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Old 02-12-2014   #1
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Default Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

Expect a different battle cry. Look for the old "We must work HARDER" to turn to "We must work SMARTER."

Pulled this very astute piece by Rivers McCown published near the end of last season.

Quote:
Case Keenum and The Dumbening of the Texans
December 16, 2013


I once saw Case Keenum’s existence as a blight upon the Texans. Not because I didn’t enjoy his work (I went to the University of Houston), and not because I thought he was untalented — but because his background inevitably meant that radio callers would wonder why he wasn’t starting yet. It’s the Tim Tebow Jacksonville syndrome taken to a much smaller scale — a loud minority that stakes a claim on a bandwagon that seems kind of ridiculous.

But after this season, I am thrilled with Case Keenum, because his play has illustrated a core problem that the Texans have. The people involved in this organization are not dumb men, but they are men that are married to the ideas that got them to where they are today. There is no learning on the Houston Texans. Keenum’s development shows exactly why that is. Here is what we know about Keenum’s short time as a starter:

– Keenum started off by hitting the deep balls that Matt Schaub could not. Through Week 15, Keenum’s average deep pass has gone 26.9 yards in the air — only Ryan Tannehill and Jason Campbell have thrown deeper among quarterbacks with more than 30 attempts. With no time to prepare Keenum for the intimate details of the offense, Gary Kubiak adjusted his scheme to fit the player. They ran plenty of play-action. They mostly kept him in shotgun or pistol looks. And through his first three starts, he had 231 DYAR against two of the three best defenses in the league — Arizona and Kansas City (with Justin Houston) — and a Colts pass defense that has yo-yoed between good and bad throughout the season.

– Kubiak benched him for Schaub, twice, late in games. The original reason given was that he does not know the proper protection schemes. My (admittedly unchecked) observation is that Kubiak did not trust Keenum without a running back in the backfield, and moving to Schaub would presumably avoid hot read confusion, which has been an issue for Keenum. Of course, Keenum ran a no-huddle spread offense pretty well in college, but okay, sure, the protection scheme is an issue. Not an undying belief in an obsolete quarterback. Got it.

– Bob McNair, at the press conference firing Kubiak, praised Kubiak to the rafters. He also explained to the remaining coaching staff in no uncertain terms that Case Keenum was the starting quarterback of the Houston Texans for the rest of the season.

– And then, this week, Texans fans were treated to a completely inept offensive display, where Keenum mostly stayed in the pocket and checked down, the Texans barely ran any play-action, and deep passes were almost non-existent in the game plan. This is the kind of game plan you’d put in if you were intentionally tanking a season. But the Texans have been so adamant that they’re putting full effort in and trying their best down the stretch that they couldn’t even give us that sliver of hope that somebody upstairs decided it was time to throw in the towel. No, it’s the fact that this was a game plan they intentionally came up with that is the saddest thing of all.

In those first three weeks, Keenum threw 20 deep balls and garnered 176 DYAR on them. Practically all of his positive value as a quarterback was coming from his ability to make the deep throw. In five weeks since, his DYAR on deep balls has dropped to -8, and his average deep ball is going just 25.4 yards in the air past the line of scrimmage. It was nearly 29 in the first three games.

Is it possible that Keenum just rode a hot start and wasn’t really that talented at all? Sure. I think there’s plenty of reason to be skeptical of an undrafted quarterback. But the fact that he did it against fairly good competition stands out to me. My evaluation of Keenum right now is, to steal a Matt Waldman trope, that he’s on the Titans quarterback scale. He’s somewhere behind Ryan Fitzpatrick and Jake Locker, with a ceiling in between the two. It’s funny to picture him as Locker because of the obvious physical differences, but that’s how they play: inconsistent on short passes, can run around all day, and can make any throw on the field even if they often won’t. I think he’s got a career as a backup, and with a little development he’s got a chance to be more.

Well, here’s the problem, then: when you shift from using a player the way he’s best used to trying to make him fit your system, it’s obviously going to destroy his value to some extent. Most players are not as extreme as Keenum — as we just went over, almost all Keenum’s value comes from throwing deep — but to me that points to a failure of coaching. A failure of properly utilizing the parts you have in the best possible way.
FOR THE REST OF THE STORY CLICK THE LINK IN THE TITLE
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Old 02-12-2014   #2
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

For sure, one of the key themes to look for in FA and draft will be football intelligence and scheme flexibility.
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Old 02-12-2014   #3
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

Spot on article, IMO. It seemed to me that the more coaching Keenum received, the worse he played.
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Old 02-12-2014   #4
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

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Originally Posted by RTP2110 View Post
Spot on article, IMO. It seemed to me that the more coaching Keenum received, the worse he played.
Or...... The more tape teams got on Keenum the more he sucked. I understand the UH lovefest that some people in this city have for the guy, hell I'm a UT fan and had the same for VY, we were both wrong.
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Old 02-12-2014   #5
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

Scheming every week against our opponents on both sides of the ball is what has me most excited about O'Brien.
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Old 02-12-2014   #6
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

good link doc. i'm a keenum fan, that's no secret. i'm NOT however a hometown or UofH homer - i don't think i've ever actually watched a UofH game. i said before and still believe that he has every tool necessary to be a success. there's a reason i'm not a talent evaluator though, the tools i see may or may not be the exact package of skills required to make it. i'm very anxious to see how o'brien rates keenum.

what i took from this article is a stance i agree with - "but to me that points to a failure of coaching". kubiak's a fantastic teacher and he has a great system, one of the best. it's a very very structured system however. it's at it's best with longer developing timing and option routes, usually from play-action and heavier packages. despite being strong at drawing up route combinations, kubiak doesnt run 4+ receiver and shotgun offenses well at all, it's just ugly. this spread attack is the adjustment he tried to make to focus on keenum's perceived strengths however, to both of their detriments. with the injuries at runningback, the offensive line falling apart and essentially a rookie who frankly wasnt ready yet, we saw the unavoidable results.

i'm trying not to magnify keenum's highlights and ignore his lowlights, but as a fan it's sometimes hard to do. he's got a lot of work to do to make it in this league, but as i started with, i think he has the tools and if given the chance to get comfortable with the system in camp - keenum could be very very good.
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Old 02-13-2014   #7
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

Quote:
Originally Posted by RTP2110 View Post
Spot on article, IMO. It seemed to me that the more coaching Keenum received, the worse he played.
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Originally Posted by texan_joe View Post
Or...... The more tape teams got on Keenum the more he sucked. I understand the UH lovefest that some people in this city have for the guy, hell I'm a UT fan and had the same for VY, we were both wrong.
or.... numerous players that started well with the team then ended up not being "Texans worthy" & dropped went on to be amazing additions to other teams
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Old 02-13-2014   #8
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

To be honest, I really think that the majority of Keenum's drop off came from CBs and Safeties not giving up on the play and letting receivers go (deep) after 10 or so seconds. The guy is a master at avoiding the sack, staying behind the LOS (WAY behind, in many cases), and then throwing a bomb to somebody that is no longer covered because some DB thought the play was basically over already.

I'm not saying Kubiak's spread out wide and throw it short (and soon) Offense didn't screw him up some, though. I just think it was mostly the Defenses figuring him out.

And I was definitely a supporter of Keenum until it was clearly not working anymore.

PS-if OB shocks me and says, "Keenum is our starter," I will definitely watch with interest, though.
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Old 02-13-2014   #9
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

I think his decline was

1/3 anticipation by opponents of how he reacts to certain coverages and blitzing. He took some massive sacks trying to extend plays.
1/3 lack of creative play calling
1/3 lack of a running game and protection toward the end

Let's not discount the whole Schaub/Kubiak drama either. I speculate there was a lot of opinion in that locker room on who should be starting and I doubt it was motivational.
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Old 02-13-2014   #10
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

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Originally Posted by OzzO View Post
or.... numerous players that started well with the team then ended up not being "Texans worthy" & dropped went on to be amazing additions to other teams
You seem to be more concerned that we have members of the team who can't control themselves than in getting better as a team. I wonder why? Do you subscribe to the theory that every team needs bad guys to win?
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Old 02-12-2014   #11
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

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Originally Posted by RTP2110 View Post
Spot on article, IMO. It seemed to me that the more coaching Keenum received, the worse he played.
It has seemed like that applied to a number of players here. Guys got here and seldom got better as a result.
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Old 02-13-2014   #12
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

meh...just another Case keenum excuse article/thread. Would have interested if some new info on O'Brien's schemes instead revisiting Case's already over discussed half as an NFL starter.
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Old 02-16-2014   #13
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I was saying this all along, Kubiak took away what Keenum did great from him, he got in the boys head and told him to stay in the pocket. That was where Kubiak went wrong with Case, i;m sorry but if you throw 3 Long TDs to AJ in one game all outside the pocket then maybe, just maybe let the boy continue to do what he has been doing.

Was watching the Super Bowl at a friend's house, and Russell Wilson made some spectacular play (can't remember which). One guy who was at the party, and is really knowledgable about football overall, got frustrated and said: "See there, Case was capable of things like that before Kubiak got his hands on him."

The guy seemed like a reasonable, rational person who knows about football, and not a fan boy at all.

I don't know much about Case, but, I agreed with him.


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Old 02-17-2014   #14
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

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Originally Posted by houstonspartan View Post
Was watching the Super Bowl at a friend's house, and Russell Wilson made some spectacular play (can't remember which). One guy who was at the party, and is really knowledgable about football overall, got frustrated and said: "See there, Case was capable of things like that before Kubiak got his hands on him."

The guy seemed like a reasonable, rational person who knows about football, and not a fan boy at all.

I don't know much about Case, but, I agreed with him.


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So, before Kubiak coached up Case (aka, when he was a starter at UH) he was capable of winning a SuperBowl. Start Case, Superbowl or bust.
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Old 02-19-2014   #15
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

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So, before Kubiak coached up Case (aka, when he was a starter at UH) he was capable of winning a SuperBowl. Start Case, Superbowl or bust.
haha dont recall any of us saying that. But before kubiak coached him up he was throwing TDs instead of staying in the pocket taking 15 yard sacks like he did after Kubiak said in in the colts press conference game (you know the one he threw 3 TDs to AJ) that case needed to work on staying in the pocket. The kid listened to his coach.....
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Old 02-19-2014   #16
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So, before Kubiak coached up Case (aka, when he was a starter at UH) he was capable of winning a SuperBowl. Start Case, Superbowl or bust.

Lol. Not sure where you got that from my comments. I was merely saying that a lot of people Case had potential until Kubiak started coaching him directly. I don't know either way, but, it wouldn't shock me if O'Brien keeps him around as aback-up.


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Old 03-11-2014   #17
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I don't understand wanting to cut Myers or Manning

Myers may not fit new scheme and may just be a product of the ZBS


Your man... Pots and pans
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Old 03-11-2014   #18
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

So now that Mitchell is gone are we going after a big NT in the draft?
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Old 03-11-2014   #19
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

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So now that Mitchell is gone are we going after a big NT in the draft?
Yes........and at this very moment, he is training hard to impress OB for our position of need.

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Old 03-11-2014   #20
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Default Re: Our New Schemes on Both Sides of the Ball Will Promote Adaptability

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I don't understand wanting to cut Myers or Manning
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Originally Posted by PHILLYTEXANFAN View Post
Myers may not fit new scheme and may just be a product of the ZBS


Your man... Pots and pans
And Manning, at 31, has dealt with injuries and shown progressive decline in performance.
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