Defensive ends live to put pressure on opposing quarterbacks. Arizona Cardinals defensive ends Darnell Dockett and Calais Campbell are no exception.
Those two veteran players will get an opportunity to dial up the heat on enemy signal-callers this coming season under new defensive coordinator Todd Bowles. Arizona will still use the 3-4 as their base defense, as they have during the previous two seasons under Ray Horton. The difference this season will be that Bowles’ system will call for more one-gapping than two-gapping. A one-gap system allows defensive ends to penetrate more often, attack the edge of the opposing offensive line.
That’s music to their ears.
“This defense is better for any D-lineman,just because it allows us to be more aggressive,” Campbell told azcentral.com.
Dockett’s power and quickness should be on full display again in the new scheme.
“This right here allows me to do what I’ve been doing when I was a dominant player at the position,” the 32-year-old Dockett explained to azcentral.com. “This right here allows guys to have to really block me and Calais. This right here allows you to be a playmaker. It allows you to be very dominant up front and be a physical force and not take on two or three people, just sitting pretty much like a hitting bag. This right here allows us to be a hammer and let other people be the nail.”
The Red Birds tied for 11th in the NFL with 38 sacks in 2012. That number should increase this coming season. An aggressive Arizona defensive unit should be even more aggressive this time around.
“They want us to create penetration,” Campbell told azcentral.com. “They want us to shove (offensive lineman) back two years, three yards deep and be able to shed blockers quicker and make tackles in the backfield, which I think Dockett and myself would be very, very good at. You know, we’re very athletic.”
Yes they are. It should be fun to watch that athleticism on display in 2013.
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