The Super Bowl is coming up in less than two weeks and there are so many things to be envious of as a Redskins fan. Ben Roethlisberger looks for a chance to redeem his off field issues and cement himself as one of the top QBs in the NFL with a 3rd championship ring, while Aaron Rodgers looks to lead the high flying Packers and capture his first, jumpstarting his journey to be the best QB in the league. On top of that the #2 Steelers defense, led by Troy Polomalu faces off against the #5 packers defense led by Clay Matthews. These two teams got there the right way, and are set up for more success and title chances for years to come. As we sit here with the 31st ranked defense in the league and no idea who will be starting at Quarterback come September, we have to ask, what should we do?
Here are 5 things that we need to learn from the successes of these two teams…
- NT is the most important position in the 3-4: BJ Raji and Casey Hampton come to work and are studs on the football field (unlike someone lazy bum we know…). Stick with the 3-4; find the anchor to it. Can you imagine what Orakpo could do if he had someone like Hampton or Raji anchoring our D-line instead of a washed up Haynesworth or Maake Kemoeatu? If Marcell Dareus from Alabama is somehow available at 10 (though unlikely) he would be my choice and would make the most immediate positive impact overall on this team. Green Bay went from allowing 51 points in the playoffs last year in the 3-4 to being a top 5 defense. Not saying we’ll be there, but we can definitely make strides from last year. There really is nowhere to go but up.
- The Draft is King and the Draft is DEEP: Key contributors to both franchises were drafted after the 2nd round and compliments to the drafted talent was picked up in free agency. Notable steals: Tramon Williams, Mike Wallace, Jermichael Finley, Sam Shields (probably the player of the game against the Bears), James Starks, Desmond Bishop, and Chris Kemoeatu. It’s something that the fans have been echoing for the past several years and this Super Bowl backs it up.
- We NEED to draft a franchise QB: Whether it is this year in the first round, or someone slightly later to groom under McNabb (I vote no to grooming under Grossman), or next year, it needs to happen soon. Trent Dilfer and Rex Grossman were anomalies and we will not get to a consistent playoff level with a QB that we pick up off the street or past his prime. Getting lucky with someone like Tom Brady is unlikely, especially with the Redskins, so the fact of the matter is that the QB needs to be a pick on the first day of the draft. Jason Campbell could have been great…he wasn’t and we need to try again soon. That second round pick we traded for McNabb could’ve been Colt McCoy, it’s time to not make that trade anymore. I’m not saying McCoy is a budding all-pro, but I think we would certainly be in a better position than we are now if we had picked him up in the second round last year and kept Jason Campbell around. Campbell and McCoy (w/an extra pick this year) or Grossman and Beck…is it really even a choice?
- O-Line is important, but…these Super Bowl teams have somewhat raggedy lines and still made it because of the stars leading their teams. Big Ben’s best quality as a QB is his well-documented ability to be a tank in the pocket and not go down, but Rogers has made due with a mediocre O-line at best. Our O-line needs to be bolstered for sure, there is no doubt about that. We also need a lot of other pieces. Rex Grossman will not lead us to the Promised Land no matter how good our O-line is. Both of these teams have great QBs (on the field) and have surrounded them with good young talent and a top 5 defense.
- Time to get a fresh face at coach? It’s failed in the past with the Spurrier experiment and the Zorn debacle, but Mike Tomlin and Mike McCarthy are great coaches, and they get the absolute best out of their players after being plucked from obscurity. I’m not saying Shanahan is a bad coach, or that we should get rid of him. More so that if it doesn’t work out and we cut our ties with the Shanahan family, it might be time to look to get younger on the sideline in addition to on the field. Mike Tomlin has a chance to earn his second Super Bowl ring in four seasons, one more than Bill Cowher did in 15! Might it be time to say goodbye to the old guard and bring in the new?
Here’s to a brighter future…Go Skins!
Tags: #1 NFL Team 2010 Draft 2010 NFL Draft 2010 NFL Power Rankings 2010 NFL Rookies 2010 NFL Standings 2010-2011 NFL Season 2011 NFL Draft 2011 NFL Draft Order NFC North Team Needs- Chicago Bears 2011 NFL Draft Order; 2011 NFL Mock Draft 2011 NFL Draft Prospect Big Board 2011 NFL Draft Scouting Reports 2011 NFL Mock Draft 2011 NFL Power Rankings 2011 NFL Rookies 2011 NFL Standings Aaron Kampman Aaron Williams Adrian Clayborn AJ Green Akeem Ayers Alabama Allen Bailey Andre Luck Anthony Castonzo Arizona Cardinals Arizona Cardinals Draft Needs AFC North Team Needs- Baltimore Ravens Arizona Cardinals Team Needs Arkansas Atlanta +Falcons Atlanta Falcons Draft Needs NFC East Team Needs- Dallas Cowboys Atlanta Falcons Team Needs Auburn Baltimore Ravens Baltimore Ravens Draft Needs Baltimore Ravens Team Needs Bears Ben Roethlisberger Benn Big Board BJ Raji Boston College Bradford Brandon Jacobs Brandon Marshall Broncos Bruce Carter Bucs Buffalo Bills Buffalo Bills Draft Needs AFC West Team Needs- Oakland Raiders Buffalo Bills Team Needs BYU Cameron Heyward Carolina Panthers Carolina Panthers Draft Needs Carolina Panthers Team Needs Casey Hampton CB Charlie Whitehurst Chicago Bears Chicago Bears Draft Needs Chicago Bears Team Needs Christian Ponder Cincinnati Bengals Cincinnati Bengals Draft Needs AFC South Team Needs- Indianapolis Colts Cincinnati Bengals Team Needs Clemson Cleveland Browns Cleveland Browns Draft Needs Cleveland Browns Team Needs Coach Carroll Coach Gailey's Coach Pete Carroll Cody Grimm Colordo Colt McCoy Curtis Brown Da'Quan Bowers Dallas Cowboys Dallas Cowboys Draft Needs Dallas Cowboys Team Needs Danario Alexander Daniel Thomas Darceus David Garrard DE DE/OLB DeAndre McDaniel DeMarco Murray DeMarcus Love Denver Broncos Denver Broncos Draft Needs Denver Broncos Team Needs Derek Sherrod Detroit Lions Detroit Lions Draft Needs Detroit Lions Team Needs Deunta Williams Dez Bryant Draft Order Drake Nevis DT Duenta Williams Dwayne Bowe Earl Thomas Eric Berry Evan Royster Florida Florida State Gabe Carimi Gabe Carmi Georgia Green Green Bay Packers Green Bay Packers Draft Needs Green Bay Packers Team Needs Greg Jones Houston Texans Houston Texans Draft Needs Houston Texans Team Needs Indianapolis Colts Indianapolis Colts Draft Needs Indianapolis Colts Team Needs Indy Colts Big Board- 2011 NFL Draft Iowa Jacksonville Jaguars Jacksonville Jaguars Draft Needs Jacksonville Jaguars Team Needs Jaguars Jahvid Best Jake Locker Janoris Jenkins Jared Crick Jared Gaither Jeremy Beal Jim Kelly's Joey Porter John Abraham Jonathan Baldwin Jones Joseph Barksdale Julio Jones Julio Jones Alabama Justin Boren Kansas City Chiefs Kansas City Chiefs Draft Needs Kansas City Chiefs Team Needs Kansas State Kyle Rudolph LB Lovie Smith LSU Malcolm Floyd Marcel Darceus Mark Herzlich Mark Ingram Marvin Austin Matt Reynolds Max Hall Miami Miami Dolphins Miami Dolphins Draft Needs Miami Dolphins Team Needs Michael Floyd Michigan State Mike Pouncey Mike Williams Minnesota Vikings Minnesota Vikings Draft Needs NFC South Team Needs- Tampa Bay Buccaneers Minnesota Vikings Team Needs Mississippi State Mock Mock Draft Nate Allen Nate Solder Ndamukong Suh Nebraska New England Patriots New England Patriots Draft Needs New England Patriots Team Needs New Orleans Saints New Orleans Saints Draft Needs New Orleans Saints Team Needs New York Giants New York Giants Draft Needs New York Giants Team Needs New York Jets New York Jets Draft Needs New York Jets Team Needs NFL NFL Draft NFL Draft Big Board NFL Power Rankings NFL Power Rankings- Chicago Bears NFL Rookie Rankings NFL Rookie Watch NFL Rookies NFL Standings Nick Fairly North Carolina Notre Dame Oakland Raiders Oakland Raiders Draft Needs Oakland Raiders Team Needs Ohio State Oklahoma Oklahoma Mock Drafts- 2011 NFL Draft OLB OT Pat Angerer Pat Williams Patrick Peterson Penn State Peyton Manning Philadelphia Eagles Philadelphia Eagles Draft Needs Philadelphia Eagles Team Needs Pierre Thomas Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Steelers Pittsburgh Steelers Draft Needs Pittsburgh Steelers Team Needs Prince Amukamara Purdue QB Quinn Rahim Moore Raiders Ras-I Dowling RB Reggie Bush Robert Quinn Rodney Hudson Rookie Watch- Chicago Bears Ryan Broles Ryan Kerrigan Ryan Mallett Ryan Mathews Ryan Williams S Sam Bradford San Diego Chargers San Diego Chargers Draft Needs San Diego Chargers Team Needs San Francisco 49ers San Francisco 49ers Draft Needs San Francisco 49ers Team Needs Scouting Reports Seattle Seahawks Seattle Seahawks Draft Needs Seattle Seahawks Team Needs St. Louis Rams St. Louis Rams Draft Needs St. Louis Rams Team Needs Stanford Stefen Wisniewski Tampa Bay Tampa Bay Buccaneers Tampa Bay Buccaneers Draft Needs Tampa Bay Buccaneers Team Needs Tampa Bay Bucs Tennessee Titans Tennessee Titans Draft Needs AFC East Team Needs- New York Jets Tennessee Titans Team Needs Terrence Toliver Texas Texas A&M Thomas Davis Top NFL Rookies Top NFL Teams Travis Lewis Trent Williams UCLA UNC Vernon Gholston Vincent Jackson Virginia Von Miller Washington Washington Redskins Washington Redskins Draft Needs NFC West Team Needs- Seattle Seahawks Washington Redskins Team Needs Week ___ NFL Power Rankings Wisconsin WR