This is only IMO but tactically I vastly prefer a 3-4 or 3-3-5 defense over a 4-3, especially at our level of football. The 4-3 is common, but less versatile than the 3-4 when it’s working on all cylinders. Kotulski’s 3-4 with Al Pierce/Mike Groome in the center and Chagani at the node – that’s how it’s done.
The linchpins to the 3-4 to me are an effective NG and a duo of ILBs that clog up the middle. That’s what we had with Chagani/Groome/Pierce. This past season we struggled at all three positions, so we struggled as a unit. I’m hoping that a true tackling machine emerges from the roster this April.
I grew up admiring the Saints’ 3-4 “Dome Patrol” with one of the best linebacking units in the NFL at the time. Sam Mills and Vaughn Johnson were the perfect duo in the middle, while the veteran Rickey Jackson and the younger Pat Swilling would cause matchup problems because you’d never know where the hurt was coming from.
Everyone’s opinions vary, but I love the 3-4.