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11/21/2018 - 8:36am Pretty sure I saw him in…

Pretty sure I saw him in after that. I think on the 3rd and goal pass to Gentry that was short/dropped.

09/26/2018 - 10:57pm Counter OY a lot this year…

Counter OY a lot this year too with both TEs flexed. 

09/26/2018 - 10:40pm Counter OT is a Counter …

Counter OT is a Counter "Trey". It is the original counter trey. Counter OF (guard kickout, FB lead thru) and Counter OY/OH (guard kickout, Y/H lead thru) came after because having 2 lineman pull from the backside took too long to develop. Then came Power O with the kickout block coming from the playside with FB or HB and backside guard leading thru.  "Trey" really just referred to the double team on the playside coming from the TE & tackle. But it became a popular name for the Counter pay. Counter "Gap" is the double team with the tackle and guard.

Really cool to see Harbaugh break this one out of the archive. Its exciting seeing all the wrinkles in the running game week to week.

11/14/2017 - 1:41pm I dont agree

Its zone, so they should know they play can cut all they way back. And with the linebacker flowing back over the top over his double team like he did, that is telling him that the play has cut back. If the Evans stayed to the playside or cut up tighter it would be Ruiz coming off to get the backer. Thats why on a combo block like this on a zone play you're taught to stay on as long as you can until the backer commits. Rewatching a bit closer it is a really tough decision because he does nearly commit to the playside before reacting with Evans.

Maybe you're right and I'm wrong here, I have no idea exactly what they teach. Regardless, it looks like his head is buried in that double and he has no idea where the linebacker is.

(Edit: Looks like I replied to your initial response before you edited. I agree not the end of the world, but I still think he's got to get his eyes on the LB)


11/14/2017 - 12:32pm JBB

JBB doesn't come off the double team with Ruiz to pick up their linebacker. It didn't hurt them here because the linebacker flows so hard playside that he can't do much on the cut back. But JBB really should see that and come off to pick him up once he flows back over the top. That linebacker is actually the one that makes the play eventually.



11/01/2017 - 12:22pm Counter/Power Series

This is a good write up too:

Note: The Power/KIK diagrams are a little little confusing on this because they are both labeled Power. KIK is what we know as Power O and is shown in the second diagram. Power, the first diagram, is slight variation.  There is no true kick out.  The HB or extra TE is lined up playside and slips under the the DE to the Sam backer. The backside guard is the only puller and is assinged to the playside insider backer.

11/01/2017 - 11:53am Counter Trey orginally from

Counter Trey orginally from the Redskins was the backside guard and tackle both pulling. Guard kicked out and tackle lead thru the hole. OF was making the 2nd puller the FB and not the tackle. OY was the 2nd puller as a TE or HB and not the tackle. No one runs the counter with the backside tackle pulling anymore. So they are all really either OF or OY these days.

"Trey" specically meant the playside double team was going to be the TE and tackle on a 5tech. This is the way you would block it against an Under front.

"Gap" meant the the playside double team was going to the tackle and guard on the 3tech. This is the way you would block it against an Over front.

"Ace" would be the playside guard and center on the nose tackle.

There was also "load" which is what Seth is showing as goaline Power. Power Load would be getting two playside double teams by getting an extra TE over there.

Trey, gap, ace, etc. are basically the line calls. But the term Counter Trey became the popular name for the play.

Power or KIK essentially spawned off of the counter play because the counter play could be too slow to develop with both pullers coming from the backside. So power is the same idea, but the kickout block is coming from the playside with a FB or HB. There are variations off this too like BIM or weakside power.

On paper these plays are designed to hit "off tackle". But depending on the way the defense is reacting it can hit all the way back to the backside a gap, as we saw against Rutgers.



10/18/2017 - 10:54pm 50:11

Its actually 50:11 when he begins explaining Counter O.F.

1:08:43 when he shows examplea from the 99/00 Chargers (which Harbaugh played on) 

Its 1:40:53 when he talks about "Jimmy" Harbaugh running the Fake Stutter Naked and shows clips (Stutter as explained earlier in the clinic is a power gap concept against nickel defense)

If anyone here is interested enough in the gap scheme, this is one of the very best to every teach and scheme it explaining everything you want to know about it and telling some great stories along the way. 2 hrs well spent, I promise. 



10/18/2017 - 1:33pm Counter O.F.

Counter O.F. as Joe Bugel called it had the intial FB steps away.

Here is a link link to a Bugel clinic:

He starts drawing up Counter O.F. at about the 1hr mark.

Interestingly at about the 1hr 9min mark he shows them running it with the San Diego Chargers. Leaf is the QB in that clip but Harbaugh is on that team.

Later in the clinic I believe he shows some P.A. variations that have Harbaugh at the QB.

Unfortunately I can't listen to the sound or look too hard it now at work. But hopefully others can enjoy. The whole clinic takes you through the counter trey series and variations.



10/18/2017 - 12:56pm Not a new invention

Wrinkles to power play have been around for a long time. Power O was actually initially a wrinkle to the counter trey/gap play. Counter trey and Power O are essentially the same play but counter has both pullers coming from the backside & power O has the kickout block on the playside. They needed a more quicker hitting power play and this was the answer.

This play is really no different than the original counter trey play in many ways. And there are many more variations off of this. The counter lead is another variation that is designed to hit inside and not off tackle. Harbaugh and Drevno I'm sure have endless wrinkles to the power/counter game. I wouldn't be worried that they showed it or that someone else steals it.




01/20/2017 - 11:26am Harbaugh

While I agree about Frey over Hart right now. This was probably the same thing said about Harbaugh when Carr passed on him as QB coach for Scott Loeffler.

09/30/2016 - 7:47pm 6am

I emailed event parking yesterday and they told me opens 6am but due to weather may only let people in until a certain time.

03/01/2016 - 8:41am None updated

None are updated. Here are the game notes from the Utah game last year:

Cole 305, Isaac 228, and Gentry 244.



02/29/2016 - 8:35pm Its not

It's not updated…

These are the game notes from the OSU game last year. Page 20 is the roster. All the weights are the same. I think these are the same weights they listed all season. The roster page on mgoblue hasnt been updated since last spring maybe.



02/29/2016 - 6:56pm Freshman #s

I didnt go through the whole list but it seems like freshman jersery #'s are the only thing thats new here. I could be wrong but I don't think any of these weights are updated compared to the weekly depth charts and rosters from last fall (not the roster page on mgoblue, the weekly pdf with depth and rosters). I can't find them on anymore but I'm pretty sure none of these changed and it looks like the freshman weights all match their 24/7 recruiting profile.

09/10/2015 - 12:36pm Pwr vs Ctr

The FB and BSG are not only switching roles but the FB alignment is changing. On Counter both "pullers" (BSG & FB) are coming from the backside. Its a longer developing play.  Power kind of spawned off of that to have one of the "pullers" playside, which is the FB. The play hits a bit quicker and is less prone to being blown up by penetration from the backside of the play.

Also the alignment of the FB can screw with defense. Out of the same look you can hit them with Power or Counter.  Michigan ran a lot of two tight end sets also with a FB. Now you offset the fullback and can run power at the fullback or counter away from the FB. Michigan didn't run any counter that I can recall but I'm sure its coming.  Also you can do the same thing in a one tight end set with the FB away from the TE. This becomes either a weakside power play or a strongside counter play. 

As far as wrapper vs. trapper.  The trapper is always going to want to kick out the end man on the line of scrimmage, whether its a DE or maybe a walked up OLB.  The wrapper is going to cut up right outside the double team from either the PSG/PST or PST/TE and look for the playside linebacker but really going to block the first player that shows in the gap.  On Power the FB is the trapper and BSG is the wrapper. On Counter the BSG is the trapper andFB wrapper.

10/08/2014 - 11:58am Aaron Kromer

Chicago Bears OC. Good knowledge of the Sean Payton & Marc Trestman passing games.

Miami (NTM) graduate and assistant coach for 8 years. Some B1G experience at Northwestern.

O-line guy, could help develop the oline talent at UM.

Was a finalist for couple HC gigs in the NFL. I think for STL before they went with Fisher and Chicago before they went with Trestman. Was the brief intertim coach for the then interim coach Joe Vitt in NO during the bounty scandal.



08/15/2014 - 1:09pm And this sentence

And this sentence regarding whether Kalis would be starting: "From the point that we were before he got hurt yeah, there's no question." Seems like he has had that breakthrough everyone has been waiting for. Now on to Bosch...



08/14/2014 - 10:08pm Presser

I agree. After watching the press conference I think the tweets don't really tell the whole story. I think there are three important things Hoke said:

1. Kalis would be starting if he wasn't hurt. He even said "there's no question", which it isn't often that he gives that definitive of an answer. The remaining question on Kalis would be is how serious is this injury?

2. Miller is outplaying Glasgow at center. I'm really 50/50 on this. There are a lot of people on the MIchigan boards claiming to have inside knowledge that Miller is out playing Glasgow. So maybe Hoke is telling the truth.  But I also wonder, does Hoke really want Miller believing he is only starting vs. App St. while Glasgow is out and then he's back to the bench? Or does he want him thinking he has a legitimate chance of winning the job out right. 

3. He seemed to try to make it clear that Cole is the starter "today", and that is subject to change. It was much different tone than he had when he talked about Kalis being a starter. So I don't think we can write that left side of the depth chart down in ink just yet.


08/12/2014 - 1:26pm Path

There is a difference, but I don't claim to be an expert on the RR style of OZ, so I hope some others can chime in as well.

But the big difference here is the path of the back and some of it has to do with be in the gun vs. under center. Its hard to take that "downhill" path from the gun just by the way you align. That's why you see a lot teams setting the RB back a yard or from the QB to try to get a little more down hill. And this is another reason the pistol become so popular also, to get that downhill path.

But RR style doesn't run it that way just because the alignment makes him. That is his preferred way. And it's not just a spread thing either. There are plenty of pro teams that run a style of OZ that has the RB on a path to the sideline and his shoulders are actually square to the sideline and not the endzone. I never played, coached or really studied this philosophy in that much depth but it kind of works in the opposite way. They are 1) trying to beat the defense to the edge or  2) get them flowing so aggresively to the edge and then cut up field. Whereas the Broncos style as SC points out would get the linebackers to fill downhill and then maybe the bounce was there. But the bounce or not bounce is determined by the EMLOS no matter what, not whether the LB came downhill or not. I don't want to confuse that.

08/12/2014 - 1:02pm It can cut back

Because the play can very well cut back to those defenders. The first read is EMLOS and if he goes out the play will be inside. The second read in the next downlineman. If that guy works out too the back will cut underneath him.  So you can't let the backside defenders flow down the line.

There is a difference in philosophy on the backside cutting. I was taught just like Gibbs taught it. All backside guys were cut on OZ away from you. Joe Bugel & Joe Gibbs were against this. They thought it was kind of bush league.

In practice you didn't cut your own guys.  You form tackled them. It really pissed the dlineman off b/c they were trying to get work done too. But they would rather you do that than risk hurting them in practice. The form tackle is a nice exercise though because it forces you to really move your feet and get your head on the guys playside shoulder. So it would help with not getting lazy cuts when you actually did cut in the game.

08/12/2014 - 12:33pm Bounced

Yes it is rare. Like you said its unsound defense (or maybe a bad stunt call) if you're bouncing it in this style of OZ scheme. The Pin/Pull scheme is trying to bounce the play from the start. The Wide Zone play is an off tackle running play. I think it gets people confused a lot when they hear outside zone and think its like a variation of a sweep or toss designed to get to the sidelines. Its not, its a downhill play with the option of taking it outside. Thats why I think wide zone is actually a better term for this style than outside zone. But I know there are a few differen't styles of OZ these days and I'm only referring to the Broncos/Gibbs style.

And coaching the RB's steps, path, and reads is so important. An overally anxious back or a indecisive back can really kill this play.



08/12/2014 - 12:13pm Exactly

The TE just has to force that guy to do something. Don't let him anchor down. Take him somewhere and let the back read it.

And Gibbs says the Broncos ran to the open side just as much if not more than they did to the TE side.


08/12/2014 - 12:00pm He's great

His tapes are filled with a bunch of that stuff. Same with Joe Bugel and Russ Grimm. Just old school oline guys with great one liners and nasty vocab.

One I remember from the Gibbs OZ tape is when he talks about teaching the RB how to read and how many old school guys didn't believe that. And he talks about coaching under Woody Hayes and Hayes would say something along the lines of "if he got us yards he was our guy and if he didn't we got him the fuck out and found another fucking guy"

08/12/2014 - 11:57am Nice write up

Nice write up.

I own the Alex Gibbs OZ and IZ dvd's so I will offer a few more points here. (I am at work and cant here the audio on the video I a might repeat a few things)

Wide Zone - Gibbs didn't really call the play "outside zone". They had two zone runs. Wide zone and tight zone. His ultimate goal wasn't really to get this play to the edge. In an ideal world he wanted the EMLOS pushed out and the play to come up under the EMLOS. Only if the EMLOS slanted in did the play go outside.

EMLOS - was the first read for the back. A SAM linebacker walked up in a 43 under for example was not counted as the EMLOS. Only downlineman were counted. So in a 43 under if you were running to the strong side the 5 tech would be the first read. Like I said above he really taught the TE or T to try to force that guy outside but if he went inside that was okay the play would just bounce out. The worst thing that could happen is the DE holding his ground, keeping his shoulders square and being able to toss the blocker away and fall in/out to make the play.

RB Path & Reads: The RB was taught to stay on the path to the TE's ass. If there was no TE he would imagine a TE there and keep the same path. He stresses keeping this path no matter what and explains thats why he doesn't like the "bounce" play where you get down blocks and pulls and the back turns his shoulders to the sideline. As stated above the first read was EMLOS. That told the back if it was going inside or outside. The second read was the next down lineman inside. In our same example of the 43 under it would be the 1 tech. This read he made the cut off of. The back got one cut and had to live with it.

Gibbs explains the reason they chose this play was they could guarantee positive yardage. They didn't want plays that could hit big but also result in -2 yards. They would rather take the 4 yards everytime.

The other thing Gibbs explained about their system is how important is was to be able to run wide zone strong, wide zone weak, tight zone strong and tight zone weak all from the same formation or using motion to get into the same look. It forced the defense to remain balanced. Their favorite formations were double tight and I-form with the FB offset weak.

One more thing. Gibbs talks about not letting the 8th man in the box take you out of the play. Whether its using what they called "force zone" with the FB leading playside or using the WR in motion as an extra backside blocker. BUT he stresses not being too stubborn to run into a 9 man box. Can't be done he says. Don't have too much pride, go to the pass if they are doing that. Now he is talking about normal situations. Obviouslty short yardage, goaline and 4 minute you have do your share of running into stacked boxes. But he says he has learned the hard way from trying to run into impossible looks.




06/17/2014 - 12:31pm Base Alignment

I don't know how much you're going to be able to see the Michigan defense even align this way. If they could, I don't think they would have felt the need to switch to the over front and put Ryan at MLB. The problem was that the offensive alignement was forcing the SAM out of the box and out on a slot WR. This wasn't allowing Ryan to make an impact on inside run plays.  So I'd imagine they were willing to sacrifice Ross and RJS at SAM to get Ryan more involved. Then you switch the over because if you do see a pro look the SAM in the over fits Ross and RJS more than the under. If they aren't expecting this then I just don't see the need to make the switch scheme wise or personnel wise. Correct me if I'm wrong.

Maybe a part 3 of this series can look at the adjusted alignments vs a spread look.


04/29/2014 - 12:51pm 4 years

Did he do any of those things in his first 4 years?

04/16/2014 - 2:28pm Friends

Is it possible they are still employed because the are good and qualified coaches?

I wonder how the hell MSU went from 7-6 2012 to B1G champs and Rose Bowl champs in 2013. Didn't they change coordinators and keep the staff?

04/16/2014 - 1:55pm Tangible evidence

Nice rant but none of it addresses your tangible evidence that Hoke makes his OC run "his" offense.

04/16/2014 - 1:32pm Borges Offense

And how do you know Funk and the balance of the staff was coaching "Hoke's offense" and not Borges's offense?

Keep searching.

Funny how the Hoke haters use both the "Hoke is too hands off" argument and "Hoke dictating the offense" argument. Whichever one serves the agenda better in the given thread.

04/16/2014 - 12:45pm Don't recall

I don't recall this happening. I do recall Dawson pulling right and going to block the same linebacker that FB/HB was already blocking while his linebacker shot the gap and made the play at the LOS. This might be the play you're referring to.

04/13/2014 - 10:45am I agree

Especially since they will be used more as an H-back and less of a true I form fullback in a 3 point stance.

I was pretty impressed with way Houma got after in the spring game too. He's pretty phyiscial.


04/08/2014 - 4:31pm Run Schemes

I would lump those together for sure.

IZ and OZ are the same scheme, different techniques. Unless as you mention you use pin and pull for OZ and then you can MAYBE consider it a different scheme.

Power and Counter are both the gap scheme. The BST, C, PSG, PST, and TE all do the same thing on power or counter. Only the BSG and F/H switch.

Iso and lead draw are the same scheme with different techniques by a couple guys.

Almost all college and pro teams will have those 3 schemes (zone, gap, iso/base). And with a young oline I am sure they are treating it as 3 schemes and not 6. Anything else will be special variation and game plan type stuff. Wham and Cutback/Seal might be your zone variations. G stuff and Jet stuff might be a special etc...

I know this is exactly what you are saying I am just saying I would for sure lump these together, especially when teaching a young oline.




04/08/2014 - 2:48pm Not as bad

I re watched almost all the run plays. And I don't think its as bad as people think. They still have a lot of work to do but I actually saw some nice things across the board. It only takes one missed assigment, blown block, or bad read by RB to kill these plays. And most of the bad plays were just one of these things. I know people are sick of hearing that but its true.

Most of the bad plays were 2-3 yard gains and not  2 yard losses. So they did a better job of securing their initial assigment at the LOS. From there I saw some confusion on combo blocks, a bad read by a back, and not finishing blocks. These stopped a lot plays at 3 yards but you could see it had big potential.

Cole held his own but Magnuson will be an upgrade for sure. LTT did a nice job on zone combos getting to level 2. He also showed nice footwork sealing the backside on power.

Bosch and Kalis did some really nice things and each had 1 or 2 duh moments. Bosch whiffed on a LB bad. Kalis burried his head in the combo and let Ryan run thru un touched. Both got a little lazy with their steps at times on zone. But both also showed some really nice feet and leverage against a slanting defender a few times. I remember Kalis doing a real nice job against Mone. Bosch had a nice pull on one of the succesful power plays. Dawson had a rough day. He was slow with his zone step against the slanting lineman and constantly gave penetration on his playside gap. He missed a LB on a power play that would have been a 50 yard TD had he picked him up.

Miller did a pretty nice job for the most part. One zone play he got to the playside shoulder of the nose and sealed him off with no help.  Kugler didn't embarass himself either.

Braden and Glasgow were pretty even but I'd give the slight edge to Glasgow as one time Braden blantantly went the wrong way and caused a TFL. Another time I couldn't tell if him or Kalis messed up but he left his man early and Kalis was already gone to the LB. But when Braden did know what he was doing he wasn't bad. Glasgow didnt seem to have any mental errors.

Obviously as I said this is just run plays. So its only half the equation. But after a second watch I came away feeling better than the first time I saw it on Saturday. Also consider how vanilla the offense was. That put them at a disadvantage as well.

04/08/2014 - 2:25pm LTT

To add to your points, I really didnt think LTT looked all the bad on Saturday for someone who came in raw and out of shape. Then missed a part of the spring and is now playing with a club.  He got bull rushed pretty bad by Ojemudia once but seemed to hold his own overall out there. I thought he made it to the second level on zone combos a few times and broke down nicely to pick up the LB.  I do not think he is pushing to start but I think he is progessing.

04/08/2014 - 2:15pm Run

Until Taco plays the run on a consistant basis the rotation will favor Beyer. I saw Taco get washed down the line by AJ Williams on one play. And as we know AJ is no devastating blocker.

With that said I think this is the best spot for Taco going forward.  I just don't see him taking too much playing time from Beyer on 1st and 2nd down situations IMO.

04/07/2014 - 12:15pm Different

The WILL in the Under is quite a bit different than the SAM in the Over. They are more similar than the SAM in the Under but still different. In the Under the WILL is covered by the 3 tech and is more of an A and B gap player. The Sam in the over is going to be outside the box a lot of the time and will be more of a C gap or contain player depeding on the call.

Anyways I am not arguing how good a player he has been or that on paper he should start. I just think its less unlikely than people think that RJS could start over him.

04/07/2014 - 11:52am Glasgow at RT

This isn't all that surprising. He has repped all over the place the past couple years. Last year he was getting reps at multiple spots until he settled in at C. Hoke said something earlier in the spring about his versitility and repping some at LT as well. So if the true goal is to get the best 5 out there I think Glasgow has a legit shot of taking over RT from Braden. He has the size for RT and he has the most game experience. With Miller, Kugler and possibly the transfer from Bama they have more options at center than at RT.

04/07/2014 - 11:45am SAM

Why coudn't RJS beat out Ross? They are both playing a new position so he is not supplanting Ross. And RJS is playing well enough to at least be considered ahead of Ross or at very least tied.  The "best player plays" is what we hear all the time. So I don't think Ross's past success at Will or constant media hype will keep RJS from nabbing the spot if he outplays him in fall camp. But regardless of who trots out with the 1's I think we will see 6 backers constantly rotating (RJS, Ross, Ryan, Morgan, Bolden and Gedeon).

04/07/2014 - 11:35am Glasgow

Pretty sure Glasgow was the 2nd RT. And Bars was the 3rd.

For Kugler, I might not be remembering correctly but I thought was the 2nd C and Pliska was the 3rd. Might be wrong but heres how I recall the groups:

1 - Cole, Bosch, Miller, Kalis, Braden

2 - LTT, Dawson, Kugler, Kalis/Bosch, Glasgow

3 - LTT, Froelich, Pliska, Samuelson, Bars

No sign of Fox as far as I remember. I wonder if he will be working at RT or inside. Burzynski would probably be the 3rd LG over Froelich if he was healthy.

03/12/2014 - 10:43am Not SC

I'm not Space Coyote, but I'll offer my thoughts.

I think that is part of what Nuss was referring to but I think he is also including blown assingments due to miscommunication that allowed 1st level players (dlineman) to come unblocked as well in the run and pass game. And also blown combo blocks that allowed either LB's to run free or dlineman to split double teams.

Running into stacked box is always going to cause some problems, but if you hang your hat on being a running team you will have to do it from time to time. Think 4 minute offense. And to solve those problems he may want to work with Devin in being able to identify the 8th or 9th man and running away from him. Thus leaving the unblocked "hat" out of the play.



03/12/2014 - 10:32am Zone Chemistry

While the zone scheme may be a bit more simplistic assignment wise there still needs to be good chemisty and communication between the starting 5 (plus TE and H).  I just hope they can determine their best group early on and get them a lot of reps together. And with Mags and LTT out for Spring thats not a good start because now you have guys repping at LT that might not even have been on the depth chart there had everyone been healthy. I'm not saying they are doomed already or anything but if they are still tinkering late into August like the past two years that could be a problem.


02/28/2014 - 12:54pm Could be

That very well could be true. I think they will probably split a lot of the playing time. Taco has by far the greater upside and should be a future star on the defense but Beyer has played a lot of football here in 3 years and I think Mattison really trusts him a lot.

And I think this spot in the Over defense is probably the closest to Beyer's natural spot. He wasn't quite athletic enough at the rush end or sam to make impact plays and wasn't quite big and strong enough for the 5 tech spot.

02/28/2014 - 12:01pm No more 5

They aren't playing the 43 under, they are switching to the 43 Over. There is no 5 tech. The strong end is a 6tech or 9tech. So Beyer is just fine at 6'3" 260lbs. Charlton, Poggi and Strobel are the other strong ends all about 270lbs.

The strong end in the over doesnt not have to take on those double teams like the 5 in the under. So they do not have to be 285+ to hold their own.


02/28/2014 - 11:45am Yes

By moving to the 43 Over the SDE is no longer a 5tech that has to take on doubles from the OT and TE. They will be a 6 tech or 9tech and a lighter more athletic guy can play there.  The RVB style SDE like Wormley and Godin will now play mostly 3 tech id imagine.

02/28/2014 - 11:31am Charlton

I think Charlton will be working at the strong end now along Beyer, Poggi and Strobel.

I think at 6'4" 240 McCray will still be a MIKE. And Winovich will probably start out at SAM.

It will be interesting to see how the oline depth chart plays out. We know for the most part who's in the mix to start but I have no idea how the rest of the 2-3 deep will look.

01/16/2014 - 7:54pm Difference

The difference between what you described and what I described is the Broncos wide zone was not trying to reach the EMLOS, in fact they actually prefered the opposite.  I believe the fear was that a good EMLOS could just string the blocker out and fall in or out at the last moment while at the same time the rest of the defense was flowing that way. They wanted the back to press the LOS as fast as possible not head horizontal towards the sidelines.

I am not saying one way is right and the other is wrong. The purpose I guess was just to point out there are several styles of OZ and the Broncos (who popularized zone in the mid-late 90's) wide zone play was not really a perimeter play. It hit inside the TE most of the time and they wanted it that way. 

01/16/2014 - 10:01am Zone and Gap

I like having some sort of gap scheme play to go along with zone whether its Power O or Counter. But some believe zone is all you need. One of those people is Alex Gibbs who was the o-line coach for Broncos during the Elway/Davis years when zone became so popular due to their success. He believed in having no zero yardage or loss plays in the running game. He felt there were already enough those plays in the pass game. And the gap scheme plays could hit big but they also had so many moving parts there was a chance for -2 type plays. He felt zone was always good for 2-3 no matter how bad the play was.

IZ has for the most part has stayed consistent in approach but OZ has developed a few different styles. Gibbs called their plays Wide Zone (OZ) and Tight Zone (IZ). And their base was wide zone.  But contrary to popular belief their wide zone wasn't really a "get to the edge" play. The aiming point was always the TE or imaginary TE's ass. The RB always pressed this aiming point in a hurry. His 1st read was the EMLOS that was a defenisve lineman (LBs do not count). This read told him when the play was hitting inside or outside. But they really wanted the play to hit inside of that read. The man or men blocking that first read really wanted to force that guy out or at the very least force that guy to give the RB a read. The worst thing that could happen was for that guy to anchor down and stay square to the line. Then the next read was the next dlineman inside whether it was a 3tech or 1 tech. And that was the cut read. The RB got one cut. 8 of 10 times their wide zone play came inside of the 1st read, thus was not really an edge play. Tight zone was really only used when a defense aligned wide on both sides. He did not believe in the stretch or bounce (depending on your terminolgy) style of OZ. By this I mean the uncovered man blocking down and covered man pulling around. Some say pin and pull some say horn. He didn't like this because it took the RB off his aiming point and he was no longer pressing the line.

They key to their offense was that the formation, personnel and movement always put them in a position to run wide zone strong, wide zone weak, tight zone strong, tight zone weak and bootleg out of any look. And their favorite way to do this was double TE or I form with the FB aligned weak.


01/16/2014 - 9:34am Push

Agree there isn't much verbal communication but in some cases you can push your combo partner off the double.  If you are the inside man on the combo block and the LB plays over the top you just push your partner off of the D-lineman. If you feel that push you know to snap your head up and get that LB.

01/14/2014 - 4:48pm Jackson and Zone

I know everyone remembers all the outside zone that was run with Hart and obviously Jackson taught zone under RR.

But IIRC didn't Michigan run quite a bit of IZ with Biakabutuka in '95 when Jackson was the OC?  I watched many of those games but was too young at the time to pay attention to blocking schemes. But I want to say when I watched the re runs of the MSU and NW games on BTN it was a whole bunch of double tight formation with IZ, counter, and play action.