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Old 05-08-2004   #1
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Default Babin will be our LOLB

Apparently Babin is taking all of his snaps at LOLB and Wong is moving to ROLB. I like this move. If the Peek performs better than Wong at ROLB, Wong can move inside (and potentially replace Foreman).

http://www.chron.com/cs/CDA/ssistory.mpl/sports/2556945

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Old 05-08-2004   #2
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That closes the loop somewhat on this thread: http://www.houstontexans.com/fan_zon...read.php?t=86]
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Old 05-08-2004   #3
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What this Chronicle report also cleared up for myself is that the terms Strong Side and Weak Side do not apply in the Texans' defensive scheme. Contrary to what is a common practice with other teams and defenses, the Texans do not switch their linebackers to fit the offensive alignment. As many of you others use, the proper terminology is simply ROLB and LOLB.
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Old 05-08-2004   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Number19
What this Chronicle report also cleared up for myself is that the terms Strong Side and Weak Side do not apply in the Texans' defensive scheme. Contrary to what is a common practice with other teams and defenses, the Texans do not switch their linebackers to fit the offensive alignment. As many of you others use, the proper terminology is simply ROLB and LOLB.
I would add a couple of things to Number19's comments.

1) While the Texans don't switch their OUTSIDE linebackers to adjust to changes in the offensive formation, they certainly do have a strong side and weak side, probably called by one of the interior linebackers. This call will be used for stunts and adjustments, such as the defensive linemen slanting to the strangth of the formation on a snap. I beleive Number 19 is suggesting that the term Stong Side and Weak Side Linebackers is inappropriate.

2) The Chronicle article and the quote from Defensive Coordinator Vic Fangio suggest that the motivation for putting Babin on the left side is the fact that he is bigger than Wong ( ... at least 15 lbs) 'to take on bigger offensive players like the tight end and tackles.' While it is open to teams to line their tight end up on the left side (and the Texans won't switch their outside linebackers to counteract the move, although they may switch their strength call), most teams have right handed quarterbacks and accordingly would prefer to have their tight end on the right side most of the time.

The Texans approach reminds me most of the way I believe all teams line up their offensive tackles. The don't switch tackles just because they want to put the tight end on the left. In other words, although the left tackle is sometimes covered with a thight end, he usually is on his own.
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Old 05-08-2004   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mistril48
...I beleive Number 19 is suggesting that the term Stong Side and Weak Side Linebackers is inappropriate...
You are correct; poor choice of wording on my part. And thanks for the further explanation of our defense.
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Old 05-08-2004   #6
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DCapers & VFangio call'em Mac & Buc LBs I believe.
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Old 05-08-2004   #7
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Originally Posted by CoachJim
DCapers & VFangio call'em Mac & Buc LBs I believe.
Foreman is the BLB and Sharper is the MLB in our system.
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Old 05-08-2004   #8
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Perhaps someone can offer a clarification on the Chronicle's statement that the downside of Wong moving to the right side is that he will be facing LT's. Smith will be lining up as the RDE, I believe, over the LT. Who will be blocking him? The OG? It seems to me that in this scenerio, Smith could become a "blocker" on the LT, giving our ROLB a clear shot to the QB, taking on only the FB or HB. It just seems that there is a serious mismatch on that side; and how did we manage to have so few sacks these past two years?
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Old 05-08-2004   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SteelBlue
Foreman is the BLB and Sharper is the MLB in our system.
... the outside linebackers are Sam (LOLB) and Will (ROLB)
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Old 05-08-2004   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Number19
Perhaps someone can offer a clarification on the Chronicle's statement that the downside of Wong moving to the right side is that he will be facing LT's. Smith will be lining up as the RDE, I believe, over the LT. Who will be blocking him? The OG? It seems to me that in this scenerio, Smith could become a "blocker" on the LT, giving our ROLB a clear shot to the QB, taking on only the FB or HB. It just seems that there is a serious mismatch on that side; and how did we manage to have so few sacks these past two years?
Typically, the LOLB is outside the shoulder of the TE and the LOLB is outside the should of the LT. Accordingly, the ROLB has a shorter distance to the quarterback (Advantage). The Chronicle says 'Theoretically, the move should give Wong a better chance as a pass rusher ...' Vic Fangio tried to point out that there were advantages and disadvantages of rushing from both positions by pointing out that there have been many excellent pass rushers who worked on the left side (Kevin Greene and Reggie White).

The disadvantage of the ROLB is that the offensive coordinators understand the shorter distance and put their best pass blocking tackle, in space, on the left side (usually also the quarterback's blind side.) The Chronicle's statement also referred to the fact that the ROLB will usually face the best blocking tackle.

Without blitzing, there are five offensive lineman blocking four rushers. In a 4-3 the left tackle slides out to cover the right defensive end. Against a 3-4, the left tackle slides out to get the ROLB, if he is the 4th rusher. Depending on the pass protection, the left guard could be sliding out to help the left tackle, or working on a defensive tackle with the center. Pass protection packages also introduce support (and blitz pickup) from running backs and TEs in certain situations.

If the RDE (4-3) or the ROLB (3-4) has a clear shot at the quarterback around the outside of the tackle, there has been a breakdown on pass protection. The tackle should have slid out to pick him up.

A nice overload would be to send the NT between the center and the left guard and the RDE outside of the left tackle, requiring him to go with him. You then send both Sharper and the ROLB between the left guard and the left tackle.
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Old 05-08-2004   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Number19
Smith will be lining up as the RDE, I believe, over the LT. Who will be blocking him?
Usually, the Texans play the RDE in the gap between the LG and LT. The ROLB (when he lines up on the LOS) plays off the left shoulder of the LT.
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Old 05-08-2004   #12
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I still have several comments/questions.
1) Reading up on the 34, my understanding is that the NT lines up over the center (obvious); and the DE's line up on the outside shoulder of the OT's. Filling the gap between the NT and the DE is an ILB. The OLB's line up further outside of the DE's. On the left side, this means he lines up over the TE.
2) Now, I've always thought when one of the OLB's dropped down to come on the rush, the defensive alignment more or less stayed as above, in a 34 alignment. But it seems this may not be the case; Capers may shift into a traditional 43.
3) My original question was posed with the idea of rushing an OLB from the 34 alignment. This would mean that the OG would have to "pull" in order to get sufficently outside to reach the DE or OLB. By pulling, I mean he might also "drop back" sufficently to pick up his block, if the QB would roll slightly to his right. Either way, a strong, fast rusher would have the advantage over a much slower OG.
4) In my scenerio above, the C would take on the NT, maybe with help from the RG. Anyhow, with the OG pulling out to reach his blocking assignment on the OLB/DE, this creates a huge hole for an ILB blitz. And this creates the necessity for the ROG taking on the NT one on one, with the C blocking on the ILB.
5) The situation as descibed in (4) means if you have a NT of the caliber of Wilfork or Sopoaga, who are extremely difficult, if not impossible, to block one on one, then you have extremely effective pressure up the middle.
6) If the OG does not pull, then the OLB is left one on one with the FB or HB.

Does any of this make sense? It just seems to me that when you rush an OLB from a traditional 43 alignment, you are simply giving the offense better blocking angles.
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Old 05-08-2004   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aj.
Usually, the Texans play the RDE in the gap between the LG and LT. The ROLB (when he lines up on the LOS) plays off the left shoulder of the LT.
This explains a lot. I have the DE's lining up futher outside.
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Old 05-08-2004   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Number19
I still have several comments/questions.
1) Reading up on the 34, my understanding is that the NT lines up over the center (obvious); and the DE's line up on the outside shoulder of the OT's. Filling the gap between the NT and the DE is an ILB. The OLB's line up further outside of the DE's. On the left side, this means he lines up over the TE.
Essentially, the NT is head up on the center and resposible for the two A gaps (between the center and guard on both sides). The DEs are essentially heads up on the two offensive tackles and they are responsible for the B gap (between the guard and the tackle) and the C gap (outside the tackle). Hence, the NT and the DEs are playing a two-gap technique. Not infrequently, the defensive linemen will 'shade' by setting up on the inside or outside shoulder of the offensive linemen they are assigned to, but usually they are still responsible for the two gaps. This is perhaps most obvious when the NT lines up on an angle with his nose on the center and his butt facing towards one of the side lines.

In the above scenario, the two interior LBs are essentially lined up heads up on the guards, but approximately 8-9 yards off the line of scrimmage. In a perfect world, the defensive linemen are absorbing the offensive linemen, demanding double teams and the interior LBs are freed up to make the tackle (for example, it when it takes the center and a guard to move the NT out of the hole), or at least the interior LBs are taking on the fullback in the hole to close it.
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Old 05-08-2004   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Number19
I still have several comments/questions.
2) Now, I've always thought when one of the OLB's dropped down to come on the rush, the defensive alignment more or less stayed as above, in a 34 alignment. But it seems this may not be the case; Capers may shift into a traditional 43.
I believe you are describing two situations.

In the first situation, the Texans move out of their base 3-4 into a nickel, or dime coverage. Because the Texans are adding DBs, they have to take somebody off the field. Not infrequently, the Texans were taking DEs (like Deloach and Sears) off the field and having the OLBs (like Wong and Peeks) put theirs hands down, heads up on the offensive tackles, in the hopes of generating a pass rush. In some cases, Gary Walker would move to NT and Seth Payne would come off. It appears in these situations that the Texans are still in a 3-4, because their are still three 'linemen' with their hands down, but instead of it being Walker-Payne-Deloach, it's Wong-Walker-Peek (say). It is not a 3-4, because there are not 3 defensive linemen and 4 linebackers(remember the extra DBs). The announcers make it particularly confusing, because if Peek gets a sack from this formation, they will say that Capers specializes in getting sacks from OLBs, but technically, although Peek gets the sack, he earned it 'as a DE.

In the second situation, a Team wants to shift from a 3-4 to a 4-3, to confuse the blocking scheme of the offense. In this case, their will still be 4 DBs on the field. It is difficult to do this generally, because you need a defense tackle who can switch to a one-gap technique (Walker can), a DE who can play like a 4-3 DE (Smith can) and a OLB who can put his hand down and play like an outside DE in a 4-3 (we are told Babin can). I believe that the Texans are excited by the prospect of sliding from the 3-4 to the 4-3 effortlessly next year, a fairly unique situation. In the 4-3 configuration, the remaining OLB (Peek) will play the Will LB, one interior LB will play the MAC and the other will play the SAM.
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Old 05-08-2004   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Number19
I still have several comments/questions.
3) My original question was posed with the idea of rushing an OLB from the 34 alignment. This would mean that the OG would have to "pull" in order to get sufficently outside to reach the DE or OLB. By pulling, I mean he might also "drop back" sufficently to pick up his block, if the QB would roll slightly to his right. Either way, a strong, fast rusher would have the advantage over a much slower OG.
4) In my scenerio above, the C would take on the NT, maybe with help from the RG. Anyhow, with the OG pulling out to reach his blocking assignment on the OLB/DE, this creates a huge hole for an ILB blitz. And this creates the necessity for the ROG taking on the NT one on one, with the C blocking on the ILB.
5) The situation as descibed in (4) means if you have a NT of the caliber of Wilfork or Sopoaga, who are extremely difficult, if not impossible, to block one on one, then you have extremely effective pressure up the middle.
6) If the OG does not pull, then the OLB is left one on one with the FB or HB.

Does any of this make sense? It just seems to me that when you rush an OLB from a traditional 43 alignment, you are simply giving the offense better blocking angles.
I think that essentially what happens is that when there ISN'T a blitz, in a 3-4, usually the three defensive linemen are rushing, along with a LB, usually one of the OLB (of course, they could send both OLBs and drop a DL into coverage, or drop both OLB in coverage and rush one of the interior LB). If more than 4 are rushing, then its a blitz. In a 4-3, if its not a blitz, then its the four DLs rushing, fairly predictable. In a 3-4, even when you don't blitz, its more unpredictable, becuase you don't know who will be the 4th rusher.

Essentially, the center blocks the NT, the tackles block the ends and the guards are available to double-team. Once the OLB rushes, the offensive tackle 'passes off' the DE to the guard and he slides out to block the OLB. Now only the guard on the other side is available to double team.

Obviously, there are millions of variations, but the tackle would not intentionally leave the rushing OLB for a FB, or RB. They need to be available for a 5th or 6th rush from a blitzer.
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Old 05-08-2004   #17
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soooo...

To the right, does not make a Wong?
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Old 05-08-2004   #18
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soooo...

To the right, does not make a Wong?
I'd have that bag over my head too.
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Old 05-09-2004   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Number19
how did we manage to have so few sacks these past two years?
The DL was not drawing double teams. When that happens it is easier for the OL to pick up blocks.
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Old 05-09-2004   #20
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Buc and Mac, Sam and Will! Man, I thought I was confused before!
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