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Mailbag: A Sleeper On The Defensive Line?

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I see this D-Line being great no matter how it’s cut down after training camp. I think DT Christian Covington is the key. Great run stuffer. How do you feel about his chances? - JUAN TELSEDE / CHAPPELL HILL, TX

Bryan: I am really excited about the addition of Christian Covington. It was a shame we didn’t get to see him during these minicamps as he rehabbed a calf injury, but wait till you see him in pads. As good as the Texans were rushing the passer, he was a big part of that. His ability to attack the middle of the pocket helped guys like J.J. Watt and Jadeveon Clowney get pressure.

Rob: I visited with Covington last week after practice. He’s excited to be part of this defense. He played in a 3-4 scheme with the Texans, but this is the system he played in high school and college. He was an underrated player in Houston playing alongside the stars Bryan mentioned.

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What is the difference between a one technique and a three technique defensive tackle? - ALVIN / ARDMORE, OK

Bryan: Good question. A one technique plays in the gap between the center and guard in what they call a heavy position. This is usually a bigger or thicker defensive tackle. The three technique plays in the game between the guard and tackle. He generally lines up on the outside shoulder of the guard. This position is played by lighter and quicker guys. A one technique holds blocks and a three attacks up the field.

Rob: I’ve actually had defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli walk me through this and there are alignment differences, as Bryan said, even though we’ve seen players such as Maliek Collins play both spots. But there’s no question Marinelli wants all of his linemen, no matter the position, to push the pocket.

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