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Thread: Is Ike Taylor better than Nnamdi Asomugha?

          
   
   
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    BlitzburghRockCity's Avatar
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    Question Is Ike Taylor better than Nnamdi Asomugha?

    He's considered the best. Well, at least until common sense takes over.
    Unrestricted free-agent cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha is a pretty good football player. A former first-round draft pick, he's considered a lockdown corner because of his ability to prevent opposing receivers from catching the ball.


    But you know what? Asomugha may not be as good as advertised.
    This offseason, Asomugha has been touted as the class of unrestricted free-agent corners. He's rangy, fast and plays his position with aplomb.


    Asomugha is definitely talented. But he has an aversion to contact in a physical sport, recording only 19 tackles in 14 games last season. (He missed two games because of injury.) That's an embarrassing stat for someone who ranks among the best at this position.


    Asomugha, who didn't have an interception in 2010, was paid $15 million by the Oakland Raiders. That made him the highest-paid corner in the NFL, but also the most overpaid corner when compared with Ike Taylor, another unrestricted free agent.
    "He's not quite a specialist like (Oakland kicker) Sebastian Janikowski, but he is kind of a specialist," said Jerry McDonald, who covers the Raiders for the Oakland Tribune. "He has one special skill. He's great at covering receivers. In the grand scheme of things, it's not changing things. They still gave up 29 touchdown passes with him. The Raiders totally realize that. That's why they weren't going to sign him back."
    According to the numbers, Taylor was a more complete cornerback than Asomugha last season, as well as throughout their respective eight-year careers.
    Taylor and Asomugha are perfect foils. They were selected in the same draft, so their body of work is nearly identical. Taylor, who turned 31 in May, is a year older than Asomugha, who turns 30 in July.


    Taylor recorded 66 tackles and two interceptions in 2010. He had 11 passes defended to Asomugha's six.


    Overall, Taylor has 481 tackles, 99 passes defended and 11 interceptions in 125 career games with the Steelers. Asomugha has 310 tackles, 54 passes defended and 11 interceptions in 122 career games.
    Taylor and Asomugha were selected in the 2003 draft. Asomugha was the No. 31 overall pick; Taylor went in the fourth round, No. 125 overall.
    Statistically, Taylor is a better player than Asomugha, despite earning half as much in 2010. And that doesn't include Taylor starting in three Super Bowls -- winning two -- and playing in four AFC Championship Games.


    Asomugha has never played in a playoff game. In fact, he's never played on a team with a winning record.


    If a team seeks a talented free-agent cornerback who can also bring a winning attitude to the locker room, Taylor, not Asomugha, is your man.
    "(New York Jets cornerback) Darrelle Revis can do it all. But I'd take Taylor over Asomugha because of his physicality," said Scouting Services Inc. chief Dave-Te' Thomas, who consults with NFL teams on the draft and potential free agents. "He should be wearing No. 55 on his jersey. He loves that element where he can punish people.''


    Don't assume that Asomugha will set the salary scale for free-agent cornerbacks when the lockout is lifted. If his asking price is in the neighborhood of $15 million per season -- even if he signs for $12 million or $13 million per season -- Taylor should be worth at least that much.


    Taylor has a better resume than Asomugha, who was the least-targeted cornerback in the league the past two seasons.
    However, Asomugha's ability to play stifling pass defense doesn't override the fact that he doesn't do much else. He doesn't come up and force the run like Taylor does. Hall of Fame defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau labeled Taylor the best tackling cornerback in the league. Asomugha doesn't defend both sides of the field or play on special teams like Taylor does.


    Steelers management insists it has every intention of re-signing Taylor, who plays right cornerback, left cornerback and in the slot. But the number of teams the Steelers will have to outbid for Taylor continues to rise -- along with his price tag.
    Last week, ESPN and CBS Sportsline reported that the Philadelphia Eagles could be targeting Taylor in free agency after the team initially focused on Asomugha, who plays right cornerback exclusively.


    "He makes an occasional play against the run, but I don't know how much he wants to really come up and hit," said McDonald about Asomugha. "You wonder why you don't see it more. He's had some nagging injuries. And he's always dealing with this hip thing they never talk about. He's always stretching it. It's never listed on an injury report."
    On paper and on the field, Taylor is a better football player than Asomugha. In the battle of unrestricted free-agent cornerbacks, it's Taylor by a long shot.


    From the Trib




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    BlitzburghRockCity's Avatar
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    I would say they are both different, one better than the other in certain areas but neither is head and shoulders above their counterpart.

    Ike is better from the overall, well rounded, player perspective. He can cover as good as anyone, and he's a great open field tackler. Nnamdi is a better pure cover corner, similar to a Deion Sanders. He's not someone you'd want trying to make a game saving tackle in the open field or making the stop near the line of scrimmage against a shifty running back type for example.

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    hes not deion sanders-like in his physicality....he really doesnt need to make all that many tackles, but he CAN. hes not that fast, hes not that big or physical but his technique is brilliant, absoulely brilliant.

    ike IS that fast, he IS that physical, and hes tremendous in run support, but he is somewhat stiff, somewhat over aggressive, and does get beat.

    i love ike, i think hes a great CB but when you really take a few minutes and watch nnamdi you realize why hes among the best, he just doesnt give a window.

    neither revis not nnamdi are the biggest, fastest, or best tackling corners but you dont need to be when you are dominant in coverage.

    ike makes out secondary have hope to be effective, nnamdi would make the defense just unfair

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    I am pretty great. Rampage's Avatar
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    If Ike had the ball skills to pick up several INTs each and every season, I would consider him a top flight CB. I think he is just an excellent complement to the system.

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    I've watched Namdi, the dude is epic in his cover skills there is no doubt. He's much like Revis in that he's not asked to tackle much I'll give you that. I just don't see him as being a physical type of CB that will come up in run support and make the tough, open field, tackle that well rounded corners do. Honestly when I think about it I don't know that Nnamdi would be such a good fit for the Steelers. The way the 34 defense is run in Pittsburgh and the way the secondary helps in run support, we'd have to see how he would do. I certainly wouldn't be against him coming, hell the more good CB's we can get the better, but I just wonder how he'd fit into a defense like the Steelers.

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    i get "how" we run a 34, but thats because we dont have a luxury of a CB that can man up on anyone.

    all our corners are great tacklers...thats something the coaches stress, and its important to make up for their other deficiencies....but nnamdi would be a better tackler too on the steelers, and he would be an incredible asset, theres no doubt he would find a home here and continue dominating, it would allow us to roll things away from him because of all the trust you can put on him to keep a guy locked down. not gonna say he eliminates a half of the field cause thats not true, but he would make everyone better theres no doubt in my mind

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    Ike goes man up on the other teams best WR almost exclusively. If you notice last year in particular, he rarely got thrown against because he was able to shut down his man. Now I will say that part of that was probably also the fact that Gay and McFadden were much easier targets so teams would have no problem letting Ike alone to move the ball downfield on them..LOL.

    He will come up and play run support from time to time of course too. Now if Ike and Nnamdi were on the same defense, yeah the secondary would be stellar I agree with you there. You could literally take the teams 2 best WR's almost out of the game.

    I don't know that our CB's play the way they do, tackling wise, to make up for deficiencies in other areas. Obviously they aren't pure cover guys but Lebeau's scheme calls for guys to be versatile more than situational. I'm sure Nnamdi could absolutely do well in a Steelers defense, it would be dumb to say otherwise, however I'd like to see him really get after guys and make the big, tough, tackles besides just cover.

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    K Train's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlitzburghRockCity View Post
    Ike goes man up on the other teams best WR almost exclusively. If you notice last year in particular, he rarely got thrown against because he was able to shut down his man. Now I will say that part of that was probably also the fact that Gay and McFadden were much easier targets so teams would have no problem letting Ike alone to move the ball downfield on them..LOL.

    He will come up and play run support from time to time of course too. Now if Ike and Nnamdi were on the same defense, yeah the secondary would be stellar I agree with you there. You could literally take the teams 2 best WR's almost out of the game.

    I don't know that our CB's play the way they do, tackling wise, to make up for deficiencies in other areas. Obviously they aren't pure cover guys but Lebeau's scheme calls for guys to be versatile more than situational. I'm sure Nnamdi could absolutely do well in a Steelers defense, it would be dumb to say otherwise, however I'd like to see him really get after guys and make the big, tough, tackles besides just cover.
    ike "follows" the main reciever, he doesnt exactly man up...he shifts that direction. but think about other guys, like deshea townsend...who has something like 16 sacks and was a starter for quite a while, he wasnt exactly the biggest corner and he doesnt fall under the category of a bigger corner by any stretch of the imagination.

    people look at ike as a big corner, hes tall but hes like 190 pounds, and for a 6-2 corner thats SKINNY. hes just relentless when he tackles with good fundementals, just like hes over aggressive in coverage. nnamdi is relentless in coverage with perfect fundementals and never gives up, hes an able and willing tackler but thats never what he'll be known for, and honestly no corner wants to be known as that. i believe mcfadden, ike, and gay are the best tackling trio in the league....but when the recievers are catching a lot of balls thats not exactly something to be proud of.

    dont let the ike taylor profile of a corner make you lose sight of what a truly elite corner can bring to the defense....i love ike, i love the way he plays, and what he brings to the table, but theres a reason hes left out of the discussion as being among the best in the league and its not just the stone hands.

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    See, I tend to think it's more of the system rather than his lack of elite cover skills. His relentless attitude on the field, speed, great tackling, and ability to cover the teams top wide out make him unique. I couldn't say for sure if he were in a system where all he was asked to do is cover, if he'd be as good. I would say it's probably a toss up. However the defense the Steelers run fits his style of play perfectly, he adapts to what Lebeau wants him to do, he's a player that Dick just loves. As far as the balls caught against the Steeler secondary, yes there were a ton, but the vast majority were not thrown Taylors way. Like I said before though, how much of that is Ike being "that" good vs the McFadden and Gay duo that is much more tempting to pick on as an offensive coordinator? It's probably a combination of both IMO.

    Ike is not the best in the game, we all know that, but as far as top percentage type player, yeah I'd put him in that category. Besides, imagine how much worse the secondary would be if he's not in there..LOL

    Nnamdi is elite, there is no question, one of the best of the best. There's a reason he'll be carrying 40+ million dollar price tag to whoever signs him.

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    "Besides, imagine how much worse the secondary would be if he's not in there..LOL"

    BRC - that is NOT an LOL statement! I have nightmares about Tom Brady throwing for 700 yards against an Ike-less Steelers D. Can you imagine the boxscore? 59-61 704 yards 7 tds 1 rush for 1 yard. We might as well give up if we don't have Ike or Nmandi as our starting CB next year. It would be like having Danica Patricks Formula car to drive down the highway BUT you dont have a right front tire. The best engine (dline) and transmission (LB's) are absolutely worthless without the tires.

    Get this man paid and lets hope Crezdon is as great as I think he will be. We will be the best D in football....again.
    I like big hits and I cannot lie

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