PFR: Mario Williams And DeMarcus Ware

Ever since word broke that Wade Phillips intends to try Mario Williams as the weakside OLB in the 3-4 scheme, people have been comparing Super Mario to another OLB that flourished in Wade's scheme--DeMarcus Ware. While some are skeptical of Super Mario having the same impact at OLB as he's had at DE, I figure it's still worth a quick look at the Pro Football Reference stats to see what sort of data stands out.

The following is with the monstrous caveats that (1) Ware had a whole lot more talent around him from 2007-2010 (Wade's time as a head coach in Dallas) than Super Mario does right now; (2) Ware never had to move from DE in a 4-3 to OLB in a 3-4 as a professional; and (3) stats do not tell the whole story of a player's value. Nevertheless, DeMarcus Ware's numbers during his time under Wade Phillips:

2007: 60 tackles, 14.0 sacks, 4 passes defensed, 4 forced fumbles.
2008: 69 tackles, 20.0 sacks, 2 passes defensed, 6 forced fumbles.
2009: 45 tackles, 11.0 sacks, 6 passes defensed, 5 forced fumbles.
2010*: 56 tackles, 15.5 sacks, 1 pass defensed, 2 forced fumbles.

* Wade Phillips was fired after the first eight games of the 2010 season.

Purely for a sense of what Mario's done as a DE in several historically bad 4-3 schemes, here are Mario Williams' career stats.

What do you expect out of Mario Williams, 3-4 OLB, in 2011?

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