Upon Further Review 2012: Offense vs Nebraska Comment Count

Brian October 31st, 2012 at 4:58 PM

Formation notes: Much of the game was spent with Michigan in 2WR looks, leading to a lot of 4-3's like this with the linebackers shifted over the slot and a cornerback overhanging. When the receivers were split instead of twinned Michigan either got a straight up 4-3 even with two deep safeties or a shifted 4-4 look.


When Michigan spread the field, Nebraska defenders would go with them. Against three wide looks you got this:


And against four wide looks it was usually this:


Occasionally a safety would screw down but there weren't enough snaps with Denard on the field and M in a true spread to test it. Interestingly enough, I saw both Oregon and Arizona run double stacks last weekend like Borges does, except when they ran double stacks those stacks were damn near the edge of the field.

Substitution notes: Nothing new except for the obvious switch at QB. Rawls still can't get a snap. Funchess is playing all over the field, but rarely as an in-line TE.

[After the jump: it's okay and then DOOOOM.]

Go no go.

Ln Dn Ds O Form RB TE WR DForm Type Play Player Yards
M29 1 10 Shotgun 3-wide 1 1 3 Nickel Run QB sweep Robinson 3
Guy over the slot is a hybrid DB/LB sort. M blocks down, pulls playside G and C around. Kwiatkowski(+0.5) eliminates the playside end. Omameh(+1) cuts the playside end. LBs are flowing hard, hard, hard, and Omameh has to do this in the backfield. Mealer comes around, but he's a little slow because of his angle. If he doesn't take the angle he probably gets caught up in the wash, so maybe correct? Mealer(+0.5) also cuts a linebacker; safety has hit the LOS very fast and Toussaint(-1) just got beat by that slot LB. Michigan brought Gallon on end-around motion that didn't slow anyone relevant to the play and allowed that safety to not even get a token block from the slot WR. RPS -1. Picture paged.
M32 2 7 Shotgun 2-back 2 0 3 Nickel Run Inside zone Toussaint 2
Smith goes in motion presnap to give the appearance of a triple option. M runs it up the gut. Barnum(-1) controlled and shot into the hole by a DT. No crease, Toussaint must cutback. This robs Mealer of a blocking angle on the MLB, who sticks Toussaint in the hole. Omameh(-0.5), Schofield(-0.5).
M34 3 5 Shotgun 3-wide 1 1 3 Nickel Pass Circle Gallon Inc
Gallon runs a good route that sends the nickelback to his knees and will get the first down if he catches the ball; he'll probably turn it upfield for a bunch of YAC. Denard misses. (IN, 0, protection 1/1)
Drive Notes: Punt, 0-0, 13 min 1st Q
Ln Dn Ds O Form RB TE WR D Form Type Play Player Yards
M15 1 10 Ace double stack 1 1 3 Nickel Pass Throwback screen Gallon -2
Nebraska has this scouted and sends their nickelback directly at Gallon on the snap. He's got no shot. RPS -3. (CA, 3, screen)
M13 2 12 Shotgun 4-wide 1 0 4 Dime Run Inverted veer give Toussaint 9
Nebraska has five in the box, so there is no one containing. Denard gives. Toussaint(+0.5) sees no one until Stafford comes up seven yards downfield and tries to shoulder-block him down. Toussaint bounces off and is trying to disengage when Stafford grabs his foot; still a couple YAC. RPS +2, but like more a Zook RPS.
M22 3 3 Shotgun double stack 1 1 3 4-3 even Run QB draw Robinson 6
Very conservative with another two deep shell and one of the LBs flexing out over the slot. This is actually a QB draw, so screaming RUN at Denard, as I did, is not necessary. Nebraska is sending a LB upfield in anticipation of this and there isn't a crease in the middle of the field. Lewan(+1) is waiting for his guy to pick a side and attack; when Robinson(+1) moves out and threatens on the edge the DE pops out; Lewan stays engaged and starts riding him. Denard cuts back inside, which I actually think is the wrong move because he's got it easy if it's on the edge. As it is he shoots up past the interior pursuit and makes the first down with ease.
M28 1 10 Shotgun 3-wide 1 1 3 3-3-5 stack Pass PA Post Roundtree Inc
Inverted veer play action, dios mio man. Protection is pretty good until Barnum loses the guy he pulled into; still good enough to bomb it deep without getting Denard hit. The deep bomb is to Roundtree, who's got only a step or two on the corner. It's a little long; Roundtree lays out and catches it, until the replay guy says he did not catch it. Would actually prefer Denard to hold this up a bit so it's either not that tough a catch or the CB runs over the guy but a large part of why this is tough is because it's Roundtree instead of say Braylon Edwards. (CA, 1, protection 2/2, RPS +1)
M28 2 10 Shotgun 2-back 2 0 3 Nickel Run End around Gallon 8 + 15 pen
Omameh pulls as the line blocks down. Omameh is not blocking for Gallon, he's blocking for something a bit further inside. Man press on the outside takes the CB inside with Gardner until he is clearly blocking; CB then recovers to push Gallon out after a nice gain. RPS +1; blocking not required on this play. Nebraska gets a late hit after.
O49 1 10 Shotgun 2-back TE 2 1 2 4-3 even Run QB sweep Robinson 7
Fitz runs to the field and takes a handoff fake as everyone pulls for the boundary, which slightly delays the LBs. Kwiatkowski(-0.5) gives a lot of ground to the DE and loses him late; awkward, still not quite enough to get Robinson tackled. Barnum(+1) latches on to a corner and kicks him well outside; Mealer(+1) adjusts to the WLB flowing up hard and gives Robinson a lane. Play design was likely to get that WLB blocked by Omameh after he bit to the Fitz fake, but no sale. Again the fake away from the playside gives a safety a free fill. Robinson(+0.5) is tackled, falls forward.
O42 2 3 Shotgun 2-back 2 0 3 Nickel Run Inside zone Toussaint -1
Nebraska shows man press and creeps a safety down. Denard would have screwed his read up but I don't think it's actually a read since he goes for a bubble fake throw afterwards instead of running. Omameh(-1) gets some drive on the backside DT but then ends up losing that guy to the playside; Toussaint(-2) should cut behind that block and meet Compton near the LOS for a yard or three. Instead he starts a dancing around and gets TFLed. I don't understand why they're not doubling on the LOS at all. Drive this guy back with a double and you're nearing first down yardage. RPS –1.
O43 3 4 Shotgun 3-wide 1 1 3 Nickel Pass Scramble Robinson 5
The pass on which Denard has a million years and screaming RUN at the television is eminently appropriate. It looks like Denard misses Funchess but a LB got a really good chuck on him so maybe there's a safety there in time. It appears three of the other four guys are covered. Denard(+1) eventually runs around and lunges over the first down line. (SCR, N/A, protection 2/2)
O38 1 10 Shotgun trips 1 0 4 Nickel press man Run Inside zone Smith 0
A safety does come down for a one high look. There is no read here. Michigan blocks everyone on the LOS and hands off to Smith. Smith then gets eaten up by an unblocked MLB, because that's what happens when you don't use your numerical advantage. RPS -2.
O38 2 10 Shotgun 2-back 2 0 3 Nickel Run Inverted veer give Smith 2
RPSed here as a safety moves down late and the LBs bug out playside. No apparent contain so Denard hands. Toussaint is running by the LB, going for the safety, Smith is one in one in space with Compton and can't do much. He does get by eventually; it takes him a long time and the cavalry can rally. RPS -1.
O36 3 8 Shotgun double stack 1 1 3 Dime Pass Hitch Jackson Inc
Nebraska sends six. All short routes are covered; Jackson gets no separation because obviously. Denard throws to him, good throw, no chance because obviously. Had a free rusher coming around the outside, had to get rid of it. (CA, 0, protection ½, team -1)
Drive Notes: Missed FG(53), 4 min 1st Q. Gallon derfs the ensuing Nebraska punt and M ends up backed up.
Ln Dn Ds O Form RB TE WR D Form Type Play Player Yards
M2 1 10 Shotgun trips 1 0 4 Dime Run QB iso Robinson 6
Again five in the box. Stealing. Mealer(+1) and Omameh(+1) double the NT, blowing him back, sealing, and getting out on the only LB. Barnum(+1) kicks the other DT himself, big gap. Toussaint(+0.5) knocks a safety coming down. Denard gets an easy seven. RPS +1
M8 2 4 I-Form Big 2 2 1 4-4 even Run Iso Toussaint 8
Mealer(+0.5) and Omameh(+0.5) again turn the NT out. Barnum(+0.5) has an easy time with the other DT; Hopkins(+1) pops the LB in the hole and Toussaint(+0.5) runs right up the hole through a safety arm tackle before stumbling into the last guy.
M16 1 10 Shotgun trips 1 0 4 Dime Run Inverted veer keeper Robinson 5
Nebraska sends the corner as contain and Denard(+0.5) keeps; Dileo(-2) chases the corner pointlessly instead of moving to the second level to get a safety. This allows the safety to contain and holds this down; if Dileo walls this guy off even a little this could be big. RPS push, I guess. Corner blitz did get a two for one; Nebraska still had no shot at holding this to less than they did.
M21 2 5 Shotgun 3-wide 1 1 3 Nickel Run QB sweep Robinson 2
Another blocking screwup as Barnum(-2) peels back for a guy shooting inside of him. Mealer(+1) chops the guy like a champ, but that's a two for one and the nickelback has a free run at Denard. Another run that could have broken big with minimally competent blocking. Kwiatkowski(+0.5) got a good block on the playside end too FWIW. Lewan(+0.5) rode another DL out of the play.
M23 3 3 I-Form Big 2 2 1 4-4 even Run Power Toussaint -1
Nebraska loads up and goes after it, slanting the playside DE and sending three guys behind him at three blockers. Kwiatkowski(-1) ends up blocking no one as the SAM comes under him. Omameh(-1) runs by him as well. Kerridge(-1) misses on the edge, too, and nobody gets blocked at all. RPS -2; this was a combination of getting beat on the call and crappy blocking.
Drive Notes: Punt, 0-0, EO1Q. When Hoke fumed after the game about the blocking, he was probably thinking of this drive more than anything.
Ln Dn Ds O Form RB TE WR D Form Type Play Player Yards
M21 1 10 Shotgun 3-wide 1 1 3 3-3-5 stack Run End around Gallon 6
Playside end left alone and sucked in by the potential for Denard to run. Gardner(+1) gets a good crackback block on the playside LB, so no edge. Now three on two on the edge, though. Toussaint(+0.5) gets a good block on one DB; Gallon uses that block to get as many as he can.
M27 2 4 Shotgun trips Te 1 1 3 4-3 even Pass Out Jackson Inc
Roundtree motions out of the backfield. Denard has a couple outs for the first down, choosing the inside one. Jackson takes a weird hop step as he gets out of his break and ends up trying to catch a ball in front of him that should be in his chest; he drops it. (CA, 3, protection 1/1)
M27 3 4 Shotgun 2-back 1 1 3 Nickel Pass Hitch Jackson 6
Jackson finally just shoves the DB away from him and gets some separation. Denard's throw is a bit late but not too bad; completion. (CA, 3, protection 1/1)
M33 1 10 Shotgun 3-wide 1 1 3 Nickel Run Inverted veer keeper Robinson 4
Robinson screws up the read; there is no one to the outside since the DE dives inside and the playside LB also does. A give is yards. Kwiatkowski(+1) had moved from one to the other. Denard(-1) pulls and then has both those guys inside and has to start dancing around. Barnum(+0.5) and Mealer(+0.5) blew a DT off the ball and got to a linebacker so there is some room once he cuts back behind that business. Safety and DE can combine to tackle.
M37 2 6 Shotgun 3-wide 1 1 3 Nickel Run QB iso Robinson 1
World's worst lead block by Toussaint(-2) who gets destroyed at the LOS and moves backwards, preventing Denard from cutting behind and picking up some yards. Mealer(+0.5) and Omameh(+0.5) had walled it off on the backside and Barnum(+0.5) dealt with the other guy okay, nice crease if a minimally competent lead block is executed.
M38 3 5 Shotgun trips 1 1 3 Nickel Pass Out Jackson 8
Slot guy on Jackson stumbles out of the break, so some separation. Throw seems a little behind Jackson but hard to tell if it's relevant given the stumble. Complete. (CA, 3, protection 1/1)
M46 1 10 Shotgun 2-back TE 2 1 2 4-4 even Pass PA FB seam Hopkins Inc (Pen +15)
Slot guy walks off the WR presnap. Michigan goes play action, showing veer and backing out. Linebackers suck up and are gone. Denard has a nice pocket and finds Hopkins shooting to the second level. His throw is a little high, a little behind Hopkins, forcing a harder catch out of him than is necessary and taking him off his feet. CA/MA borderline; his throw did make this tougher. (MA, 1, protection 1/1, RPS +1) Nebraska picks up a targeting flag afterwards. I made this a one because Hopkins got hit in the head immediately after the catch.
O39 1 10 Shotgun 2-back 2 0 3 Nickel press man Run End around Gallon 3
Gardner(-1) misses his crackback block this time and the guy in man going in motion is looking for this so once Gallon cuts inside of an eh block from Toussaint he doesn't have much room.
O36 2 7 Shotgun 2-back 2 0 3 Nickel Pass PA RB flat Smith 1
PA off the same action they just ran. Immediate pressure, guy in Smith's business as Denard has to dump off immediately. No pull; all previous plays here have pulled a lineman. (CA, 3, protection N/A, RPS -1)
O35 3 6 Pistol double stack 1 1 3 Nickel Pass Deep hitch Funchess Inc
Smith hops to one side of Denard when he motions for the snap. Robinson finds Funchess for about 15 in between two guys; NFL window. Ball gets raked out. Lewan picks up a dubious holding call that is declined. No replay to see how legit, but it looks like the guy just fell over Lewan as he fell. (DO, 2, protection 2/2) Funchess really needs to come back for this ball to get away from the coverage; he's sitting still instead of attacking the ball. Well past the sticks, so...
Drive Notes: FG(52), 3-7, 8 min 2nd Q
Ln Dn Ds O Form RB TE WR D Form Type Play Player Yards
M26 1 10 Shotgun 2TE twins 1 2 2 4-3 even Pass PA Post Roundtree 32
Inverted veer PA, blocked well, gets linebackers sucked up and the two WRs one on one with DBs in man coverage. Denard steps up and nails Roundtree for a big gain; Roundtree had not gotten any separation but did shield the DB away with his body. (DO, 3, protection 2/2, RPS +2)
O42 1 10 I-Form 2 1 2 4-3 under Run Iso Toussaint 2
Safety creeps down for an eighth guy in the box. Why you would do this when they're laying back on shotgun stuff I don't know. Nebraska slants, using the S as contain; Mealer(-1) loses his guy into the hole. Toussaint(+0.5) gets a couple. RPS -1.
O40 2 8 Shotgun 2-back TE 2 1 2 4-3 even Pass Screen Smith 10
Just one blocker leaking out, Omameh. Williams is tasked with the MLB. Denard holds on to this too long, I think, as Smith should have an extra moment or two to get his bearings after the catch. He doesn't but Omameh(+0.5) gets out to wall off a guy who is keeping leverage and Williams(+0.5) gets a shove, so Smith(+1) has a crease up the middle of the field he deftly takes. Smith is tracked down from behind by a peeling DL as the safeties converge on him, (CA, 3, screen)
O30 1 10 I-Form 2 1 2 4-3 even Run Iso Toussaint 2
Blocking scheme is odd here as instead of trying to seal out one NT and get a guard to the second level Lewan releases downfield and has no angle on one of the LBs. I wonder if that's a bust? Lewan might have been tasked with trapping around. Mealer(-0.5) gets no push on the other DT and when he releases downfield from the double with Omameh the DT is free. He forces Toussaint away from him and into the guy Lewan has no angle on. Barnum(+1) got a good block on the other DT; Kerridge(+0.5) got a pop on the MLB before sliding off. Toussaint gets taken down by the unblocked LB. Picture paged.
O28 2 8 Shotgun 2-back 2 0 3 Nickel press man Pass Post Gardner Inc (Pen +10)
Safeties creeping down more now. Robinson takes a shot. Again no separation as the DB rides Gardner all the way downfield and gets a leaping stab at it. Gardner gets one, too, getting one hand on it and almost hauling it in after the ball clunks off the hand. (CA, 1, protection 2/2) Nebraska gets a penalty for riding the guy forever, so maybe not so bad for Gardner. RPS +1, deep route one on one.
O18 1 10 Shotgun 2-back twins 2 1 2 4-3 even Run Inside zone Toussaint 2
Option motion from Kerridge. Michigan hands off, not sure if this is a read. If it is, it's a blown once since M has two on one on the edge and a lot of space. Nebraska's DL gets playside of the line, which normally wouldn't be a big deal but here there's a totally unblocked LB in the hole since M has them outnumbered on the edge and isn't running out there. LB tackles. RPS –2. Picture paged.
O16 2 8 Shotgun 3-wide 1 1 3 Nickel Run QB draw Robinson 8
Funchess lined up next to Denard in World's Most Obvious Future Wheel Route. I can't tell but I think this is actually a called run. Toussaint is hunting LBs. Denard has nothing inside as Nebraska stunts the DTs; Lewan(+1) gets him the edge when the DE gets too aggressive and is pushed past the play. Robinson(+1) gets to the edge, decides to get the first down instead of running OOB, knocks elbow, is out.


starts here, feels bad man

O8 1 G Shotgun 2TE twins 1 2 2 4-3 even Run Inverted veer keeper Bellomy 1
Blitz. DT threatens to slant under Schofield; Barnum is pulling for the veer and gets held up by that guy's quick entrance into the backfield. Not much Schofield or Barnum can do, the guy timed it perfectly and was moving forward at the snap. Bellomy(+0.5) makes the right read as the LB flying up takes the RB, and goes straight upfield into the linebacker Barnum isn't blocking. Almost certainly a TD without that two for one, but that's why they run that blitz. RPS -1.
O7 2 G Pistol trips TE 1 1 3 Nickel Pass Angle Funchess Inc
Funchess sets up for a hitch, drawing the MLB over to him, then releases inside. He has to basically go through the MLB, who is essentially blocking him, and does so. Impressive. Bellomy finds him and slings it well behind him. Gallon flashbacks from last week. (IN, 1, protection 2/2)
O7 3 G Shotgun trips bunch tight 1 1 3 Okie zero Pass Drag Roundtree Inc
Nebraska sends the house, seven guys. Roundtree's running a drag and should take it vertical but doesn't know it, Bellomy has to start rolling away from the pressure and throw. Ball is well wide but Roundtree was getting chucked as he throws the ball and there's nowhere to go. (PR, 0, protection N/A, RPS -1)
Drive Notes: FG(24), 6-7, 2 min 2nd Q
Ln Dn Ds O Form RB TE WR D Form Type Play Player Yards
O45 1 10 Shotgun 4-wide 1 0 4 Dime Pass Slant Roundtree Inc
Blitzes, man coverage, ball well behind Roundtree. DB clearly goes through him to break it up but no flag. Boo. (IN, 0, protection 1/1)
O45 2 10 Shotgun trips 1 1 3 Nickel Pass TE Flat Funchess Inc
Funchess pops wide open and can turn this up for a first down if it's not punted into the stands by Bellomy. (IN, 0, protection 1/1, RPS +1)
O45 3 10 Shotgun 4-wide 1 0 4 3-3-5 nickel Pass Sack N/A -10
Omameh(-2) smoked, allows guy right up middle. Mealer(-1) does not adjust so someone was coming free anyway, now it's two someones, sackage. (PR, 0, protection 0/3)
Drive Notes: EOH, 6-7.
Ln Dn Ds O Form RB TE WR D Form Type Play Player Yards
M46 1 10 I-Form twins 2 1 2 4-3 even Run Power off tackle Toussaint 7
Well blocked all around. Kwiatkowski(+0.5) gets the playside DE in, albeit dodgily. Schofield(+1) gets push on a DT and then gets to the second level to harass Compton. He can't seal the guy because he's hopping to the play but he is making life difficult. Barnum(+1) finds the other LB shooting into the gap and adjusts to put him to the ground. Kerridge(+1) kicks out the overhanging corner and just keeps blasting him to the sideline, giving Toussaint(+1) room to run past Compton, who's off balance thanks to the Schofield block. Safety fills at this point.
O47 2 3 I-Form 2 1 2 4-3 under Pass PA hitch Gallon Inc
Nebraska brings a sixth guy to the LOS and rolls a safety down behind. Michigan passes. Gallon gets open on a hitch just past the sticks, Bellomy hits him, dropped. GRARG (CA, 3, protection 2/2)
O47 3 3 Shotgun 2-back 2 0 3 Nickel press man Pass Dumpoff Smith INT
DE comes inside and bowls over Barnum(-1) as he spins inside Lewan. DE falls, is getting up, Bellomy has to dump it, goes with a Smith out that is pretty well covered. He puts it short, Smith tries to dig it out of the turf, somehow contrives to pop it up to a defender, who intercepts and runs it back. Woo. (MA, 2, protection ½, Barnum -1)
Drive Notes: Interception, 6-7, 12 min 3rd Q
Ln Dn Ds O Form RB TE WR D Form Type Play Player Yards
M32 1 10 Shotgun 2-back 2 0 3 Nickel Run Zone stretch Smith -4
Gallon motions for the end around, M runs a stretch the other way. Mealer(-3) lets a DT he gets his helmet across get under him way too quick. That should be dead meat for the defense, instead a DT chases Smith into a TFL. Lewan(-1) also screwed up his stretch block.
M28 2 14 I-Form 2 1 2 4-3 even Pass Throwback screen Gallon Inc
Fortunate this is dropped because three guys were about to bury Gallon in the backfield. (CA, 3, screen, RPS -3).
M28 3 14 Shotgun 4-wide 1 0 4 3-3-5 nickel Pass Sack N/A -8
Six sent against six blockers, with the guy off the corner coming free from a long way away. This is on Bellomy, and the playcall, and the fact that the corner can blitz off Jackson and he still can't get open. (PR, N/A, protection 2/3, team -1, RPS -1)
Drive Notes: Punt, 6-10, 10 min 3rd Q
Ln Dn Ds O Form RB TE WR D Form Type Play Player Yards
M35 1 10 Ace twins 1 2 2 4-3 even Run Inside zone Toussaint 1
M doubles both DTs, gets little movement. Mealer(-1) spends way too long after it's clear the DT they've got is moving outside; he never releases downfield. Omameh(-1) does not get any push on the other DT and Schofield(-1) does not step around him, so he's there when Omameh releases into the other LB. Nowhere to go.
M36 2 9 Shotgun 3-wide 1 1 3 Nickel Pass Hitch Gardner Inc
Bellomy way late and high to a covered Gardner. No one open on three short routes. (IN, 0, protection 2/2, RPS -1)
M36 3 9 Shotgun 2-back TE 2 1 2 4-3 even Pass Hitch Toussaint Inc
Toussaint motions way out. M rolls to the 3 WR side. Bellomy launches a five yard hitch that isn't getting the first down anyway into the stands. (IN, 0, protection 1/1)
Drive Notes: Punt, 6-13, 7 min 3rd Q
Ln Dn Ds O Form RB TE WR D Form Type Play Player Yards
M31 1 10 Shotgun 4-wide 1 0 4 Dime Run Inverted veer give Toussaint 1
Toussaint(-2) is one on one with a linebacker trying to flow out and has five, six yards easy if he just friggin runs the ball to the hash. Instead, he stops and gets tackled.
M32 2 9 Shotgun 3-wide 1 1 3 Nickel Pass PA TE flat Funchess Inc
Corner blitz with LB moving out on Funchess and safety on Jackson, instant pressure, turfed, wasn't getting anything anyway. (PR, 0, protection N/A, RPS -2)
M32 3 9 Shotgun double stack 1 1 3 Nickel Pass Hitch Jackson Inc (Pen +30!)
Bunch of covered hitches at the sticks, Bellomy throws high into an NFL window to Jackson, ball off his fingertips, M bailed out by targeting call. (IN, 0, protection 2/2, RPS -1)
O48 1 10 I-Form 2 1 2 4-3 even Pass PA FB flat Kerridge 12
PA, nice blitz pickup from Toussaint. Nobody covers Kerridge, Bellomy has all day, he thinks about deep and then fires a looper to Kerridge. (CA, 3, protection 3/3. RPS +1)
O36 1 10 I-Form twins 2 1 2 4-3 even Run Iso Toussaint -1
Yet another play on which an ILB has no blocker. WTF. Schofield or Mealer must have busted. Guess it's on Mealer(-1), but even if he picks the right guy this play is tough to see work. RPS –1. Picture paged.
O37 2 11 Shotgun 3-wide 1 1 3 Nickel Pass PA Post Roundtree Inc (Pen +15)
Inverted veer PA, everyone open. Funchess releases after an initial block, which gets Bellomy some pressure as Barnum(-1) can't handle blocking a guy who's already been chipped on his pull. Toussaint's wheel looks open, Bellomy goes for it all at a single-covered Roundtree post. The throw is crappy, driving Roundtree back outside; he does get a hand on it but it's a tough, tough catch, one he doesn't make. Very dubious PI bails M out. (MA, 1, protection 1/2, Barnum -1, RPS +1)
O22 1 10 Shotgun 2-back 2 0 3 Nickel Run Power off tackle Toussaint 3
Gallon end around action, he doesn't get the ball, RB does. LB shoots up into the hole; Barnum(-1) does too as Smith cuts that guy. Another example of a block being executed just fine as someone else decides it won't be. No one trusts anyone. Schofield(+1) gets good push on the playside DT, which gets Toussaint a few. Notably, the nickelback went with Gallon in case of PA. If Barnum flares good yardage awaits.
O19 2 7 Shotgun 2-back 2 0 3 Nickel press man Run Inside zone Toussaint 0
Corner blitz. Barnum(-2) destroyed by backside DT, getting blown yards back. Toussaint manages to run by it. Lewan(-1) lost backside DE, everyone else is hopping frontside, unblocked LB with nothing in his way hits Toussaint.
O19 3 7 Shotgun 3-wide 1 1 3 Nickel press man Run Speed option pitch Smith -3
LB takes off for the edge on the presnap motion and annihilates Smith. RPS -2. Telegraphed, no chance for Schofield to get out on the guy.
Drive Notes: FG(37), 9-16, 1 min 3rd Q
Ln Dn Ds O Form RB TE WR DForm Type Play Player Yards
M20 1 10 Shotgun 2TE twins 1 2 2 4-3 even Run PA Fly Gallon INT
Play action not super effective since the pulling lineman is pulling away from the run action but M doesn't care about LBs here anyway and is probably just trying to buy some time. The pass rush is picked up until Toussaint(-1) trips Mealer, sending a DT in to Bellomy's face. Both double moves work, Roundtree and Gallon are open. Gallon is streaking past a guy open by three or so yards as Bellomy loads up... and leaves this ball about 15 yards short. (INX, 0, protection 1/2, Toussaint –1, RPS +2)
Drive Notes: Interception, 9-16, 11 min 4th Q
Ln Dn Ds O Form RB TE WR D Form Type Play Player Yards
M29 1 10 Shotgun 3-wide 1 1 3 Nickel Run QB power Bellomy 1
Kwiatkowski(-0.5) gives some ground and makes Barnum's pull awkward but Barnum gets around it. Omameh(+0.5) has shoved the DT far enough inside for a gap to open. One of the LBs moves up to fill it as Toussaint and Barnum go around. Bellomy(-2) cuts away from his blocking into the unblocked LB and gets tackled.
M30 2 9 I-Form twins 2 1 2 4-3 even Run Power off tackle Toussaint 1
Nebraska shows man with a blitz, Bellomy checks(!!!). It's power. Toussaint thinks it's a pitch. He recovers to get the handoff eventually. Kwiatkowski(-1) gets a little push to start but then goes dead and gives the ground back. Omameh(-0.5) pulls. He hits a guy for a kickout; that guy bounces off and can tackle with help from the other guy after a minimal gain.
M31 3 8 Shotgun 2-back 2 0 3 3-2-6 dime Pass Dig Gardner 15
Three man rush, ton of time. Bellomy steps up and shoots one to Gardner for a leaping catch past the sticks. (DO, 2, protection 2/2)
M46 1 10 Shotgun 2TE twins 1 2 2 4-3 even Pass Scramble Bellomy 15
Mealer(-1) gets beaten by a DT, so Bellomy(+1) has to step up past that guy as he threatens to sack. The rest of the NU DL is contained and so once he's past the DT he's got a running lane he takes for a nice gain. (SCR, N/A, protection 2/3, Mealer -1)
O39 1 10 Shotgun 2-back TE 2 1 2 4-3 even Run PA circle Gallon 11
Mealer(-1) run over. Barnum(-1) misses the DE on his pull, pressure and lots of it. Bellomy flings a duck out to Gallon; S runs through a corner route behind the circle Gallon is running but can't get there in time to prevent YAC. Michigan should be running simple stuff like this more often. (CA, 3, protection 0/2)
O28 1 10 Shotgun trips TE 1 1 3 Nickel Pass TE out Funchess Inc
Funchess may be open for five and an instant tackle; pass is batted. (BA, 0, protection 1/1)
O28 2 10 Shotgun trips 1 1 3 Nickel Pass Post Gardner INT
Token PA fake. Bellomy throws into double coverage well behind Gardner. INX or BRX, take your pick. (BRX, 0, protection 2/2)
Drive Notes: Interception, 9-23, 7 min 4th Q. Nebraska runs out the rest of the clock.


Is it safe to come out?

Ask Denard's ulnar nerve compression.

If I do so in this space will it respond to me or am I stuck with you?

I think we need to re-evaluate just who is stuck with who here.

It's clearly me being stuck with you.


I've decided I don't want any—


--charts this week, for obvious reasons. Now go away.



That's a graph, idiot.

You're the one who keeps asking for goats on defense after they give up like four points.

That's part of the shtick.

Here's a chart:

[Hennechart legend is updated. Hover over column headers for quick explanations. [I'm putting little asterisks in for BRX or INX plays now. One per awful event.]

2011 through MSU 13 66(12) 11(1) 34(1) 17 2 3 10 4 55%
2011 after MSU 9 77(9) 7 17 9 6(1) 5(2) 9 5 69%
Alabama 4 15(2) 1 4 3* - - 3(1) 1 71%
Air Force 1 14 3 2 1 - 2 1 - 75%
UMass 1 16(4) - 4 - 1 1 1 3 68%
Notre Dame 4 10(1) 2 4(1)* 2** 1 1 3 1 65%
Purdue 3 7(2) - 1(1) - 1 2 - - 73%
Illinois 3 6(2) - - 2 - - - - 78%
MSU 4 9(2) 3(1) 4 2* 1 5 2 - 48%
Nebraska 2 9(2) 1 1 - - - 1 1 90%

That's Denard. His only miss was his first pass, which went wide of Gallon.


Nebraska 1 4(1) 2 7* 1* - 1 4 1 31%

I think that may have made a difference. Bellomy's most terrifying throw was probably one of his three completions. Kerridge was at the sideline about ten yards downfield, wide open. Bellomy checked deep and then decided to throw that checkdown. That part is all good. It's just about what happened after:

It's never good when the color guy is laughing at your completion. That may have gotten blown back in Bellomy's face if there was a stiff wind.

Meanwhile, his second interception was actually Evil Genius Al Borges getting two separate guys wide open deep and Bellomy leaving the ball thousands of yards short because he did a weird hop backfoot thing:

Wow. I feel bad for the kid for being put in a situation he was clearly not ready for, and wonder what the hell could be going on in practices that made anyone think they could move Gardner.

But, man, was he far from the only problem.

There is no manchart. It's like a not man chart.


Offensive Line
Player + - Total Notes
Lewan 2 2 0 They aren't really running any plays on which his blocking is relevant. That is bizarre.
Barnum 5.5 6 -0.5 Also crappy pass blocking.
Mealer 5 5.5 -0.5 Also also crappy pass blocking.
Omameh 4 4 0 Meh.
Schofield 2 1.5 0.5 Rush, a smaller guy, didn't give him much trouble.
Kwiatkowski 2.5 3 -0.5 Didn't seem to be getting as much movement.
Moore - - - DNP
Williams 0.5 - 0.5  
Funchess - - - DNC
TOTAL 21.5 22 49% Atrocious.
Player + - T Notes
Robinson 4 1 3 Goodnight sweet prince.
Bellomy 1.5 2 -0.5 One scramble, one blown QB power.
Toussaint 3.5 7 -3.5 Some bad blocking, one extremely bad cut.
Rawls - - - DNP
Smith 1 - 1 Screen.
Hayes - - - DNP
Hopkins 1 - 1 Back.
Kerridge 1.5 1 0.5 Blocks not relevant because other LB often unblocked.
TOTAL 12.5 11 1.5 Rawls can at least block, I assume.
Player + - T Notes
Gardner 1 1 0 -
Roundtree - - - -
Gallon - - -  
Jackson - - -  
Dileo - 2 -2  
Reynolds - - -  
Darboh - - -  
TOTAL 1 3 -2 When you can't get to the secondary this happens.
Player + - T Notes
Protection 36 11 77% Mealer –3, Barnum –3, Omameh –2, Team –2, Toussaint -1
RPS 14 26 -12 Throwbacks: scouted.

The pass blocking is okay, and Denard gets off okay. Everything else was a complete debacle. You may want to take the RPS number with a grain of salt since Bellomy and everything; still, Borges called two throwback screens that had a maximum output of 0 yards that would only be achieved if the receiver dropped the ball. When you call a play that has a zero percent chance of being positive, that's –3, and you have to make up for it elsewhere with chunk plays. Michigan didn't really.

The rest of the team was a trainwreck, basically, as the picture pages attested to. I've got a second one on the docket that's going to be a bunch of guys getting confused and blocking nobody, like Barnum here:

I can't even complain about no stretch blocking because the one time they ran a stretch Mealer let a guy come right under him on a play that otherwise would have been a decent to big gain. They can't really block anything anymore. They can't combo on inside zone, they don't have the power to knock people back for gap schemes, they get in space and twirl around looking for people to block. They've been holding it together previously, but for whatever reason they fell apart in Lincoln. Given the Cornhusker's defensive rankings—90th in run defense before Saturday—I don't think you can mitigate their performance by pointing to the guys across the LOS like last week.

So the failure was total.

What is wrong with the blocking?

One thing I don't get is Michigan's tendency to jet to the second level without any combo blocks. This is second and three. Watch Mealer and Omameh.

Mealer releases immediately, leaving Omameh with a tough job on a guy slanting under him. He loses that battle, but he's trying to cut off a guy lined up inside of him. Mealer should hit the DT on the snap, get some motion on him, allow Omameh to come under, and then release.

Meanwhile, a team with Denard Robinson isn't even using the zone read here. Schofield blocks the DE and Kerridge goes backside to block no one, leaving an unblocked LB on the cutback. That's a hugely broken play design or a huge bust, and they were so frequent in this game it seems clear the offense has no damn idea what it's doing.

This should be happening on every snap, basically:

Mealer goes BOOM into the DT, Omameh hits him and seals him, Mealer releases. Same setup on the line, with an even front. Too many times Michigan is not running that double, and they're paying for it. Maybe you can get away with it when you have an Alabama level OL, but Michigan doesn't. Can anyone explain why sometimes you get a double against and sometimes you don't against the same front? I'm really at a loss.

And then there's just busted play design. I mean, run the damn zone read!

That is a potential touchdown if Schofield releases downfield into the only(!) linebacker and Denard reads the end. Instead Denard reads nobody and that guy is unblocked for a zero-yard tackle. No, it's not a bust by the OL. Michigan did the same thing later on a another blown up inside zone.

That is just infuriating. What are you trying to do? Who are you optioning? Do you understand the concepts of this offense at all? How do you expect to get yards with Denard's legs without optioning a guy off?

At least Michigan got some play action off the veer, though.

So there's that. That and infinite unblocked linebackers, who are probably Denard's fault too.

But Michigan was moving the ball before Denard went out.

In fits and starts, sure. Michigan drives before Denard went down:

  1. Three and out
  2. 12 play, 49-yard drive ending in long missed FG
  3. One first down and out
  4. 10 play, 44 yard drive ending in long FG
  5. 10 play, 67 yard drive ending in FG

They were on pace to put up 20 points on a bad defense and had a long run of nine yards against a team that implodes versus mobile quarterbacks. It was bad. Maybe Michigan pulls it out if Denard stays in, but that would be thanks to the munificence of the defense more than anything else. Even if you extrapolate the first half yardage—177—to a full game you only get 354 yards. This is a team that gave up 371 rushing yards to Ohio State.

Receivers and their existential crisis?

[Passes are rated by how tough they are to catch. 0 == impossible. 1 == wow he caught that, 2 == moderate difficulty, 3 == routine. The 0/X in all passes marked zero is implied.]

Player 0 1 2 3   0 1 2 3
Gardner 1 0/1 1/1 -   12 0/5 2/5 14/15
Roundtree 2 0/1 1/1 1/1   10 0/3 4/4 9/10
Gallon 2     2/4   9 0/1 3/5 16/18
J. Robinson           1 0/1 0/1 2/2
Dileo           1 1/1 3/3 5/5
Jackson 2     2/3   5     5/7
Kwiatkowski                 3/3
Funchess 2 0/1 0/1     4 2/4 1/3 8/8
Hopkins   0/1         0/1    
Toussaint 1         1 0/2 1/2 4/4
Smith   0/1   2/2     0/1 1/2 6/6
Kerridge       1/1     0/1   1/1

So a week after he was the offense against Michigan State, Drew Dileo gets no targets. Instead Michigan throws at Jeremy Jackson five times, and on all of those throws there is a defender implanted in his chest. I don't get it. Jackson can't get separation from anyone, and he's got two flat out drops in seven attempts, plus a number of those uncatchable balls are because defenders are breaking them up due to the lack of separation, instead of just being inaccurate like the top three guys. Look at Dileo's chart! THROW AT THAT GUY.

Where is Rawls?

Don't know. He should be tried. Michigan's not getting anything out of Toussaint and he might be able to run over those unblocked linebackers some.

Where is Funchess?

Double-covered and badly missed when targeted.

What is love?



Denard, for a half.


Everyone except Denard, who was actually having a wonderful day. Al Borges does come in for a bunch of WTFs in this game from the reliance on Jackson instead of Dileo to ALL THE UNBLOCKED LBs. Nebraska wasn't even doing anything clever.

What does it mean for Minnesota and the future?

If Bellomy plays we're in trouble obviously. The blocking schemes are just not getting through to the players and seem to be going backwards. Guys are peeling back when their guy has another blocker or is about to be optioned off. MLBs are not getting IDed. Combo blocks are not even being attempted. And whatever they're trying to read is not clear to me, or evidently Denard.

Michigan managed to move the ball some largely because Nebraska was playing some wildly inviting defenses—five in the box against Denard Robinson, no one on the edge for the veer give—and they hit a couple deep plays. Against a D that has been a tire fire they still should have done much better. This game was a lot more depressing than the Michigan State game, and it's not all on Bellomy's shoulders.



October 31st, 2012 at 5:13 PM ^

The whole linemen "get in space and twirl around looking for people to block" thing is spot on. It's evident even live on a lot of plays all season. Guys release and must not be seeing what they saw in practice and they're just not handling the adjustments on the fly well at all.


October 31st, 2012 at 5:38 PM ^

My brain hurts after seeing all of the minuses on the page. 

How much of this is on Funk?  I have no idea, but I'm guessing he is being told the scheme and just coaching technique. 



October 31st, 2012 at 5:38 PM ^

It looks like on the first Mealer and Omameh play, the DT might be aligned closer to head up on Omameh and then slants inside.  In the second play, he is lined up in the gap and Mealer helps.  Their blocking rules might dictate that Omameh is on his own if he's back side with a head up DT.


October 31st, 2012 at 5:53 PM ^

I think that he takes some of the blame because it is his job to have the OL ready.  If they aren't ready he has to somehow relay that to Borges so that he can call plays that the OL is comfortable with.

When zoning, Funk and Borges are seeking “hard double teams” at the line of scrimmage. Even though it is zone, they still want physical, hard downhill combo blocks. The hard double team at the LOS is more important than getting one of the double team blockers to the second level, though, clearly, that’s the idea. But, between late on the second level and not getting hard double team blocks at the LOS, Funk chooses “be late.”

We can now see that the transition from Molk to anyone is pretty significant. Maybe he isn't making the "exception" calls that were made by Molk.  Maybe those calls being made or not being made presnap are causing our OL to miss the double teams.



November 1st, 2012 at 6:51 AM ^

Keep in mind we went from the best center in the country to someone who has not played center.  That job is important because they have the job of calling out assignments at the line.  I think one of the reasons our line was so good was because Molk was an expert at getting the rest of the line ready.  I am not saying we can’t do that now, but there was bound to be some drop off.


November 1st, 2012 at 9:32 AM ^

of collegiate award winners who did not fit the same in the NFL, but they were the best at what they did in the college game. Add the fact that Molk's draft status dropped significantly as he warmed up for the Sugar Bowl -- from drafting a starter, to drafting a backup who may be a while recovering from an injury.

We just don't know what could have been with David Molk, especially because the NFL is shifting to leaner quicker players over big gut hefters.


October 31st, 2012 at 5:41 PM ^

One point regarding the throwback screen.  When we ran it the first time, it was obvious they had it well scouted and played it *very* aggressively, and totally stoned the play.  It's shocking to me that we never ran the counter-action off that play (we ran it a couple games ago; the pass to Funchess off the throwback action).  Rather than using the defense's anticipation for the throwback screen against them, we ran the play over again.  I can't believe we went back to the same damn play and expected a different result.



November 1st, 2012 at 1:44 AM ^

We (I don't really mean we) have been doing that alot this year. I cant understand it either. That we (again) keep calling plays that have little to no chance of success is one thing, you have to try your luck and see what a defense will give you sometimes, but that they keep getting called, over and over again, throughout the entire course of a game, sometimes from game to game, sometimes on successive plays, when we're behind, and then we make zero adjustment to counter..... Yeah, WTF?! 

/legitimate complaint


October 31st, 2012 at 5:58 PM ^


What's wrong with this block?


Omameh doesn't take a good first step with his left foot, and then has his head on the wrong side of the defender. The DT is in a 2 technique (head up). That should be an easy block for Patrick. Instead, it's just shitty technique. Mealer should go after that linebacker. We just had a post about unblocked ILBs. If Mealer checks back on Barnum's DT, that ILB is free to tackle Fitz.


November 1st, 2012 at 1:53 AM ^

That's two losses now that lay at the feet of bad technique everywhere. We were obviously and significantly better than either of the non-alabama teams we lost to. The games were right there to be won, and the players we're in no way ready to take those ripe oppourtunities. Not true, the defense was more than ready, they were dominant. The offense was beyond unprepared, they didn't look anything like themselves. They used to be effective, opportunistic, and even dynamic, but now they seem almost inept. We've actually regressed as the seasons worn on. I hate it too.


October 31st, 2012 at 6:12 PM ^

And then there's this. Run the damn zone read

I think Denard does reads that DT but instantly decides to give when he sees the DT jump outside Omameh's block. I wonder if Omameh blew an assignment and was supposed to leave the DT unblocked and go right to the LB. I don't know if Borges runs inside/midline like that, but it's how we do it.


November 1st, 2012 at 4:48 AM ^

I should be the last person correcting anyone about schemes but it seems you're horribly misinformed. If they were running the zone read, the end wouldn't be blocked at all (that's how you can tell it's not a zone read, not what Denard's doing, but what the O-line is doing). You don't block him, so you can get blockers elsewhere, and then you read who he's going for, and let the guy not being tracked by him to get the ball.


October 31st, 2012 at 6:59 PM ^

Well besides all the other worrying things, is this. regarding Lewan:

"They aren't really running any plays on which his blocking is relevant."

Isn't this our best OL?  I'm going on old-fashioned football sense, but my HS coach said - when you need yards run your best back behind your best blocker.   Not running behind Lewan is very odd.



October 31st, 2012 at 7:25 PM ^

I knew it was going to be bad but this was absurdly frustrating. The fact that Borges won't even attempt to use Denard's skill set when he's healthy is completely infuriating. Sadly, one of the greatest athletes we'll ever see with a winged helmet is not being put in position to succeed. In fact, I'd say at this point Denarf's senior season is being wasted game by game.

The other thing that is the most frustrating is that our receivers aren't helping our QBs out enough. They need to come up with some tough catches. It's part of the job as a scholarship WR. Obviously there's a talent deficiency but it's tough to stomach.


October 31st, 2012 at 7:51 PM ^

"Denarf's [sic] senior season is being wasted game by game."

And I keep wondering why he won't run during pass plays, when he sits in the pocket, with lots of time, and he won't run.

Is it the coaching?

Is he trying to be Joe Montana?

Are they protecting his nerve injury?

At this point who knows.

I will say this - had Denard gone to a team where he'd have been a spread option qb for 4 years, he would have won the Heisman.  I'm not pining for RR here, I'm just sayin'.



October 31st, 2012 at 8:20 PM ^

That is what is even more frustrating. A spread OC would almost certainly be more successful with Denard. But I'm not pining for RR either. I think you can mix in some more complex passing concepts for Denard to digest. But the core of the offense needs to be based on Denard's talents, and I don't believe that has been the case for most of this year. Block with spread concepts most of the time! Then Borges can go to work with play action and passing trees based on how that manipulates the defense.

Blue in Yarmouth

November 1st, 2012 at 8:47 AM ^

But was I was pining for from the begining of Al Borges's tenure here is that he would grow to love having an athlete at the QB position and choose to stick with that rather than turn us back in to the 3 yards and a cloud of dust type team.

After watching him for a season and a half now I am just pining for a spread OC (not RR) to come in and take the reigns of this offense. We still have a year or two with DG who could be a really good spread QB. 

At this point when looking at our offense it becomes evident that Al Borges really doesn't know what he is doing. His track record shows he can do well with first round draft picks littering the roster, but doesn't show much else. I mean Gerg even did well at Texas for a spell, and look how that worked out here.

I don't have anything against Borges. I wish the man well and think he has a pretty good sense of humour, but there is more to being an OC than that. No offense to him, I just would rather this team had an OC who ran the spread. Imagine that with the defenses than Mattison puts out there....it would be sweer!.


November 1st, 2012 at 10:40 AM ^

That's an odd observation. What stuck with me about the SDSU offense was the preponderance of big plays in the passing game. I'm looking now at the statistics and they seem to bear that out--they were a top-20 offense in yards and points  but way down the list in first downs--exactly the opposite of what you'd expect from a grind-it-out offense. And they averaged 16 yards per completion, topped only by the three triple option teams that seldom throw (Navy, Air Force, Georgia Tech).

That wasn't an offense stocked with first-round material, though Vincent Brown was pretty good.

(Ed.: that wasn't clear--I'm looking at the 2010 statistics.)

Blue in Yarmouth

November 1st, 2012 at 10:52 AM ^

But I wouldn't say SDSU played very good competition either. My point about three yards and a cloud of dust was more in relation to how Hoke insists on moving to a pro-style power running game with the offense more so than AB and his WCO. Personally I just don't have confidence that AB can run any sort of offense at all. I say that because this is a guy who a) hasn't really proven much except when he has had lots of talent and b) most decent coordinators that use similar offenses or defenses as the pro's will often get a stint in the pro's, but none have ever been after Borges. So that fact coupled with his history and what we have seen here give me very little optimism for the future.Others may see it differently as this is just my opinion, but I would love to see this offense go back to the spread style and get a coordinator who knows how to coach it. Sadly, I don't see that in the cards.


November 1st, 2012 at 11:00 AM ^

They played 4 top-25 teams.

They put 35 points and 300 yards on a TCU team that allowed 11 points and 211 yards per game.

They put 24 points and 440 yards on a Missouri team that allowed 15 points and 350 yards per game.

34 points anf 591 yards on a Utah team that allowed 19.8 points and 349 yards per game.


November 1st, 2012 at 11:28 AM ^

What was wrong with their competition?

TCU went 13-0, won the Rose Bowl by holding Wisconsin to their lowest output of the season, led the country in scoring defense and total defense and pass defense and pass efficiency defense and SDSU scored 35 on them, more than they'd given up in their six previous games combined.

Missouri was #6 in the country in scoring defense, and playing in the Big 12 that's pretty good, SDSU lost there 27-24. Not their best offensive game, maybe, but it's in line with the performances of the best Big 12 offenses against Missouri and it was done with nowhere near the same level of talent .

There was only one game all year where SDSU didn't score more (and usually significantly more) than the other team's defensive average--they got 21 on BYU who averaged 21.6. And it wasn't that they were going up-tempo--if you looked at all this tempo-free it would probably be better than the raw numbers.

And the only players from that offense currently in the NFL are Vincent Brown, Ryan Lindley, Ronnie Hillman and Aaron Brewer . Two third round picks, a sixth round pick and a long snapper.

I don't get it.


October 31st, 2012 at 7:47 PM ^

Ughhh.  Not good.  What really sucks and to me is maybe the bigger issue at stake, is there isn't a whole lot of room for optimism, either.  Now what?  Minnesota, yea, but if Denard isn't 75% (or whatever number he needs to be at to play) and well enough to go, WTF are we in for for 4 more games?!  Damn, this defense is pretty good though.  There's the optimism.  But in football and in 2012 POINTS are fun too.


October 31st, 2012 at 8:06 PM ^

A run game. We NEEDS it. If we had something outside of Denard, so many of these problems would be alleviated. I did not expect Toussaint to struggle like he has and as much as I love Smith, he isn't the answer. We need a run through of Hayes, Rawls, and Norfleet for some series this next game. I honestly feel any of them could do just as well at this point. I've been wondering why Norfleet hasn't been getting more offensive touches. You can tell the guy wants to compete and has no fear. 


October 31st, 2012 at 8:57 PM ^

What's frustrating is everything seemed so haphazard. Except for Denard throwing lasers. That's encouraging. It's not entirely clear if the O-Line is being coached up or it's a lack of a coherent gameplan. Perhaps simplify the calls?


November 1st, 2012 at 4:57 AM ^

It's a frankenstein of an offense. Borges may be using some spread PLAYS, but he doesn't buy into the spread SYSTEM, and that's why it doesn't work well. He can't run the O he knows with Denard as QB and he doesn't know how, or doesn't want, to buy into the spread as a whole, even with Denard. I can't fault him for either really. It's just a sad, unfortunate state of affairs. If he doesn't know how, why should he? He's just not experienced with that philosophy. If he doesn't want to, that could make sense too. Doing a complete overhaul from one season to the next probably wouldn't work out so well. I feel bad for Denard, but I at least hope the freshmen O-line, receivers, etc. are getting coached up with some WCO so they'll have something they already know when they gear up that offense even more.


November 1st, 2012 at 9:59 AM ^

next year. Smith and Roundtree too. Possibly Lewan as well.

It doesn't matter how good the new guys are, and whether a Freshman Shane or Devin or Bellomy can be an effective WCO QB, we are replacing 6 out of 11 guys (3 to 4 of the OL) in our offense.

Conclusion: we are going to have a very challenged offense next year - like a near-2008 kind of experience.


October 31st, 2012 at 9:09 PM ^

Don't really like the assumption that we were on "pace" for only 20 pts against a bad defense..


We also probably would of scored a TD had denard not gone out on the 1st and goal..  As well as when Martinez fumbled on their 40 with 1 min left in the half...  Who knows what would of happened in the 2nd half, but the way our D was playing before bellomy came in was good enough to easily win.


We would of wore them down and drained the clock fairly easily IMO


October 31st, 2012 at 9:42 PM ^

what the heck the coaches could have seen in practice with Bellomy.  His arm strength in this game was shockingly lacking, nevermind his poor accuracy and lack of field vision.


Bobby Boucher

October 31st, 2012 at 9:48 PM ^

I don't get how there's no push from the line.  No matter the scheme or reads, don't they practice to move the LOS?  Isn't that the basic concept here?  Whatever happened to donkey punching?


October 31st, 2012 at 10:27 PM ^

I'm mad because it not like they where thrown some crazy defense at us, like something we never seen before Or have great talent "bama". Look at the zone read play, I should say lack of zone read play.one ILB Just like brain said if Schofield get the next level on the LB and Denard reads the end (which I have FULL confidence in him to make the right read) touchdown or at least hands it off and the LB would be blocked. And look at denards head on that play he was not looking at the end or the DT to read them so hit was a handoff all the way.. So WTF we are just going to had it off and not block the middle linebacker and say good luck?? We should be running the hell out of that play!! The coach's are not putting this offense in a position to win the games and play after up.. And its on the player too,they have to trust the coaching and execute the plays but if u don't put them in the position to win well u know


October 31st, 2012 at 11:17 PM ^

Borges simply doesn't know what to do with the personnel and I fear for a future full of predictable, unimaginative offense that costs the team 2 to 3 games a year.  This hire will be known as Hoke's first mistake.