Safety Play under Shafer

Submitted by gsimmons85 on July 24th, 2008 at 8:07 PM

On my blog,  i go through some of the impressions i have this summer from running two of shafers most popular coverages exclusively.    I think the thing that most are wondering about in the secondary is how are we going to replace Brandent and Jamar?    The thing about Shafers defense is that i dont think we are going to have too.  The problem i saw from safties over the past several years at Michigan has been hesitation and second guessing.   90% of time if a safety is unsure, he is beat.   Shafer (whom many consider to be one of the top secondary coaches in the country)  takes the uncertanity out of playing safety.  The biggest advantage for having a blitz happy DC, is that the secondary can read and react to qb  keys,  and not worrie about being looked off, missdirected, etc.  The problem is that many times a blitz happy DC  puts the secondary on islands.  Shafer however with his blitz fakes,  zone blitzes, and delayed blitzes,  gives the secondary the confidence to know that a QB will never be comfortable enough sit back and read what they are doing.  Shafer will spend a ton oftime in two-a-days working with his defense on reading QB's  Arm angles, foot work, shoulder moves, etc.  So having said that,  I look for our safties to have big years, not becasue they are better than my second sons name sake (Brandent)  or the guy from Butler highschool, just down the road from me (jamar)  but rather because they are better coached, and have a better scheme for them to have success under.






July 24th, 2008 at 9:12 PM ^

not really on the point of safeties, but i saw a replay of the stan-asu game and could really see what you were saying about the corners shading. the stan cbs always gave up the fades, and frankly, got abused for it


July 24th, 2008 at 11:59 PM ^

It's a good thing that we have solid corners because it seems like they will be on islands alot this year. The key for Shafer, like you say, is mixing up the types of blitzes (zone, safety, etc.) to keep the quarterback off balance. I used to want to gouge my eyes out at every 1st down we gave up on 3rd and longs when we rushed 3 or 4 and sat back in a deep zone. I hate that. I've always been a big proponent of blitzing quickly on 3rd and longs, giving up the short route and coming up to make the tackle. Hopefully this sequence will occur more often under Shafer.


July 25th, 2008 at 12:39 AM ^

2 things,


1  our corners will be on islands some, but not as much as you think.  The two defenses i ran this summer from shafer look like one on one on the outside, but it is not....    the key is that all the coverages look the same, so qb's are taking a chance...   but in any coverage,  fades more than likely are going to have to be played by a corner, by himself...

2  Shafer will make our corners better....


July 25th, 2008 at 1:16 PM ^

I think the key point is not that you need to be "blitzing quickly on 3rd and longs" but rather that the QB doesn't know what's coming.  G talks around this topic by mentioning that our CBs won't be on islands as much as we expect.  THAT'S THE POINT!

When *either* the defense or the offense is predictable, they can be stopped.  This was my biggest frustration w/ Michigan recently, especially over the last couple of years.  Giving the impression that you're going to pin your ears back and go for the QB can be just as effective as actually doing so...

Ninja Football

July 25th, 2008 at 1:55 AM ^

Thanks G! Good to know we'll have the coaching back there to go along with some potential killer recruits. We're top on the list for Marvin Robinson and have legit shots at a few other guys. I've never understood our inability to attract top-end safety prospects, but hopefully with Shafer there we'll be getting better jimmies and joes.