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Old 08-17-2010, 10:18 PM  
Tribal Warfare Tribal Warfare is offline
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Teicher: Chiefs’ Studebaker putting himself in position at linebacker

Chiefs’ Studebaker putting himself in position at linebacker
By ADAM TEICHER
The Kansas City Star

ST. JOSEPH | The Chiefs found a lot to like from outside linebacker Andy Studebaker in last week’s preseason opener in Atlanta. He chased Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan out of the pocket on a third-down play and played off a block nicely to make a tackle in the running game.

His reward at training camp this week has been plenty of first-team snaps, which can also be partly attributed to the advancing age of Mike Vrabel, the starter on the left side.

Studebaker is unlikely to steal many snaps from Vrabel once the real season begins, though the Chiefs have looked at him as an outside linebacker in nickel situations, with Vrabel moving to the inside.

If nothing else, Studebaker, 24, appears to be solidifying his place as the eventual replacement for Vrabel, who recently turned 35 and last winter signed a one-year contract with the Chiefs.

“He has to show that he can make plays consistently,” defensive coordinator Romeo Crennel said of Studebaker. “He’s got a veteran guy in front of him, and he’s going to be hard to unseat. But when he does get into the game, he has to show he can hold up his end, which I think he did the other night, so you feel better about putting him in the game.”

The Chiefs ask their outside linebackers to make big plays. Studebaker had no game-changers against the Falcons, but the Chiefs have seen them from him before.

He started two games last season for the injured Vrabel and had a huge game when the Chiefs upset the defending Super Bowl champion Pittsburgh Steelers. He broke up two passes and intercepted two others, returning one 94 yards.

The Chiefs welcomed Vrabel back to their lineup once he was healthy and eagerly re-signed him during the offseason, but they’re aware they didn’t suffer when they had to play Studebaker.

“What we all saw was a guy who showed the game wasn’t too big for him,” linebackers coach Gary Gibbs said. “The bright lights didn’t concern him. That’s the thing you want to see from a young player. He wasn’t intimidated.

“We have confidence in him because he’s gone out and played well for us.”

When they switched to the 3-4 defensive system last year, the Chiefs weren’t sure how Studebaker would fit. He had been a defensive end to that point and never been asked to play in pass coverage.

That part of Studebaker’s game can still be rough. In zone coverage against the Falcons, he allowed a pass completion to Tony Gonzalez, and after the play Studebaker appeared mad at himself, as if he knew he’d been in the wrong place.

“There’s obviously some good and some bad in each game,” Studebaker said. “There were some plays that I thought were a little worse than they were. There were a couple of plays I made that I could have done a little better on, maybe made them faster than I did. You take the good with the bad and you learn from it or move on.

“I’ve had a little bit of success in coverage, and I’m starting to have a little success in the pass rush. I like to be able to do both things to pin one down and say, ‘That’s who I am.’ But I’m not quite sure which one I would pick.”

For the Chiefs, that’s good news for a player who only a couple of years ago was little more than a pass rusher and is still developing in all phases of the game.

“It’s not brand new to him, but he’s still in the transition, so he can improve in everything from rushing the quarterback to play recognition to recognizing formations,” Gibbs said. “That’s just part of the process.”

Coach Todd Haley talks often about the need to develop young players, and he says that with guys like Studebaker in mind. Studebaker played at tiny Wheaton College in Illinois and was a sixth-round pick by Philadelphia in 2008.

The Chiefs signed him from the Eagles’ practice squad later that year. Beginnings don’t come much more humble than that.

“He’s one of those guys that’s come a long way,” Haley said. “It was hard not to notice him (against Atlanta) in a lot of different areas. He’s worked real hard to put himself in a position to have some success. Some of that showed up. I’m excited about the direction Andy’s going.”
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Old 08-17-2010, 10:25 PM   #2
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This kid is gonna play a big role in our future success. I think he will be one of our best defenders once he gets into the fulltime starting lineup.
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Old 08-17-2010, 10:32 PM   #3
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This kid is gonna play a big role in our future success. I think he will be one of our best defenders once he gets into the fulltime starting lineup.
I hope so, but I would be very surprised.
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Old 08-17-2010, 10:37 PM   #4
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Now if they can get rid of broke dick Vrabel and start him.
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Old 08-17-2010, 10:38 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by Tribal Warfare View Post
Chiefs’ Studebaker putting himself in position at linebacker
By ADAM TEICHER


In zone coverage against the Falcons, he allowed a pass completion to Tony Gonzalez,




Yeah, him and about 500 other linebackers who have tragi-comically attempted to play coverage against Gonzalez over the years.

Seriously, If someone is going to catch a ball on you, the last guy you feel bad about doing it is Tony G.
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Old 08-17-2010, 10:39 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Wallcrawler View Post


Yeah, him and about 500 other linebackers who have tragi-comically attempted to play coverage against Gonzalez over the years.

Seriously, If someone is going to catch a ball on you, the last guy you feel bad about doing it is Tony G.
Tony G always made Nnamdi Asomough look like a scrub.
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Old 08-17-2010, 10:42 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BossChief View Post
This kid is gonna play a big role in our future success. I think he will be one of our best defenders once he gets into the fulltime starting lineup.
If he is one of the best defenders I am somewhat concerned about what that says about the rest of the defense. Guess we'll see. Hopefully the kid is legit and this isn't just a fluff piece by Tiecher needing to fill space.
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Old 08-17-2010, 10:47 PM   #8
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Why does this fanbase always attach itself to marginally talented players?

It's great that Studebaker had a couple of balls hit him in the chest last year, but he hasn't exactly shown that he's much other than an improvement over Vrabel, which isn't saying much, because he doesn't belong in the league anymore.
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Old 08-17-2010, 10:50 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by 'Hamas' Jenkins View Post
Why does this fanbase always attach itself to marginally talented players?

It's great that Studebaker had a couple of balls hit him in the chest last year, but he hasn't exactly shown that he's much other than an improvement over Vrabel, which isn't saying much, because he doesn't belong in the league anymore.
not to bring race into it, but studebaker is the next great white dope.
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Old 08-17-2010, 11:23 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by 'Hamas' Jenkins View Post
It's great that Studebaker had a couple of balls hit him in the chest last year, but he hasn't exactly shown that he's much other than an improvement over Vrabel, which isn't saying much, because he doesn't belong in the league anymore.
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not to bring race into it, but studebaker is the next great white dope.
Andy Studebaker likes horses, muddin,' and shootin' animals, and gosh darn it, his motor don't quit. JARED ALLEN 3.0! Where Brian Johnston failed, Andy Studebaker will SUCCEED! GAS UP!
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:09 AM   #11
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I wasnt ever a fan of Johnston or Boomer (though his grandparents were cool to talk to at camp) but Studabaker has all of the indicators of a player that can be a difference maker in this defense.
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:12 AM   #12
KCrockaholic KCrockaholic is offline
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I wasnt ever a fan of Johnston or Boomer (though his grandparents were cool to talk to at camp) but Studabaker has all of the indicators of a player that can be a difference maker in this defense.
Really? I mean, I like him too. He's better than Vrabel. But seriously?
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:15 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by BossChief View Post
I wasnt ever a fan of Johnston or Boomer (though his grandparents were cool to talk to at camp) but Studabaker has all of the indicators of a player that can be a difference maker in this defense.
Are those indicators his 0 career sacks, his tremendous production at a D-III school, or the fact that he looks better than a guy who should be doing color work for Ohio State?

Yeah, it'd be great if Herm had somehow plucked a multi-year starter like Studebaker off the Eagles' PS, but he's just one of the many anonymous NFL roster fillers.

LaChapelle, Boerigter, Sippio, Grigsby, Chris Horn, Richard Smith...the list is long and ignominious.
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:19 AM   #14
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Really? I mean, I like him too. He's better than Vrabel. But seriously?
The kids times from his proday (as he wasnt invited to the combine due to his college) we ELITE. Not just good, ELITE...Demarcus Ware type of Elite.

Whenever he has been on the field, he has made plays.

He has a reputation as a student of the game.

He had terrific sack production in college.

He has had the benefit of learning behind one of the better 3-4 linebackers of the last 10 or so years. Every interview of him is talking about how much he is learning from Mike.

I think his possible impact on this defense opposite Hali is something that is going unnoticed because of this staffs desire to keep Vrabel on the field.
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Old 08-18-2010, 12:25 AM   #15
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6'03.1"
10 1/8 hand
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10'7" broad jump
10 - 1.59, 1.61
20 - 2.63, 2.65
40 - 4.60, 4.61
20 yd shuttle 4.14
3 cone 6.81
60 shuttle 11.59

put those up against any player drafted to play OLB over the last ten years...when a player times that well and then produces results on the field, you need to give him more opertunities to succeed and I think these guys will.
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