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Old 08-14-2012   #1
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Default 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

In three screen shots, I will show the progression of a 2nd & Goal at the Panthers' 2-yard-line.

The play might have just been a bad play from the get-go, based on the Panthers' defensive formation opposite of our own. The play itself could have been handled better by a few Texans personnel, but again: Some plays just get counter-attacked well by the opponent.

SHOT 1: Myers Moves Immediately To The Second Level...





SHOT 2: Myers Out Of The Play, Butler Picks Wrong LB To Block...





SHOT 3: Kudos To The NT, He Made a Mess Of Our Plans The Whole Way...

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Old 08-14-2012   #2
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

After thinking about this one for awhile, I think Myers was doing what was planned all along (at least HIS role on the play)...Myers was supposed to get to the second level, and Caldwell was supposed to take the NT and shove him into the second level right behind/beside Myers as Myers explodes into the end zone.

But Caldwell doesn't get that NT cleared out very well, Myers senses it...tries to turn back around and help Caldwell, but it's too late: The NT has successfully held his ground AND log-jammed the middle to the point that the only saving grace for the Texans is our RT Butler.

Butler has two choices on the play, and I think he was going to be damned if he did and damned if he didn't no matter which LB he chose to block (because both LBs were in position to shoot the gap and stuff Tate).

Not really mentioned much is James Casey at FB who, like Myers, blows through to the weak side of our formation and gets into the second level...but the problem is that the strength or focus of the Panthers' pursuit/contain was never on our weak side (which was our left side of the OL); it was on the strong side (Owen Daniels' side on the right side of our line with Caldwell and Butler there alongside OD). So Casey's role was nullified immediately.

Does this mean that the play was supposed to go to the left side, and Tate cut it back (either by design, or by Tate's choice if a backside lane opened up for him)? Our scheme runs a lot on backside cuts or straight ahead hole-finding and hole-shooting...whichever one our RBs want to try for. This run play, IMO, is just one of those times that even if every person did what he was supposed to do on the play...the play might still have been a dud.

I call this play a wash. Yes, it can be quibbled that Myers might have left the play too early...or Caldwell didn't clear his man out enough...or that Butler didn't identify the right LB to block...but the Panthers did a good job of having their NT occupy enough of the "storm" that the Panthers LBs, led by a very instinctual Luke Kuechly (rookie, #59) flowed with the play and picked their gap to shoot (knowing the RB would flow to that same gap, too).

I like running plays that stretch the edges, such as the 1st and goal play that Tate ran to the right side of our line for a big gain. The run plays that start straight down the pipe, IMO, do not maximize our OL and RB ability to create space and abuse the mismatches that occur from it. Once a NT holds his ground on a Texans run play that starts up the middle, the LBs can flow and choose the gap(s) that open up. If the Texans' run play starts wide, there are almost unending gaps that will open and close for our RB to choose from. Just my two cents worth.
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Old 08-14-2012   #3
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

Luke Kuechly, rookie #59, is going to be a great NFL LB.

In the very next play, which was a 3rd and goal from their own 3...a play I did a 3 & Out analysis on in another thread...he got burned by Owen Daniels and OD was going to catch a TD from Schaub, but still...Kuechly is the real deal.

He wears #59, appropriately enough.
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Old 08-14-2012   #4
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Default

This is what I see:

Weakside inside zone.

I think Tate should have kept it playside and not cut it back. But the play may have still not worked.

OD did a poor job on the backside overtaking the DE. Meyers looks like he's moving too fast and not giving a good chip on the NT before going to the second level, but it's hard to tell because I can't see where they were lined up pre snap.

Caldwell looks like he did ok.

Overall, the mike, the NT and the strong side lb did a good job.

They looked like they were in good position to stop the play regardless of what tate did, but i think he gives himself more of a chance if he let's the play continue to develop. Casey probably picks up the play side lb or safety and he's left with one guy between him and the endzone.

But that backside lb still may get on the play if not caught up in trash because there is no way butler touches him if Tate keeps going playside instead of cutting it back.

Edit: on a second look, Caldwell did a bad job and meyers is probably used to briesel taking better steps and having been in position in time. Meyers is fine. Caldwell looms pretty bad there.
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Old 08-14-2012   #5
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

From looking at those pictures, that play looks like an inside zone to the weakside where but Tate saw 43 ready to fill that gap so tried to cut it back. The main clue why I think the play is designed to go weakside is that OD lets the OLB through untouched by design so that has to be the backside.

I agree that Kuechly should get a lot of the credit for this stop. Picture 1 shows classic zone combo-block on the SDE (OD and Butler), NT (Cadlwell and Myers), and UT (Smith and Casey). My read is that the plan is for Myers and Casey to go up and take Kuechly and 43. But Kuechly made a quick break so Myers has to break back onto the NT so that Caldwell has a shot at blocking Kuechly. You can see in picture 2 Caldwell is trying to disengage. The other key player for the Panthers is the UT (#97) who does his job at occupying the double-team. If Casey had been able to get to the LB that would have been a clear lane on the left side for a TD.
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Old 08-14-2012   #6
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

Love this kind of analysis. Give me more of it along with pictures. Major reps.
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Old 08-14-2012   #7
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

When I looked at this play earlier (in the Pick-A-Texan thread), I was only watching Myers. To me, Myers plays this correctly.

The first couple of times I looked at it, I wasn't looking for who blew their block. But from looking at this, it looks to me like Butler should have taken out Kuechly. It looks like he was trying to get too far upfield too quickly and picked out 53 as his guy and missed 59, the guy I think he should have blocked. But it also looks like Caldwell didn't get his guy blocked and that disrupted Tate's read/choices.
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Old 08-14-2012   #8
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rey View Post
This is what I see:

Weakside inside zone.

I think Tate should have kept it playside and not cut it back. But the play may have still not worked.

OD did a poor job on the backside overtaking the DE. Meyers looks like he's moving too fast and not giving a good chip on the NT before going to the second level, but it's hard to tell because I can't see where they were lined up pre snap.

Caldwell looks like he did ok.

Overall, the mike, the NT and the strong side lb did a good job.

They looked like they were in good position to stop the play regardless of what tate did, but i think he gives himself more of a chance if he let's the play continue to develop. Casey probably picks up the play side lb or safety and he's left with one guy between him and the endzone.

But that backside lb still may get on the play if not caught up in trash because there is no way butler touches him if Tate keeps going playside instead of cutting it back.

Edit: on a second look, Caldwell did a bad job and meyers is probably used to briesel taking better steps and having been in position in time. Meyers is fine. Caldwell looms pretty bad there.
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Old 08-14-2012   #9
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

GO TO THIS NFL.COM VIDEO (:22 mark of the video) and look at the play which begins at the :22 mark of the video.

You'll see the play in full motion. Now that you've seen the still shots, the video might create a clearer picture of what each of you guys had been looking for or wondering about earlier.

I still think this is just one of those plays that is dependent upon the defense buying into what we want them to believe...and yet there is still the significant option of the RB (Tate in this case) who has to read whether to go for the Plan A or shoot for a Plan B if he wants to or feels he HAS to.

What muddies the water here, IMO, is that the cutback by Tate doesn't jive with what the C, RG, and RT (as well as Casey at FB!) is engaged with in regards to the way the Panthers' defensive guys (the NT and the LBs) are reacting.

TATE, as Rey pointed out, might should have kept it going weak side...but hey, no guarantee that the play would've worked anyways had he done so.

Which makes me think that this is the sort of play you have to really think twice about when facing a defense who lines up pre-snap like the Panthers lined up. And at the end of the day, either Schaub has to audible his guys to something else OR Myers has to call out the assignments better OR the other OL has to understand and respond properly as Myers expects them to.
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Old 08-14-2012   #10
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

I don't want to create an atmosphere where every time we discuss this stuff...either Caldwell or Butler become the target of the criticism.

Yes, Myers knows his stuff. Knows it in his sleep, blindfolded, etc. But yet there is also room for gray area too. We don't know what Schaub did, pre snap, to align or call out attention or whatever. We don't know what Myers did or did not call out, or if it was clear to some guys and unclear to others.

The point is that we can sometimes use our amateur minds to find professional answers that are not as professional as we might think. I can see now why some teams or coaches are not too happy about the NFL releasing the All-22 film to the fans every week during the season. We're not going to always know whether a guy blew his job or not, because his job at that moment might have made him collateral damage based on what the opponent counter-attacked with on the play. OR...the coaches, or center, or QB, or MLB, etc., might have falsely called an audible out or something. We just don't know everything.
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Old 08-14-2012   #11
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by GP View Post
That's a better picture.

Looks like the panthers have 9 guys in the box.

So we have 7 guys trying to block 9.

Maybe in the regular season schaub checks to something else. At least I'm hoping that would be the case. Looks like man to man outside on the receivers. Would be nice if walter motioned over and then you'd have both corners on an island on both sides.

Either way, that is a defense asking to be thrown on.

If Matt stafford gets that look he's going up top to megatron. I don't know if we regularly see looks like that in the reg season, but if we do I hope schaub and kubiak make teams respect their gangsta.
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Old 08-14-2012   #12
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

If Tate keeps it play side he has a good chance of scoring. The NT might have made the play on him, but if he doesn't I take my chances with Tate against a safety in the hole any day of the week. Wade Smith did a good job and Myers looked to be in position to get a hat on the 53. I think he saw the Nose and decided to bend it back. If he stays with it I think he scores.
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Old 08-15-2012   #13
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

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Originally Posted by Texn4life View Post
If Tate keeps it play side he has a good chance of scoring. The NT might have made the play on him, but if he doesn't I take my chances with Tate against a safety in the hole any day of the week. Wade Smith did a good job and Myers looked to be in position to get a hat on the 53. I think he saw the Nose and decided to bend it back. If he stays with it I think he scores.
I re-watched the play with my PreSeason Live subscription on NFL.com (that's how I'm able to post these screenshots, btw).

It looks like Tate had ONE focus on that play, and that was running right into the gap between C and LG. He never deviates from that path; there was never a bob here or a duck there...he was steamrolling pretty straight ahead and to the left only slightly.

The hole that opened up a bit more to his left, as he's hitting the LOS and meeting the log jam mash-up in the middle (Myers and crew), he never sees it opening, never tries to bounce it to the left at all.

And furthermore, it makes me think (after seeing this by Tate) that Caldwell really REALLY goofed up the play by not getting ahold of the NT and moving him backward or clean out to the far left. Butler added to the misery by not helping pave a cutback lane to Tate's right, but then again I think Butler and OD were never supposed to have to 100% worry about that. The key was Caldwell's man.

Sigh. Right side, RG and RT, might be a problem folks.

I'm going to watch some Texans-Panthers footage to see what Newton, Brooks, and Mondek were able to accomplish. And Gardener too.
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Old 08-15-2012   #14
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

The reason I think based on the pics that the play was designed to go to the left side is because of the positioning of the snap and the flow of the play by the lineman. Rey may know know this a little better than me, but generally during zone runs the Center releases play side.His first step a lot of times is going to usually be pretty telling to try to get a block on LB. I was kind of focusing on Myers on this play and its just kind of what I saw. With the way we run our offense the running backs have the option to take the run somewhere else if they see something, but just going on the end zone view alone from the Line I believe the initial play design is to take it to the left.
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Old 08-15-2012   #15
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

If you remember Arian had a bit of a problem at times last year trying cut back or just go right upfield instead of following the blocking of the play. A lot of times you can kind of get guys over pursuing when they read their initial keys, but in the red zone its a little tough. Patience is a skill that takes a while a lot of times in the red zone for backs. Most backs are just so much in a hurry to get up field as quick as possible. When you watch Arian in the red zone he's very good at following his blocking.
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Old 08-15-2012   #16
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

Quote:
Originally Posted by dsorc View Post
From looking at those pictures, that play looks like an inside zone to the weakside where but Tate saw 43 ready to fill that gap so tried to cut it back. The main clue why I think the play is designed to go weakside is that OD lets the OLB through untouched by design so that has to be the backside.

I agree that Kuechly should get a lot of the credit for this stop. Picture 1 shows classic zone combo-block on the SDE (OD and Butler), NT (Cadlwell and Myers), and UT (Smith and Casey). My read is that the plan is for Myers and Casey to go up and take Kuechly and 43. But Kuechly made a quick break so Myers has to break back onto the NT so that Caldwell has a shot at blocking Kuechly. You can see in picture 2 Caldwell is trying to disengage. The other key player for the Panthers is the UT (#97) who does his job at occupying the double-team. If Casey had been able to get to the LB that would have been a clear lane on the left side for a TD.
I'm with you, Rey, and Txn4life on this one.

There were 3 clear combo blocks to spring the play to the weak side.

Too many unblocked defenders on the strong side for the play to be deemed going that-a-way (#50 & #30).

Tate should stay weak side unless he saw the defense overplay that side heavily (which they didn't).

The 34 WDE (#97) had a quick first step on Wade Smith; to me, this is the weakest point on the front.

Overall, they won the trench war.
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Old 08-15-2012   #17
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rey View Post
That's a better picture.

Looks like the panthers have 9 guys in the box.

So we have 7 guys trying to block 9.

Maybe in the regular season schaub checks to something else. At least I'm hoping that would be the case. Looks like man to man outside on the receivers. Would be nice if walter motioned over and then you'd have both corners on an island on both sides.

Either way, that is a defense asking to be thrown on.

If Matt stafford gets that look he's going up top to megatron. I don't know if we regularly see looks like that in the reg season, but if we do I hope schaub and kubiak make teams respect their gangsta.

I think when Kubiak says we should be able to run on a 9 man box, it is because we don't plan to attack all 9 men. I think you were right & this should have been an inside zone to the weak side. Then you've got a hat on a hat, a situation we should win.

But Wade is stood up on the left side, he gets no lateral movement of 97, Caldwell does what he's supposed to & holds up the NT while Myers makes his way to the second level (but Myers going back to the NT makes me question my analysis). Casey should come free & put a body on the safety/LB that Myers doesn't get, but has to help on 97..... which plugs the whole & Tate has to cut it back into traffic.

Here, you can see Wade has outside position. If he was able to keep that position, allowing Casey to get outside, Tate would have easily fallen into the end-zone.

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Old 08-15-2012   #18
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Default Re: 3 & Out Play Analysis: Log Jam On 2nd & Goal

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rey View Post
That's a better picture.

Looks like the panthers have 9 guys in the box.

So we have 7 guys trying to block 9.

Maybe in the regular season schaub checks to something else. At least I'm hoping that would be the case. Looks like man to man outside on the receivers. Would be nice if walter motioned over and then you'd have both corners on an island on both sides.

Either way, that is a defense asking to be thrown on.
If it was everywhere but the red zone I would agree with you. In compressed field of the redzone, the safeties can drop into the box and still be deep enough for pass coverage. So it's kind of a coinflip really. I could see the argument for a play to the outside since it seem like all the defenders are bunched up on the inside.


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Originally Posted by Fiddler View Post
I think when Kubiak says we should be able to run on a 9 man box, it is because we don't plan to attack all 9 men. I think you were right & this should have been an inside zone to the weak side. Then you've got a hat on a hat, a situation we should win.

But Wade is stood up on the left side, he gets no lateral movement of 97, Caldwell does what he's supposed to & holds up the NT while Myers makes his way to the second level (but Myers going back to the NT makes me question my analysis). Casey should come free & put a body on the safety/LB that Myers doesn't get, but has to help on 97..... which plugs the whole & Tate has to cut it back into traffic.

Here, you can see Wade has outside position. If he was able to keep that position, allowing Casey to get outside, Tate would have easily fallen into the end-zone.
The more I think about it, I think Myers might have situationally misplayed the combo block. I think the design of the play assumed that the defense would react to the slant of OL and attack the weakside. That would have put Kuechly attacking weakside A gap. Myers chips the DT, leaves him to Caldwell, and goes up looking for Kuechly but Kuechly broke so hard on the strongside B/A gap that he is threatening to blow up the play on the backfield. The proper release would have been Caldwell going up to Kuechly and Myers staying with the DT but that's hindsight. It's funny, but if Tate stays weakside and scores, it would be Panther's fans analysing this play and saying Kuechly filled the wrong gap. He just did it so effectively it killed the play.
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Old 08-15-2012   #19
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If it was everywhere but the red zone I would agree with you. In compressed field of the redzone, the safeties can drop into the box and still be deep enough for pass coverage. .
There is is only one safety in the game. And he is over OD.

There is no way he can provide help on both those wr's on the opposite side of the field.

Maybe 43 is a safety, but there is no way he can help on the outside wr and the inside wr on a quick throw.

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Old 08-15-2012   #20
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When I looked at this play earlier (in the Pick-A-Texan thread), I was only watching Myers. To me, Myers plays this correctly.

The first couple of times I looked at it, I wasn't looking for who blew their block. But from looking at this, it looks to me like Butler should have taken out Kuechly. It looks like he was trying to get too far upfield too quickly and picked out 53 as his guy and missed 59, the guy I think he should have blocked. But it also looks like Caldwell didn't get his guy blocked and that disrupted Tate's read/choices.
No way butler has kuechly. It looks like that because Tate cut it back. And cut backs are fine, but you have to press the hole. Looks like tate should have just stayed playside or at least pressed the whole more.

He makes the o line look silly IMO and that's why you have those lb's in position to make a play. Butler blocks the lb that he was intended to block, Meyers and Caldwell were responsible for the NT and mike.

Had Tate kept it play side the mike would have flowed and Meyers would have been in excellent position to combo up to him.

Butler probably wouldn't cut off that backside lb but he could get a body on him and try to just push him past the hole and make it difficult for him to make the tackle.

Last edited by Rey; 08-15-2012 at 11:11 AM.
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