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11/2011 Football Talk: Von Miller for ROY

November 25th 2011 16:07
After the Thanksgiving games have been played, it is now appropriate to start conjuring up early end of season award musings. With the MVP award all but given to Aaron Rodgers, I want to talk about the Rookie of the Year award. So far this season, there have been a handful of rookies playing at a high level, and this draft yielded some studs in the making. However, one of those guys is already a stud and stands out above the rest.

This special rookie's name isn't Cam Newton. The Panthers' quarterback does have a lot of hype surrounding him, but he takes a back seat to the less-heralded Von Miller. The Broncos outside linebacker was No. 2 to Newton's No. 1 in the draft, but that order should be reversed when talking about who is the better player. Newton may be a very mobile quarterback with a cannon of an arm, but he doesn't quite measure up to Von Miller.

Coming out of college, Miller was known as a gifted pass rusher who would translate seamlessly to the NFL level. That has all been proven true, but many people thought that he was just a pass rusher. Those people were proven wrong, as Miller has been lighting it up in run defense. He has already blossomed into one of the best pass rushers in the game, but his stout work in run defense has been overlooked but equally as important. Miller has been one of the best players this season- not just rookies- and has been one of the best ten outside linebackers this season. Newton has been great and all, but he's starting to come back to earth with some rather poor decision making. Right now, Miller has simply dominated the guys he has faced, just ask helpless Jets tackle Wayne Hunter what went down last week on Thursday.

Everybody now knows that Ndamukong Suh pulled a Wayne Rooney and literally stomped an offensive lineman on the Green Bay Packers in yesterday's loss. Suh gave strange explanation about his side of what transpired, and he will almost certainly be suspended because of his actions. I am more interested in talking about Suh as a player, his flaws, and the obvious strengths.

Ndamukong Suh is one of the strongest players in the NFL, and he has the uncanny ability to just bulldoze offensive lineman. Suh is also explosive and can blow by lineman from the snap. However, this aggression backfires more often than not in run defense, and this makes him an extremely inconsistent player against the run. He can make huge stops, but he mostly ends up nowhere near the play or causing a huge hole where he once was. Therefore, Suh is actually a subpar player against the run.

However, the strength/explosiveness of Suh also makes him a dangerous pass rusher who murders quarterbacks. He's one of those guys who can turn pressures into sacks, and he has the ability to take over the game against a poor interior (the Panthers game).

Because Suh is poor against the run, he is a "good" but not "great" player. With more experience and development, Suh will certainly improve his run-stopping ability and become great; bank on it. But for now, he is just a "good" defensive tackle. Suh is overrated, while some of his teammates on the line are very underrated because of his hype.

Cliff Avril is one of the better pass rushers in the NFL and is one of the more athletic ends in the league. Backup Willie Young has emerged as a solid player in limited snaps this season, and rookie Nick Fairley has been explosive when he has played. Defensive tackle Sammie Lee Hill is a force in the interior, but it is best if he receives a limited amount of snaps in a rotational role due to his lack of endurance. Veteran tackle Corey Williams is underrated and is one of the best in the game. You really should watch what he did in Week 5 against the 49ers, it was incredible and showed Williams at his pass-rushing best. And hey, he blows up running lanes pretty well too. In fact, he is just as good- maybe even a hair better- than Suh. Aging defensive end Kyle Vanden Bosch is overrated and on his last legs, but he is still about an average player on the best defensive line in the NFL.
Formerly known as "The Joker"

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6 Comments. [ Add A Comment ]

Comment by nbageek

November 25th 2011 16:37
Vonn Miller does deserve some serious votes for the rookie of the year. I agree with your assessment of Suh. A good player, but will with time get great. The Lions are very bad versus the run, once their starting cornerbacks went down yesterday they had no shot.

Comment by Winless In Seattle

December 3rd 2011 20:40
Miller should also be highly considered for overall DPOY - not just rookie.

Comment by Joe Soriano

December 3rd 2011 21:15
The DPOY race has come down to Von Miller and Darrelle Revis in my mind, and their play down the stretch will decide which one wins. I totally agree with you Winless, and Miller tops my unofficial DPOY ballot right now.

Comment by Gordon34453

December 3rd 2011 21:34
You guys are idiots because Cam is way better htan Von Miller. All Miller does is rush the passer and quarterbacks are better than linebackers always. Polamalu deserves to win DPOY not freaking Miller who sucks a lot, you guys think your so smart cuz you think outside of the box or something like that.

Comment by Anonymous

December 3rd 2011 22:55
Gordon - If you think all a LB does is rush the passer, it's clear you do not watch football - and it makes your comments lose some luster - so I already know responding to you isn't worth my time. However, you want to call me an idiot - so I'll respond to you with knowledge, something you clearly don't have when it comes to football. Keeping that in mind, I'll keep my answers to you at a basic level so you don't get confused.

You're comparing apples to oranges when you compare the two guys/positions side by side. You can't say a QB is better than a LB or vice versa - different positions, different roles.

Now if you are saying that Cam Newton is a better QB than Von Miller is a LB - you're sadly (yet predictably, judging by your intelligent comment) mistaken.

Cam Newton is MAYBE a top 10-15 QB in the league so far this year - MAYBE. Von Miller is easily a top 3 LB so far this year. What this means, Gordon, is that anyone that knows football can name 10-14 QB's that are better than Newton. Then asking those same people to name LB's better than Miller - it'd be hard for them to come up with 2.

And Polamalu? Seriously? I'll go out on a limb and say you're from Pittsburgh. And now, since you like to compare people, let's look at Polamalu vs Miller: not stat for stat - because that would just confuse you - but on basic principle...

Miller, a LB, has 10.5 sacks (4th in the NFL). He also has 4 passes defended. He's a LB, this it what's he's supposed to do - and he's doing it well.

Polamalu, a defensive back has 0 (ZERO) interceptions. He also only has 7 passes defended. He's a DB - he's supposed to do these things regularly, and well. He's not.

Do yourself a favor in the future, Gordon. If you're going to call people idiots - at least have the knowledge to back up your claim.


Comment by Joe Soriano

December 4th 2011 07:48
Polamalu is honestly an overrated player, and he hasn't played nearly as well as Miller this year. I don't really like to use statistics in my arguments, because stats skew things in football. Miller is obviously already one of the best pass rushers in the game, he is one of the best 4-3 OLBs against the run, and he is actually solid in coverage. He does everything well, and he's the reason why the Broncos defense has vastly improved. Another thing, that upset win against the Jets and the recent victory over the Chargers were mainly due to his great play. Cam Newton is a great quarterback to have for the future, but he's what I thought he was from the start; league-average with potential. Newton has a great deep ball and can obviously make things happen with his feet, but he forces too many throws and isn't as effective in the mid-range game.

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