Flores is our new DC

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Flores is our new DC

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Adam Schefter
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Steelers’ assistant coach Brian Flores is accepting the Vikings’ defensive coordinator job, per source.
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Re: Flores is our new DC

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Ben Goessling
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Update: The deal is done, a source said. Flores is officially the guy.
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The #Vikings haven't signed a deal with Brian Flores yet, but everything is heading that way. Assuming the deal gets done, it's a big move to revitalize their defense in 2023.
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Re: Flores is our new DC

Post by JJBreaksRecords »

He will blitz more and is supposedly good at on the fly adjustments. I think we are going to like him. :appl: :govikes:
Last edited by JJBreaksRecords on Mon Feb 06, 2023 8:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Flores is our new DC

Post by Maelstrom88 »

I love this hire. He was my top guy all along. Expect a disciplined, aggressive unit that plays hard. Now about that talent...
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Re: Flores is our new DC

Post by MossCarterJefferson »

I did not want Flores but I am honestly surprised he came here instead of taking the head coaching job with the Cardinals
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Re: Flores is our new DC

Post by Foreman44 »

This is how I see it. He will do well. Things will look up defensively.

2024 He will except a head coaching job elsewhere.

We may like him but for how long
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Re: Flores is our new DC

Post by makila »

Couple reads from The Athletic..looking forward to being more aggressive in general.

Liked this quote:

“(Blitzing) is something the offense has to prepare for,” Flores told iHeart Radio. “The backs have to be ready. The offensive line has to be ready. The quarterback has to be ready to make his checks. That’s something I have a history and experience with.”

Sounds like we are gonna need secondary upgrade(s). Curious to see how Cine and Booth get evaluated. Lots of man coverage.
-----

Vikings hire Brian Flores: So what can we expect of Minnesota’s defense in 2023?

By Alec Lewis
55m ago

On the night of Dec. 11, Kevin O’Connell, late in his first season as the head coach of the Vikings, stepped up to a lectern in the bowels of Ford Field in Detroit. He was disgusted.

All losses sting. But this one, a shellacking at the hands of an NFC North foe in the Lions, was a disaster for the Minnesota defense.

For a month, quarterbacks like Mike White of the Jets and Mac Jones of the Patriots had ripped the unit to shreds. Lackluster offenses lobbed the ball all over the joint. The Vikings absorbed punch after punch with little response. O’Connell, it became evident that night, had had enough.

“We’ve got to take a look at what we can do for our guys to be in a position to make more plays and be more aggressive,” he said.

Aggressive.

That word hovers over Monday night’s news. The Vikings, following a month-long search for a new defensive coordinator, landed Brian Flores. The longtime Patriots staffer and former Dolphins head coach who this past season was a senior defensive assistant with the Steelers, has caused headaches for years with his defenses.

How so? By dictating the action to the offense.

As you’re narrowing your expectations for the Vikings’ defense in 2023, start there. And if that sounds like the antithesis of the Vikings defense last season, that’s because it is.

While Ed Donatell’s squad sat back in off coverage and played with more six-man boxes than all but one team in the NFL, Flores has fielded defenses in the past that caused mayhem. For example, in 2020, Flores’ defense with the Dolphins ranked fifth in blitz rate, according to Sports Info Solutions. A year later, his defense ranked first in blitz rate.

“You always want to be aggressive,” Flores said this past fall in a conversation with iHeart Radio. “You always want to have a physical front. You always want to pressure the quarterback.”

A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Flores is a linebacker by trade. He played the position at Boston College before joining Bill Belichick’s New England staff as a scouting assistant in 2004. He progressed quickly from there, earning a promotion to pro scout in 2006 and becoming a coaching assistant in 2008.

That year, he crossed paths with a recently drafted quarterback named Kevin O’Connell. As the future Vikings head coach moved on to play for the Jets and other teams, Flores remained in New England and continued his coaching ascent. He became the Patriots’ safeties coach in 2012 and worked alongside All-Pro Devin McCourty. In 2016, he transitioned to linebackers coach. Then in 2018, Belichick tabbed him as the team’s defensive play caller.

That defense, like many of Belichick’s, feasted on offenses with tight man coverage and multiplicity on the front. One package had eight defenders start on the line of scrimmage. The onus, then, was on the opposing quarterback to sort through who would be sprinting at him and who would be falling back into coverage. The package helped that Patriots team win Super Bowl LIII. It also elevated Flores’ name into an elite circle of interviewees for head-coaching jobs around the league.

The Dolphins hired him in 2019. That year, the team added interior defender Christian Wilkins in the NFL Draft. Two years later, they leveled up with Jaelen Phillips and Jevon Holland. Tying the system and the talent together, the Dolphins ranked in the top 10 in success rate and expected points added.

In 2021, Flores’ defense used six different fronts. Some featured three down linemen, while others featured four. Those personnel groupings also included a bevy of coverage packages with six secondary players on the field (frequently called “dime” personnel).

The way the Dolphins deployed their defenders was the polar opposite of last year’s Vikings. While Donatell’s defense showed a two-high safety shell look pre-snap, Flores’ Dolphins defense in 2021 ranked last in the NFL in two-high safety shell usage. Additionally, while Donatell’s defense regularly used six men in the box, Flores’ 2021 Dolphins defense had the third-lowest percentage of light boxes.

“(Blitzing) is something the offense has to prepare for,” Flores told iHeart Radio. “The backs have to be ready. The offensive line has to be ready. The quarterback has to be ready to make his checks. That’s something I have a history and experience with.”

That experience is why Steelers coach Mike Tomlin hired him last fall to be a senior defensive assistant and linebackers coach. The move followed Flores’ firing in Miami — even after back-to-back winning seasons. It also occurred after Flores, who is Black, filed a class-action lawsuit against the Dolphins, Giants and Broncos, alleging teams still use racially discriminatory hiring practices for head coaches.

Tomlin explained his decision to hire Flores succinctly.

“It doesn’t require a lot of time to come to the realization that you could use a Brian Flores on your staff,” he said. “There are so many ways that he’s going to help us and help me in particular. I love sharpening my sword on his and gaining perspective that his experiences provide, that wise counsel.”

Flores quickly made an impression on Steelers players.

“He’s a bulldog,” strong safety Terrell Edmunds said. “You can tell by just the way he talks that he has a military mentality and wants everything to be on point and not letting anybody slack off. We need that. We need that in the back end, we need that with the linebackers for the communication.”

This is what can be expected as Flores is integrated into his new franchise. He’ll almost certainly have a hand in the defenders the Vikings draft in April. Last week, he spent several days in Mobile, Ala., evaluating players up close at the Senior Bowl. And there’s also something to be said for what Flores’ football mind will mean for O’Connell’s offense.
go-deeper

GO DEEPER

The Vikings need defensive backs. Here are six who have impressed at the Senior Bowl

Much in the way Chargers coach Brandon Staley pushed Rams coach Sean McVay (and O’Connell, who was McVay’s offensive coordinator) in 2020, Flores could have the same effect on O’Connell. This idea brings to mind how O’Connell described the process of hiring his first defensive coordinator a year ago.

“You really start thinking about it with, ‘What do you not like to play against? What’s the hardest defensive scheme to play against? What keeps you up at night when you game-plan against a defense?’” O’Connell said last February.

The answers to those questions were not what was on display for the Vikings in December against Detroit. This time, O’Connell chose a different path, one centered on being the aggressor.

-----

Vikings hire Brian Flores as next defensive coordinator: What the ex-Dolphins coach brings to Minnesota

By Alec Lewis and Mike DeFabo
3h ago

The Minnesota Vikings agreed to make Brian Flores their next defensive coordinator, the team announced Monday. Here’s what you need to know:

Flores replaces Ed Donatell, who was fired after one season.
The former Dolphins head coach spent last season as a senior defensive assistant on Steelers coach Mike Tomlin’s staff.
Flores is suing the NFL and several teams for racial discrimination.

Backstory

Flores spent last season as the Steelers’ linebackers coach after being fired by the Dolphins despite posting back-to-back winning seasons. He filed a class-action lawsuit last February against the NFL, the Giants and several other teams alleging discrimination in their hiring practices. Among the claims in the suit was that the Giants interviewed him for their then-vacant head coaching position despite having already decided to hire former Bills assistant Brian Daboll.

Flores also alleged the Dolphins tried to incentivize the team to lose in 2019 to gain a better draft pick in 2020 and that the team engaged in tampering. The NFL sanctioned the Dolphins for impermissible contact with quarterback Tom Brady while he was with the Patriots and the Buccaneers and impermissible contact with the agent of former Saints head coach Sean Payton while Payton was still with the Saints. The Dolphins forfeited the club’s first-round selection in the 2023 NFL Draft and a third-round selection in the 2024 NFL Draft.

Why is Flores the Vikings’ choice?

Because he has proven an ability to install a dominant defensive scheme. Flores first called a defense in 2018 with the New England Patriots. Then, of course, he was hired as the Dolphins’ head coach, where he oversaw their defensive arc. His defenses have been aggressive. They have complicated the picture for quarterbacks. And they have caused headaches for offensive line units. Flores’ defense is a group that attempts to dictate the action, which is almost the polar opposite of what the Vikings had in 2022 under Donatell. — Lewis
What will Flores’ defense look like?

That’s a hard question to answer because of how many different fronts and coverage schemes he’s used. First, know this: Flores is not afraid to send the house. In 2020, no team played more Cover 0 than Flores’ Dolphins. His defenses play a heavy amount of man coverage, and oftentimes a single-high safety occupies the middle of the field. He will load the box and place heavy responsibility on cornerbacks. Each of these sounds like (and really is) the antithesis of what Donatell had installed last season: The Vic Fangio, two-high safety, off-coverage special. Though the Fangio style is what Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell envisioned last season when he first hired a staff, Flores’ defense poses similar challenges for quarterbacks, which is what this defense will do. — Lewis
Flores’ imprint on Steelers

While Flores’ stint in Pittsburgh lasted only one season, he quickly became a well-respected piece of the organization. As a former head coach and defensive coordinator, he was overqualified for the job of senior defensive assistant — and pretty much everyone knew it.

“We have a head coach inside our linebacker room,” inside linebacker Robert Spillane said.

Flores worked mostly with inside linebackers, however, his wide-ranging background allowed him to contribute all over the defense. Free agents like linebacker Myles Jack signed with the Steelers, in part, due to Flores’ reputation. Others inside linebackers like Devin Bush began to get their careers back on track thanks to Flores’ guidance.

In terms of coaching style, Flores can be a disciplinarian at times. Steelers safety Terrell Edmunds said Flores has a “military mentality.” There was no gray area when Flores was coaching. — DeFabo
Last edited by makila on Mon Feb 06, 2023 9:55 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: Flores is our new DC

Post by Maelstrom88 »

Foreman44 wrote: Mon Feb 06, 2023 9:25 pm This is how I see it. He will do well. Things will look up defensively.

2024 He will except a head coaching job elsewhere.

We may like him but for how long
True but it's a Not For Long league. When he leaves there will be other "defensive gurus" available cough cough Todd Bowles. It will be KOCs job to replace good with good.
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Re: Flores is our new DC

Post by Maelstrom88 »

makila wrote: Mon Feb 06, 2023 9:44 pm Couple reads from The Athletic, imho..looking forward to being more aggressive in general.

Liked this quote:

“(Blitzing) is something the offense has to prepare for,” Flores told iHeart Radio. “The backs have to be ready. The offensive line has to be ready. The quarterback has to be ready to make his checks. That’s something I have a history and experience with.”

Sounds like we are gonna need secondary upgrade(s). Curious to see how Cine and Booth get evaluated.
-----

Vikings hire Brian Flores: So what can we expect of Minnesota’s defense in 2023?

By Alec Lewis
55m ago

On the night of Dec. 11, Kevin O’Connell, late in his first season as the head coach of the Vikings, stepped up to a lectern in the bowels of Ford Field in Detroit. He was disgusted.

All losses sting. But this one, a shellacking at the hands of an NFC North foe in the Lions, was a disaster for the Minnesota defense.

For a month, quarterbacks like Mike White of the Jets and Mac Jones of the Patriots had ripped the unit to shreds. Lackluster offenses lobbed the ball all over the joint. The Vikings absorbed punch after punch with little response. O’Connell, it became evident that night, had had enough.

“We’ve got to take a look at what we can do for our guys to be in a position to make more plays and be more aggressive,” he said.

Aggressive.

That word hovers over Monday night’s news. The Vikings, following a month-long search for a new defensive coordinator, landed Brian Flores. The longtime Patriots staffer and former Dolphins head coach who this past season was a senior defensive assistant with the Steelers, has caused headaches for years with his defenses.

How so? By dictating the action to the offense.

As you’re narrowing your expectations for the Vikings’ defense in 2023, start there. And if that sounds like the antithesis of the Vikings defense last season, that’s because it is.

While Ed Donatell’s squad sat back in off coverage and played with more six-man boxes than all but one team in the NFL, Flores has fielded defenses in the past that caused mayhem. For example, in 2020, Flores’ defense with the Dolphins ranked fifth in blitz rate, according to Sports Info Solutions. A year later, his defense ranked first in blitz rate.

“You always want to be aggressive,” Flores said this past fall in a conversation with iHeart Radio. “You always want to have a physical front. You always want to pressure the quarterback.”

A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Flores is a linebacker by trade. He played the position at Boston College before joining Bill Belichick’s New England staff as a scouting assistant in 2004. He progressed quickly from there, earning a promotion to pro scout in 2006 and becoming a coaching assistant in 2008.

That year, he crossed paths with a recently drafted quarterback named Kevin O’Connell. As the future Vikings head coach moved on to play for the Jets and other teams, Flores remained in New England and continued his coaching ascent. He became the Patriots’ safeties coach in 2012 and worked alongside All-Pro Devin McCourty. In 2016, he transitioned to linebackers coach. Then in 2018, Belichick tabbed him as the team’s defensive play caller.

That defense, like many of Belichick’s, feasted on offenses with tight man coverage and multiplicity on the front. One package had eight defenders start on the line of scrimmage. The onus, then, was on the opposing quarterback to sort through who would be sprinting at him and who would be falling back into coverage. The package helped that Patriots team win Super Bowl LIII. It also elevated Flores’ name into an elite circle of interviewees for head-coaching jobs around the league.

The Dolphins hired him in 2019. That year, the team added interior defender Christian Wilkins in the NFL Draft. Two years later, they leveled up with Jaelen Phillips and Jevon Holland. Tying the system and the talent together, the Dolphins ranked in the top 10 in success rate and expected points added.

In 2021, Flores’ defense used six different fronts. Some featured three down linemen, while others featured four. Those personnel groupings also included a bevy of coverage packages with six secondary players on the field (frequently called “dime” personnel).

The way the Dolphins deployed their defenders was the polar opposite of last year’s Vikings. While Donatell’s defense showed a two-high safety shell look pre-snap, Flores’ Dolphins defense in 2021 ranked last in the NFL in two-high safety shell usage. Additionally, while Donatell’s defense regularly used six men in the box, Flores’ 2021 Dolphins defense had the third-lowest percentage of light boxes.

“(Blitzing) is something the offense has to prepare for,” Flores told iHeart Radio. “The backs have to be ready. The offensive line has to be ready. The quarterback has to be ready to make his checks. That’s something I have a history and experience with.”

That experience is why Steelers coach Mike Tomlin hired him last fall to be a senior defensive assistant and linebackers coach. The move followed Flores’ firing in Miami — even after back-to-back winning seasons. It also occurred after Flores, who is Black, filed a class-action lawsuit against the Dolphins, Giants and Broncos, alleging teams still use racially discriminatory hiring practices for head coaches.

Tomlin explained his decision to hire Flores succinctly.

“It doesn’t require a lot of time to come to the realization that you could use a Brian Flores on your staff,” he said. “There are so many ways that he’s going to help us and help me in particular. I love sharpening my sword on his and gaining perspective that his experiences provide, that wise counsel.”

Flores quickly made an impression on Steelers players.

“He’s a bulldog,” strong safety Terrell Edmunds said. “You can tell by just the way he talks that he has a military mentality and wants everything to be on point and not letting anybody slack off. We need that. We need that in the back end, we need that with the linebackers for the communication.”

This is what can be expected as Flores is integrated into his new franchise. He’ll almost certainly have a hand in the defenders the Vikings draft in April. Last week, he spent several days in Mobile, Ala., evaluating players up close at the Senior Bowl. And there’s also something to be said for what Flores’ football mind will mean for O’Connell’s offense.
go-deeper

GO DEEPER

The Vikings need defensive backs. Here are six who have impressed at the Senior Bowl

Much in the way Chargers coach Brandon Staley pushed Rams coach Sean McVay (and O’Connell, who was McVay’s offensive coordinator) in 2020, Flores could have the same effect on O’Connell. This idea brings to mind how O’Connell described the process of hiring his first defensive coordinator a year ago.

“You really start thinking about it with, ‘What do you not like to play against? What’s the hardest defensive scheme to play against? What keeps you up at night when you game-plan against a defense?’” O’Connell said last February.

The answers to those questions were not what was on display for the Vikings in December against Detroit. This time, O’Connell chose a different path, one centered on being the aggressor.

-----

Vikings hire Brian Flores as next defensive coordinator: What the ex-Dolphins coach brings to Minnesota

By Alec Lewis and Mike DeFabo
3h ago

The Minnesota Vikings agreed to make Brian Flores their next defensive coordinator, the team announced Monday. Here’s what you need to know:

Flores replaces Ed Donatell, who was fired after one season.
The former Dolphins head coach spent last season as a senior defensive assistant on Steelers coach Mike Tomlin’s staff.
Flores is suing the NFL and several teams for racial discrimination.

Backstory

Flores spent last season as the Steelers’ linebackers coach after being fired by the Dolphins despite posting back-to-back winning seasons. He filed a class-action lawsuit last February against the NFL, the Giants and several other teams alleging discrimination in their hiring practices. Among the claims in the suit was that the Giants interviewed him for their then-vacant head coaching position despite having already decided to hire former Bills assistant Brian Daboll.

Flores also alleged the Dolphins tried to incentivize the team to lose in 2019 to gain a better draft pick in 2020 and that the team engaged in tampering. The NFL sanctioned the Dolphins for impermissible contact with quarterback Tom Brady while he was with the Patriots and the Buccaneers and impermissible contact with the agent of former Saints head coach Sean Payton while Payton was still with the Saints. The Dolphins forfeited the club’s first-round selection in the 2023 NFL Draft and a third-round selection in the 2024 NFL Draft.

Why is Flores the Vikings’ choice?

Because he has proven an ability to install a dominant defensive scheme. Flores first called a defense in 2018 with the New England Patriots. Then, of course, he was hired as the Dolphins’ head coach, where he oversaw their defensive arc. His defenses have been aggressive. They have complicated the picture for quarterbacks. And they have caused headaches for offensive line units. Flores’ defense is a group that attempts to dictate the action, which is almost the polar opposite of what the Vikings had in 2022 under Donatell. — Lewis
What will Flores’ defense look like?

That’s a hard question to answer because of how many different fronts and coverage schemes he’s used. First, know this: Flores is not afraid to send the house. In 2020, no team played more Cover 0 than Flores’ Dolphins. His defenses play a heavy amount of man coverage, and oftentimes a single-high safety occupies the middle of the field. He will load the box and place heavy responsibility on cornerbacks. Each of these sounds like (and really is) the antithesis of what Donatell had installed last season: The Vic Fangio, two-high safety, off-coverage special. Though the Fangio style is what Vikings head coach Kevin O’Connell envisioned last season when he first hired a staff, Flores’ defense poses similar challenges for quarterbacks, which is what this defense will do. — Lewis
Flores’ imprint on Steelers

While Flores’ stint in Pittsburgh lasted only one season, he quickly became a well-respected piece of the organization. As a former head coach and defensive coordinator, he was overqualified for the job of senior defensive assistant — and pretty much everyone knew it.

“We have a head coach inside our linebacker room,” inside linebacker Robert Spillane said.

Flores worked mostly with inside linebackers, however, his wide-ranging background allowed him to contribute all over the defense. Free agents like linebacker Myles Jack signed with the Steelers, in part, due to Flores’ reputation. Others inside linebackers like Devin Bush began to get their careers back on track thanks to Flores’ guidance.

In terms of coaching style, Flores can be a disciplinarian at times. Steelers safety Terrell Edmunds said Flores has a “military mentality.” There was no gray area when Flores was coaching. — DeFabo
Thanks! That was a fun read. He is responsible for drafting some of the best defenders in Miami. We can only hope he will have that success here. I haven't watched film on Joey Porter Jr. yet but as of right now that's who I want. They'll likely have to trade up a ways to get him though. Drafting him and signing Jamel Dean would transform the defense.
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a powerful whirlpool in the sea or a river.

a situation or state of confused movement or violent turmoil.
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Re: Flores is our new DC

Post by Foreman44 »

Maelstrom88 wrote: Mon Feb 06, 2023 9:44 pm
Foreman44 wrote: Mon Feb 06, 2023 9:25 pm This is how I see it. He will do well. Things will look up defensively.

2024 He will except a head coaching job elsewhere.

We may like him but for how long
True but it's a Not For Long league. When he leaves there will be other "defensive gurus" available cough cough Todd Bowles. It will be KOCs job to replace good with good.
I have a feeling Flores will shine.
He may go to another team as a head coach, youare right. It will be KOCs job to find another shining star DC.

But didn’t KOC pick Donatell.
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Re: Flores is our new DC

Post by Maelstrom88 »

Foreman44 wrote: Mon Feb 06, 2023 10:55 pm
Maelstrom88 wrote: Mon Feb 06, 2023 9:44 pm

True but it's a Not For Long league. When he leaves there will be other "defensive gurus" available cough cough Todd Bowles. It will be KOCs job to replace good with good.
I have a feeling Flores will shine.
He may go to another team as a head coach, youare right. It will be KOCs job to find another shining star DC.

But didn’t KOC pick Donatell.
Yeah, honestly I can't blame him too much for that. The guy was well respected and served under Fangio forever. I learned that I don't like Fangio's defense unless Fangio is running it. Personally I like aggressive defense that dictates to the offense where they will go with the ball and causes confusion over where pressure will come from. I also like forcing running backs to block linebackers who outweigh them. Most backs can't block so I want to test them
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a situation or state of confused movement or violent turmoil.
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Re: Flores is our new DC

Post by Foreman44 »

Excellent post Makilla. Goodread. Didn’t hit quote for length thanks
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Re: Flores is our new DC

Post by CharVike »

I guess they got what they wanted. Another season of the 3-4 bend but don't break stuff. Looks like another Vic Fangio knockoff scheme. For some reason Fangio is considered a mastermind but I can't think of a single defense he ever put out there that slammed the door shut. It's that 2 safety deep to eliminate the big play. But you can nickle and dime us to death. Basically hoping for a screw up. Forget hoping. Attack the QB and make it happen. I don't give a crap about this soft play back 3-4. Is that the most boring uneventful D ever? We'll see what Fang.. I mean Flores puts out there.
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Re: Flores is our new DC

Post by makila »

Huh? Flores runs a very aggressive 3-4. Lots of man coverage. Load up and blitz a ton. Very little 2 deep safety.

-----
"....The way the Dolphins deployed their defenders was the polar opposite of last year’s Vikings. While Donatell’s defense showed a two-high safety shell look pre-snap, Flores’ Dolphins defense in 2021 ranked last in the NFL in two-high safety shell usage. Additionally, while Donatell’s defense regularly used six men in the box, Flores’ 2021 Dolphins defense had the third-lowest percentage of light boxes...."
-----

Basically the exact opposite of fangio/donatell with his 3-4, bend don't break scheme.
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Re: Flores is our new DC

Post by Pondering Her Percy »

CharVike wrote: Tue Feb 07, 2023 7:57 am I guess they got what they wanted. Another season of the 3-4 bend but don't break stuff. Looks like another Vic Fangio knockoff scheme. For some reason Fangio is considered a mastermind but I can't think of a single defense he ever put out there that slammed the door shut. It's that 2 safety deep to eliminate the big play. But you can nickle and dime us to death. Basically hoping for a screw up. Forget hoping. Attack the QB and make it happen. I don't give a crap about this soft play back 3-4. Is that the most boring uneventful D ever? We'll see what Fang.. I mean Flores puts out there.
Buddy, I'm not sure what you're talking about here. Flores does not run the same scheme as Fangio. This really has nothing to do with Fangio. Flores runs heavy cover 0 and cover 1 where Fangio runs heavy cover 4 and cover 6. Flores also had the 2nd highest blitz rate his last year in Miami. This is definitely a much, much more aggressive scheme.
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