Pudge, you do realize that in these last few posts you are playing the exact same game you are accusing other people of doing, right? Over simplifying an opposing point of view largely due to pre-conceived personal perspective?
Call me blind, but I don't believe I am. Okay, maybe I am. But let me explain why it's different.
Look, I think it's very clear that Bartu is better for the Falcons than Dent. That proof is in the pudding. If I made a claim otherwise, then I retract such claim and would prefer it stricken from the record.
The claim I want to suggest is that the difference between Dent and Bartu in coverage is by degrees. Look, Dent is covering players like Marques Colston, Darren Sproles, Tavon Austin, and Chris Givens. There may be a reality where Dent is expected to lock down those guys, but it is not this reality. So the idea that people are concluding that he's "terrible" in coverage (or any other similar adjective) because those players are beating him, to me suggests a clear bias. Bartu got beat a few times by Jared Cook and Lance Kendricks in the game. But nobody is suggesting that he's somehow a liability.
My good friend Scott Carasik tweeted during the game on a player where Bartu got beat, basically excusing him for getting beat by one of those quick Rams WRs:https://twitter.com/ScottCarasik/status ... 5795854336
Then about an hour later, the same happened to Dent, and this is what he offered:https://twitter.com/ScottCarasik/status ... 9910579200
As you can tell, I called him out on that. But not to throw Scott under the bus, but I see that sort of subjective analysis all the time.
I'm not trying to sit here and suggest I'm this unassailable bastion of objectivity. Look, I admittedly gave Baker a pass vs. the Rams and did not for Holmes. IMO, Baker struggled vs. Quinn due to his speed. Baker had a bad wheel, and Quinn is emerging as the sort of dominant pass rusher I envisioned when I considered him one of the 3 best players in the 2011 draft class (alongside Patrick Peterson & Marcell Dareus). When you have a bum knee (and later a bum foot), not being able to match Quinn's speed on your kick-slide is a likely consequence. Plus, I thought Baker did a better job matching Quinn's speed as the game went on. Not a good job mind you, but a better job.
Holmes OTOH I don't give such a pass, because IMO he was getting beat by an injured Chris Long not because of pure speed but because Holmes didn't use his hands. He wasn't punching. And you have to punch in this league. Holmes has 60+ pounds on Long, but that size advantage is negated if he doesn't use his hands. He forgot to, too often. I can excuse a physical limitation much more easily than I can excuse a technical limitation.
For example, if Matt Ryan gets picked off trying to throw a 60-yard bomb, but underthrows it because his arm isn't strong enough, it's not nearly as bad as if Matt Ryan throws another INT because he didn't set his feet or threw side-arm (i.e. bad footwork/mechanics = technical issue).
But let's get back to Akeem Dent and the LBs. There are many instances where Sean Weatherspoon gets beat in coverage. He got beat a number of times by Darren Sproles in Week 1 (as did other Falcon defenders). But IMO it seems like no one cares or bothers when Spoon gets beat. Look I made the comment on the podcast multiple times over the past year that Spoon got destroyed by Darren Sproles last year and it would behoove the Falcons to get a coverage option at LB (or dime back) specifically to try and check Sproles since Spoon cannot. But the common response to "Spoon can't check Sproles" is "Well who can?"
Look Spoon got beat by Tiquan Underwood on a similar play as the one where Dent got "beat" by Colston last year: http://www.nfl.com/videos/nfl-game-high ... yard-catch
Against the Raiders last year, just after Asante's pick six, the Raiders began driving. In that game, Spoon had some plays where he was out of position agianst Brandon Myers. On 3rd & 11 of that final Raiders drive, he gave up a completion to Myers which moved the sticks. The very next play, Samuel bit up to try and jump the route to Myers (who Spoon was covering), but then Palmer beat Samuel with a 38-yard pass to Denarius Moore.
The point is that I'm trying to illustrate that Spoon also struggles in coverage. Contrary to popular belief, Spoon contributed quite a bit to the Falcons inability to cover TEs last year alongside Nicholas. But people find excuses for him. Most of them begin with something along the lines of "Well, Spoon makes up for it at other times." And those people would be right.
Dent does not. Or at least has not. Why? Because he has 2 games in which we're judging, while Spoon has 30 or 40.
I see this stuff all the time on twitter and on this message board, where I think people overrate one players' struggles and underrate another's because of some pre-conceived bias.
For example, let's go back to a thread last year, where Todd McClure was coming off a "bad" game where people took that opportunity to crush McClure for his years of suckitude.viewtopic.php?f=2&t=17783&start=0
That thread was helped by the pre-conceived notion that many people had (and still have) that Todd McClure was a liability on the Falcons front, and the minute he had a bad game, "We should have gotten rid of him years ago!" Never mind the fact that the week before, he was the best OL on the field.
A few years ago, it was the same thing with Thomas DeCoud. He gets beat in single coverage by Robert Meachem or Marques Colston, and it's "Oh, DeCoud sucks!"
This summer, it was Patrick DiMarco is terrible, and Bradie Ewing is awesome. Ewing is maybe 2 degrees better than DiMarco. Ewing was by no means the 2nd coming of Ovie Mughelli. He was at this point in his career more like the 2nd coming of Mike Cox, a player that without the Falcons would have been unable to find a job for the past 2 years.
To me this Dent thing is just another example of this. It's all confirmation bias
. I see it on twitter and this forum all the time. Look, as I said earlier, do I have it as well? Absolutely. I'm not naive enough to suggest that I don't. But I make the effort
to avoid it and I wish others would do more of the same.
The reality is that these are opinions. As Cappy & I illustrate, we can watch the same tape and come to different conclusions. Hell, the Falcons do it too. They concluded that the left side of their OL merited $80 million in investments over the past 2 years, but were unwilling to invest $45 million in their right side.
The eye in the sky never lies, but guess what? The eye in the sky doesn't share its observations, fallible people do. Cappy and the rest of the world are welcome to their own opinions, but as anybody who is a frequenter of this forum over the years knows, if that opinion is different from my own, you're going to get 25,000 words on why you're wrong.
So I'm suggesting you better have something to back it up.
And if you're basically villifying Dent for getting beat 2 or 3 times, but not doing the same for Spoon or Bartu, then maybe you need to step back and reevaluate.
I think Cappy is doing an excellent job, and I don't mean this to suggest somehow it invalidates all of his opinions because it does not. I just think he's falling into the trap that I see many others do too often with confirmation bias. But then again, Cappy is also the president of the Todd McClure sucks fan club...so there's that...