Seattle Defense Is “Nastier Brand” Than Old Bucs’January 29th, 2014
The Seahawks march into the Super Bowl allowing the fewest points and yards in the NFL this season. That doesn’t happen often, and those stats generated many questions at Super Bowl Media Day about how the Seattle “D” stacks up against legendary defenses of the Buccaneers, Ravens, Giants and Bears.
One Hall of Famer is a huge fan of the Seahawks defense and explains why it’s more ferocious than those of Tampa Bay’s glory years.
Normally, such a take would anger Joe.
It would have Joe puffing up his chest and defending the iconic Bucs defenses led by Derrick Brooks, John Lynch, Warren Sapp and others. Except the explanation came from Sapp himself yesterday during his chat with Joe.
“Seattle’s a nastier brand of eight-man in your face. I mean, cause they got eight in the box. They are playing bump and run. We played [cover] 2. We needed reroutes. There were certain holes that we knew of in our defense,” Sapp said.
“It’s throw every down for Peyton Manning because there’s no run look. I mean there’s no run look in Seattle’s defense.”
Sadly, Sapp said the Seahawks don’t just have a monster front-four defensive line like the Bucs did, they have seven powerful linemen and their pass-rush engine is a familiar face.
“They rotate. That’s when you know you have a unit,” Sapp said. “They can put four ends on the D-line and come at you. When you have interchangeable parts, you can really do some special things. And Michael Bennett makes it all go with him coming inside. “
However, Seattle’s dominant defense can’t be nearly as effective as it would have been years ago, per Sapp.
“Defenses don’t win championships. The last No. 1 defense to get to the Super Bowl and win was me. That’s 11 years ago. So the thing about it is defense gives you a chance now, but offense has to win it for you,” Sapp said. “Giants? The defense gave them a chance, Eli [Manning] won it for them. Packers? Defense gives them a chance, Aaron Rodgers won it for them, 3rd-and-10 with Troy Polamalu’s in the middle of the field spinning around. That’s how you gotta win it now. You’re not going to go out and stop people any more.
“You just can’t impose your will on defense any more. [Twenty-five years ago], when [Giants linebacker] Carl Banks used to go out on the slot, the slot disappeared. (laughs) When Wilber Marshall went out on the slot, the slot disappeared. You didn’t have a slot receiver. Wes Welker would have been tartar.
“The middle was a place you had to circumnavigate. Andre Reed used to be a master of the middle of the field because you had to circumnavigate it, you’d get knocked out going through the middle of that field.
“There’s an Autobahn built in the middle of the field now.”
And it’s that Autobahn, the same one that’s helped neuter Dashon Goldson, that gives the Broncos a great shot of winning Sunday.