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2012 Atlanta Falcons Minicamp: Mike Nolan Looks To Tweak Defense, Not Overhaul

The Atlanta Falcons' new defensive coordinator Mike Nolan is looking to take the defense to the next level. His plan is to make his players not just more aggressive, but quicker too. That means simpler schemes so players spend less time reading and start reacting to plays much faster. Nolan isn't overhauling the defense--most of the playbook will remain the same--but he is tweaking it just a bit.

"The problem is if a guy is thinking too much on the field because of terminology, he's not playing fast," Nolan said. "That's a lot of what the OTAs and minicamp try to get out of the way."

Nolan emphasized that he will be building his defense around the existing talent, meaning playmakers like defensive end John Abraham and outside linebacker Sean Weatherspoon should again factor heavily into the gameplan.

"We'll be a 4-3 and we'll use 3-4 at times, but we'll be primarily a 4-3 because this team is built that way," Nolan said. "You want to play to your player's strengths."

For more on the 2012 Atlanta Falcons' offseason, check out The Falcoholic and SB Nation's NFL page.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.