Since 1983 when Coach Chuck Knoll instituted the 3-4 scheme and Dick LeBeau became God of the zone blitz, the Steelers have been known for their outstanding defense. Â Year after year, the Steelers dominate nearly every category of measurement for great defenses. Â Last year was no exception. Â That defense, in many ways, led the Steelers to the Super Bowl. Â So, what about mixing it up a little?
What if, though the 3-4 defense rocks, the Steelers added some flexibility and at times ran a 4-3 this season?
Why you ask? Well, Coach Tomlin ran a Tampa-2 for the first six years of his coaching career. Â It would not be a surprise to see him mix in a little 4-3 with the 3-4, would it?
Yes, that would mean there would have to be another defensive end to fill the gap in the 4-3. But, what would happen if for example, you put Ziggy on the line, move Aaron Smith next to Big Snack and left Brett Kiesel where he is?
It could happen, no? Think about it. Â Ziggy could certainly be the missing piece to the 4-3 puzzle. Â And what if the Steelers ran a hybrid? At one moment they are 3-4 and in the very next a 4-3?
The intent: confuse the opposing offense. The Patriots have been able to run such a defensive scheme for a few years. Â Coach Belichick is the master at switching between the 3-4 and 4-3 with no real problems. Â This could happen in Pittsburgh. It really could.
Everyone knows defense wins championships, but no one has really said WHICH defense wins. Â I know there’s a saying out there, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” but I think it could be fun to watch a thoroughly confused offense get crushed by the Steelers dominating defense, whether its a 3-4 OR a 4-3.
Needless to say, I will be watching very closely at camp this weekend to see if I see any glimses of the Honorable Dick LeBeau and Coach Tomlin creating a new way to kill QBs. (My inner linebacker survived the offseason! It’s officially time for Steelers football!)
Thoughts on this possiblity?