COACHING TAPE – WEEK 11 (11/21/08)


  • Vikings only 52 offensive plays, and 210 total yards – They had the ball for only 26 minutes
  • Ruud sack to end Vikings first series came out of “man free” coverage concept in which Bucs had DE Adams man-to-man on TE Shiancoe – This speaks to the athleticism and versatility of Adams
  • Bucs continue to play more man coverage concepts that they have in past seasons under Kiffin
  • S Piscitelli showed some speed on Peterson 22 yard run, He just about ran down Peterson
  • DT Sims giving the Bucs some solid snaps – Sims beat LG Hutchinson on 2nd + goal from the Bucs 3 yard line and stopped Peterson for a loss of 1
  • Vikings split TE Shiancoe a number of times and had success: He was matched man-to-man versus LB Brooks in the first quarter and caught a fade for 23 yards; In the second quarter, he caught an 18 yard slant against Barber in a “cover 3” zone concept – Vikings clearly trying to create and dictate matchups with Shiancoe
  • There is absolutely no pop or physicality to LT KcKinnie
  • Frerotte not very relaxed, Played fast and undisciplined, Left some plays on the field – He was far too frenetic, He perceived pressure, Clearly did not see things clearly downfield
  • DE White terrific play on 3rd + 2 in the third quarter to stop Peterson for 1 yard, He beat Shiancoe’s block and drove hard down the line of scrimmage
  • Bucs defense looked much faster than the Vikings OL, which is a slow and plodding unit – This was the mismatch
  • Vikings offense established no rhythm in this game, Not enough overall snaps, Frerotte got impatient and his flaws were exposed – They showed some sustaining ability with Peterson, but didn’t have the ball enough to dictate pace and tempo with the running game for four quarters


  • Redskins ran 56 offensive plays, but gained only 228 total yards
  • Redskins 5-14 on third down conversions
  • Redskins play breakdown: 38 called passes / 18 called runs – First time they had a lack of balance in quite a while
  • Scandrick was the Cowboys nickel CB in this game
  • Newman played over Moss, regardless of where Moss aligned in the Redskins formation
  • Cowboys more man coverage concepts, with more press on the outside
  • Cowboys use of reduced fronts with their down 3, They aligned DEs Canty and Spears inside over guards Kendall and Thomas – Canty blew up Kendall on the game’s first 2 plays
  • RT Jansen a liability in pass protection
  • Ratliff not a typical NT in a 3-4 front: Quick, athletic, excellent lateral movement – C Rabach had problems with Ratliff’s quickness, Also struggled with Tank Johnson
  • Spencer rotated with Ellis at OLB, Spencer more snaps as the game progressed
  • Redskins designed big play opportunity in the second quarter, Campbell play action deep drop – Thomas ran by the secondary and was wide open to the post: Ware got the corner on Samuel, Cooley beat by Spencer, Campbell no time to set and get the ball downfield – A great opportunity defeated by poor execution, Check down to Cooley for 9 yards
  • Cowboys more aggressive in their base 3-4 front: More reduced fronts, More use of ILBs attacking downhill and hitting gaps rather than reacting and flowing
  • Redskins strong tendency to run outside zone toward Moss side; Get the safety playing over top of Moss so that removes him as a run support defender
  • Tackles Samuels and Jansen struggled with pass protection
  • Cowboys with their front alignments dictated one-on-one blocking matchups with the Redskins OL; Redskins OL struggled across the board, which significantly limited the downfield passing game
  • Newman interception came out of “man free” coverage, He was press man on Moss in the slot – Great coverage, but an inaccurate throw by Campbell too far inside
  • Randle El 24 yards in the third quarter came on 1st + 10 out of straight “I”, with 8 man protection with only Moss and Randle El running routes – One of the few times Campbell was secure in the pocket
  • Ratliff’s second sack came out of Cowboys nickel package: Ratliff aligned at DT, He beat RG Thomas with quickness – On that play, Jansen was also driven back by Ellis
  • Campbell a little frenetic on the 4th + 4 incompletion, Could have calmly stepped up in the pocket – Cowboys “2 man” coverage
  • Overall, no rhythm to the Redskins offense; Cowboys aggressive, challenging concepts clearly disrupted Redskins usual efficient, methodical approach


  • Cards ran 70 offensive plays, and controlled the ball for 34 minutes
  • Cards 458 total yards; They were 6-12 on third down conversions
  • Cards play breakdown (not including Warner’s 3 kneel downs at the end of the game): 46 called passes / 21 called runs
  • Boldin 13-168, Fitzgerald 10-151 – They had 337 yards between them
  • TE Pope a poor blocker, Cannot block DEs one-on-one; That significantly limits the Cards running game
  • Cards try to get the ball to Boldin on routes where he can run after the catch; They move him a lot with shifting and motion, even aligning him at times in the backfield – He’s the move guy in the offense; They even use him in the shotgun in the “Wildcat” formation
  • Cards passing game very controlled and efficient, A lot of short and intermediate routes
  • Fitzgerald makes contested catches routinely, like his 33 yarder against CB Wilson on a go route – There’s no better hands catcher in the league
  • Warner unbelievable timing and anticipation, He has tremendous confidence in the ability of Fitzgerald and Boldin to make contested catches – Neither Fitzgerald or Boldin creates much separation, but they are both big and physical, and catch with their hands
  • When the Cards went with 4 WR personnel, especially in their 2×2 set, the Seahawks matched up with dime personnel and predominantly played “Tampa 2”; That was a strong tendency
  • Warner’s interception came out of 4 WR, 2×2 set; Cards again matched up with a 2 deep shell, but for the first time played “2 man”, not “cover 2” – Warner threw to Urban running an out route from the slot but Wilson jumped the throw
  • What stands out about Warner is his accuracy, That accounts for a lot of completions to well covered receivers
  • Arrington a nice sub-package player for the Cards, Getting more snaps – Has some downhill burst and explosiveness, Fits the Cards offense with its heavy use of shotgun and delay action in the run game
  • Seahawks generated no consistent pressure on Warner, Must get Warner out of his comfort zone – Difficult to disrupt the Cards passing game by pressing the receivers since they are so big and physical and consistently make contested catches


  • Colts ran 80 offensive plays, and controlled the ball for more than 34 minutes
  • Colts gained 474 total yards; They were 10-15 on third down conversions
  • Colts no turnovers on 80 plays, That’s impressive
  • Texans matched up to Colts offense with their nickel package
  • Colts much more balanced with run and pass, especially on their first couple of drives
  • Texans a lot of defensive movement as close to the snap as possible: Tried to take Manning’s pre snap processing of information and decision making into the post snap phase
  • DE Williams uses his hands very well to create separation and distance from OL
  • Texans played a significant amount of “2 man” coverage with press on the outside
  • Texans had some success with stunts, primarily against LG Johnson and LT Ugoh – Williams was the DE on the stunt side
  • LT Ugoh struggled with Williams, both with his outside speed and his power on the bull rush – Ugoh has been inconsistent all season as a pass protector
  • Manning showed terrific pocket movement in this game: Downfield focus, poise and accuracy on the move
  • Texans a good job getting pressure on Manning in the first half: Williams owned Ugoh, and there were other individual breakdowns as well – It was not a function of blitz, since the Texans rarely blitzed
  • Manning looked as comfortable in this game as I’ve seen him all season: Calmer in the pocket, Stronger with his base and balance, More comfortable throwing the ball – An outstanding game
  • Colts first drive of the third quarter was 10 plays, 81 yards, TD, their best drive of the season, first time they looked like the Colts of the past: Great mix of run and pass (5 runs, 5 passes), Manning orchestrating the plays beautifully
  • Addai 23 yard TD catch a great call by Manning versus “2 man”: Addai wheel route versus LB Ryans with Harrison the rub element on Ryans – Second time in 2 weeks Colts used the wheel route of the backfield to score a TD
  • Colts looked their best in their 3 WR package with Gonzalez in the slot – Colts OL was outstanding in the second half, They were moving people in the run game
  • Colts used the empty set in the third quarter for a number of plays, with Rhodes split wide: They threw a bubble screen to Rhodes for 5 yards out of the empty set
  • S Ferguson a poor job of tackling in the run game as a support defender, coming down to fill on the backside
  • Colts got the ball with 8:54 left in the fourth quarter, and put together a 16 play drive that ate up 7 minutes and produced a FG: 10 passes, 6 runs
  • In the second half, the Colts offense was the best they had been all season, especially the OL – As they move forward, it will be interesting to see if they stay more with 3 WR personnel since they were so effective from that personnel package


  • Chiefs ran 66 offensive plays, and gained 330 yards
  • Chiefs very interesting formation with Thigpen in the shotgun, and RB Johnson aligned directly behind him; I had never seen that before – This was the Chiefs base formation versus the Saints
  • Chiefs ran “Counter” from that formation, with Johnson directly behind Thigpen
  • Chiefs also used their version of the “Wildcat” formation with Johnson in the shotgun taking the direct snap
  • Johnson did not run consistently hard, He often ran to get tackled, Not much passion and intensity; At the end of the day, he’s a dog – You can win with players like Johnson, but you can’t turn a team around like the Chiefs re trying to do with young talent
  • Rookie LT Albert good feet and lateral movement, A firm base – Excellent potential as a quality LT after playing primarily LG at Virginia
  • Once again, Thigpen very impressive: A live arm, with good mechanics and a compact delivery – A number of throws he snapped off pretty well, The ball came out
  • Thigpen did show a tendency to lock on to Gonzalez, That was his one glaring flaw
  • Saints increased their blitz frequency as the game progressed, They played a high percentage of man coverage concepts on third down
  • Saints cannot play man coverage without a pressure element, Their corners will not hold up and their safeties do not have range in coverage – FS Kaesviharn a liability, Can’t run and lacks range, Not a starting caliber safety, Good passing teams will exploit and expose him
  • CB Gay was not afraid to challenge himself in coverage, He stayed in his back pedal as long as possible – He played well against the Chiefs, Very aggressive
  • DE Smith showed good strength at the point of attack, plus good movement
  • Bowe a very solid intermediate possession receiver: A big body with good hands; But he lacks burst to the ball on vertical routes, No consistent ability to separate on go routes
  • Chiefs essentially run a college offense: High percentage shotgun, A lot of QB movement with rollouts and bootlegs – Thigpen clearly comfortable in the shotgun
  • If the Chiefs continue to primarily play out of the shotgun, then Charles is a much better fit at RB than Johnson; Charles a much better seam runner, More downhill explosiveness and lateral agility and quickness

Category: Fantasy Guru Daily


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