The Gildong Report (Sep 5th, 00)
In light of many a fan being bamboozled and ga-ga over Jason Gildong�s 11 sacks in �98 --- despite only 2 being anywhere near "earned sacks" --- I devoted considerable time in �99 to monitor the work of the exceptionally average Jason Gildon. Jason has been famous enough with his coverage sacks, flop sacks, the QB-slipped-on-the-wet-turf sacks, the OT totally forgot his blocking assignment sacks, and so on, that the NFL designated a new statistic, called the "Dong Sack™", in honor of Jason Gildong. (Some fantasy football leagues are incorporating this into their point systems.)
For those of you new here, you can peruse past Gildong Reports by going into the Still Mill articles archive. (click on "Articles" on the left side of your screen.)
In the opener versus the Crows, Gildon picked up exactly where he left off last season -- doing little and providing nothing of value.
He never once even sniffed Tony Banks on the pass rush. Raven RT Harry Swayne dominated Gildon with no problems whatsoever. Every time Gildon tried his "wide loop rush", which goes waaay around the horn of Africa, Swayne simply rode him wide. Not once did Gildon even press Banks into throwing early, or disrupt his vision or his mechanics. And lest I hear cries of "Gildon was back in pass coverage all day," I reviewed the tape last nite. He was in pass coverage on 9 plays, leaving well over 20 plays to make something happen with the pass rush.
Of course, OLB is not just pass-rushing. Part of an OLB�s job is run stuffing. After this game, one would have to wonder if Gildon has ever read his job description.
Gildon finished with a whopping 2 solos and 3 assists.
On the Ravens 1st play from scrimmage, Priest ran up the gut, and Gildon got an ankle tackle of Priest, for a 5-yard gain.
2 plays later, an untouched Gildon got an assist of a Priest run up the gut.
On an 11-yard Priest run up right tackle, which is where Gildon should have been to provide run support, Chad tripped up Priest at the end of the run, and Gildon, as Priest was falling to the ground, gave him one last shot. This earned Jason an assist.
Near the end of the half, Priest ran up the gut for a nice gainer, and then stopped and stuttered as he encountered a scrum about 8 yards downfield. Gildon, totally untouched and unblocked, can from behind and grabbed Priest�s legs, earning his only other solo tackle of the game.
In the 2nd half -- in which Gildon did NOTHING � he got an assist with Henry, on a FB plunge that went for 7 yards.
- I would be remiss if I failed to mention the abysmal failures of Gildon on a host of other plays.
* On the 28-yard Taylor reception in the 2nd qtr, Gildon, back in zone pass coverage and covering no one, took a pitifully poor angle at Taylor after he caught the ball, and Gildon tiptoed like he was walking on eggs. What should have been a 16-yard reception, bloated into a 28-yarder.
* On the 2nd play of the 2nd half, Coates pushed Gildon waaay inside, allowing a mammoth hole for Priest to run off tackle for 7. In fact, Porter had to come all the way from the other side of the field, to make this stop.
* Immediately after Criqui and Tasker were fawning over Gildon ("Banks could have perhaps run for more on this rollout, but ya don�t wanna try that with Jason Gildon over there," blah blah blah) Coates pushed Gildon waaaay toward the sideline -- a good 15 feet from where Gildon began the play -- and Priest ran up a MASSIVE hole for an 18-yard gain.
* On the very first play after the Goal Line Fiasco, Gildon was shoved way inside -- literally to where the NT lines up -- and Priest sauntered thru the Buick-sized hole for an easy 7 yards.
- Many fans are screaming that the defensive line should be drawn and quartered for allowing so much rushing yards. The REAL culprit was none other than Jason Gildon, who single-handedly was responsible for a good 1/3 of Priest�s yardage.
On the other side of the line, Porter did a solid job in his 1st ever NFL start. Though he was sealed in on a few running plays, Porter showed some good ability to knife away from blocks and help stuff or string several runs. And Porter�s strip of Banks was sheer poetry in motion. FB Ayanbadejo lined up on that play, about 1 � yard behind the LT, with the TE also lined up next to the LT. Porter beat a well-set-up Ayanbadejo, and stripped the ball from Banks� hand BEFORE he released it. Without question, this should have been ruled a fumble, and no one can fathom why Cowher failed to challenge this play. Porter also rushed Banks into a very poor throw on a key 3rd down, which forced Balt. to kick its final FG. And, Porter made a truly devastating hit on a punt, swooping in like an eagle and crushing Jermaine Lewis.
For the record, the sack by Vrabel was a coverage sack. He did have nice initial pressure, but Banks eluded him, but then Banks failed to find an open receiver, and Vrabel got up and made the stop. I said during preseason, and I�ll say it again -- Mike Vrabel is better at both pass rushing and run support, at LOLB, than Jason Gildon. Period.
I�d like to conclude this weekly report by acknowledging the fine job of pass pressure the Baltimore defense did. On paper, you look at the sack stats for Balt, and you see ONE sack. The casual fan, who didn�t watch the game, might think that Baltimore either sat back and played a softee 3 or 4-man rush, or that the Stiller offense was ticking so crisply that Balt. simply couldn�t get to the QB, or that Baltimore�s front 7 is slow and sloppy. As we know, none of this is true. Baltimore was ALL OVER Graham, continually harassing him, hurrying him, nipping at his arm, limiting his movement and mechanics in the pocket, and so forth. THIS is why the NFL sack statistic, when looked at in isolation, is such a poor statistic. It doesn�t tell the whole story. I�ve said it before -- I�ll gladly take 5 plays of in-your-face harassment of the QB, than a slop sack when a QB, as he is COACHED to do, eats the ball on 2nd and 5 rather than forcing a sloppy throw to a double-covered receiver. The slop sack shows up on the NFL stat sheets, but the harassment (and follow-on punishment) is almost always significantly more valuable to a defense. Just ask the Ravens.
Season to date totals for Jason, in 1 game:
Earned Sacks: 0
Dong Sacks™: 0
Strips, Jars, fumbles caused: 0
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