I just remembered that I forgot to tag this on to the end of the defensive backs preview section and since I am both prideful and stupid I figured I would throw us up really quickly.
Okay, the defense is going to be bad. I kind of knew this going in, but the more I picked this thing apart, the darker things became and I began to mutter bullshit about Col. Kurtz and werewolves and all other manner of bizarre gibberish. They are going to be terrible. I say this with a fair amount of certainty. The defensive line is bad, bad, bad. Maybe the defensive ends can kind of hold it together, especially if Cliff Avril can make a sonic leap and get to the quarterback with regularity. That's assuming he's even on the field enough to be able to make that difference. But the center of the line is almost nonexistent, made up of an old fat man and a young fat man, neither of whom should be counted on for more than a few quality snaps in any one game. Landon Cohen needs to take it up yet another notch if this unit has any chance of not being blown apart and having its ashes scattered on foul winds.
The linebackers are essentially the defense's only hope. They need to both fly to opposing ball carriers and blitz the shit out of the quarterback, all while covering the middle of the field on passes. Basically, they need about 9 guys, but they only have three and unless they have some sort of weird mutant superpower where they can be in multiple places at once, I doubt they can do everything we need them to. Then again, I have faith in The Lizard King, and perhaps working out with his monkey has given him new found agility and strength. We can only hope.
The defensive backs are probably going to get burned and burned often, especially if the quarterback has enough time to sit in the pocket and wait for his receivers to get open, which they surely will against this collection of retreads and fringe players.
It's going to be ugly, terrible really, but this is a year of ugly growth and faltering missteps. Our team is like a retarded baby that will throw up on itself every once in a while, shit its pants and begin sobbing at weird and random intervals. But one day it will grow up, and we just have to have enough patience to let that happen. Perhaps it will be tempting to leave it in the dumpster, but we are better than that.
Defensive Grade: D. It might take a miracle for it to rise any higher than this. Maybe Gunther Cunningham will go crazy and blitz like a madman and maybe that will pay off occasionally. Really, it's the only chance we have.