From: Altadena, CA
I, too, think the problem with the LBs is speed rather size; there are just too many open spaces between the DL and the safeties. I'm sure some of that is by design, some is players adapting to EXACTLY where they need to be, and some is execution even when they can see where they need to be. Both teams we have faced have good RBs and worked the short to medium passing game well. Detroit is good in the run game and has a good line, so it will be another test for the LBs in that phase.
This is the design of the defense, which works quite well when executed properly. Part of execution is positioning pre-snap and the first movements just after, especially by the safeties and LBs. Maybe Donatell has adjustments to make there, and maybe his players do, or probably both.
It was always clear that this defense and, to a lesser extent, the offense would be a work in progress, even though as fans we might be optimistic. One of the keys to Belichick's teams staying on top was getting better as the season wore on while working in players of the type Bill mentioned above. Obviously we are trying to get on top, not stay there, but the same principle applies. Let's hope that's what happens!!!!