Moving Picture Pages - Backside DE Pursuit

Submitted by Chris of Dange… on November 2nd, 2010 at 10:02 PM

Normally, this would be the time frame in which I would create one of my all-killa-no-filla-and-nothing-remotely-resembling-an-opponent-highlight highlight reels, but I find myself with a little free time thanks to Saturday night's dong-punching (because when Michigan loses, There Are No Highlights).

Naturally, I used this time to revisit a three-week-old dong punch, the MSU game. This is the video companion to the Backside DE Pursuit Picture Page. But enough about my dong and punches thereto.

Wha'happon: It's early in the second quarter; MSU just scored on a 61-yard run that illustrates what can happen when you don't get any backside pursuit (which moment of defensive glory I'll be MPP'ing soon; I can only deal with one catastrophe at a time). Michigan runs Denard off left tackle with Hopkins as lead blocker. Schilling pulls around, but because his pull is disrupted by the MSU DT, he's not a factor. Lewan and Webb destroy the right side of the MSU DL, Molk takes out the WLB, and Hopkins gets a solid block on the SLB. Even without Schilling helping lead the charge, this looks like a huge play or even an answering 60-yard TD after Denard WOOP!s Greg Jones. HOWEVA, Dorrestein can't maintain his block on the DE, who hauls ass all the way across the formation and trips Denard up after seven yards.

I slowed the captions down considerably from my previous two efforts (for those of you doing videography at home, the rule of thumb is to leave a title up for THREE TIMES AS LONG as it takes you to read it aloud, but that seemed bloody ponderous when I tried it, so I cut all those times back somewhat). I'd say "Enjoy," but you're really not going to enjoy it. I'll just say "Watch and learn," because I sure as hell did.



November 2nd, 2010 at 10:25 PM ^

Great job.  It's funny - I watched that MSU game and saw a bunch of these desperation tackles stopping long runs by the offense.  I'll give credit to MSU for playing well, but that game definitely felt like a bunch of points were left on the field because of a couple of chance plays going against UM.


November 3rd, 2010 at 11:11 AM ^

I would say that these are not "chance plays" as you suggest, but rather sound defensive training. In this case, the backside DE disengaged proprely, read the play well and took a good pursuit angle. While some might call that a lucky tackle, I think that just shows someone who is well coached.


November 3rd, 2010 at 10:44 PM ^

I agree on that play it was a player making a good play, but there were also a couple of Denard runs early on when a LB made an ankle tackle or Rucker half-tripped a guy with space behind him and kept the gain to 7-8 instead of 7 points.  But yeah, MSU did play well.


November 2nd, 2010 at 10:45 PM ^

Not many threads about the offense right now, so I figured I would post this on here. Did anywone else notice that we ran the midline read around 5 or 6 times this game, and also at least 1 inverted veer, that could have gone for a TD if we could have sealed off the backside DT and DE. I was happy to see those variations to our offense this week.


November 2nd, 2010 at 11:59 PM ^

you made some nices changes to the style, highlighted important players and made it a bit faster by making the text shorter to read.  Really great work!


November 3rd, 2010 at 11:07 AM ^

Great job... it's remarkable how a seemingly "Simple" qb off tackle run is much, much more complicated than it seems.  Thanks for breaking this down and showing us how close we were from breaking off a HUGE play.  Makes me a sad panda... but a more informed sad panda.


November 3rd, 2010 at 12:40 PM ^

really demonstrates what an interesting and great game football is. It also shows why coaches harp about execution all the time. A mistake can totally change the outcome of a play, and cannot always be overcome by individual talent. Thanks for that and I look forward to more of these.


November 3rd, 2010 at 2:02 PM ^

If I'm reading that correctly, Dorrestein should have actually allowed the backside DE to get a little further into his rush, this would have forced him to go around the fray, making him useless in pursuing Denard.  Shouldn't that be part of the play?  Is that a major fuck up for Perry on a fairly simple assignment?


November 3rd, 2010 at 4:27 PM ^

Watching this for the umpteenth time, I noticed something about Dorrestein that I didn't in any of the umpteen times I looked at the original picture pages or the non-captioned video.  Dorrestein does not get "caught up in the wash" -- he affirmatively releases from the DE and turns toward the playside guys that are being pushed toward him (about 2:05).  Almost like he was coached to do it.  This struck me as odd, given that we've seen Omameh and Lewan repeatedly hopping on such donkeys and whipping them senseless.  I never knew nothin' about OL play, but isn't the fix for this to simply continue pushing the guy in the general direction he wants to go, i.e., angled downfield?  If Dorrestein had done so, the guy wouldn't have gotten to the play side either (a) as quickly or (b) only 7 yards downfield or (c) possibly not at all if Dorrestein had enough push and knocked him off his feet.  Denard would've been well to the outside and presumably beyond his reach by that point.

Blue in Seattle

November 3rd, 2010 at 5:21 PM ^

Greatly appreciate this and since it comes after so much analysis of Michigan D I noticed a couple of things.

First the MSU Backside DE jumps up after his tackle and makes the "no good" sign with his arms, waving them across his body.  How can our offense be inconsistent when a 7 yard Denard run is viewed by the opposing team as a "stop" worthy of waving your arms about?

Second, while Denard gets a "whoops" on Greg Jones, notice how he forces Denard to cut back inside into what I've been hearing of as "help".  

And this play seems very similar to the "Mouton sheds OT by ducking inside" mistake that was debated so much.  Yes Kovacs was blocked completely out of the play, and MAYBE Mouton isn't at fault and could claim, "but Kovacs had outside contain".  For MSU what I saw was a MLB who was outmatched in quickness, but recognized that he was responsible for contain since the OLB was completely blocked by the running back and by making the smart decision in the moment saved a TD.

You can coach schemes and technique, but you can't coach instinct and recognition.  Time and Time again I here of people stating Kovacs was in the right position but is in comparison a child among men.  Who coached Kovacs to make the right decisions?  Kovacs is smart, others with more size and speed appear not so smart.  But if Kovacs knows what to do at the age of 20, I have to believe that someone in the coaching staff helped him.

We are in the dregs of a recruiting cycle, messing with the coaches, any coaches is a greater evil than choosing consistency.  Jim Herrman won the Assistant Coach of the Year award in 1997.  Why didn't he win it in 1998?  Because he changed his scheme?

Now he's a LB coach in the NFL, why didn't his genius translate to the NFL?

Is Casteel really the solution?  Or is recruiting talent and demonstrating stability in a coaching staff the solution?