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Meloy
08-03-2006, 09:40 AM
Bryan Pittman long snapper. Flanagan,Hodgdon and even McKinney are on team. Can't any one of that trio be the LS & cut Pittman? I would like that spot to go to another player.

Runner
08-03-2006, 09:43 AM
Bryan Pittman long snapper. Flanagan,Hodgdon and even McKinney are on team. Can't any one of that trio be the LS & cut Pittman? I would like that spot to go to another player.

Or Bruener or somebody. I've even seen linebackers act as long snappers. I know what you mean - it always seems like a waste of a valuable roster spot, but many teams have dedicated long snappers.

texan279
08-03-2006, 09:45 AM
I played center and long snapper in high school, long snapping was much harder for me than playing center. You have to be quick, by the time the ball is snapped before you have a chance to look up you've got guys trying to jump over you.

real
08-03-2006, 09:47 AM
If he is far better at long snapping than everyone else he is garunteed a roster spot...why would we take the chance of putting someone out there thats might make a bad snap, and cost us in crunch time ? Long snapping isn't as easy as it looks...

MYDAUGHTER'STEXANS
08-03-2006, 09:49 AM
We will have to wait and see, until Kubiak and the coaching staff cut the roster down to 53, he might be gone so Kubiak can keep a fresh supply of running backs, he does have the Denver system inside him, last year Denver had about 6 running backs.....but don't count on it, I noticed during training camp this past week, Bryan continues to practice with Stanley and Kris Brown on a seperate field............

TexansCM
08-03-2006, 09:49 AM
A bad snap is normally a disaster. Also a dedicated long snapper can focus on just one thing, if you use an existing lineman they have to take time out of practice to work on snapping.

gsbtxn
08-03-2006, 09:49 AM
Bryan Pittman long snapper. Flanagan,Hodgdon and even McKinney are on team. Can't any one of that trio be the LS & cut Pittman? I would like that spot to go to another player.

Remember the playoff game between the Giants and 49ers a few years ago? Last thing you want is to work hard all game and be in a position to win at the end with a field goal and have no idea where the snap is going. There's a big difference between a good long snapper and a bad long snapper.

texan279
08-03-2006, 09:50 AM
If he is far better at long snapping than everyone else he is garunteed a roster spot...why would we take the chance of putting someone out there thats might make a bad snap, and cost us in crunch time ? Long snapping isn't as easy as it looks...

Exactly, and IMO the most important thing you look for in a long snapper is consistency. Kind of like Mathis holding a roster spot last season as a KR, long snapper might not seem as important as a KR, but if you have a bad or inconsistent long snapper you will have problems.

Meloy
08-03-2006, 09:52 AM
Remember the playoff game between the Giants and 49ers a few years ago? Last thing you want is to work hard all game and be in a position to win at the end with a field goal and have no idea where the snap is going. There's a big difference between a good long snapper and a bad long snapper. I understand and agree. How many other teams have one guy to do LS? I just think that with the players we have now, every spot is coveted.

done88
08-03-2006, 09:54 AM
the only player the bus will not leave without is the long snapper. A bad long snapper can guarentee bad field position all day. It is as important as the punter and kicker himself. The long snapper is jugged harshly. He has one job and he better do it more consistantly then anyone else or they will cut him and get someone who can due the job. This player takes a beating. His main job is to snap the ball and therfore takes a beating from the D-line while he snap. He will have his hand fully extended between his legs when he gets hit. You do not want a starter on the O-line in that position regularly. A long snap and shotgun snap are two very different things.

Dave Letterman
08-03-2006, 09:56 AM
Joppru can long snap very well he did it in college at Michigan first couple of years knows how to do it well :shoot:

Runner
08-03-2006, 09:56 AM
I'm going from memory of a draft report here because I only follow the Longhorns casually, but wasn't their tight end also a long snapper? A lot of players break into the league as special teamers and try to earn additional position time. It seems to me a marginal position player who works at adding long snapper to his skill set could really increase his odds of making a team.

Edited to add:
The post above is a good example. It would be nice for the team's roster count if Joppru was a quality long snapper.


I didn't mean to imply that any ol' long snapper would do, if that is what it sounded like. Whoever has the job has to be able to do it well.

jparrish
08-03-2006, 10:03 AM
I long snapped some back in HS and I hated it. I could do it, but there's a lot of weight resting on your shoulders if the team needs a last minute field goal or the punter is backed in the end zone. I'm definitely glad I'm not doing it anymore here in college.

phan1
08-03-2006, 10:11 AM
I woud say that if he's the best long snapper we have, KEEP HIM! We don't have to pay him millions or anything, but a screw-up from a long snapper could easily cost us any given game. If he cand do it and do it well, than he stays. I don't ever want to lose because someone screwed up a snap.

phan1
08-03-2006, 10:12 AM
Remember the playoff game between the Giants and 49ers a few years ago? Last thing you want is to work hard all game and be in a position to win at the end with a field goal and have no idea where the snap is going. There's a big difference between a good long snapper and a bad long snapper.

That game hurt me real bad. I was going to get a whole lot of $ on that one. And then they totally choked.

Bearfan Blue and Orange
08-03-2006, 10:22 AM
It is not uncommon to have a center and a separate long snapper. The Bears have the best long snapper in the league in Patrick Mannelly. It is like having a Punter and a Kicker (dumb analysis) but they both can kick, but you want that specialty when it counts.

Even Centers in the NFL have the preference from direct snap versus shotgun. There are some centers in the NFL that prefer one over the other because when the QB is under center you snap it in there hard and fast (allowing you to take off the ball to block) versus shotgun you have to be careful on how hard you snap it (mentally delaying your blocking mind).

Meloy
08-03-2006, 10:25 AM
Exactly, and IMO the most important thing you look for in a long snapper is consistency. Kind of like Mathis holding a roster spot last season as a KR, long snapper might not seem as important as a KR, but if you have a bad or inconsistent long snapper you will have problems.Mathis was on team as a wide receiver also. Pittman does not play special teams to my knowledge. Can not veterans like Flanagan and McKinney be taught to snap deep? Why can Pittman do it? Is he more brave? Does he get his head up quicker? Do the other guys say "Hell, no, I ain't getting my block knocked off." Any missed block, kick, catch, fumble.. any blown play can cost the game. Coach does not say "Moulds your only play is to go 12 yards down field and hook to the sideline. You may get to do this play 5-6 times a game so get it right. We just might lose the game with out this play." I am not going to stop watching if Pittman continues to be our "snap the ball a bit further specialist". I just think that slot could be used for another back or linebacker or receiver...

Texans Horror
08-03-2006, 10:26 AM
Wow! We apparently have some good insight into the long snapper. Like the kicker, this is one of those critical positions that is usually not given much thought outside of the coach's room. Have a good one, and you will sometimes forget he's there, but if you have a bad one, you'll never forget it.

HOU-TEX
08-03-2006, 10:28 AM
Mathis was on team as a wide receiver also. Pittman does not play special teams to my knowledge. Can not veterans like Flanagan and McKinney be taught to snap deep? Why can Pittman do it? Is he more brave? Does he get his head up quicker? Do the other guys say "Hell, no, I ain't getting my block knocked off." Any missed block, kick, catch, fumble.. any blown play can cost the game. Coach does not say "Moulds your only play is to go 12 yards down field and hook to the sideline. You may get to do this play 5-6 times a game so get it right. We just might lose the game with out this play." I am not going to stop watching if Pittman continues to be our "snap the ball a bit further specialist". I just think that slot could be used for another back or linebacker or receiver...

What does he play then??? :brickwall

Bearfan Blue and Orange
08-03-2006, 10:29 AM
Mathis was on team as a wide receiver also. Pittman does not play special teams to my knowledge. Can not veterans like Flanagan and McKinney be taught to snap deep? Why can Pittman do it? Is he more brave? Does he get his head up quicker? Do the other guys say "Hell, no, I ain't getting my block knocked off." Any missed block, kick, catch, fumble.. any blown play can cost the game. Coach does not say "Moulds your only play is to go 12 yards down field and hook to the sideline. You may get to do this play 5-6 times a game so get it right. We just might lose the game with out this play." I am not going to stop watching if Pittman continues to be our "snap the ball a bit further specialist". I just think that slot could be used for another back or linebacker or receiver...

Longsnapping is not just a little bit further. Shotgun is a little bit further for a center. You cannot lob a snap to a punter with people coming from all directions, you have to rifle that ball to the punter and just as quick as you would see a center snap the ball to the QB. It takes much skill to do this accurately and quickly.

Bearfan Blue and Orange
08-03-2006, 10:30 AM
Wow! We apparently have some good insight into the long snapper. Like the kicker, this is one of those critical positions that is usually not given much thought outside of the coach's room. Have a good one, and you will sometimes forget he's there, but if you have a bad one, you'll never forget it.

YOU SAID THAT RIGHT!!!

CloakNNNdagger
08-03-2006, 10:45 AM
Remember when the Girls had a season where they went through 3 long snappers in their quest to get beyond the 6 blocked punts? A great long snapper is the least famous man on a team..........when he screws up, he the the most infamous.

This article about "Our favorite team" does give us insight into how important the LS is and some important characteristics of a good one.



In a nutshell, long snapping is about speed and accuracy, Blegen said.

Pro punters need the ball to cover 15 yards in less than 0.8 seconds. Long snappers such as Kuehl have it down to a science. They can fire a perfect spiral, landing the ball in the hands of a punter with the laces facing up.

``If snapping the ball was easy, anybody could do it,'' Kuehl said. ``I can tell by throwing a ball overhand if a guy can do it or not. If you can't throw a spiral overhand, you can't throw one underhand, either.''

``You only have one chance to do something right,'' said Durbin, who also plays tight end and defensive end for the junior varsity. ``Other players get a chance to redeem themselves throughout the course of the game. We really don't.''

One long snapper took his miscue to the grave with him.

Dan Turk enjoyed a productive 15-year career, but his final snap on a potential game-winning field goal in the 1999 playoffs served as his legacy.

Playing for the Washington Redskins, he one-hopped the ball to the holder, leading to an aborted attempt and a 14-13 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Turk was not re-signed. He died three months later of testicular cancer at age 38.

Old article/worth reading (http://www.longsnap.com/publicity/Beaconjournal.htm)

EF55
08-03-2006, 10:55 AM
Or Bruener or somebody. I've even seen linebackers act as long snappers. I know what you mean - it always seems like a waste of a valuable roster spot, but many teams have dedicated long snappers.


The eagles use Mike Bartrum, who occasionally plays TE and actually catches a TD now and then, but his primary funtion is long snapping. Not sure if that's the route they'll take this year but expect it will be.

The cowboys during their 90's sb years I think used Dale Hellestray (not sure how thats spelled)

It seems like a wasted space on the roster but it is apparently highly valued

tsip
08-03-2006, 11:03 AM
I'm going from memory of a draft report here because I only follow the Longhorns casually, but wasn't their tight end also a long snapper? A lot of players break into the league as special teamers and try to earn additional position time. It seems to me a marginal position player who works at adding long snapper to his skill set could really increase his odds of making a team.

Edited to add:
The post above is a good example. It would be nice for the team's roster count if Joppru was a quality long snapper.


I didn't mean to imply that any ol' long snapper would do, if that is what it sounded like. Whoever has the job has to be able to do it well.

I believe Dave Thomas was a holder.

Vinny
08-03-2006, 11:14 AM
Long snapping is hard. You try throwing a tight spiral on a rope, between your legs at a small window to a guy crouching on the ground several yards behind you waiting for a kicker to kick the ball within literally a second or two after the snap. You have to have a leaner guy who is flexible (why you don't see big guys like McKinney long snapping too much) and has the coordination to throw a spiral between their legs at high velocity with a 330 lb mutant on your nose trying to crack your skull when your head is between your legs. Some really big guys can do this (like Bruce Matthews) but he was the exception more than the rule. That's why you see smaller TE type guys snapping so much.

JohnGalt
08-03-2006, 11:15 AM
The center shotgun snap is usually with one hand and the center is expected to come out of his stance and block.

The long snap is with both hands and is normally a tight spiral. The LS stance is different and many times the LS is looking between his legs. Also most return teams will line a heavy hitter up accross from the LS whose only job is to hammer the LS after each snap. They hope that the repeated abuse will cause a poor snap late in the game.

Have you ever noticed that most teams have the punter hold for the place kicker? That's because they don't do anything else at practice so the LS, punter, and PK are off together away from the team drills practicing. Most LS are listed as LB's or OL's, but they spend much of their time snapping instead of doing first step and tackling drills.

WWX
08-03-2006, 11:44 AM
Smart coaches always keep dedicated LS on their roster especially after that NY-SF playoff game. Most centers or linemen could do the job without a hitch. But at the end of a long game putting an exhausted, beat up, player in there to perform a critical job just carries too many risks. And if the ball, just once, is snapped over the punters head in an NFL game, how does that make the coaching staff look? That’s my opinion anyway.

:twocents:

Vinny
08-03-2006, 11:47 AM
Not everyone has the talent to long snap. The ability to throw a tight spiral is a must. So is the ability to stay poised with the knowledge that a pair of angry linemen is anxious to rip your head off.

The best NFL long snappers can get the ball to the punter, standing 15 yards back, in approximately .7 seconds. Snaps for kick placement require a softer touch but must be delivered so that when the holder catches it, his top hand is on the laces.

Hellestrae was always amused when he heard his teammates ask the officials for the wind at their backs after losing a coin toss.

"I'm thinking, 'What about me?' " he said. "I have to snap into the wind."
http://www.azcentral.com/sports/columns/articles/0824boivin0824.html

http://www.longsnap.com/

Runner
08-03-2006, 12:17 PM
I believe Dave Thomas was a holder.

I guess I should have done my goo diligence.

jparrish
08-03-2006, 12:39 PM
Ha, CloakNNNDagger...I find it VERY hard to believe that he could get the laces facing up everytime it got to the punter.

Corrosion
08-03-2006, 02:24 PM
You never miss a good longsnapper until you dont have one .... That may be the only time he see's the field is snapping for punts / field goals but take him off of the team and those units will suffer ....:twocents:

Coach C.
08-03-2006, 04:09 PM
Look when I played ball I had no respect for our long snapper or our kicker, hell they dont do anything during practice. It sucked while we are sweating our tails off and Slocum is yelling at the defense to get our asses in gear you see the kicker and long snapper playin grab ass on the other field. Either way I digress, the long snapper is pretty important in the scheme of things when you think about how often they are actually on the field. In our case we are lucky we have a good long snapper and Pittman is one of our better special teams guys also so he provides a service.

HJam72
08-03-2006, 05:02 PM
I doubt that Joppru is even big enough to do that now. Even if he was, he's probably not a high quality long-snapper. Besides, Joppru needs to work on his main job.

the wonger need food
08-03-2006, 05:08 PM
This is now a specialty position in the NFL and a lot of teams have them on their rosters.

Semi-interesting new rule this season effecting long snappers...

Centers who snap on field goals, extra points and punts can not have a defender line up directly over him. Instead, the defender has to line up outside the snapper's shoulder pads. The penalty for illegal formation will be 5 yards, but few penalties are expected to be called because officials will warn the player before the snap.

BigDTexansFan
08-03-2006, 05:45 PM
Dallas Cowboys had a LS they used and paid him nicely, Bill Parcells decided they didn't need him anymore ANYBODY can LS. That next season they went 6-10...KEEP PITTMAN:yahoo:

vtech9
08-03-2006, 08:52 PM
Halterman was also a long snapper in college.

South Texan
08-03-2006, 09:39 PM
A long snapper is like a bathroom, you may not need it a lot but when you need it, you NEED it!

texan279
08-03-2006, 10:03 PM
This is now a specialty position in the NFL and a lot of teams have them on their rosters.

Semi-interesting new rule this season effecting long snappers...

Centers who snap on field goals, extra points and punts can not have a defender line up directly over him. Instead, the defender has to line up outside the snapper's shoulder pads. The penalty for illegal formation will be 5 yards, but few penalties are expected to be called because officials will warn the player before the snap.

Warn the player before the snap? Are they going to start warning offfense before the snap when the are lined up in illegal formations? Not sure if I like the sound of that, next thing we know they'll be warning guys when they are lined up offsides before the snap and warning guys on any other pre snap penalty.

Texans_Chick
08-03-2006, 10:13 PM
I once saw Coach Joe and Bryan Pittman do a mini-seminar on long snapping. Apparently, a coach early in Pittman's football playing days identified his ability to longsnap and encouraged him to work on that skill.

He showed us how he did it, and the way he did it, looked like just one of those reflexive things you can do without thinking.

Link:HoustonTexans.com (http://www.houstontexans.com/news/news_detail.php?PRKey=2651) (with a video on the link if you actually care to learn about longsnapping)

Specialists are everywhere in the NFL. Whether it is a place kicker, a nickel back, or a blocking tight end, rosters are filled with players who have defined roles for their teams. Probably the most overlooked of all these role players are longsnappers.

It’s a small group, just 32 do it professionally and it’s not glamorous by any stretch of the imagination. You won’t hear the crowd roar after a successful snap to a punter or holder, it’s expected. NFL longsnappers can play up to 15 years in the NFL and perfect their craft all while operating in the shadows of most NFL practices. Their craft takes minutes to learn but a lifetime to perfect.

“The thing about longsnapping is that it’s similar to an art form.” Texans longsnapper Bryan Pittman said. “I’ve picked up my tips and techniques along the way from other snappers. I’ve never had a coach sit me down and tell me this is the way to do it. If you ask any pro snapper in the league, I’m pretty sure they would say the same thing.”

While it may take a lifetime to master, make no mistake, longsnapping can be very lucrative for the lucky few that can do it well consistently. Children don’t often dream of becoming NFL longsnappers, but as they get older, it’s probably something they should consider. For Pittman, his NFL dreams shifted to snapping toward the end of his high school career.

“My senior year we had a new coach that came in and after he saw me snap the ball for the first time, he asked me if I knew what the minimum salary was in the NFL,” Pittman said. “I actually didn’t know at the time, but after that day I put it in my mind that one day (longsnapping) could be a possibility to make a living doing it.”

It wasn’t an easy road to the NFL for Pittman. While it became clear that longsnapping could become his meal ticket, he took a long and winding road to his pro career after high school.

“From (high school), I just took it on,” Pittman said. “I went to junior college to improve my skills. I went from there to a major college (University of Washington) where all I was there was a specialist and then eventually worked my way through the ranks and finally got a break in (2003).”

Pittman was first signed by the Cleveland Browns in 2003, then released, then signed again only to find himself on the street following training camp. The Texans quickly signed him to the practice squad in September of 2003 and less than a week later he was the team’s primary long snapper, a role that he has not relinquished over the past three seasons.

Pittman has teamed with place kicker Kris Brown and punter Chad Stanley during the past three years to provide a solid foundation for a Texans’ special teams unit that has been the team’s most consistent performers since the team’s inception.

Even with years of experience under his belt, Pittman’s work ethic on and off the field demonstrates that he takes nothing for granted. He knows even the most minor mistake by him can cost points or even a game so the only option is practicing to a point where thinking is removed from the equation.

“You don’t want to think about (the snap),” Pittman said. “You practice it enough to a point where you don’t have to think about is my grip proper? Is my stance good? Because once you go to kind of mentally evaluate something when you’re in the process of a snap situation, then that’s when something goes wrong.”

Pittman can be called into action at a moment’s notice. There can sometimes be little or no warning for when his duties are needed so you might find him doing some unusual things on the sideline this fall in order to stay loose.

“Stretching for me is important,” he said. “Just staying warm. I use rubber bands a lot, just try and stay active, try not to stiffen up. I’ll ride the stationary bike, jog on the sideline, almost anything.”

The rubber bands Pittman speaks of are large enough to go under his feet and stretch over his head with his arms fully extended. Pittman said that’s one of the few things that he uses more than the rest of the team. His workouts are similar to other linemen, though he does spend much of his time with special teams coach Joe Marciano during practice somewhat secluded from the other players. The duo, naturally, has a close bond.

That pair was kind enough to demonstrate the art of longsnapping after a Texans’ mini-camp practice. You can view their installment of Football 101 here or click on the link at the top of the page. Check back to HoustonTexans.com for future installments of Football 101.

threetoedpete
08-03-2006, 10:29 PM
Dallas Cowboys had a LS they used and paid him nicely, Bill Parcells decided they didn't need him anymore ANYBODY can LS. That next season they went 6-10...KEEP PITTMAN:yahoo:

Yup, the turk will be here soon enough. No need to get to worried about a glut at anyone position. When they were warming up last friday, I believe I counted three rows of guys who'll get a buss ticket. Turk hasn't even warmed up good yet.

Had one of my former teammares get a full ride at Sodom on Town Lake deep snapping. My lasting memory of him is Hurlling one over the punters head for a thiry yard loss and a saftey. One of the specail teams or tightend bubble guys will go befor the deep snaper goes.

HJam72
08-05-2006, 09:04 AM
A long snapper is like a bathroom, you may not need it a lot but when you need it, you NEED it!

See, there ya go. High praise for the LS. lol:

The Pencil Neck
08-05-2006, 01:20 PM
Joppru can long snap very well he did it in college at Michigan first couple of years knows how to do it well :shoot:

WOO HOOO... that just what we need! More opportunities for... umm... I can't say it...