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Speed more important than weight

June 6, 2007

So, what have the coaches said after one day with new DT Sam Adams? 

Shanahan, who believes D-linemen are as honest about their weight as desperate housewives, says that speed and quickness are more important than weight.  And Adams agrees…

“I’ve been in Pro Bowls at 355 and I’ve been in Pro Bowls at 335. So it doesn’t matter.”

— Sam Adams 6/5/07

“You can see that he has great quickness for a player that size.  He did a couple of things today in practice that were very impressive. Hopefully he can do it when it counts.”  

— Mike Shanahan 6/5/07

Jim Bates game strategy is based on having the middle of the D-line filled with two large quick-footed men at the tackle position.  If these tackles can occupy more than one O-lineman each, his lighter defensive ends can speed around the corners of the line and break up the pocket.  The bigger and faster his tackles are in the middle, the wider he can spread his DE’s — this closes down the outside lanes while giving the ends a great angle to the QB.  Adams, who is often double teamed, obviously has the size to fill the middle at tackle, but Bates also believes that Sam’s biggest advantage lies in his agile footwork.

“Sam has a uniqueness as far as quickness – his first step is as fast as any big man in football.”

— Jim Bates 6/5/07

Line Break

Another important part of Bates’ new scheme is the rotation on the D-line.  Unlike other defensive positions, the D-line rotates heavily so everyone stays fresh and can play at full speed all game long.   This is especially helpful for those big guys up front facing those nasty double teams.

“With Dré (Bly), you’re looking at 50 to 55 plays a game.  With Sam, hopefully you’re looking at 25 to 30 plays. There’s a difference in terms of that, but within those 30 plays, (Adams’) impact could be enormous. People sometimes don’t see the dirty work done up front. But we certainly see it, and you win football games up front.  All you have to do is talk to our offensive linemen who have played against him. They talk about an immovable object — in this defense, that’s important.”  

— John Lynch 6/5/07

“We usually dress seven, eight defensive linemen. We rotate them quite a bit and try to keep them fresh and healthy.”

— Mike Shanahan 6/5/07

Line Break

And although most of the talk was positive and upbeat, we also heard several disclaimers yesterday.  Most of them had to do with conditioning, but some still mentioned weight.

“We’d like (Adams) at a weight where he can play at least 28-30 snaps a game. Some games it may be more, some games it may be less, so we’ve got to get him at a weight where his endurance will be a factor going into the fourth quarter.”

— Jim Bates 6/5/07

“You want him in football shape.  With the offseason conditioning program and camp, hopefully there’s no setbacks and he’s ready to go.”

— Mike Shanahan 6/5/07

Line Break

As I mentioned before, we’ll have to wait and see what Rich Tuten and his strength and conditioning staff can do to prepare Adams for camp (and hopefully the season).  But from the positive things the coaches have said so far it seems like we may have found one more piece to the personnel puzzle. 

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One comment

  1. Warren @ 325 + Adams @ 350 = No yardage on the ground!

    Go Broncos!



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