fair point that
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|4 days 11 hours ago||Weakness and weakness||
Our D just got gashed by a competent RB and the strength of PSU's defense goes right at the weakness of our offense. My gut is very nervous.
It's not the whole story, of course. PSU doesn't have Indiana's stretch plays or tempo, and Harbaugh isn't likely to Hoke the offense into the ground. But, as Brian says, this game is likely to get very ugly.
|4 days 11 hours ago||?||
I'm kind of confused as to how a TE that can neither block nor catch can be considered "talented".
|4 days 13 hours ago||Jeremy Lin vs. the Lakers||
Yep. It kind of reminded me of Linsanity, when the Lakers (who were fatigued and overall played like shit) tried to keep him outside the paint and dared him to shoot jumpers. Why? Because even when he was tearing up the league, his jumper was misfiring like crazy. Up to that point he'd scored almost all his points on drives. He just happened to find his shooting touch that night and destroyed them.
Indiana wasn't dumb; they saw the tape on Rudock and gambled that he couldn't burn them deep. Even after the first few long passes connected, you don't re-write your gameplan on (what was mostly likely, from their point of view) a fluke. They also had to get in Rudock's face; even if he excels at pocket presence, it's not like their secondary can adequately cover Chesson or Butt.
Indiana's gameplan was sound for what they had; they just didn't get the Jake Rudock they prepared for.
|4 days 13 hours ago||Ehh, no||
If no one's in front of him, sure. If a closing LB or S does what they're trained to do when the QB's in the process of launching forward, very bad things can happen. The QB's basically targeting himself.
A better thing would be for the QB to tuck into fetal position with the throwing arm on the ball, knees tucked and off hand bracing the head, twist and roll backfirst. The forearm could get bruised but that won't debilitate a QB, the armor will protect against a front impact, the head and neck are protected and braced, and the knees shield the ball. I think coaches would balk because that exposes the back and arms to impact, but it's better if they're angled to best aborb the hits they take anyway. With a slide the legs are exposed but everyone goes for the head/body which isn't positioned to take the hit.
|4 days 14 hours ago||Maaaybe||
UFR breaks down individual play so it wouldn't get swayed by that. Brian was pretty clear on whether he believed a play was derped due to the OL or the RB. If a lineman biffs a block, it's possible to pick that out on tape. With our guys it's often linemen just running right by defenders and there's now way the RB gets dinged for that.
However, and MGoBlog has pointed this out at times, it is difficult to know if the RB's play is affected by the O-line play. They may not trust what they see. I don't know if the O-line gets affected by RB play though, because they're not looking at what the RB does. They just block guys and the RB ideally runs by them.
|4 days 14 hours ago||How that work?||
I kind of understood the route points to mean the WR executed them so well it would create separation or otherwise was key to the play.
It wasn't the prettiest stop-and-go I'd seen by a long shot; Harbaugh said Fisch dailed it up even though they hadn't practiced it that week. They executed it well enough to complete, but I agree that this was more of an RPS play than Gallon-esque route-running.
|4 days 14 hours ago||Brandon's Lasting Lessons||
I think he refers to the fact that Toys R Us is Dave Brandon's new gig, and his modus operandi was "If it ain't broke, break it."
|4 days 14 hours ago||Probably impossible||
PATs and FGs aside because the former are routine and the latter are usually kicker vs. the elements, special teams is so spread out you need an all-22 view to review them, but TV execs like to hire guys who think they're Hollywood action movie directors to oversee the camera work of football games.
You see the whole field now and then, but I don't think it's consistent enough to commit to delivering STURFs.
|4 days 16 hours ago||We ain't them tho||
Michigan's offense isn't Ohio State or Indiana. We beat Indiana by outscoring them, but they faced a vastly superior defense in that game. Penn State's D-line might be overrated but it's not like we'll make that distinction matter.
What makes me nervous here is that Penn State's D attacks our weakness. Rudock has good pocket presence but he's gun-shy so expect a lot of throwaways and 2-yard scrambles into their ILBs. Smith is tough but he won't out-muscle their DTs and can't find a hole to save his life. We probably won't execute Power very well which leaves us with the screen game as our bread-and-butter.
Not that their offense is in better shape. Even our depleted D-line will slash past their O-line, they don't have the quickness or scheme to go sideways and Hack won't find many receivers open. The only thing I'm nervous about is Barkley vs. Bolden. Our safeties will probably be enlisted into preventing deep balls (Hack will probably bring his A-game) so whenever Barkley gets past our D-line he probably won't see anyone for about twenty yards.
The main advantage we have going into this game is Harbaugh. If both defenses grind each others' offenses into a stalemate, Hack won't have a guy who can dial up RPS+3 plays to generate points when PSU really needs them.
|4 days 16 hours ago||Oh god||
I could put on 130 pounds of muscle, and the thought of a 300-pound Jake Ryan would still terrify me.
|4 days 17 hours ago||Last chance to say it with abandon||
|4 days 18 hours ago||Probably not||
Zone stretch doesn't look to me like something you can implement quickly, especially if you're pro-style. You can start with narrow splits but when you go sideways it just feels a lot like you're in space. It's a pretty versatile constraint on paper, but I think it's easier to add to a spread offense. If you literally ran none of them two weeks ago, it's a great way to have D-linemen slashing into your backfield on the snap.
I mean, if they try, that's probably good news for us.
|5 days 8 hours ago||We do||
You may think of pass rush as kind of like this:
Ours is a bit weird but no less effective:
We basically run 3DTs and a DE/LB hybrid out there. So it's less about zipping around blocks and blindsiding the QBs as crushing the pocket. As a result our pass rush doesn't rack up sacks but we do NOT make the pocket a comfortable place and (except against tempo zone stretch) we don't compromise run D.
|5 days 11 hours ago||Read the fine print||
There is an endless supply.*
*Offer valid for only one Glasgow per unit.
So, if you think we need a new punt returner. . . feel free to redeem.
|5 days 14 hours ago||(icy stare)||
We’re not beat up. Nobody’s beat up that I know of. Do you know something I don’t know? We’ve got a bounce in our step. We’re ready to go. I think the student-athletes have a bounce in their step and they’re ready to attack the day with an enthusiasm unknown to mankind.
|5 days 15 hours ago||Shoop da whoop||
|5 days 21 hours ago||Not likely||
He's a two-way player, and Harbaugh LOVES two-way players.
But probably not at QB. More like, this is a nice hedge. The QB position is now a survival game, but even if Viramontes doesn't finish that gauntlet standing atop a pile of other defeated QBs, he has experience at LB where our depth is thin. The more things you can do, the better your chances of getting playing time.
|1 week 6 hours ago||Or||
Graham, if you went on vacation in the Caribbean, would you come back as a Golden Graham?
|1 week 7 hours ago||neither||
If you're looking for official data on "passes defended with one hand or both", I don't think that's tracked anywhere. Just watch his technique. Most of the PBU's I've seen him make were with one hand. Back when he regularly phased out of reality it's because he'd raise both hands and the ball would fly through.
That said, that might be a good diary for later. While I can post here and there during work while waiting for scripts to complete, unfortunately I won't have any time in the near future to burn any midnight oil on reviewing every Jourdan Lewis PBU, as much fun as that would be.
|1 week 10 hours ago||Lewis||
Nope. As I said in HHH, part of Lewis' bargain with the gypsy is that instead of going for the INT with both hands, causing him to phase out of existence, he now focuses on getting a few fingertips from one hand on the ball. You can't rack up picks that way, but that's all you need to tip the ball off-target, and INT attempts tend to get deflected upwards. Long story short, he's embraced a soccer goalie style of coverage -- catch what you can, but bat it away when it doubt, which for a 5'10" corner is damn near everything. The one-handed reach compensates for his lack of height with a little extra extension to break up the pass. The gypsy approves.
It's still rather dumb for opposing QBs to target him since it's such an unproductive exercise (unless you have no other options and a QB that throws on target like MSU), but I don't see any luck in Lewis' technique. If anything, he's removed luck from the equation by sacrificing the chance at a pick for more reliable coverage.
|1 week 14 hours ago||D-line 2015. . .||
. . . is greater than the sum of its parts. They're individually good enough that it's very difficult to account for them all.
Collectively the 2015 D-line -- until injuries softened it considerably -- was a nightmare because every guy on the two-deep was good enough that single-blocking was a shaky proposition. Over time, winning every block, every down, was a monumental task that most offenses can't execute. But there isn't a guy who blows up all the plays, game in and game out, a la Mike Martin or Alan Branch. Glasgow is very good, but he's not a terrifying monster.
|1 week 15 hours ago||Depends on the bear||
Them little black bears running around are compact balls of fur, claw and muscle, and there's a wide range of size, but Houma is in fact significantly heavier than the average American black bear. If he was a decent fighter he could give one a pretty bad day.
No human or big cat is gonna take down a grizzly, though. Twice the weight of an NFL lineman (on average), quick enough to fish by hand (er, paw), with a bite strong enough to crush a bowling ball. A tiger might be able to mess it up but in a losing effort it'd only put in to protect its young.
|1 week 16 hours ago||Knuckleball snap??||
I think by comparing the "dead-ball" snap to a knuckleball, he's talking about a "failed" knuckleball, not the kind that drives everyone mad. A dancing knuckleball spins very slowly but measurably, 1-1.5 times over the 60.5'. If you completely kill the spin with a knuckleball, you've done too much and the ball just floats. But for a snap that's ideal. If a football spins, anything but a perfect spiral and it's going to wobble.
|1 week 21 hours ago||MGoQ||
He gave the most beautiful answer yet to an MGoQuestion.
|1 week 1 day ago||I was wrong||
I said all last week that between ChaosOffense, holding teams scoreless in the third and then running out of gas, Indiana terrifies everyone but can't finish. . . so the game will be decided in the 4th.
Though I really can't get too down on my inability to predict that it'd go into OT.
|1 week 1 day ago||To an extent||
It's not so much "I'm gonna throw to my #1" as, a #1 receiver is generally #1, and targeted, because he can get open, and throwing to an open receiver is passing 101. That very drop-off you speak of is just that everyone else is less likely to reward the QB with a completion. A QB expects a #1 receiver to be open; without that there's no value as a go-to receiver. If there's a pick machine in his back pocket, though, that changes the equation quite a bit. Every QB has tendencies but none of them like throwing picks.
Lewis has the coverage part down pat; the opposing #1 receiver is usually not open. But he doesn't burn the QB's tendency to target a receiver the way 2-3 picks would. That's why MSU was able to take Cook-to-Burbridge to an extreme and not get burned, though it was also in part because they had few other options.
|1 week 4 days ago||The NFL is now a passing league||
The death of the run game has been predicted forever and will never come true, but a fair number of offenses get 70, 75% of their yards through the air. There are exceptions like Carolina but many of the good NFL offenses you defend by forcing them to execute those passes, and they execute them. That Lewis won't be able to defend them doesn't put him on a lower tier than the 6'1" guys who can't do it either. I just think his height lowers the perception of his ability to do so, when in reality he plays bigger than his height by compromising his ability to get INTs.
He didn't really battle Burbridge to a draw; Sparty played the "we have an NFL QB and a bigger, (marginal) NFL receiver" and rolled the dice on Lewis' inability to pick them off. That was their go-to, and what they got wasn't consistent enough to move the ball without some outrageous officiating. Lewis got burned a few times but overall he won the matchup decisively.
The lack of INTs will be noticed, but again, I think he won't be a hot prospect so much as the muse of a Moneyball DC. He won't be a star, and maybe I'm overly optimistic, but I think he'll fit on an NFL roster as a depth starter -- i.e., not a rotation/practice squad guy, but a "crap we don't have the money to bring in an elite free agent but we can't throw a bust out there" failsafe.
|1 week 4 days ago||DL||
I'm not surprised. As outlined in UFR, our D-line is greater than the sum of its parts. In any given game, one guy will get a double-digit grade because no OL has enough guys to double-team everyone; whoever they overplay means someone else will be underplayed. But NFL talent there is generally a guy that is literally impossible to deal with, even with a double-team, and no one is (yet?) that good. Mike Martin couldn't be reliably single-blocked and he was a third-rounder; he's buried in the Titans' depth chart. The good news: Almost all will be back next year, and some of them still have room to grow.
Back to Lewis, I think he can succeed in the NFL, but it's very contingent on getting a chance and he may not get much of one because of his height. But there are CBs in the NFL even shorter than him, so he will get a chance, and if he can carry that PBU consistency to the next level then he won't need much of a coach's patience to start getting serious PT.
|1 week 4 days ago||Maybe, but not yet||
It's not my call of course, but I wouldn't call it a sure thing. Both Cole and Butt are already good and still have upside to be had, but it's never a sure thing that a player will reach the pinnacle of his potential. Cole isn't elite (to be elite you have to beat elite and he can't yet take on NFL-grade pass rushers without help a la Taylor Lewan) and Butt's blocking needs to improve for him to become a complete TE. I think Lewis (being the exception) is already as good as he's going to get (see above), but I'm all in for his inaugural HHH induction because the stats more than back up his case.
They're definitely worth keeping an eye on, though. But if you're going to go there I don't know why you omitted Peppers.
|1 week 4 days ago||Lewis is a Moneyball pick||
"Savvy" being the key word here. I do have a low opinion of NFL scouts (Tom Brady at #199) but to be more fair, the first two rounds are generally for "physical freaks" with high upside and (as you get further down) increasing downside. It's "roll the dice" time. That goes double for a CB, where you either have the athleticism to play or don't. So when drafting early, CBs, and especially CBs early, NFL teams are looking for playmakers.
Lewis is not that. He's a very technical cover corner. I think he'll succeed in the NFL because he's shown he can more than hold his own against NFL talent. But he's not a beast, and he's explicitly not a playmaker because of his height. So whether or not people think it's deserved, he's going to stay on the board until the "freaks" are gone, at which point a team with a thin backfield and a savvy DC will snatch him.
I don't know about nickel though, as I wonder if he's big enough to handle the linebacker-ish duties of the position at the next level. I see a defense more lining him up at field corner against offenses that like to put their shifty "possession" receivers at wideout for converting those and-long downs. From there he'll quickly prove he's an unspectacular but steady cover corner, and most NFL teams will be very happy to have that.