Thanks for taking the time to answer all these questionsNo idea. They're in good position to win the division, so I'm hoping for a 12-13 win season. Given the moves they've made and the way the staff has been kept in tact, that seems well within the realm of possibility.
I think that's what they would have been last year if not for the apocalyptic string of injuries.
Thanks for taking the time to answer all these questions
Was there any scenario where Sean Payton is still Saints coach in 2022?
If we didn't have all those injuries and won those 12-13 games?
even with the injuries, if we had made the playoffs and won a game?
Or do you think he was he leaving no matter what?
This is communicated as a considerate simple truth.OK... I'll try to answer this thoroughly w/out too much rambling
Well success is a bit relative... so there are of course general, baseline requirments such as 1) possess the combination of athletic and mental traits to play the position, 2) learn the playbook, 3) execute your responsibilities at a satisfactory level.
Digging a little deeper, RB is a unique position because the players come in all shapes, sizes, and styles. So a player who has a little less wiggle can compensate for with power, and vise versa. If you're asking what the most important non-negotiables are for me, I'd break it down to these three:
1) Timing; 2) Efficiency; 3) Mental athleticism
The first is needed to develop a feel for getting through those first and second level creases at the NFL level. Sometimes a RB (especially one who is extremely gifted, athletically) can get away a lot at the college level running behind an OL that is just blowing defenses off the ball. Those creases are much tighter in the NFL, and timing/anticipation plays a huge part in running the ball successfully.
In terms of efficiency, I'm talking about footwork. Don't take 3 steps when you only need one. I want a guy who slashes, doesn't chop. You always hear announcers talking about a "one-cut runner". Well, at the first and second level, there's a script a RB more or less follows. The design of inside zone, outside zone, power... it doesn't change based on the back. They have an aiming point, a landmark, a crease to hit. They have to read it, of course, but those first 5 yards, you aren't improvising. You save that for when you get one-on-one with the safety (of course, there is leeway to be had here, but I'm speaking in basic terms).
With "mental athleticism"... a lot gets made of "this back runs a 4.3" or "this guy is a nightmare in the open-field." But Emmit Smith ran like a 4.7. It was his anticipation and understanding of angles (what's often given the catch-all term of "vision") that made up for his relatively pedestrian foot speed. A back who can feel the angle/timing of a block while his eyes are on the next defender. Who can commit to his move and know he's beat the defender before he's even cleared him, and again has his eyes to the next obstacle. That's mental athleticism, and it is something you can only gauge by watching a TON of film on a guy.
Now... with regards to the current backs on the roster. Tony Jones has foot speed issues and it shows up on film. Slow first step, slow through the hole, slow into the 2nd and 3rd level. Pierre Thomas was not fast, but he had a change of gear/burst that got the job done. Jones doesn't hit the hole as much as kind of plod through it. He's a fluid athlete, it's not ugly... it's just easy for a defender to squeeze that gap and get a bead on him because there isn't the suddenness there.
I like Tony Jones, I just see him as a 3rd down RB. He can catch out of the backfield, and despite the speed, he's pretty decent in space (because he's shifty). He seems intelligent and to understand pass pro. But the drop off in rushing production with him will be significant vs. Kamara or Ingram.
Dwayne Washington is kind of the opposite. He has the athletic skills, good foot speed, but seems to be running a little more blind when compared Jones (as well as the rest of the RBs). Runs a little out of control, a little to high--not where it's a style, but more just him running like a banshee. It's good at times, but he definitely makes me nervous when he runs.
I think that's the issue with him. There is never going to be a strong level of confidence in with the ball in his hands because he's not trusting his technique. He's just going. As a coach, you want someone who understands the position a little better (or at least shows it on the field). If Washington and Jones could be combined into one player, it'd actually be a pretty damn good NFL RB.
I’m rooting for RB Dwayne Washington to develop the “Mental Athleticism” of EMMIT SMITH and combine it with his physical athleticism.
I agree. After Kamara, RB by committee is filling roles.I'm with you, I would like Dwayne to get a few touches a game at RB....maybe if has a good TC with the AK suspension he has a chance...we will see....