Alouettes-Defense 2023

Un regard sur ce que sera la défense des Alouettes en 2023 par Joe Alfieri: Alfieri: What will the Alouettes defence look like in 2023? - Montreal Alouettes

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La tertiaire s'est considérablement améliorée avec les agents libres. La ligne secondaire va bénéficier de la présence d'Avery Williams et idéalement Tyrell Richards performera. Notre défense est théoriquement meilleure que l'année dernière, même si la ligne défensive n'a pas d'amélioration notable.


I think our defense, if it stays healthy, will surprise people. As Lucas said, we're substantially improved in the secondary, and while Pickett's loss will sting, I think Wes Sutton can slide down to SAM and do a good job alongside Williams and Beverette.

On the line, we haven't made splashy signings, but newcomers like Patrick, Byers, Chihat, Heninger, and Wright give us good training camp depth. Mustafa Johnson will hopefully progress. And Thorpe will be able to develop the defensive playbook with the benefit of a full training camp.


We have good individuals on our defense. Thorpe will have to make them work collectively, as a same unit. Avoid penalties is important. Last year, particularly with the defensive coach before Thorpe, indicispline penalties was a big factor on many losses. Play hard, fight on each play, but stay disciplined.

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Thorpe's style is not everyone's cup of tea, but he's a smart guy and his defenses are always tough to play against. While I'm still smarting from that EDF pasting, just like everyone else, I want to give him the benefit of a full training camp. Especially now that we've got reinforcements in the secondary.

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Ce que nous savons des défensives de Thorpe :

  1. la ligne défensive ne fait pas de pression avec constance sur le quart adverse;
  2. la pression sur le quart repose essentiellement sur les blitz et des jeux en croisé dont les schémas évoluent peu;
  3. en deuxième et long, il a tendance à s'en remettre à une défensive de zone dont les entre zones sont trop larges, ce qui permet plus souvent qu'il ne le devrait à l'adversaire de poursuivre sa séquence alors qu'elle aurait dû être arrêtée;
  4. il commande beaucoup de blitz par ses demis défensifs, ce qui produit souvent l'effet escompté de presser le quart, mais dont plusieurs quarts d'expérience se servent pour frapper l'espace laissé vacant par le demi.

Thorpe a bâti de bonnes défensives, mais pas de défensive championne. Il s'est fait joyeusement roulé dans la farine par Dinwiddie l'an dernier, et c'était là je crois l'expression de la limite de ses capacités. Il est l'exemple parfait de cette organisation : une équipe qui peut faire de belles choses sur le terrain, mais qui ne frayera jamais avec les meilleures du circuit parce qu'elle peut faire autant de mauvaises choses sur le terrain.


Mes candidats pour le poste de CLB pour remplacer Pickett sont:

Tyrce Beverette
Wes Sutton
Najee Murray
Reggie Stubberfield

Si Beverette fait bien a cette position, alors nous pourrions mettre Tyrell Richards\Chris Ackie comme WLB et amener plus de robustesse dans notre groupe de LB

Richards is 6'4" and 240 lbs. Quite a different body type from Beverette, who played Will last year, and Ackie, who's 6'0" and 225.

I see Richards starting the year backing up Avery Williams down the middle and possibly rotating in on plays when we're running a 3-4 front with an extra linebacker. But I also think Maas and Thorpe will give him every opportunity to win a starter's spot. Richards had a rough 2022 with injuries and a change in DCs. Hopefully 2023 is his breakout season.

If Beverette can play SLB, I don’t see why you guys can't play a Canadian at WLB with all that depth. Plus you have two good MLBs from Laval and U of Montreal, who you could take in the draft to back up Avery Williams.

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Being heavier in the LB is not a bad thing, it could help in the run defence that was not good last year

No doubt. I was just noting that we played a lighter body at Will last year. If Richards plays Will, I imagine Thorpe would have to re-envision what the Will does, because Richards isn't going to be effective in coverage. Richards is built like a DL/MLB tweener.

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It all depends on whether Richards is ready to take that step and Thorpe thinks it would work. In the same vein, Thorpe has been reluctant to start Chris Ackie in the past unless injuries forced his hand. I'd love to see us start at least one Canadian at linebacker, though.

He seemed to be fine last year. The only thing that held him back was the injury, sure wasn't performance.

Yeah, injuries were his main issue. At the start of the year, Barron Miles seemed reluctant to give him more responsibility, though he was doing great on special teams. Then Thorpe took over, by which time Richards was injured, and that seemed to be his season. Hoping for better injury luck for him this year.

Je pense que Richards est un prospect très intéressant. Il a un gabarit et une vitesse qui lui permettent de jouer à la fois le rôle du secondeur et celui d'un joueur de ligne additionnel. Le malheur a voulu qu'il ne puisse évoluer la saison dernière, aussi il devra se reprendre cette année. Dans l'ordre, il doit d'abord s'assurer d'être en bonne santé et de pouvoir le demeurer, et ensuite travailler à bien faire ses affectations. S'il a pu avoir sa chance dans l'alignement l'an dernier, il devrait pouvoir percer de nouveau cette année. Il faudra cependant que l'équipe prévoie sa substitution pour la gestion du ratio.

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I would like to see the team plug Tyrell Richards into the one position they see him most suitable for (WILL, MLB, DE) and let him develop there. Like they did with Dequoy & Lestage.

You don't want him ending up as just a special teams player and versatile backup.

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I don’t hate the idea of using him as 4th LB in 3-4 formation when they use it this year. Can be used in the box for more beef inside or as a rusher

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Thorpe loves to rotate his guys this way, so my bet is that this is what we'll see. Richards may also get platooned with Williams at MLB depending on how things go. In Thorpe's defense, the Mike backer is basically a fifth lineman and practices with the DL, while the Sam and Will backers are essentially viewed as defensive backs. So Richards will gain transferable experience regardless of whether he's playing Mike, lining up as the extra LB in a 3-4, or even rushing off the edge like a traditional defensive end. I can't see him playing Will, but that's just me.

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It's not a bad idea, but Richards seems like an every down player. Maybe he comes in for Ellis on passing situations.