in re: is GRIII on a tear
Sounds like our favorite scatback is headed back to offense. From a Rivals spring preview article found here ($), I give you the money quote:
"He's supposedly going back to offense," Blackwell [ed: Norfleet's 7-on-7 coach] said. "They will use him in the slot and in the return game, and some as a running back. Coach [Greg] Mattison is saying he can still use him on defense and is making an argument to keep him there, but Dennis' passion is for the offense. That's where he wants to play, and from talking to Dennis it appears that's where he's going to play.
The rest of the article basically describes why Norfleet went to defense in the first place (potential for PT in the bowl game) and that offense is his true passion (duh). It also highlights his need to beef up his blocking and grasp of the playbook in order to see the field more.
Brian is going to cry tears of joy.
The 33 year old coach is best known for working with Case Keenum at Houston and most recently being the Offensive Coordinator for Texas A&M directing Manziel to a Heisman Thropy. Clearly this is a risky move hiring someone without any head coaching experience but I think their fans would rather see this than hiring another retread.
I saw this question asked in another thread and it was never answered and I searched the site and didn't find anything that came up.
Is there a viable counter/strategy to cut blocking? I know this seems to happen a lot to Campbell (from the Iowa game), Martin, Suh and I just don't have the football accumen to figure out what an opposing defense can do in that instance.
So any coaches/players/educated observers out there have any insights into this?
This began as a reply to Misopogon's post, but I thought it warranted some Board banter.
One of my biggest frustrations last year was Denard's unwillingness to tuck the ball and run on designed pass plays. Some people seem to be putting that on Denard, but I don't think that's accurate. Rich Rod was an avowed control freak and didn't seem to tolerate any deviation from his schemes or play calls. Did we ever see one of our quarterbacks audible during RR's tenure? I feel like Rich even said something about this a few years back, along the lines of, "If we execute, we don't need to audible."
Denard is such a lethal runner, he should have been taught to take off as soon as his first and second reads weren't wide open. But it seemed like our coaches were telling DR that "If it's a pass play, you're passing. End of story." Doesn't make sense to me, but if the coaches were giving DR the green light to scramble, we would have seen that happen more often as the season progressed and Denard became more comfortable in the pocket. Instead we saw more defenses recognizing that Denard will never run on a designed pass play, and so our passing game became less effective and Denard's YPC fell.
So after a year of screaming at the TV, watching Denard search in vain for receivers on 3rd and 7 when there was nothing between him and the first down marker but open space, I'm excited to see him in a new offense that forces defenses to respect (and fear) his scrambling ability, even on plays where he doesn't take off in the first two seconds.
Don't know if Borges will do this, but it was pretty clear that scrambling on designed pass plays was verboten in RR's offense.
After perusing the comments on Brian's latest article, I thought I'd offer up some different analyses on "Modern" offenses, terminology, etc.
Pro-Style. Spread, etc. I think these are dated terms and shouldn't really be used anymore by this board. Look at the Colts and Patriots. They are often in 3+ wide receiver, shotgun sets, yet are pro teams. Andrew Luck at Stanford occasionally ran a Zone Read - and kept it. MSU ran a VERY successful Zone Read at us this year out of their "Pro Style" offense.
With the advent of the internet, modern tape review, 20 hour work days (for coaches, zing!) etc. there aren't a whole lot of "new" concepts in offensive football save the Pistol set - debut a few years ago. The future is Multiple.
The "Wildcat" revolutionized football a few years ago - until defenses remembered that this was 1950's football and how to stop it. Now even the Dolphins rarely run it anymore. Rich ran many of the same plays Michigan ran in the 1940's, just with wide-outs as opposed to tight ends. There are an enormous amount of offensive plays out there, but all of them can be stopped by defenses with enough time to prepare.
Navy's Triple Option is ridiculously old offense, but it still works when executed well.
For a great example of what "modern" offense is, watch the Philly Eagles some time with Michael Vick. They run out of the I. They run a zone read 3 times a game. On 4th and 1 I saw them run QB Iso (denard's main play vs. ND). Those are football tactics from 1900, 1940, and the early 2000s. In preseason this year I saw the Titans run a Navy-style triple option with Vince Young. Last week in the playoffs the Packers many times ran out of a 3 back set.
Modern football is multiple football. I dont want Michigan to be "Zone Read" Only, I form Only, "Spread" or "Pro".
It may be a pipe dream with college kids, but the keys to offense aren't scheme based anymore. As Bo said it's all about Blocking and Tackling. Execution. I hope that Brady has a very open mind when it comes to the playbook, and that our Michigan Team can execute better than everyone else.