th the year before.

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11 hours ago, Brennan Huff said:

Rex Ryan’s defense isn’t an option?

"We'll beat you undermanned...wait, there's no penalty box?!"

*
I voted 'other'.  I like the Moe Howard 'eye poke / forehead slap' defense.

Edited by Ridgewaycynic2013
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McDs easy. It may not be flashy but it gets the job done and is the most consistent. 

 

Schwartz would be second- This was more of a risky scheme but wasn't so far off the rails risky like Gregg Williams D.

 

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3 hours ago, mjt328 said:

 

This exactly.  Schemes only work with the right personnel.

 

Most of the longtime Bills fans seem to lean towards Wade Phillips.  But don't forget that defense was absolutely stacked.

Bruce Smith was possibly the best pass rusher of all-time.  He was next to Ted Washington, who was possibly the best nose tackle ever.

Not to mention guys like Phil Hansen and a growing star in Sam Cowart (I was always so upset how injuries ruined his career).

 

Same with the Jim Schwartz Wide-9, which had an incredible D-Line with Mario Williams, Marcel Dareus, Kyle Williams and Jerry Hughes.

 

Honestly, I'm back and forth on Sean McDermott's scheme.  Sometimes it seems to have a strong balance of aggression.  Other times it seems way too passive.  Sometimes it seems versatile and adaptable, allowing us to make strong in-game adjustments.  Other times (like the AFC Championship for instance) I get frustrated that we continue to stick with the same coverages and pressure packages, when it clearly isn't stopping the opponent.  Sometimes our defense seems fundamentally sound, with the players in-sync and doing their jobs.  Other times, I feel like our guys completely forget things like tackling and gap integrity.

 

Wasn't it an achilles or a knee injury for Cowart down in Tampa on a wet rainy day that pretty much ended his career in 2000?  I think we lost several guys on D in that game.  That was too bad.  Cowart was really good and had the potential to be a great player.  I think losing that game pretty much sent our team spiraling downward and led to the start of the draught.  I think the next week when we went to Indy Wade said we would not make the playoffs, and then we pretty much fell off a cliff.  

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12 hours ago, Rochesterfan said:

Depends upon the players we have.  Do we get to utilize the players at the time or are we using our current talent?

 

Neither. Imagine that the Bills have just traded away all their defensive players for draft picks. The quantity and quality of picks significantly exceeds expectations. Also imagine the Bills have plenty of cap space. So, the Bills will have plenty of picks over the next 2 - 3 drafts, plus plenty of cap space, with which to build a defense around whichever defensive scheme you choose.

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12 hours ago, Buffalo716 said:

Ever think schwartz got pressure with 4 because he had Mario , A hungry Dareus, meatball, and Jerry 

 

We had the best D line in football at a point.

 

And he still couldn't stop the run when it mattered

Of course that played a role. But Schwartz also used those guys differently than a traditional front 4.  Any scheme can work with great players. Schwartz had success before and after Buffalo.

As for stopping the run, Pettine's defense was by far the worst.  It was either the worst or second worst in franchise history. 

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34 minutes ago, Ethan in Portland said:

Of course that played a role. But Schwartz also used those guys differently than a traditional front 4.  Any scheme can work with great players. Schwartz had success before and after Buffalo.

As for stopping the run, Pettine's defense was by far the worst.  It was either the worst or second worst in franchise history. 

I mean comparing Schwartz to a failed defensive coordinator isn't much praise

 

And one of the few thing that Schwartz did differently than most coaches in a 43 was play a wide 9 while not care about Gap integrity.. that's why they can get 56 sacks but not stop the run when it mattered

 

he also went to Philadelphia with an elite defensive line, so just letting them go could work again with talent

 

If Schwartz was our defensive coordinator here , Our D line would look like a mess with how he coaches it 

 

And FYI I'm not trying to say he's a bad coach, he's just not dick lebeau 

 

 

 

 

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3 hours ago, Ethan in Portland said:

Wade's defense was amazing but I think it is the system most dependent on a single position. It really depends on a stout NT.

 

 

Not true,  he ran both odd and even fronts with great success in his 35 years as a DC and HC.    He's had a lot of HOF'ers on D but none of them were NT's.   Washington was by far the best of his NT's.     Traditionally not an expensive or very difficult position to fill.   

 

It's harder to find a good 1 tech.......it's a tweener position......if your 1 tech isn't not only absorbing his share of double teams but also making tackles and aiding with the pass rush then you aren't getting enough from that position.

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7 hours ago, Paup 1995MVP said:

Wasn't it an achilles or a knee injury for Cowart down in Tampa on a wet rainy day that pretty much ended his career in 2000?  I think we lost several guys on D in that game.  That was too bad.  Cowart was really good and had the potential to be a great player.  I think losing that game pretty much sent our team spiraling downward and led to the start of the draught.  I think the next week when we went to Indy Wade said we would not make the playoffs, and then we pretty much fell off a cliff.  

It was a Frank Middleton cheap shot.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/cowart-sidelined-six-weeks-1.226409

 

PS. ***** you Tony Dungy.

 

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I definitely like what Schwartz did here but McDermott has done pretty well here too. I like what we have just need to be more aggressive, the way we blitzed Lamar Jackson in the playoffs is what we should have done to Mahomes. McDermott was a little too conservative in the playoffs and it cost us , but he also recognized that and will make the proper adjustments like he has his entire career.

 

 

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I don't know if he had a specific scheme, but all day every day Wade.

 

He was flexible and not tied to any particular scheme. Just got the best guys on his roster on the field and tried to put them where they could make plays.

 

He turned a lot of poor team defenses around, but had some tough championship losses. 

 

I don't think any defensive staff was worse off having Wade at the helm, he would find a way to use what they had.

 

 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Rico said:

It was a Frank Middleton cheap shot.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/cowart-sidelined-six-weeks-1.226409

 

PS. ***** you Tony Dungy.

 

 

 

Yeah he is Mr. Nice Guy on camera but Tony Dungy promoted dirty football with the Vikings and Bucs.    His long time DL coach John Teerlinck........whose son would later coach for the Bills..........was especially notorious.   Never forget their LB Jack Del Rio taking out Kelly's knee late in that 1994 season..........and Reich coming in and sh*tting himself over the next several games.   

 

When he got Peyton Manning then he became worried about player safety.

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