Bills defensive end Aaron Schobel is only a month into what he stated would be a two-month decision making process as to whether he intends to return to the only team he has played for in the NFL for a 10th season. He has however, been keeping abreast of the offseason developments at One Bills Drive. Schobel shared his thoughts on the defense's plans to go to the 3-4 alignment with Buffalobills.com.
"I like the system," Schobel said. "I think it's a better defense overall. You can do more things out of it. You don't have to be perfect against the run. In our previous system if one person was out of their gap it was a big play for the opponent. With the 3-4 you've got bigger men on the field, and if someone messes up usually a linebacker can clean things up."
Schobel, who sees himself as an outside linebacker in such a system, believes he would've been pretty successful as a player in a 3-4 system earlier in his career.
"I feel I could've been a more productive player in the 3-4 just based on the fact that all through school I played well as a standup pass rusher," Schobel told Buffalobills.com "I feel I can cover well. I could be used in more situations."
There's no debating that from an outside linebacker position Schobel would be afforded more advantageous matchups, which would presumably lead to more consistent pressures on opposing quarterbacks.
"You get more opportunities to rush against running backs and tight ends instead of a big offensive tackle all the time," he said. "And if the tackle comes out to help he's always late so there's a shorter corner for you to get around to reach the quarterback. I just think there would be more quality rush opportunities out of the 3-4, easier rushes."
All of this positive commentary from Schobel might lead one to think he's leaning toward playing in 2010, but the Bills top pass rusher hasn't reached that point yet.
"I'm still undecided," Schobel told Buffalobills.com. "I talked to Chan (Gailey) and we discussed some things. When the time comes we'll get everything squared away."
Gailey confirmed in a press conference Thursday that he had spoken to Schobel by phone, but also chose to keep the details of the conversation private.
"I have talked to Aaron Schobel and we had a good conversation," Gailey said. "I'm going to leave it at that. I took from the conversation that he has not decided, but I think that's going to come with time. He's going to have to make a decision at some point in time and I think he will. We know what a great player he is, we know we'd like to have him on the Bills and make that happen, but we'll see what he decides."
Schobel has stated more than once that his decision is more about family logistics and the desire to go through the mental and physical grind of another season than it is about scheme or dollars and cents.