We’ve had some really insightful posts on the football board lately that are going to get buried pretty quickly so I’m going to start posting some of them here. Here’s one from sbeNDfan about the play of the offensive line.
I played o-line through highschool and then college. Div III isn’t the same thing, but at the same time, I know at least a bit about line play. First, I must say, there is a HUGE difference between college and h.s. and their is a learning curve for new college players. In highschool you can get by on talent and strength, in college, you better have technique as well. Especially in the passing game.
My observations are as follows:
**These guys just aren’t getting it done. It is such a catastrophic failure, I honestly don’t know where they should start addressing the issues. I think personel changes are a must to be honest.
- 1. Cut blocking is for the weak. We are trying to rely on this too much. This is a coaching problem.
A cut block in my mind is used in only a couple of situations. A backside tackle, or even a guard on a wide run play, might use a cut block to stop backside pursuit. It can work in creating a pile up, and essentially taking a couple of people out of a play. The other time it is used is to slow an aggressive defender on the corner, or an overly aggressive LB blitz. If you keep getting beat by a guy coming in just to hard and fast, you cut him. Not every play, just a couple of times so he thinks twice before just blasting in. When defenders have to think, half the battle is won.
The technique on the cut blocks are bad too. You just don’t fire off the ball to the ground. You have to see where the guy is going. We are missing guys on cut blocks, and that is no good. If you cut to much, and they expect it coming, they hesitate, let you fall, and they are free to go. Which is why you don’t do it too often.
CUT BLOCKING IS NOT FOR SHORT PASSES! People think this too often. Cut them, get their hands down, blah blah blah. That is BS! Want their hands down on a three step drop. Hit the SOB. Just hit him. Drive him! Act like its a run! If your face is burried in their chest driving them, their hands aren’t coming up. If they do, your putting them on their back.
- 2. Blitz pick up – There are obviously back problems here. When an o-lineman is looking stepping watching left, that usually means his assignment is to cover blitz from that side of the field. Lineman have reads and checkdowns like everyone else. uncovered centers especially. Seeing how guys are caught looking somewhere else, makes me think people don’t know the plays or their assignments, this is bad coaching.
Whatever your responsibility is, no one ever crosses your face. One play, in GT, I saw Sully watch a LB come through right in front of him. He saw him coming, but still slid to his left, and let the guy through. Inexcusable.
This is more simple. Friggin hit someone. They aren’t doing it. Nuff said. No pop, no drive, no nothing. They look lost. My guess is they don’t know the blocking schemes well enough. They are second guessing themselves, and are unprepared. Again, bad coaching.
Bottom line: You don’t have an O-line be this awful, without bad coaching. Either simplify the schemes, and make them man up, and figure out a way to teach them what they are doing so they step with confidence. Line play is all about step one. If you are affraid because you don’t think you know what you are doing, you will get beat, and beat bad. Fear causes hesitation, and hesitation causes your worst fears to come true. These guys are playing affraid and hesitant. That is poor coaching. Period.
Thanks go to sbeNDfan for the insights.