Hi Josh, thanks for doing this.
The Bullet position and the SAM linebacker are competing for snaps in our current defense, with only one of the two on the field at any given time. Given that, there has been some debate on this site regarding the playing time of Brendon White vs Pete Werner. Through the first 2 games of the season, White only had 35% of the snaps that Werner was on the field for (34 for White and 95 for Werner). No snap counts have been released yet for the Indiana game, but it appeared that this trend continued. This is surprising to many of us, given how White appeared to be the best defensive player on the team towards the end of last year (he was markedly better than Werner against both the pass and the run), and was the Rose Bowl MVP.
Obviously, Werner is playing much better this year, but in your opinion, does his improved play justify limiting White, a potential defensive juggernaut, to such little playing time? Do you seeing the current snap-count ratio of 65/35 favoring Werner to continue as the Buckeyes head into the meat of their schedule?
The scheme is the scheme and the personnel is the personnel. Keep in mind that run defense was bad last year and coaches tent to believe that LBs are typically better in run D than SAF. Also note that Peter struggled a year ago partially because coaches had him covering players like Rondale Moore, who turned out to be one of the best WR in college football, M2M. This zone scheme allows you to leave LBs on the field vs more athletic personnel. Peter has been good in man coverage vs TEs this year, by the way. Although I think Brendon is a really really good player, it's hard to give away his reps if the gameplan doesn't call for it and/or he's playing well. He's stuck in a tough spot with a crowded LB room and a crowded SAF room. Reps are hard to come by this season.