I like this explanation but would it be true with better linemen? We don't have a Championship pass rush!! We really have a fairly poor offensive line!! All Of This is on Thomas D.!!
Finally, Cyril, we agree on soemthing.
It would not be true if we had a better O-line. For the record, I'm not a big fan of conservative offensive/defensive philosophies/schemes, but I can't look back at history and say that they don't get results. I'm a believer that you can run any scheme in the NFL and be successful at it, if you have the right players.
The problem is that our philosophy (which is largely conservative) requires having better players in the trenches than your opponents to be most effective. The Falcons were weak up front last year on the offensive side of the ball and what is on TD is that they did NOTHING to fix it. They didn't approach players like Manuwai, Max Starks, Shawn Andrews, Leonard Davis, or any number of FAs during the season to try and fix that deficiency. No, Kirk Chambers was not signed to boost to the O-line, he was signed to replace an injured player (Mike Johnson). Instead, they just thought they could make due with some reshuffling (Svitek & Hawley), and just coaching them up to make due. And IMHO, this is why Paul Boudreau is no longer the OL coach, because he has been scapegoated for failing in the latter regard. But IMO, the bigger failure was on the GM and/or whoever else was making the decision to sign players. And if Boudreau was banging the table saying he could "inspire" the guys to get the job done, then TD should have overidden him given the fact that a good talent evaluator would have known an OL consisting of Svitek-Blalock-McClure-Hawley-Clabo is not going to carry you to a Super Bowl.
If you don't have what it takes up front, then you need to find ways to make up for it in the passing game (a good example of this is the 2011 Giants) because you can't win with your running game. This goes back to the major problem that is holding back this team/organization IMHO is that it doesn't do a good job self-evaluating their roster.
The beauty of the off-season is that you can fix a lot of these problems. You can go out and bring in several OLs to compete and bolster the front, if you want to continue to maintain that style of play. And if you're going to move away from that style of play and be a more "aggressive" pass-oriented team, then go out and get the personnel to run that scheme to its most efficient. Which the Falcons really have not done due to their decision to retain Turner as the lead back (instead you'd want a back that can contribute more in the passing game), and the lack of a quality pass-catching No. 2 TE and/or No. 4 WR.
And this goes back to the biggest complaint I have about this team is that they are ill-equipped to excel in either area: passing the ball, or running the ball. And so at the end of the day they are just a pretty good team at both, but pretty good doesn't win championships. Great does. And at some point in the future the Falcons are going to have to decide which one they want to be great in.
Secondly, I've only been on the cut Turner bandwagon for months, since October/November.
Thirdly, I think you overestimate the dropoff in the running game if Turner was lost. As I've said before, at this point in his career he's a below average to average starting RB. Losing him won't be a huge hit, especially since you can sign any number of cheap veterans that could be the same for less than half the price (Peyton Hillis, Ryan Grant, Law Firm, Michael Bush, etc.)
Mario Williams is the foundation piece to the rebuilding of our D-line, that's why you sign him. Because our 2 best D-linemen are diminishing players that might have another 1 or 2 nice years in them before they are done. Those two are of course Abe & Babs. And if you think guys like Peters, Edwards, Biermann, Sidbury, Jerry, etc. are going to pick up that slack, then you my friend are sorely mistaken. Most of those guys would be backups on the majority of NFL teams. Signing Williams was a chance to add a rare playmaker on that side of the ball, one so rare that you'd almost always require a Top 10 pick (which presumably the Falcons won't have for many years) to make it next to impossible to find one. With Williams as your foundation, you can go forward knowing that your D-line isn't going to get any worse than it is today, and the arrow is only pointing up, assuming you can find 1 or 2 more playmakers up front in the coming years.
Without that signing, you may find yourself in a position starting completely from scratch, and wind up reaching on a talented DL in Round 1 in the coming years. And for the record, the success rate of a 1st round DL is about the same as a QB, which we all know are notoriously risky.
Mario Williams was a "big picture" signing, something this front office and coaching staff have had difficulty seeing since their success in 2010.