Film Analysis Ep 1.1 - Pass Offense Struggles vs. ND

Submitted by FanNamedOzzy on September 6th, 2018 at 11:20 AM

Hi all! Last season I posted videos of my analysis of different aspects of each game. People seemed to enjoy them, so I decided to do it again this year!

Planning on doing 3 parts for this first week. Part 1 is below, where I look at plays in which Michigan struggled in the pass game. Most of these are pressure related, but I go through routes, read progressions, missed assignments, etc.

Part 2 (Hopefully done tonight) will focus on issues in the run game.

Part 3 will be big plays given up by the defense.

Please note that I am by no means an expert here and am definitely wrong often. This is just something I enjoy doing and sharing. Check out my Twitter, as I post each play individually throughout the day and respond to feedback quickly. Yes, there were already wrong assumptions I made on a couple plays that I've addressed on Twitter :)




September 6th, 2018 at 11:30 AM ^

Excellent content.  I enjoyed these last year.  Great way to pass the time before the UFRs come.

On play #1, i'm not sure if Runyan was beat badly.  He knew where his help was, and pushed his end right into it.  


September 6th, 2018 at 3:07 PM ^

I think this is an unfair analysis of Ruiz. He made a couple of errors, the most egregious being on the INT. 

I disagree, quite strongly, with laying the blame on the second play at the feet of Ruiz. There are 6 rushers and 5 OL. The protection is clearly assigned to the left--JBB makes no move on the rusher to the right. Bredeson was assigned to the LB that was showing blitz, but did not rush--once his man backed out, he moved to help out Ruiz since it's better to get a hand on someone. But that was the guy Ruiz was assigned to block.

Shea was reading left, which leads me to think that it would have been better to slide protection to the right. The LB backed out, which would have meant that there was a blocker for every rusher; if that LB had blitzed, Perry's route would have been "hot" (his route, which is terrific, slants in before breaking out. The LB was right in the way of the slant, but if he had been blitzing Shea could have struck Perry immediately before his break for a probably first down). 

So IMO the issue is the slide going the same way Shea is reading is a mistake. It's a pre-snap issue, which means this is a big RPS minus. We can't know what the main issue is, because there are four scenarios I could see being responsible for this: 1. Shea fails to make the proper pre-snap adjustment; 2. Ruiz fails to make the proper pre-snap adjustment; 3. Neither are free to adjust and the playcall itself is flawed and doomed; 4. There is some explanation because I am a total amateur and don't actually know what I'm talking about.


L'Carpetron Do…

September 7th, 2018 at 12:05 AM ^

I dig this post as well. Excellent content. 

If I had the technological know-how I would do one on officiating. Generally I would like to do detailed diary each week taking an unbiased look at the officiating and breaking down the major calls and missed calls. I think a lot of mgobloggers might react harshly to it but I find it kind of fascinating and I think its a worthy topic of analysis.  

I couldn't do it this week though because I was hammered drunk by the time the game even started. And by the end of it I was in no shape to analyze anything.


September 6th, 2018 at 11:33 AM ^

Great analysis. Thanks for posting. 

Its NOT all on Runyan, though he sucked quite a bit. Ruiz is young and its his first start. I think we see growth from this group. 


September 6th, 2018 at 11:38 AM ^

Thanks for doing these, I always appreciate the breakdowns.

On the first play, Patterson had Eubanks wide open on the crossing path and should have hit him.

It's pretty damn amazing how bad the line was. JBB did ok but Runyan was awful. I understand it was Ruiz first start at center in CFB but c'mon, a lot of that stuff was embarrassing on his end. Simply put they need to slow things down and communicate better next game. 


September 6th, 2018 at 2:47 PM ^

It is always easier to arm chair QB as a fan. The Offense was playing behind and digging out from a big ass hole right off the bat. ND had all the momentum, and it only became neutral twice in the game. When Thomas returned the kick off, and when we scored the last touchdown. It is a lot easier for a defense to give it a little more when they are up and can see the light at the end of the tunnel. I will admit to turning off the game when Wimbush picked up that 3rd and 18 right up the gut. I did turn it back on at the start of the fourth quarter to only be more annoyed. I re-watched the game twice after, and I started to see a lot of positives. ND was a better team, but beatable, and were in the game to the end. A win would have been awesome, but there is a ton of shit for the coaching staff to coach up, and the players just got really good experience. If the play ins't stellar by the end of the year I will be shocked. Sucks to lose, but man this team really has some talent, and the coaching changes are already being seen. The team fought and rallied all the way to the end which was a great sign.


September 7th, 2018 at 12:05 AM ^

How many times has Don Brown screwed with opposing offenses by showing the kitchen sink but only rushing 4 or 5 from unexpected angles? Sometimes the D just gets you. That particular play, it looked like Higdon was going to cut that guy but pulled up (correctly) and then didn't have any momentum to do more than get in the way momentarily. Ruiz would have been better off just letting that guy go, but it's a bang bang decision. 


September 6th, 2018 at 11:50 AM ^

Not good enough from Ruiz and two of those sacks were on Patterson. On the one that took us out of field goal ranges and the pass from the 2 you have to know the situation better and be willing to throw the ball away. Especially the play action from 2 it was clear ND didn't bite. You throw that to the corner for Mckeon to try to make an incredible catch and you do it before that sack comes.


September 6th, 2018 at 12:06 PM ^

Also I forget which play number it was but you have a DT splitting ruiz and onwenu and it was a blitzing linebacker. They still failed at the pickup but at least it was a guy you would expect to be faster/shiftier beating them by using a delayed blitz.

Space Coyote

September 6th, 2018 at 12:16 PM ^

Great content, always enjoyed this series. Gives a really good clear look at assignments and where breakdowns happen. Hope people really take a look at this because I think it’s a lot of valuable info


September 6th, 2018 at 12:17 PM ^

Question:   On the play that resulted in the game losing fumble, Ruiz fucked up by chasing his DT on the stunt.  


I am ignorant of OL theory... are you never supposed to chase your guy on a stunt, or does it depend on if the OL is doing zone vs. man blocking?


September 6th, 2018 at 2:18 PM ^

To make matters worse, that might be THE easiest job for a center. As soon as he sees his man is looping, he must immediately take the guy slanting to him, allowing the guard to bump off the tackle and the tackle to pick up the looper.

This doesn’t even take a moment of thought, this should be immediate and instinctual. Ruiz has no responsibility to his right, because they’re blocking big on big with a back to pick up any extras on that side. He only has to think about the left side. But his pass set is so bad that he’s in no position to block the slanting defender because he isn’t deep enough.

I will say this — in the old days, neither Ruiz nor Onwenu would be playing at their current weights. They would have either trimmed down or sat the bench until they did. Both struggle with lateral movement despite being athletic enough that they shouldn’t. They are just too heavy.

Space Coyote

September 6th, 2018 at 3:21 PM ^

Agree on their weights. I've similarly been critical of it. And you see it in how they move laterally and redirect. Even JRJ looks not properly shaped for OT and I think it's hurting him.

No good comes from being 330+ in today's football. And rarely is it ever good to be over 320+, especially at center.

kevin holt

September 6th, 2018 at 12:29 PM ^

Woof, Onwenu may have cost us a TD on that first play. That looks like a really easy double but of course it's hard to tell what it was like in real time (and I am not a coach or player so I have no idea). Even if Collins' route was off, Shea could have hit him with just like a split second of time to throw.

On the second play: they would never call this but that's pretty bad pass interference on the defender isn't it? It almost causes an interception as their guy climbs Gentry's (is it Gentry?) back (after holding his arm in the route but NBD there) and also keeps him from jumping himself. In real time I thought Gentry had badly mistimed his jump but on replay he was clearly unable. Even though this was a jump-ball situation caused by the DE, it's not a tipped ball so it should still be DPI, in my view, but again they will never call that even if the refs were competent.

Third play: Shea could have saved a field goal/4th down attempt, or at least better position for a punt, by tossing the ball at Collins'/DPJ's(?) feet on the right or left side---while neither is open, you can safely throw the ball away short of either---or at LEAST try to run forward instead of getting O'Korn feet. Should we have an outlet on the right side so Shea can hit him or at least throw it away toward him? He's right handed so he couldn't hit Collins when the rush inevitably comes.

4th one: Jesus Christ we have 7 on 4 and can't even delay the rush for a fucking half second.

Last play: Patterson has Evans and needs to hit him before thinking scramble, and he needs to protect the ball if he is going to scramble.

I know I already commented that I love these, but can you go back and make the plays work out instead? Haha


September 6th, 2018 at 12:29 PM ^

I love these.  Plesse keep them up!  


At 2:17, it seems like the line should have slid protection to the right.  Even though you have 2 LBs who look like they might blitz, one of them is clearly farther from the LOS and farther outside.  I would think if they are going to "guess" who to block, it should be the guys closer to the LOS first and foremost, no?


September 6th, 2018 at 12:30 PM ^

I found the play broken down around 6:38 (the INT) to be the most depressing of them all... I mean, we kept 7 in to block 4 and still couldn't do it. Jeebus. 

Ozzy-- thanks for making these, they're fantastic despite being horrifying.


September 6th, 2018 at 12:52 PM ^

One mistake by a true sophomore making his first start at center. PA accomplishes exactly what it wants by sucking up the Mike LB. Ruiz shades to the right as his RB and the LB go left. Why? Shouldn't he anticipate the PA working? The LB goes from attacking the RB to blitzing effectively because Ruiz gave him the room to do so. Higdon does nothing wrong there imo. No RB wins that block when the LB has THAT much room. Also, the LB was the 5th rusher. 


September 6th, 2018 at 12:30 PM ^

The line play was pretty bad on these plays. No dispute there but I'd caution against widely extrapolating the bad play here to the rest of the 65 plays that were run. The point being that all is not lost as is frequently the perception after Michigan loses a big game and this was a big game. The coaching is now in place to get the OL play up to speed. There are 10 more contests in the regular season for fans to see that. I think they will.



September 6th, 2018 at 12:56 PM ^

No. Ruiz was not weak imo. He made mental mistakes. I don't think that Shea is scared. His footwork/pocket presence could use some work, but that is understandable going from shotgun to pro-style offense. A trash football team doesn't come back from 21-3 and have a chance to tie at the end.