Blocking Alameda Ta’amu Requires Help


This last week against Colorado I decided to take a significant portion of the game to just watch Alameda Ta’amu play and really breakdown his game and his ability to disrupt an offense and lead a defense.

First and foremost, I can only image how big of a nightmare Ta’amu is for an offensive coordinator.

  • Running between the tackles is out of the question.
  • You need to assign two blockers to him whether it is a run or a pass play.
  • The only real shot is a relatively quick pass play, outside runs, or plays in which you can escape the pocket.
  • Given enough time, Ta’amu always found a way into the backfield, double guarded or not.

Ta’amu is one of the main reasons that the Huskies are ranked 14th in the nation in rush defense, only allowing 582 yards on the ground over 6 games. He anchors the defensive line and closes holes or opens up new ones for his line-backers to penetrate through. He eats up a lot of space and forces the double team.

In the Colorado game alone, his stat-line was 5 tackles, 2 for loss (10 yards loss total) and he recorded half a sack.

One of those tackles for loss was overly impressive as he split the gap through his double team and was able to find the running-back as he was receiving the hand-off. This was a 5 yard loss and on the very next play, Colorado stacked three guys on him. THREE BLOCKERS.

They were having problems with running the ball on the inside the whole game. The big runs the Buffalos were able to generate were when their ball carrier took the ball to the outside avoiding Ta’amu all together.

Todd McShay described Ta’amu’s game as “he displays good fight when locked in a phone booth.” 

Wes Bunting of National Football Post said this about Ta’amu:

"Has the ability to eat up the double, sit into his base and is tough to get a push on off the football. Is also very coordinated when asked to play off slide down blocks down the line, using his combination of short area quickness, balance and power he routinely can fend off blocks and works extremely hard for a guy his size in pursuit."

He is listed as the number two defensive tackle in the 2012 NFL Draft class by ESPN and they have him rated as a 92/100 prospect. He is also listed as the 14th overall prospect in the class.

For now, he will continue to help the Huskies defense shore up the run and continue to give opposing offensive coordinators fits.