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2012 NY GIANTS: HOW WILL PERRY FEWELL UTILIZE MATHIAS KIWANUKA?

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  • 2012 NY GIANTS: HOW WILL PERRY FEWELL UTILIZE MATHIAS KIWANUKA?

    2012 NY GIANTS: HOW WILL PERRY FEWELL UTILIZE MATHIAS KIWANUKA?

    "New York
    Giants LB/DE Mathias
    Kiwanuka
    was perhaps the best player on the team that nobody talked about
    last season. While players like Jason
    Pierre-Paul
    and Victor
    Cruz
    had breakout seasons and garnered all the media attention, the
    seventh-year veteran out of Boston College quietly had 84 tackles in his first
    full season at the strong-side linebacker position, which was good for the
    fourth highest total on the team.


    Although Kiwanukawas drafted as a defensive end, he has long been recognized
    as the most versatile player on the Giants defense. Kiwanuka is very quick off
    the edge and has deceptive strength, which allows the team to use him in several
    different roles. He possesses the unique ability to play linebacker in a 4-3
    defense, or as a down linemen on the defensive line. However, with the immense
    talent and depth the Giants have had at the defensive end position throughout
    Kiwanuka's career, the team has had issues finding a way to get him on the
    field.




    Last season, Kiwianuka played relatively well at the strong-side linebacker
    position. But this offseason, many fans have debated whether defensive
    coordinator Perry
    Fewell
    would be best suited shifting the teams 2006 first-round pick back to
    defensive end. Below, we will examine three reasons why it is imperative that Mathias
    Kiwanuka
    plays the majority of his snaps at the strong-side linebacker
    position in 2012.




    Mathias
    Kiwanuka
    Would Be the Fourth Defensive End On the Depth Chart

    – Out of every area on the Giants' roster, defensive end is perhaps the most
    talented and versatile position. Although it is debatable whether Mathias
    Kiwanuka
    is the fourth best defensive end on the team, he would almost
    definitely be the fourth defensive end on Perry
    Fewell
    's depth chart.




    With a healthy Justin
    Tuck
    and Jason
    Pierre-Paul
    , Kiwanukacould be the third best defensive end on the team. The
    argument can be made that because Kiwi is good against the run, while still
    being an explosive pass rusher, he is a better all-around DE than Osi
    Umenyiora
    . However, within the context of the Giants' defense, the third
    defensive end is utilized as a pass-rushing specialist, mostly on third
    down.




    As explosive of a player as Kiwi is off the edge, Umenyiorais by far a
    superior pass rusher as a down linemen. With nine sacks in only nine games last
    season, Umenyiora proved that he is still and elite pass-rusher in this league.
    So for the purposes of the Giants defense, Kiwanuka would be the fourth
    defensive end on the depth chart. It would make little sense to take away his
    responsibilities as a LB to put him in a reserve role elsewhere.




    Kiwi Is the Team's Best Strong-Side Linebacker – Even
    if one could make the argument that Mathias
    Kiwanuka
    would be an important asset to the team as a DE, he is
    unquestionably the team's best strong-side linebacker. Some have made the
    argument that because of the Giants depth at linebacker, it may be prudent to
    move Kiwi back to his natural position and let the younger players get a chance
    to prove themselves.




    Many casual football
    fans see linebacker as one position. However, in reality, linebacker is actually
    three completely different positions within one category.




    The strong-side linebacker (SAM) plays on the strong-side of the offense,
    generally lining up on the tight end. If there is no TE, the SAM splits the
    space between the end of the line of scrimmage and the slot receiver. His
    responsibilitiesinclude, but are not limited to, filling his gap on run plays,
    covering tight ends and backs out of the backfield (in man coverage), or
    dropping into short zones on passing plays. The SAM gets his initial read from
    the tight end on whether the play is a run or pass.




    The middle linebacker (MIKE) usually lines up directly over the center and
    his primary responsibility is to stop the run. The Mike linebacker should be
    involved in almost every tackle when the ball is on the ground. On pass plays,
    normally he just drops into short zones over the middle of the field, or may
    have to cover a back out of the backfield on a blitz. The Mike normally reads
    the guard position to get his initial run/pass read.




    Finally, the weak-side (WILL) linebacker is generally on of the more athletic
    players on the field. He lines up on the weak-side of the formation and his
    primary responsibility is to contain and plug up cut-back lanes on rushing
    plays. In the passing game, the Will linebacker is expected to cover anyone from
    a slot receiver to a back out of the backfield. His initial run/pass key
    normally comes from the tackle position.




    As you can see, in a 4-3 defense, each linebacker position has different
    responsibilities with different reads on every play. With that, the Giants depth
    chart is deep at both the weak-side and middle linebacker positions. However, on
    the strong-side, it could be argued that Greg
    Jones
    is the next best SAM on the roster after Kiwanuka. So if defensive
    coordinator Perry
    Fewell
    decides to make Kiwi more of a down linemen in 2012, it would entail
    putting some of the younger, more inexperienced linebackers in an unfamiliar
    role. That would most likely be more trouble than its worth.




    Continuity – In Mathias
    Kiwanuka
    's previous six seasons, last year was the first one in which he had
    a defined role within the defense. In his previous years, Kiwi was used as a
    third defensive end (2008 as the exception) and as a linebacker. Kiwi was
    constantly being moved around and was never able to fully commit himself to
    either position, which limited his productivity.




    For the Giants to be successful on defense, it is imperative that Perry
    Fewell
    retains the ability to move Kiwi around to different places on the
    field.Kiwanukais a dangerous player that must be accounted for by opposing
    offenses, so by moving him around it can create confusion at the line of
    scrimmage for quarterbacks. Look for him to be a down linemen in the team's
    NASCAR package.




    That being said, there must be some sort of balancing act in how Kiwi is
    utilized. He can not be moving from DE one week to LB the next and then back to
    DE after that. He has to have a defined role within the defense that clearly
    lays out his responsibilities on every play. He should progress nicely in his
    second season at the SAM linebacker, but for that to happen, he must be afforded
    the opportunity to see the vast majority of his snaps at that position in
    2012."


    “Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience.” MB Rule # 1

  • #2
    Re: 2012 NY GIANTS: HOW WILL PERRY FEWELL UTILIZE MATHIAS KIWANUKA?

    thanks Ro

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: 2012 NY GIANTS: HOW WILL PERRY FEWELL UTILIZE MATHIAS KIWANUKA?

      thats a very solid read

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: 2012 NY GIANTS: HOW WILL PERRY FEWELL UTILIZE MATHIAS KIWANUKA?

        I want Kiwi primarily at SAM.

        Use him as a hybrid as well, he's smart enough for it and talented enough obviously.


        Imagine having Kiwi primarily on the D-Line though.... rotating in and out keeping guys fresh.... [:O]
        "Once a Giant, ALWAYS, a Giant."

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: 2012 NY GIANTS: HOW WILL PERRY FEWELL UTILIZE MATHIAS KIWANUKA?

          I think the way they used him last year was great. On first and second downs he does his linebacker duties quite well, then transitions into a pass rusher in the nascar package. The 4 we send in that package would be the equivalent of 6 or 7 on many other teams, allowing us to drop 7 into coverage while still generating pressure on the QB. I'm all down for that...

          I'm Commander Shepard, and this is my favorite team in the NFL.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: 2012 NY GIANTS: HOW WILL PERRY FEWELL UTILIZE MATHIAS KIWANUKA?

            It's AMAZING what we have in at our disposal in pass rushing ability. The fact that other teams need to keep watch for not just JT, OU, and JPP, but MK as well tells you how talented we are in this area. Honestly, can you think of another team with a stack like ours? Now, add to the mix a backfield that showcases Cwebb, Prince, Rolle, T2 and our rookies that will take advantage of a hurried pass....... I like this scenario. If our offense can put up numbers ANYWHERE close to last year, I'm gonna call myself a homer and call repeat....

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: 2012 NY GIANTS: HOW WILL PERRY FEWELL UTILIZE MATHIAS KIWANUKA?

              As time pass, the defense may get better and better when they really get to know the defense. That will spell doom for the other teams out there.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: 2012 NY GIANTS: HOW WILL PERRY FEWELL UTILIZE MATHIAS KIWANUKA?

                [quote user="redbeardxxv"]It's AMAZING what we have in at our disposal in pass rushing ability. The fact that other teams need to keep watch for not just JT, OU, and JPP, but MK as well tells you how talented we are in this area. Honestly, can you think of another team with a stack like ours? Now, add to the mix a backfield that showcases Cwebb, Prince, Rolle, T2 and our rookies that will take advantage of a hurried pass....... I like this scenario. If our offense can put up numbers ANYWHERE close to last year, I'm gonna call myself a homer and call repeat....[/quote]

                That's what happens when you have Jerry Reese as your GM and TC as your head coach. You get a superior team on the same dime that everyone else is alloted. Individual talent doesn't mean much if you don't have the team chemistry... and the Giants have this in spades.

                I'm Commander Shepard, and this is my favorite team in the NFL.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: 2012 NY GIANTS: HOW WILL PERRY FEWELL UTILIZE MATHIAS KIWANUKA?

                  I will try to not buy into the hype so early. If they all stay healthy we will be in great shape. But for as long as we have had 4 good DE talent's they have only all been healthy for one postseason, At times we haven't even had 3 of them healthy.

                  2007-Kiwi was injured I believe.
                  2008- Strahan retires and osi is injured.
                  2009- Osi, Kiwi and Tuck all seemed to battle through injuries.
                  2010-Kiwi was out for most of the season.
                  2011- Tuck and Osi battle injuries and Tuck only seemed to be able to play through them late in the season. Osi missed almost half the season.

                  Comment

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