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Enough Hiding The Problems On Defense

Just a few quick thoughts - and conversation starters - before I head to bed.

First things first - Greg Davis has himself a project this offseason in figuring out how to achieve better balance in the offense and developing a post-Vince running game. But folks that want to chalk the letdowns of the 2006 season to Davis are - with all due respect - bat shit crazy. This team went 10-3 because of the defense. The back seven of this defense left a LOT to be desired, and as easy as it is to scapegoat Davis because the offense wasn't perfect... well... read the next paragraph.

This offense came into the season with a freshman quarterback and a near-impossible task: replace Vince Young. And no, this year's offense doesn't even deserve comparison to last season's. But we came into the 2006 season believing that we had to win all these games with our defense. Hey, guess what? We won ten games in spite of our defense.

Our freshman quarterback set a single season Texas record, and tied an NCAA record, for touchdown passes. The running game - strong at the beginning of the year and a liability at the end - was inconsistent. But this team's high hopes weren't met because the defense was a B- unit - not because Greg Davis failed to deliver us to the promised land.

Does Greg Davis have limitations? Yes. Absolutely. But they paled in comparison to the faults of the defense, who were smoked against Ohio State, missed tackles against Nebraska, fell asleep for a half against Texas Tech, never got off the bus against Kansas State, and couldn't derail a third down play against Texas A&M.

Hate Greg Davis? Fine. Hate him. I'm not here to tell you he's the world's best coordinator. But please, as an intelligent football fan, get real - Texas' struggles this year were on defense. Not offense. The Texas offense was good enough to win the Big 12, prior to Colt's injury. It was the pathetic defense that killed this team.

I will say this, though - and this certainly gets back to Davis. The team really got hurt by poor short yardage and red zone offense. Davis has been remarkably effective developing above average offenses with the personnel that he has, but in his effort to create a Colt-friendly offense this season, he totally lost the ability to develop a short-yardage and red zone offense.  It's something you know, I know, and he knows. And will surely be the focus of this offseason's adjustments.

These are things we need to look at carefully for next season, and Davis must be accountable for. I just insist that we see this season for what it was - one of adequacy on offense (all things considered) and complete failure on defense. We were all wrong that Texas was in contention for a national title this season; but all of you that want to compartmentalize the problems as a Greg Davis inadequacy are simply being dishonest.

Fuck that. Leave that garbage for the messageboards.  If you want to trash Davis, you have room to do so; the man - and his offense - have lots of room to improve. But don't even try to get away with blaming the 2006 season's losses on him. We lost because our defense sucked and our quarterback got hurt.


I'll leave you with this: I'm a LOT more worried about my secondary and linebackers than I am my offense.

And you should be, too.