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Old 02-18-2013   #1
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Default Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is still

Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is still the best option

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Is that enough for the read option to be a staple component of an NFL offense? Can an average passer be a quality, or even a high level quarterback, simply because the offense is predicated on the read option?
The answer is a definitive "no."

The NFL reality remains clear and unambiguous, and it speaks to the second element that must exist for the read option to be effective as an offensive staple. The ability to throw the ball effectively from the pocket is the most essential characteristic required to be in the discussion of the gameís best quarterbacks. Of course, many factors comprise that, the most important of which is accuracy, or ball location, a more descriptive term that better captures the essence of the attribute. There are many others, among them anticipation, pocket movement, pocket toughness, decision-making, the willingness to pull the trigger in critical situations. These traits have always been identifiable and measurable through extensive film study.
...
There is absolutely nothing revolutionary or unconventional about any of this, and it will never change. Why? There are many reasons, but the simplest is this: Third down, especially third and long. Thatís the possession down, the down in which defenses have the advantage with their multiplicity of pressures and coverages. Quarterbacks must be able to throw the ball effectively against sophisticated defenses specifically designed to challenge and disrupt them. If you canít do that, you canít play in the NFL.
read more: http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nfl-sh...7022--nfl.html
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Old 02-18-2013   #2
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

"Running" QBs are all the rage in the NFL now....like they were a decade ago when "experts" told us that pocket passers would soon be a thing of the past. Then a funny thing happened. All Super Bowls since then have been won by QBs who could throw from the pocket.

Scrambling behind the line of scrimmage and running with the ball like an RB are two different things. QBs have been scrambling for ages. Roger Staubach, Randall Cunningham, and Fran Tarkenton were doing it decades before the name "running QB" ever became in vogue.

The problems with QBs who rely on their legs to move the ball downfield is twofold: 1. they are only a running threat until they either get injured and/or they wear out from age. 2. The over-reliance in their legs prevents them from learning critical passing skills that they will need as seasoned veterans. Things like pocket presence, reading defenses, making pre-snap adjustments, and timing with receivers, all are critical skills that often get downplayed with running QBs. However, when the legs run out, a QB will need these skills to survive and succeed in the NFL. Donovan McNabb was a so-called running QB who eventually developed his pocket skills. He could still scramble as he aged, but it was with the intent of buying time to let his receivers get open.

Defenses figure out gimmicks, and any offense that makes running an important aspect of their QB's skills will ultimately find themselves very limited when that QB has the run game shut down and he needs to make plays from the pocket.
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Old 02-18-2013   #3
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

Russell Wilson, RG3, & Collin Kaepernick.

I think the biggest thing they'll have to overcome, is forgetting 2012. A lot of people struggle to repeat a great performance, because they focus too much on trying to do what they did. The key, I think, is that they need to try to be the best they can be by working to get better.

The NFL is going to adjust but it took several years before they caught up to Donovan McNabb, or Ben Roethlisberger. There have been QBs that I think got stuck on past success, like Aaron Brooks, or Vince Young, that they never got better & they were quickly shown the exit.

These three guys are obviously extremely talented, & they've all shown to have a great feel for the game. I'm looking forward to seeing how they adapt next season.

A different kind of guy who will also have to overcome a successful rookie season, Andrew Luck. What he did was acceptable & helped them win 11 games. But there's going to be a lot of attention & focus to get him to minimize turnovers. It's going to be interesting to see how that turns out as well.
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Old 02-18-2013   #4
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

I see two things different from the previous invasion of "running" QBs

1-These guys all appear to be QBs who can run versus early Mike vick.

2- OC seems to be better at designing and usin the running skills than before.


BTW, Wilson is not a true running QB. he is a too short QB who can scrammble. honestly, Luck is a better pure runner/athlete than wilson.
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Old 02-19-2013   #5
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

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Originally Posted by ArlingtonTexan View Post
BTW, Wilson is not a true running QB. he is a too short QB who can scrammble. honestly, Luck is a better pure runner/athlete than wilson.
How can you say Wilson isn't a true running QB? I watched a lot of Seahawks games last season (wife is a Seahawks fan), and Wilson's athleticism really shined.

Just take a look at this play: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v4AyYF_7gHQ
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Old 02-19-2013   #6
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

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Originally Posted by CretorFrigg View Post
How can you say Wilson isn't a true running QB? I watched a lot of Seahawks games last season (wife is a Seahawks fan), and Wilson's athleticism really shined.

Just take a look at this play: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v4AyYF_7gHQ
There is a difference between a running QB and a scrambling QB. Watch some Roger Staubach film.
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Old 02-19-2013   #7
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

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Originally Posted by CretorFrigg View Post
How can you say Wilson isn't a true running QB? I watched a lot of Seahawks games last season (wife is a Seahawks fan), and Wilson's athleticism really shined.

Just take a look at this play: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v4AyYF_7gHQ
Seattle mixed in some zone read as the season went along, but he is not going to go Cam or Cap or RGIII and run the option 15-20 times a game. He makes plays with his legs, but that is not different historically than Tarkenton, steve young, etc.

I saw wilson interviewed later in the season and until mid-point this season he never ran the zone read in college and very few in any designed runs. He has mostly played classic QB with the ability to make plays using his feet.
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Old 02-19-2013   #8
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

I think what Cosell is saying is that a running QB alone won't cut it but the new breed works because many can throw in the pocket. I think RG3 and Kaepernick, especially, could thrive in the pocket alone if they needed to and then scramble. Not sold on Wilson completely compared to them. Like his makeup but his ability seems more predicated on designed roll outs and not sure about just being purely in the pocket. Both RG3 and Kaep. have big time arms and seem accurate enough to make every NFL throw. I was impressed with that all season. If they were both fast guys with limited throwing then there would be an issue. The difference between them and Vick in my book is the accuracy. Vick has a cannon but he is prone to overthrow and skip passes. Always has. The only year I can remember thinking, "he really looks like he is throwing well" was the first with the Eagles and then he went backwards.
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Old 02-19-2013   #9
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

Wilson reminds me of Steve Young.

With the right tools around him, he can be great.

The guy throws a pretty damn nice deep ball, accurate and in-stride with his receivers. Makes secondaries back off and respect the pass, which means Wilson can run if the play and the protections breaks down.

Will be VERY interesting to see how RGIII, Kap, and Wilson do in 2013.
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Old 02-19-2013   #10
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

I haven't seen enough from any of these guys at the pro level to make me think they'll be anything more than Michael Vick. Like Vince Young, everything I've seen has been to wide open guys.

I watched a few of RG3s games at Baylor & then I saw some highly accurate throws, so I think he has the ability. But there are a lot of QBs that are accurate in college that can not & have not made it in the NFL.

This may be the first time that we've seen three guys like this in one season, throw Andre Luck in there & I can see why people are thinking the NFL is changing. But RG3s knee is the reason I know it won't. Michael Vick playing a handful of 16 game seasons... I know it won't change.

He's a QB until he tucks the ball & run. He's fair game, until he initiates a slide. But even then, you can put a hurt'n on a QB (remember Cushing against the Browns a while back) & get a 15 yard penalty (we didn't get a penalty) but lose your QB for that game (I don't think they lost their QB but he wasn't 100%).

Kaepernick is cheap right now, so winning is probably more important than protecting their QB. Wilson is cheap, so winning is probably more important than protecting their QB.

RG3..... you can bet your ass they're going to start the season with a lot of talk about protecting their QB.
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Old 02-19-2013   #11
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

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Originally Posted by thunderkyss View Post
I haven't seen enough from any of these guys at the pro level to make me think they'll be anything more than Michael Vick. Like Vince Young, everything I've seen has been to wide open guys.

I watched a few of RG3s games at Baylor & then I saw some highly accurate throws, so I think he has the ability. But there are a lot of QBs that are accurate in college that can not & have not made it in the NFL.

This may be the first time that we've seen three guys like this in one season, throw Andre Luck in there & I can see why people are thinking the NFL is changing. But RG3s knee is the reason I know it won't. Michael Vick playing a handful of 16 game seasons... I know it won't change.

He's a QB until he tucks the ball & run. He's fair game, until he initiates a slide. But even then, you can put a hurt'n on a QB (remember Cushing against the Browns a while back) & get a 15 yard penalty (we didn't get a penalty) but lose your QB for that game (I don't think they lost their QB but he wasn't 100%).

Kaepernick is cheap right now, so winning is probably more important than protecting their QB. Wilson is cheap, so winning is probably more important than protecting their QB.

RG3..... you can bet your ass they're going to start the season with a lot of talk about protecting their QB.
I know you are saying you haven't seen them enough but I disagree with the assessment that much of it is to wide open guys, etc. These weren't simplified offenses they ran. It is one reason I think Kaepernick was such a stud. Every game I watched he was fitting the ball in tight spaces. To your TV it might look easy but there were plenty of throws to the outside and down the hash that were in the only place they could be....especially ones to Vernon Davis. I saw the same from RG3.
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Old 02-19-2013   #12
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

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Originally Posted by infantrycak View Post
There is a difference between a running QB and a scrambling QB. Watch some Roger Staubach film.
Staubach's scrambles were truly epic. Dude would run 50 yards behind the line of scrimmage until a receiver got open. You don't see that too much these days. Either today's QBs don't have the patience for it or they are coached to run for the first down whenever possible.

And Staubach had a great arm to go along with that scrambling ability. How he could come out of a dodge and twirl to avoid a defender and throw a long accurate pass is still amazing to me.

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I haven't seen enough from any of these guys at the pro level to make me think they'll be anything more than Michael Vick. Like Vince Young, everything I've seen has been to wide open guys.
Yeah, it's a small sample size with just one season. But, I saw a lot of very impressive throws from RG3 and Kaepernick. Precise throws into tight windows where they placed it right where the receiver needed it to be sort of thing.

These young guys benefit from all the advanced training available to little league and high school players these days, so they are learning a lot of the basics of good passing fundamentals while possessing some great athleticism. It remains to be seen if they can continue their styles over several years, but it's something fun to watch as they progress.
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Old 02-19-2013   #13
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

Part 2: Cosellís Take: The evolution of NFL offense
Quote:
...
The tactical - the means, the details - was always founded on execution. That was the prevailing attitude in the NFL from what seemed time immemorial. The infusion of college concepts has changed that. Deception, once seen primarily as a defensive objective, is now a featured part of offensive game plans. Think about the read option, and the multiple alternatives that stem from it. The goal is to deceive and mislead the defense, to betray their eyes. One phrase you always hear defensive coaches repeat over and over is ďTrust what you seeĒ. That does not work against the read option, where you cannot be certain of what you are seeing, and thus defending, until it has actually happened. Therefore, the defense is reactive, not proactive. They must wait rather than attack. They cannot disrupt -- they can only respond.

Thatís what the college game has brought to the NFL -- the idea that deception on the offensive side of the ball is a legitimate and highly effective means of breaking down defenses. Itís a multi-dimensional expansion of the basic play action concept that for years was executed with the quarterback under center, and more recently, out of the shotgun. The objective with play action (or more accurately at times, run action) was to create a false read for the defense, primarily at the second level. The linebacker reads run, takes a step or two forward to aggressively play his run responsibility, then is out of position to get to his coverage assignment in time. Very few regard it this way, but play/run action, at its core, is about deception.

Itís only logical then to take it to the next step, what college coaches have been doing for years: the more elements you add to the action in the backfield, the better chance you have of deceiving the defense. The defense has more to see, more to react to, more that creates uncertainty, indecision and ultimately paralysis...
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Old 02-20-2013   #14
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

Quote:
The tactical - the means, the details - was always founded on execution. That was the prevailing attitude in the NFL from what seemed time immemorial. The infusion of college concepts has changed that. Deception, once seen primarily as a defensive objective, is now a featured part of offensive game plans. Think about the read option, and the multiple alternatives that stem from it. The goal is to deceive and mislead the defense, to betray their eyes. One phrase you always hear defensive coaches repeat over and over is “Trust what you see”. That does not work against the read option, where you cannot be certain of what you are seeing, and thus defending, until it has actually happened. Therefore, the defense is reactive, not proactive. They must wait rather than attack. They cannot disrupt -- they can only respond.

That’s what the college game has brought to the NFL -- the idea that deception on the offensive side of the ball is a legitimate and highly effective means of breaking down defenses. It’s a multi-dimensional expansion of the basic play action concept that for years was executed with the quarterback under center, and more recently, out of the shotgun. The objective with play action (or more accurately at times, run action) was to create a false read for the defense, primarily at the second level. The linebacker reads run, takes a step or two forward to aggressively play his run responsibility, then is out of position to get to his coverage assignment in time. Very few regard it this way, but play/run action, at its core, is about deception.

It’s only logical then to take it to the next step, what college coaches have been doing for years: the more elements you add to the action in the backfield, the better chance you have of deceiving the defense. The defense has more to see, more to react to, more that creates uncertainty, indecision and ultimately paralysis...
I don't think I agree that the college game has brought the idea of deception on the offensive side of the ball to the NFL. I think deception on the offense has been going on for decades now in the NFL. For example, we've been seeing it with the Texans for a number of years. When a team runs the Zone Blocking Scheme the way Denver use to and the way the Texans do now, a part of that scheme is for the O-Linemen to line up the same way all the time and not "tip your hand" as to whether it is a run or pass that's coming. And, after you make several runs in a row that are gaining good yardage, and have the defense thinking run again, you have the QB roll out and hit a WR for a long gain. It's a simple deception, but it can be effective when done right. It's a great deception when the O-Line sells the run, like in Denver this past season, when Schaub rolled out and no one is near him, and he throws a TD to AJ. Then did it again a little later to, of all people, K-Dub!

Offensive deception! I think it's been around in the NFL for a long while. Maybe not as obvious as the "read/react" plays we're seeing now coming from the college ranks, but it's there. JMO!
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Old 02-20-2013   #15
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

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I don't think I agree that the college game has brought the idea of deception on the offensive side of the ball to the NFL.
In & of itself, I see where you are coming from, but his next statement
Quote:
Itís a multi-dimensional expansion of the basic play action concept that for years was executed with the quarterback under center, and more recently, out of the shotgun.
I think he's saying the college game is expanding on the idea much faster than the NFL. & I guess I agree with him. From the shotgun, the only deception I've seen in the NFL is the delayed draw & the screen and they've been doing that for years.

In college, they're doing a lot more out of the shotgun. I think it's out of necessity, since they have to add more diversity to their spread offenses.

One thing that isn't going to change, is that QBs become a big investment & is a big factor in determining a teams success/failure. I used to ask, "Why don't they run the option in the pros" & the answer has always been that HCs & OCs don't want to expose their QB.

However, since the rookie salaries have been addressed, they've got 4 years with a modest investment to help the QB adjust to the NFL. I will be surprised & disappointed if we see coaches exposing their QBs as much as we saw last year for 4 years & those guys are ruined.
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Old 02-20-2013   #16
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Default Re: Cosellís Take: Running quarterbacks are great, but throwing from the pocket is st

It doesn't matter a lick if you are a "running" QB if you can't pass. Ask Tim Tebow

The common thing about all the exciting new "running" QB's is that they are all gifted passers....that is the long and short of it.
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