Welter Skelter Defense

Discussion in 'The Tiger's Den' started by TigerTap, Jun 25, 2014.

  1. TigerTap

    TigerTap LSUsports.net


    LSU defensive coordinator John Chavis has always been known as a linebacker guru, dating back to his days at Tennessee when he doubled as a defensive coordinator and linebackers coach.

    Chavis’ coaching career goes back 36 years, and in that span he has been around some good linebacker groups, including his first year at LSU in 2009 when he worked with current NFL products Kelvin Sheppard and Perry Riley.

    As good as that group was, and many others over the years that Chavis has coached, his 2014 linebacker corps that includes Kwon Alexander, D.J. Welter, Deion Jones, Lamar Louis, Kendell Beckwith, and others, has a chance to be special on the field, as well as in the locker room.

    “From the standpoint of everything that you take, the tangibles, the intangibles, this room has a chance to be one of the best rooms I have ever been involved with,” Chavis told Derek Ponamsky of 104.5 ESPN radio on Tuesday. “We got some great young men, and obviously, they are talented football players.”

    Three of LSU’s four leading tacklers from a year ago return and included in that group are two linebackers.

    Welter (6-1, 235) started all 13 games in the middle of LSU’s defense last season and was second on the team with 80 tackles. He was also the subject of much debate on message boards and talk radio as some felt that there were better options that would make the Tigers stronger against the run.

    As far as Chavis is concerned, Welter brings a lot to the table and is coming off an impressive spring where he added about 10 pounds to his frame.

    “D.J. gives our defense a little bit of that calming effect,” Chavis said. “He knows the calls, and he knows how to get people lined up…I’m excited about D.J. and think he brings a lot to the table.

    “But again, he knows as well, that he’s going to have to be on top of his game, and he’s going to have to perform at a high level every single day. He went into spring practice with that kind of attitude, and to be quite honest, he had one of the better spring practices that I have been around.”

    The player at the center of the debate as to other possible options in the middle is Beckwith, who is bigger at 6-foot-3, 246 pounds, and more physical.

    However, after playing defensive end and quarterback most of his high school career there is still a learning curve that the young sophomore has to deal with.

    “He feels good about where he is,” said Chavis. “Obviously, it is a bit of a learning experience. He had a really good spring and we’re excited about what he brings to the table. There are some things he is going to have to experience and grow a little bit, but talent-wise and all of the intangibles are there.”

    Chavis also noted that true freshman linebacker Clifton Garrett will be in the mix. How much will not be known until the five-star linebacker dons the full pads in fall camp.

    Alexander is the other returning starter at linebacker for the Tigers, coming off his sophomore season where he started 9 of 13 games at SAM linebacker and finished fourth on the squad with 65 tackles.

    “We moved him back to the weak side, and certainly he fits that bill,” Chavis said. “In our scheme, either the middle linebacker or the weak-side linebacker will lead our team in tackles. And he’s going to be in a position to do that.”

    Chavis is entering his sixth season at LSU and is also in the final year of his contract. That has some Tiger fans a little uneasy because of the success that the man known as “Chief” has brought to LSU defenses over the years.

    Expect a contract extension to be a focus of Les Miles and Joe Alleva over the coming months. As far as Chavis goes, it doesn’t sound like he is anything but happy in Baton Rouge.

    “We came here to be part of a championship culture and that’s what it is at LSU,” he said. “And that’s what is expected. I like being in that culture, and I like having those expectations that every season when you walk out there that that’s what is expected.”

    Last edited: Jun 25, 2014
  2. TigerTap

    TigerTap LSUsports.net

    Honestly, I'm hoping Beckwith gets a lot of playing time, because next year it's likely his spot. Although very anxious to see where Garrett ends up.
  3. LSUBraveheart

    LSUBraveheart Freshman

    Very bad news for all the clueless high school and college kids over at the insane asylum, (td.com) none who have ever played a down of organized football at any level, but still think they full well know more than Chavis in regards to who should be starting and getting most of the reps.
    red55 and LSUDad like this.
  4. islstl

    islstl Occupy the BCS Staff Member

    "He knows the calls"

    Yep, Red was right.

    Put him in, coach. He may drag your defense down to mediocrity, but at least he knows the calls.
    Richdog and shane0911 like this.

    LSUMASTERMIND Veteran Member

    here we go
    islstl, red55 and LSUDad like this.
  6. lsu99

    lsu99 whashappenin

    I feel very good about the quality and depth of our LBs this year.
    LSUDad likes this.
  7. LSUDad

    LSUDad Senior Member

    He's the leading returning tackler from last year. But as always, I trust Chief with his years as a DC in the SEC to put in what he sees fit.
    Chief likes his two CB's (RR and White), he knows that they can handle the WR's. from there, he figures his nine can handle their 9 on the offensive side of the ball.
    gyver likes this.
  8. locoguano

    locoguano You sweat, you die...

    More of the same... Chavis' defenses constantly get gashed by off-tackle runs with a lead blocker. DEs fly up field and take themselves out of the play, LB gets taken out by the lead blocker and the RB picks up 10. Minter was able to shed that lead blocker and make plays... Welter does not.
    Richdog likes this.
  9. Contained Chaos

    Contained Chaos Don't we all?

    Given his very short list of achievements and lack of experience in this field, perhaps you should contact him and lend him your advanced knowledge of such things.

    I think this is the same guy who claims to have "never been a fan of Chavis". Should tell you all you need to know (although most of us knew it already).
    titoabad1, ParadiseiNC, red55 and 2 others like this.
  10. LSUBraveheart

    LSUBraveheart Freshman

    Whoop there it is. Yet another one that seemingly knows more about player personnel than JohnChavis. Amazing.

    Isn't "The Chief" generally considered one of the top 5 Defensive Coordinators and Linebacker coaches in the country? If Welter is playing, there's a reason for it. He's the best alternative at MLB right now. Chavis even says in the article that the other MLB's are not quite up to speed with their reads and calls yet.
    titoabad1, red55 and LSUDad like this.

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