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  1. #1
    Nick's Avatar
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    Chiefs want Dorsey's emphasis to be on defending the run rather than getting sacks

    Practice exhausting, educational for Chiefs’ Dorsey
    By KENT BABB
    The Kansas City Star
    Posted on Wed, Jun. 11, 2008

    Glenn Dorsey is trying to catch his breath. He’s standing at his locker now, partially wearing a gray sweatshirt because his arms feel like teabags and haven’t yet flung the fabric over his head.

    He needs a minute to adjust to all this. He’s a rookie and a high-profile one. Dorsey was the Chiefs’ top pick, the No. 5 overall selection in April’s draft. He admits he is exhausted, but he knows he cannot let up.

    “Everything is so quick-paced, quick-paced, quick-paced,” he says. “You’re breathing; you’ve got to rush the passer. It really tests your endurance and how strong you are.

    “Everybody can play when they’re not tired. But when you get tired and you have to go faster and faster, it’s a little more difficult.”

    Dorsey has been an NFL player in earnest for nearly four weeks. The Chiefs will wrap up offseason practice today with a noon session at Spratt Stadium, on the Missouri Western State University campus in St. Joseph. After that, the Chiefs have six weeks before training camp starts July 25.

    Dorsey admits these four weeks have been exhausting and educational. He says he is adjusting to his new role, the lifestyle and schedule of an NFL player, and the speed of the game that never has a minute to give.

    Coach Herm Edwards says Dorsey is about where he thought the former LSU star would be. He’s still learning, Edwards says, but he has come along even since practice started last month.

    “He’s been good. He’s getting better,” Edwards says. “He’s starting to understand, really, what we want him to do.”

    That’s stop the run and forget about sacks. If he gets to the quarterback, then yes, take him down. But Dorsey’s preliminary education has centered on reacting instead of reading; learning to focus on the run and mastering how to stuff it.

    It must be working. Edwards says the Chiefs’ offensive line has been double-teaming Dorsey most times during live drills, something Edwards expects teams will do during the regular season, too.

    But that’s a long time from now, and Dorsey admits he needs every minute of every practice to improve and learn. Training camp and preseason games remain on the horizon, and so much is left to do before those dates arrive.

    The most important item is for Dorsey and the Chiefs to agree to a contract. Dorsey is one of two top-five picks — St. Louis Rams defensive end and No. 2 pick Chris Long is the other — who have not yet signed. As of last week, a deal was not imminent, although Chiefs president Carl Peterson told The Star that there have been discussions between the team and Dorsey’s agent, Joel Segal.

    And that’s who should worry about it, Dorsey says. He says he has tried not to worry about negotiations or dollar figures. He has only one thing in mind when it comes to settling on a contract.

    “I want to be in camp. That’s the goal,” he says, finally lifting that sweatshirt and pulling it over his head.

    In the meantime, Dorsey has leaned on teammates to show him the way; help him understand that, yes, this is life in the NFL and the days don’t get any easier. They have told him that he has to keep moving, keep pushing and keep trying to get better — because around here, nothing is given away.

    “I see a lot of things I can do better,” Dorsey says. “I’m still a rookie; I’ve still got the bumps and bruises of camps to come along. It’s still early. I don’t really look at it like they’re handing me a job. I’ve got to come out and earn it. As soon as I slip up or don’t take it like I’m supposed to, they’ll put somebody else in. I still have a long way to go, man.”


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    RamOfDenmark is offline Registered User
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    Re: Chiefs want Dorsey's emphasis to be on defending the run rather than getting sack

    First thought in my mind was maybe they're trying to take a little pressure off of him his first year. I mean in terms of the media - we've all seen the stats posted on rookie defensive linemen and how many sacks they get and usually they don't get a lot. If Dorsey only gets say 3 sacks for the year the media could be all over him and the Chiefs and pundits will start throwing around the B-word (absurdly prematurely of course, but we've seen it before) and then they can say 'we told him to focus on the run'. Maybe it would help them deflect some criticism and let people focus on something else than solely how many sacks he had.

    Or of course, they could simply think that run-defense is the part of his game that needs the most work.

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    RAMarkable is offline Registered User
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    Re: Chiefs want Dorsey's emphasis to be on defending the run rather than getting sack

    Quote Originally Posted by RamOfDenmark View Post
    First thought in my mind was maybe they're trying to take a little pressure off of him his first year. I mean in terms of the media - we've all seen the stats posted on rookie defensive linemen and how many sacks they get and usually they don't get a lot. If Dorsey only gets say 3 sacks for the year the media could be all over him and the Chiefs and pundits will start throwing around the B-word (absurdly prematurely of course, but we've seen it before) and then they can say 'we told him to focus on the run'. Maybe it would help them deflect some criticism and let people focus on something else than solely how many sacks he had.

    Or of course, they could simply think that run-defense is the part of his game that needs the most work.
    Or an even more obvious possibility is that the Chiefs play in the run-oriented AFC West, and they have the dubious pleasure of facing the likes of LT in SD, the Denver Broncos and now D. McFadden in Oak. And stopping the run is paramount in order to win in that division.
    Ultimately, I do believe that Dorsey will make a superior pass rusher, but apparently K.C. wants him to stop the run first.

    WHAT SAY YE?

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    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: Chiefs want Dorsey's emphasis to be on defending the run rather than getting sack

    Quote Originally Posted by RAMarkable View Post
    Ultimately, I do believe that Dorsey will make a superior pass rusher, but apparently K.C. wants him to stop the run first.
    Just seems like a strange decision to me. You'd like a Dungy disciple like Edwards would want Glenn "The Next Sapp" Dorsey in that pass rushing three-technique role, but that doesn't seem to be what they're doing. I don't think putting him in that role means he won't be able to defend the run either, as most analysts actually felt he was a strong run defender as a prospect. To me, it raises the question as to how he's being used, because the perception was that Dorsey could be the ideal three-technique in the Sapp mold. If you have the next Sapp in a Cover 2 variant defensive scheme, why make his main focus reaction-based run defense and not capitalize on those pass rushing skills? If I was a Chiefs fan, I'd be a bit worried after hearing this in regards to whether or not he's being used to his potential. This will be something to watch through training camp and the regular season.

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    HUbison's Avatar
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    Re: Chiefs want Dorsey's emphasis to be on defending the run rather than getting sack

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    Just seems like a strange decision to me. You'd like a Dungy disciple like Edwards would want Glenn "The Next Sapp" Dorsey in that pass rushing three-technique role, but that doesn't seem to be what they're doing.
    Add to that the fact that Jared Allen's replacement (if possible) has yet to be found. Hali looks good, but McBride appears to be more of an anchor end than a pass rusher. And it's not like they have a penetrating interior with Boone and Edwards.

    It's puzzling.
    "Before the gates of excellence the high gods have placed sweat; long is the road thereto and rough and steep at first; but when the heights are reached, then there is ease, though grievously hard in the winning." --- Hesiod

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    RAMarkable is offline Registered User
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    Re: Chiefs want Dorsey's emphasis to be on defending the run rather than getting sack

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    Edwards says the Chiefs’ offensive line has been double-teaming Dorsey most times during live drills, something Edwards expects teams will do during the regular season, too.
    sigh....this is exactly what I envisioned would happen, and is a huge reason why I wanted the Rams to stay true to their board and take this guy. With Dorsey being doubled it would have freed up Carriker to only face a single blocker. Also, it could have worked to protect 'Spoon more effectively in that the Center/Guard would be tied up with Dorsey, thereby allowing Spoon more freedom.

    Look, as I've said before, I'm sure Chris Long will be a fine player; but I don't ever see him as the type that offenses will have to worry enough about to double-team.

    WHAT SAY YE?

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    Re: Chiefs want Dorsey's emphasis to be on defending the run rather than getting sack

    We'll see how it pans out, but for now I'm going to guess this is an example of getting the basics down first rather than foreshadowing of how they plan to use him in the regular season. The bolded print suggests this is Dorsey's "preliminary education". I'm thinking they were probably just saying worry about what we're teaching you now; worry about the sacks later.

    Quote Originally Posted by RAMarkable
    sigh....this is exactly what I envisioned would happen, and is a huge reason why I wanted the Rams to stay true to their board and take this guy. With Dorsey being doubled it would have freed up Carriker to only face a single blocker. Also, it could have worked to protect 'Spoon more effectively in that the Center/Guard would be tied up with Dorsey, thereby allowing Spoon more freedom.

    Look, as I've said before, I'm sure Chris Long will be a fine player; but I don't ever see him as the type that offenses will have to worry enough about to double-team.
    Well, keep on envisioning because neither player has seen a real down of pro football.
    In any event, what the Chiefs do in practice to simulate what they think opponents will do doesn't really tell us much of anything.

    Also, the last minute board change is a rumor that has been echoed numerous times but from the same sources who alleged it in the first place. The rumor isn't even consistent as to who wanted the change. At first people thought Zygmunt ordered the change a day or two before the draft. Now people are saying Linehan ordered the change. There may not have even been a change. There was hardly a clear consensus as to who was the better player between the two even disregarding positional needs.

  8. #8
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    Re: Chiefs want Dorsey's emphasis to be on defending the run rather than getting sack

    Okay, I wouldn't normally make two posts back-to-back, but I just came across something relevant from PFW while checking out an article on the Rams...


    Newest DT hope

    Dorsey primed to thrive where others have failed

    By Rick Dean
    June 12, 2008

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. — As he watched countless hours of Glenn Dorsey’s game film, on the long-shot chance that the most decorated defender in college football might somehow fall to Kansas City’s No. 5 spot in the draft, Chiefs defensive coordinator Gunther Cunningham kept coming back to the same thought:

    What would this powerful, tough-to-block LSU defensive tackle do if given the freedom to attack on most plays?

    The Chiefs and the rest of the NFL are about to find out.
    Chiefs DT Glenn Dorsey

    Glenn Dorsey
    Stunned at their good fortune to find the defensive anchor of the 2007 national champions still on the board at No. 5, the Chiefs now are anxious to learn how Dorsey can help their defense when given the one-gapping green light to wreak havoc in opposing backfields.

    Granted, they also need the kind of two-gap-controlling, run-stuffing play Dorsey provided for the Tigers. After all, Kansas City ranked a lowly 28th among NFL run defenses last season.

    Still, the plan is to turn the 297-pound Dorsey loose to become a penetrating defender who can blow up running and passing plays before they have time to develop.

    “When he came in for his (pre-draft) visit, we talked about him playing a lot of two-gap schemes (in college), a lot of read-and-react,” Cunningham said. “But what we’ll go for is penetration at the snap.

    “The times I saw him do that on film, he was always in the backfield, always making the play. But it was only a small percentage of plays he got to do that. I rarely saw him with the freedom to just cut it loose. On third down they were like position rushers who kept the pocket tight and didn’t let the quarterback run, which you have to do in college.

    “But in the NFL you go for penetration, make the quarterback move, disrupt his setup. Everything we do fits the things he wasn’t allowed to do. But we believe he can do all of that.”

    A caution is in order here.

    The Chiefs have been hoping for the same thing from a succession of unsuccessful DT draftees and free-agent signings for more than a decade.

    They had high hopes for North Carolina’s Ryan Sims, a player they traded up to get with the sixth overall pick in 2002. They said many of the same things about Eric Downing, their third-round pick in ’01, and Junior Siavii, their top pick in ’04. The jury is still out on Turk McBride — who might see time at both tackle and end — and Tank Tyler, their second- and third-round draft picks, respectively, of ’07, who have yet to make an impact on an improving defense lacking top-tier talent.

    That lack of playmaking defenders became even greater when the Chiefs traded NFL sack leader Jared Allen to Minnesota for a first-rounder — used as ammunition to move up to select versatile OL Branden Albert — and two third-round picks.

    The move helped Kansas City’s draft, no doubt. But what did it do for Cunningham’s defense?

    Dorsey’s transition to the NFL will go a long way toward answering that question.

    His presence already provides Cunningham with some options.

    He has moved DT Alfonso Boone outside to left end and shifted 2006 top pick Tamba Hali to Allen’s vacated DRE spot. If Dorsey can provide some consistent inside pressure — something the Chiefs haven’t had since the days of Dan Saleaumua and Joe Phillips in the 1990s — and Hali improves on his two-year total of 15½ sacks when rushing from the quarterback’s blind side, the Chiefs might be able to compensate for the loss of Allen.

    “Might” being the operative word.

    But even in the early days of spring workouts, the Chiefs have seen promise in Dorsey that their other failed DT draftees seldom flashed.

    “Glenn is a guy by himself. He’s just a beast,” said Hali, who has played next to Dorsey in spring practice. “He can take over a game from that position, especially if a team is trying to run. I think he’ll give us some different ways to rush the passer and stop the run.”

    Dorsey did all of that in Baton Rouge. He’ll be asked to do the same in Kansas City, but with a slightly different approach.

    “I’ve done both (two-gap and one-gap) at LSU, and you have to be able to do both to get the job done,” he noted.

    “But in a one-gap scheme, you can run loose and try to get upfield and create havoc in the backfield. You even get your name in the papers sometimes!” he remarked only half-jokingly. “I’m looking forward to that opportunity.”

    In just a couple of weeks of minicamps and organized team activities, Dorsey already has gained a sense of what the transition from a college program — albeit a powerhouse program — to the NFL will entail.

    “It seems like everyone’s always moving 100 miles per hour,” said the easygoing native of small-town Gonzales, La. “You wonder, ‘Where y’all goin?’ Everything moves at a faster pace, from the drills to the walk-throughs to the weight room. But I’ll get used to it.

    “The size of the playbook is a little overwhelming,” he admitted. “But I’ve got some older guys like Tamba Hali taking me under his wing and showing me the ropes, so I’m fortunate there.”

    His new coordinator seems confident that his prized draftee can translate all of what he did on the collegiate level — winning the Bronko Nagurski Award as the nation’s best defensive player was just one of the numerous accolades he collected at LSU — to the professional ranks.

    “The things that always amazed me were the athletic skills and balance he had,” Cunningham said. “He has a really good first step off the ball, and more than that, he uses his hands really well.

    “People already have compared him to a guy I don’t want to name (it’s Warren Sapp), but they have the same quick hands. The first day after practice, I looked at (Dorsey’s) tape and thought, ‘There it is.’ His hands get off the ground so quickly and into the opponent. That’s why he dominates.

    “What we’re looking for is the next step, and we saw a lot of snaps that said he’s ready to do that.”

    Rick Dean covers the Chiefs for the Topeka Capital-Journal.

  9. #9
    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: Chiefs want Dorsey's emphasis to be on defending the run rather than getting sack

    Quote Originally Posted by RAMarkable View Post
    With Dorsey being doubled it would have freed up Carriker to only face a single blocker.
    But as a nose tackle, which is what Carriker would have been with Dorsey on the field, I can't help but wonder if his responsibilities as a two-gapping player tying up blockers would probably have kept him from really taking advantage of that match-up. As a nose tackle with Dorsey at UT, Carriker's responsibility won't be shooting the gaps and getting quick penetration.

    Quote Originally Posted by RAMarkable View Post
    Also, it could have worked to protect 'Spoon more effectively in that the Center/Guard would be tied up with Dorsey, thereby allowing Spoon more freedom.
    There's no reason to think a Carriker/Ryan combo can't tie up linemen and help Witherspoon either. It's not as if Dorsey is the only player capable of taking on a double team to free up our LBs. I seem to recall that being one of the reasons Witherspoon was so successful last season.

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    RAMarkable is offline Registered User
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    Re: Chiefs want Dorsey's emphasis to be on defending the run rather than getting sack

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    It's not as if Dorsey is the only player capable of taking on a double team to free up our LBs. I seem to recall that being one of the reasons Witherspoon was so successful last season.
    Well, first of all you've got to be an effective and dangerous player to be even considered to be consistently double-teamed from the offense. The point is that although I'm sure Carriker/Ryan are capable of taking on a double-team, are either of these players worthy of being double-teamed throughout a game? Glenn Dorsey was doubled all 4 years at LSU, and I expect this to continue in the pros. I just don't know if Carriker/Ryan can make the same claim.

    WHAT SAY YE?

  11. #11
    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: Chiefs want Dorsey's emphasis to be on defending the run rather than getting sack

    Quote Originally Posted by RAMarkable View Post
    The point is that although I'm sure Carriker/Ryan are capable of taking on a double-team, are either of these players worthy of being double-teamed throughout a game?
    I would hope we didn't spend a Top 15 pick on Carriker if we didn't envision him having the capability of being a disruptive player on the defensive line. Only time will tell, but I think he can become that player. Especially if Ryan continues to develop and becomes a bit of a force as well.
    Last edited by Nick; -06-15-2008 at 11:12 AM.

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