Defensive Linemen Have To Be Contortionists

May 5th, 2012

Yeah, Joe knows, the rooks sweating it out at One Buc Palace this weekend aren’t playing real football because it’s just shorts and jerseys, oh yeah, helmets too.

How in the world can one judge a football player by not playing football?

Bucs coach Greg Schiano agrees with this philosophy, to a degree. Especially with defensive linemen. When asked today how he can grade defensive linemen, Schiano said one aspect is they need to be contortionists.

“It’s hard. What you try to evaluate is their sudden-ness, their explosion into a sled,” Schiano said. “There is an old saying among coaches that you have to beat a sled before you can beat a man. If the sled hits you back you have a problem.

“Then you look at their flexibility, how they turn their body. Defensive linemen, though they are big guys, they have to be flexible. They have to be able to contort their bodies in able to rush the passer that are not necessarily normal. We’ve gotten a good look at that.”

For some reason Joe never pictured a contortionist as a defensive lineman, but Joe totally understands where Schiano is coming from.

If you are just a big stiff who can’t move one way or another, you are pretty much nothing more than a sled with a heartbeat.

6 Responses to “Defensive Linemen Have To Be Contortionists”

  1. Big Picture Guy Says:

    Roy Miller for my non-contortionist nominee!

  2. Miguel Grande Says:

    One thing that Ian Beckles said that will always stick with me, is that you can tell whether an offensive lineman is any good by their footwork. You don’t need pads or contact to observe or teach footwork. I’m sure that other football positions are similar.

  3. SilenceTheCritics Says:

    That picture makes me twitch, and not in a good way.

  4. Thomas2.2 Says:


  5. Have A Nice Day Says:

    I don’t believe Schiano had a “contortionist” in mind when he said “contort”.

  6. RodfromOKC Says:

    I learn something new from Schiano everyday regarding football everyday.