2011 Best 4-3 OLB Performances
By Luke Sims
Taking a gander over to Pro Football Focus’ list of best performances for 4-3 outside linebackers, we see some pretty familiar names. Kamerion Wimbley, the new Titans defensive end, has two places on the list for those rushing the passer in sub packages. And who else made the list from the AFC South? Daryl Smith and Clint Session.
We’ve highlighted the strength of the Jaguars’ linebacking corps here at B&T before, and we’ve outline the responsibilities in Mel Tucker’s defense. Tucker’s defense is reliant upon front four pressure, not on linebacking pressure.
The players GM Gene Smith has brought in to fill the scheme are doing it quite well it would seem.
Of the top 5 performances for outside linebackers in 2011, Daryl Smith is tied for 4th place with himself. That’s two spots for our beloved linebacker.
"Two performances from Smith make it into the Top 5; the first occurring in Week 5 with one of his trademark complete performances. Smith picked up seven defensive stops and broke up a pass attempt, making Nate Livings look particularly poor when he tried to get his hands on him at the second level. Then the Jaguar ended the season with an impactful display against the Colts where he showed off what he could do as a pass rusher with a hit and pressure to go with two defended passes and five defensive stops. These games highlighted why Smith finished second in our 4-3 OLB rankings."
Being ranked second for 4-3 OLB by Pro Football Focus is pretty nice too.
Clint Session also made an appearance on PFF’s lists in the top 5 run defense games by 4-3 OLBs. He landed at number four on that list for his week five performance against Cincinnati. Daryl Smith one-upped him though and landed at number three on the same list for his performance against Indianpolis in week 17.
We’ve got some superb linebackers in Jacksonville, it’s nice to see some recognition from around the league.
– Luke N. Sims