Good piece here by Bob Grotz on how the current Eagles defense is different from those run by Buddy Ryan, Bud Carson and Jim Johnson. Snarky answers aside, things are different because of the style of offense and also the way the league enforces rules these days.
Malcolm Jenkins offered some thoughts on how the defense can still be an impact unit.
Jenkins has walked the talk. In his rookie season with New Orleans he contributed 4 tackles to help the Saints defeat the Indianapolis Colts, 31-17, in Super Bowl XLIV. The Colts outgained the Saints by 100 yards. The Saints returned Peyton Manning pass for a touchdown and recovered an onside kick to start the second half, leading to another touchdown.
“We were never going to be a top-5 defense in yards because our offense put up points,” Jenkins said. “They get a lot of yards so in turn offenses of the other teams are throwing the ball and trying to score more points. There’s a little give and take. But we were taking the ball away at a high level. We were physical and feared and that played into our hand.
The defense can’t worry about rankings and conventional stats. They just need to be the right defense for this team and style of play. And that is something they can do.