FanPost

What's up with Connor Barwin (and the non JJ Watt pass rush)?



I believe in giving players the benefit of the doubt in many situations. Way back during the first game this season against Miami, I remember being surprised that the defense didn't rack up the sacks. Moreover, I was really surprised that we got nothing noticible out of Barwin or Reed. In my head I just figured that Barwin was going against Jake Long, which would be a tough match up for any pass rusher. The next few games did little to quell my concerns. At that point I simply figured that perhaps they were off to slow starts and would pick up by the midway point of the season. Now 11 games into the season, coming off another hardly noticeable performance against a team missing its starting left tackle with a line that was already in question, I can't help but wonder what is up with Barwin? With JJ Watt having one of the greatest season for a defensive lineman in history, you would think that Barwin and Reed would be absolutely wrecking offenses giving them the 1 on 1 blocking they have faced. But they haven't. Through 11 games they have 4 1/2 sacks COMBINED. These are the 2 primary pass rushing positions in any 3-4 defense. They get snaps at defensive end in the nickel/dime so there isn't any excuse there either. They have both had plenty of opportunities. I understand it isn't just about sacks, but there aren't all that many times I remember those guys being close. Lance Zerlein had an article on his blog with statistics that backed up my assertions. The hurries and knockdowns are way down from where they were a year ago. I just can't figure it out. Every element is there for at least one of these guys to have a monster season. Especially Barwin. Hes a very athletic high effort player who works very hard on his craft. He plays in the primary pass rush position in a Wade Phillips defense. He has JJ Watt demanding double teams inside. He is in a contract year. He's in his 2nd year in the system. What do you guys think?

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