Breaking Down Every Robert Ayers Sack

March 12th, 2016


Joe has a new hero.

His name is Jordan Raanan. a Giants beat writer for NJ Advanced Media. Mr. Raanan saved Joe a lot of time by breaking down every sack by new Bucs defensive end Robert Ayers last year.

If you enjoy football, you absolutely have to click here and watch the videos and analysis of what Raanan churned out last month while studying the value of Ayers.

Final tally: Five of Ayers’ sacks came working off the right side, 2.5 came from the interior and two off the left edge. Pierre-Paul, who rarely faced double teams upon his return, only directly contributed to two of Ayers’ 9.5 sacks.

Maybe most impressive from Ayers is that he did much of his damage against the opposition’s left tackle, which is usually their best tackle. He had sacks against theJets’D’Brickashaw Ferguson, Vikings’ Matt Kalil, Eagles’Jason Peters and Panthers’ Michael Oher. Those are some quality players.

Of course, after watching all those sacks, which Ayers notched in just 12 games, it’s easy to get all hot in the pants.

However, it also further raises the red flag of why the Giants would let Ayers hit the market when (at the time), their re-signing of Jason Pierre-Paul and Olivier Vernon was uncertain.

Regardless, buried inside the story above is a quote from Giants defensive line coach Robert Nunn, who said Ayers is best as an interior pass rusher. The Bucs are strong in that area without Ayers.

47 Responses to “Breaking Down Every Robert Ayers Sack”

  1. R.O. Says:

    Umm because they signed JPP on approve it… And Drastically OP’d for OV. RA wasnt going to be given a multi-year deal with GMen. Other teams were obviously willing to give him 2 Guarenteed years.

  2. buccfan305 Says:

    Seems like panic signing to me. Oh no we didn’t catch the big fish but we can’t come home empty handed.

  3. Mike Johnson Says:

    Ayers is an OK signing. But listen Buc fans don’t try to act like this is a, Save the Day type player. He’s already had several injuries in his career. But to say this is a great signing is a bit of a stretch. Average at best.

  4. Tom Edrington Says:

    You’re in big trouble when an NFL beat writer is your hero…much less one for the NY Giants…..

  5. Bucs SB with Jameis Says:

    This is basically like going fishing and not catching anything. Then buying some fish at the market on your way home.

  6. Clw JB Says:

    IMHO it’s a safe signing at today’s inflated FA prices only if he is part of a solid 4 man rotation at DE, we have 3 now- need that star still, the one who will elevate the whole group….gotta be the pick at 9

    We cannot do like last year and rely on him a la GJ and get nothing in return, him and WG look VERY similar, not bad to me at all…

  7. buccfan305 Says:

    @ SB with Jameis

    Exactly!!! Lmao. These are trap signing. Lets say Ayes and grimes play well for the next 2 years, now they want an extension. Do you sign guys that are well in their 30′ and you know aren’t gonna be around for long. Or worse case they don’t play well. Its a trap either way.

  8. JAB83 Says:

    I like the prospect of having a line that features this guy GMC and a rotation of Jack Will Mc and whoever else they add… Something we should all keep in mind… We are a very good run defence because of the current group… Really what would make them a better pass rushing team would be a combination of coaching and talent in the secondary… The problem I have witnessed with our line tends to come on 3rd and long…. No coverage equals no pressure….

    I think we have a much much much better d line then what we have shown… Ayers adds a key element in that he can move around the line and take advantage of a GMC push… When that starts happening with a few more steps/seconds of coverage… Problem solved… COACHING will be the biggest change we witness this year…

  9. destinedbuc32 Says:

    Why stop there let’s get Quinton Couples. He’s more of a 4-3 DE than a stand up LB, so maybe with a switch back to his comfort zone we can catch lightning in a bottle

  10. Tiny Tim Says:

    I said it before, he may be a steal. The bucs did not pay him to be rice like they did michael johnson. If you are thinking that then you do not know football

  11. DefenseRules Says:

    Robert Ayers may not be THE answer to the Bucs DE needs, but he is AN answer. Bucs just got appreciably better on the DLine by signing him, but we still need more help in that area.

    Stop the run and pressure the QB is the name of the game in today’s NFL. Bucs have long been decent at the first, but not-so-great at the second.

    Right now I count 6 DLinemen who’ll most likely be on the team come season start (McCoy, McDonald, Spence, Ayers, Gholston and Smith). The good news is that the first 5 can all play the interior. Bad news looks like to me that only a couple of them have enough speed to pressure the QB from outside. We still need a strong draft (either 2 DE or 1 DT + 1 DE) or trade to improve on last year’s results.

  12. JAB83 Says:

    So with that in mind… Once we can establish a winning formula with the core guys we draft… The rotation of vets in FA will get better and better… Keep in mind, the VJax type FA are rare… Normally your only gonna get two or three years hints FA contracts not ever being much more of that…

    I would like to see one more FA signing on both sides of the ball…. Roddy White and perhaps a Safety

  13. BigHogHaynes Says:

    @ Buc SB: I’m feeling the same way!!

  14. Bob in Valrico Says:

    watched the video and read the analysis.he is a damn good football player
    with a good motor.If he can stay on the field it can be big a win for us.I like the idea of him and Gholston lining up on the same side.

  15. Pickgrin Says:

    The Vernon deal was ridiculous. Talk about grossly overpaying. JJ Watt he is NOT.

    We probably got the best “value” DE on the market in Ayers. Not that he was cheap – but the market is just so grossly over inflated for end rushers that what we are supposedly getting for what we paid seems palatable. Our DL DID improve yesterday with the Ayers signing and that’s about the most you can ask for in today’s free agency without going crazy against the salary cap trying to find pass rushers.

    The position was reasonably addressed in FA and will definitely be addressed in the draft. Licht seems to have a handle on this and is playing it smart.

  16. Mark BUC Fan Says:

    @buccfan305- if you knew anything about salary caps and old vet free agents you wouldn’t sound so dumb, these players are “band-AIDS” not life long bucs… Give us 2 years to fill a void and let players we draft learn from old vets who know the game. Look what Mankins did for Marpet, the dude came out and said that he could not have picked a better vet to learn the the position from, and I could see whoever we draft at CB to be saying the same thing when Grimes retires in 2-3 years as a BUC, not getting another contract unless it’s a 1 year saianra deal.. Ayers all admit scares me but it’s better or as good as what we currently have at worst, and we didn’t pay him an arm and a leg. If you don’t believe me go check how his salary matches up against any DE signed in the last 2 years. We wanted Oliver but we were smart not to pay him like he’s JJ Watt (trust me, he’s not even close). That hurt but we will be most likely taking a DE if one falls to us but you also missing he most important thing to be excited about on this draft is the newly found flexibility we now have. Licth drafts (and appears very good at it) BEST TALENT AVAILABLE.. You can’t do that with holes at huge positions. So back to the bandaid theory, we not have a complete team on paper and are now able to bolster our roster(can’t believe the bucs are bolstering and not filling in lol) in the draft and have a better shot at hitting on quality NFL players due to not reaching on a player due to need. Thank you, Thank you..I’ll be here all week people.

  17. Alstott up the gut Says:

    I love this signing, only because I think he will play a pivotal role along many positions on the line and bring solid production. He is not our next Simeon Rice…. Maybe #9 is and he will be Greg Spires!

  18. godzilla13 Says:

    To say that Robert Ayers is “average at best” when he produced 9.5 sacks, 41 tackles, 4 stuffs and 3 passes defended, all in just 12 games played last year, is just nescient. I would say Jason Licht did “save the day” by signing one of the best 4-3 DE available yesterday when just about every Buccaneer fan gave up hope we would even sign a DE at that point. If you can’t watch that that film on each sack he made last year and not get excited you must be such a contravening fan it’s ridiculous. The Giants let Ayers walk because of his age and they went young with Vernon. Yea, they took a chance letting him out to test the market but they had a plan all along. He is the best DE we have had in a long, long, time.

  19. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    @ SB with Jameis

    It’s OK to buy some fish on the way home if you didn’t catch any (fresh mountain trout)…….because if you worked up a hunger for fish, at least you have some fish.
    Better bought fish than no fish at all.

    I don’t look at this signing as panic…’s a depth move at the very least…we could afford to overpay for Grimes, Ayres, Sweezy & Martin….and we probably did. If they are productive and buy us a couple of years it will be worth it.

  20. Cobraboy Says:

    The Ayers signing fits the “value FA” philosophy of Licht.

    And while I have no expectations the guy is a world beater or All Pro, he brings solid credential to a position in need.

    I’m in hopes the new DL coach can get something out of George Johnson.

    And I’m curious: based on athleticism, size & speed, any thoughts of trying out / converting Howard Jones to SLB?

  21. MonsGM Says:


    When you sign guys at this age all they are is a stop gap. Who cares if we do or don’t sign them in a couple years. You get stars in the draft.

    The high risk high reward guys are the mid 20’s free agents. Or as you say these are the trap guys. If Vernon doesn’t work out NY will be eating money for years. Then they are “trapped”.

  22. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    I agree the price for Vernon was too high.

    I wanted JPP above others, but that did not happen. I can’t blame that on Licht.

    If you looked at the the wishlist I posted…most of my guys were not big names. I wanted guys that were young and showed signs of breaking out soon.

    I wonder…how would you guys feel if we go thru the draft without drafting a defensive end…because Jason Licht decides Ayers is good enough until next year?

  23. BuccaneerBonzai Says:

    What is this “value FA” philosophy of Licht?

    I have yet to see it.

  24. StPeteBucsFan Says:

    We may have not gotten any impact players or superstars but at least Grimes and Ayers have a resume. And they both have the potential of being “impact” players because of their positions!!!

    If Grimes can get us some picks and make another pro bowl I suspect that would also make Banks and Verner immediately “better”.

    And if Grimes and Banks could get in some press coverage and give Ayers and Jack Smith and the DT’s some time to get to the passer…and if the pass rushers force the QB to throw before he’s ready might our DB’s gets some ints. Or perhaps we could go all flaccid Johnson again and place our DB’s 10 yards deep and let the other team complete an unreal % of their passes!

  25. ElioT Says:

    I think this is a good signing. It’s clear we’re going to have to manufacture sacks and to do that you need depth and versatility. There are many ways to skin a cat and we don’t know the scheme Smith is going to use. For all we know Lavonte could end up with 10 sacks this year.

    I’d be willing to bet the Giants will regret the Vernon signing. The Jags will regret the Jackson signing, etc…

    Good job being patient by Licht. No reason to waste a bunch of money in 2016 that could prevent us from targets in 2017 when we should be closer to becoming a contender.

    Go Bucs!

  26. dabucs Says:

    I love how everyone has a so called educated opinion on this guy. I would bet my last ,that 80 percent of you only watched 1(the bucs game )or 2 giants games this year.. Sometimes it takes players longer than 3yrs to live up to their potential..Not saying he is the answer, but damnit he might be.. hannnnnn

  27. nate123455789 Says:

    Joe why did the giants pay for a guy with one hand over this guy? Maybe they know something you don’t…

  28. Cobraboy Says:

    Bonzai, I know you’re a big Lovie fan, and I respect that. I was really pleased with his hire, but quickly fell out of love based on horrible team management & results. Koetter and what he brought was the only positive under Lovie Smith.

    Fact is Licht was hired *after* Lovie, and I suspect at his direction. From what I understand his role was more the draft & negotiations than anything else. I think we can agree his drafts have been solid.

    I have a difficult time pinning the prior FA signings squarely on Licht, seeing how Lovie was clearly driving the bus. I doubt Licht was as in love with all the former Bear players as Lovie was.

    We saw how that ended: two years of fan misery.

    Licht did not have “full control” over personnel until after the firing of Lovie. So the current crop of signings are his, and his alone.

    Licht has stated he believes in building through the draft and supplementing as needed with FA’s.”Value FA’s” are those who don’t break the bank and bring solid playing credentials to the team. The current signed FA’s fit that definition.

    I also agree with many who say that first day Big Buck FA’s work out as planned less than 50%. A look around the league shows that to be true.

    Fact is this was not a stellar FA class. One reason is teams are now seeing the downside of FA, and are keeping their best players for themselves, cap space pending.

    I want kick butt DE, CB, S, LB, WR, OL, RB, ST, K/P and DT FA’s as much as anyone. But we’ve seen the downside of poor FA choices (the less than 50% thing) and what Cap Hell has looked like in years past.

    I don’t want to go there again.

    I’m OK with the FA’s we’ve signed so far. Not jumping through hoops and ^5ing it, but OK. And I have far more faith in Licht & Koetter than I had—in retrospect—than Lovie and his cronies.

    We’ll see how the rest of FA plays out and how the draft shapes up.

    (BTW: can you imagine the torches & pitchforks if Vernon and Osweiler—just to name two “Big Name FA’s”— don’t work out?)

  29. dabucs Says:

    I didn’t read the comments before my last post..Some of you actually have solid opinions.. you guys are getting proud of you fellas

  30. mike10 Says:

    They lined him up more at DE than he has in previous years. Curious how we’re going to use him? Hopefully, they allow him to go inside and out

  31. mac Says:

    This is a good signing. Not a great and certainly not a bad signing but a good one… Ayers is better than anyone we currently have and probably better than anyone we will draft…

    All three FA signings fit the same mold… Solid players that are only given 2 year deals (garunteed money) that will come in and start without breaking the bank… I am fine with this strategy and not giving ridiculous contracts to big name players.

    We need to continue to build through the draft and this roster will be solid in no time… We added 4 starters last year we need to find 2 or 3 more this year…

  32. Dave Says:

    It’s a good signing. There was nothing else to sign. They absolutely had to get s decent get and a rookie.

  33. James Walker Says:

    I hope he doesn’t have some hidden injury like Carl Nicks did. Why would the Giants let him leave?

  34. Dave Says:

    Trap signing??

    It’s called stop gap. It’s how you should use FA for vets to be sprinkled into your roster that is built mostly through the draft.

    It is rare to get a free agent who is 25. If you do, it is way overpaid

    Grimes and ayers are perfect to complement a couple rookies this year

  35. Dave Says:

    Giants let him go because they believe JPP is better and knew Vernon wanted to be a NYG. That kid wanted the limelight and a massive payday that was waaaay more than what he has shown on the field.

  36. Rob in Land O' Lakes Says:

    I just watched the All 22 on this guy and I’m seeing a guy with a high motor that can speed rush, bull rush, uses is hands well and can rush from the inside or outside. No, he’s not the second coming of Reggie White, but I’m struggling to see how some of you are writing this off as a BAD signing, even at money that’s big but not terminally insane?

  37. CrustyCrab Says:

    The majority of Robert Ayers sacks came when JPP came back to the team say what you want about JPP not being doubled teamed his presence was felt Ayers has been a bust since being selected in the first round. Where are the double digit sack seasons.

  38. Rob in Land O' Lakes Says:


    I would have thought the same thing regarding the JPP effect, but look at the video of his sacks. JPP may have factored in on one of them.

  39. JAB83 Says:

    Hey Crab that’s an excellent point…. Now imagine this…. SOMEONE WILL FINALLY TAKE ADVATAGE OF GMC PLAYING ALONG SIDE OF THEM!!!!!

    Thanks for the encouragement Crab…. Mmmmmmmm crab taste so good gonna go have me some more for dinner tonight… Thanks again

  40. Chris Says:

    Tampabaybucfan just stole an analogy used in Twitter earlier.

  41. Tampabaybucfan Says:

    @ Chris

    I don’t follow twitter….so…

  42. dabucs Says:

    Rob in land O’lakes..thank you for having an real educated opinion..take notes people.

  43. dabucs Says:

    Oh crusty..your answer was in your comment . The d line,just like every other unit on the the field has to work together as a unit..So yes having talent next to you, plus everyone is on the same page is how you get results.. does greg spires ring a bell.. football is truly the ultimate team sport.. bet u cant name another lineman on Denver when he played for them..not named a young von miller

  44. Rob in Land O' Lakes Says:


    Thanks for the kind words.

  45. Bill Says:

    This is a great move. The 3 guys who seem to be more revered than Ayers are Jackson, Vernon, and Williams…but why? Jackson is a great looking 3-4 DE, but we’re a 4-3 scheme and I’ll hope most of you understand the drastic difference that makes. Vernon, had a breakout 1/2 year. Really impressive numbers, but if you examine his year you’ll find that a substantial amount of that production came in 2 games; wk 13 vs BLT and wk 15 @ SD. BLT played Schaub at QB and SD’s tackles were terrible all year long. Am I saying Vernon might be over-rated? Yes.

    Mario Williams appears to have been destined for Miami all along. What can you do?

    And that brings us to Ayers, who some of you seem to think we are settling for, and I completely disagree. His performance is consistent on a week to week basis, at least compared to Vernon, and his totals are comparable despite lower snap counts. Ayers is a multi-dimensional pass rusher, inside, outside, and either side. He might be the ‘best’ pass rusher that was available.

  46. DavidbigBucsFan Says:

    I like what StPete said about press coverage. That is a big need if our corners could keep receivers from being wide open in under 3 seconds. Plus our linebackers need to stop being played so clumped up the middle leaving the slot wide open. One of the best planned defensive plays I’ve seen was last year against NY when ODB was the obvious hot read and LVD immediately stepped into the passing lane forcing Eli to throw behind right into the arms of Verner. That can beat a quick slant almost every time. Our back 7 are very important to the line having time to get to the QB.

  47. Rod Munch Says:

    Watching all the sacks honestly I wasn’t that impressed, he just ran around people on a lot of them – or it just looked like the offensive linemen didn’t get off the blocks on time. There’s a couple in there that look like solid sacks, but there’s a lot of fluff in there as well. I’m not so sure on this signing but I think he can be an OK 2nd DE, assuming we can find a top one in the draft.