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» Scramble Over/Unders: the Norths

The league's northern divisions pose a number of meaty questions, such as: "Is the Bears' offense due for a repeat performance?" "Why do the Lions have such pronounced splits?" and "Has Johnny Manziel made the Cleveland brass even crazier?"

07 Oct 2010

Walkthrough: Jury Rigged

by Mike Tanier

We're short on time this week, so let's go straight to the diagrams.

Steve Smith injured his ankle last week, which is bad news for the Panthers offense, because he is the Panthers offense. The Panthers must find a way to move on. After scouring some old strategy guides, I found a play that should be the focal point of their scheme while Smith is out.

Figure 1 shows the Panthers in an open set, with DeAngelo Williams (34) and Jonathan Stewart (28) on the field at the same time. In this example, the Bears respond by crowding everyone at the line and daring Jimmy Clausen (2) to throw.

At the snap, Stewart and Williams immediately recognize the futility of it all and head straight to the tunnel to get some bottled water and call their agents. Some of the other guys on the Panthers offense join them. Clausen briefly tries to rally the troops, but then he reflects on the human condition and his own mortality, shrugs his shoulders, and leaves the field sullenly.

Figure 1: The Panthers Give Up

Dwayne Jarrett (80) tries to join his teammates, but Jarrett is the worst decision maker in the universe, as evidenced by his second career DUI on Tuesday, giving him a 1.5-1 career starts-to-arrests ratio. Jarrett is too clueless to find the tunnel, so he runs to the opposite end of the stadium, loiters a bit, asks around, then finally figures things out. Somehow, he never gets open.

The Panthers released Jarrett a few hours after this diagram was completed, ruining the gag. C'mon, Dwayne: The least you can do is hold still and take your jokes like a man!

Next week, I will outline conditioning programs that can keep the Bills punt gunners from getting exhausted.

Saw VII: Behind the Bears Line

Jay Cutler endured nine sacks and at least one concussion against the Giants on Sunday night. It's time to take a close look at the Bears' jerry-rigged offensive line, and their protection schemes, to see if the pocket will be a safe place for Cutler and other Bears quarterbacks in the near future.

Figure 2: Cutler Sack 1

Figure 2 shows Cutler's first sack. The Bears are in third-and-10, and the Giants have a pass-rushing personnel package in the game. Note the wide front deployed by the Giants defensive linemen, with no one in a three-point stance in the interior gaps and Osi Umenyiora (72) on the outside shoulder of blocking tight end Brandon Manumaleuna (86). The formation suggests a blitz or stunt, but the Giants have nothing too fancy planned: Deon Grant (34) blitzes while Justin Tuck (91) jabs and drops into coverage, but otherwise, this is a fairly standard pass rush design.

Manumaleuna has made a career of blocking against top pass rushers. He was the designated blocker against Julius Peppers for a few years when he was with the Rams. But he may be getting too old for the job. Umenyiora executes an excellent swim move, working outside-in to beat the tight end. Jason Pierre-Paul (90) runs wide of right tackle Kevin Shaffer (78), but Cutler's biggest problem is Barry Cofield (96), who beats Lance Louis (60) off the ball. Cutler scrambles away from Cofield, but Umenyiora finishes the job.

Take special note of Matt Forte, who is assigned to block any up-the-middle blitzers on this play. Considering the formation by the Giants and Tuck's quick retreat into coverage, Forte should have slid to the right to help Louis. We make fun of Mike Martz's unwillingness to protect quarterbacks at times, but here the Giants are rushing four against seven. Three guys are getting through. This is how long nights start.

Figure 3: Cutler Sack 2

Let's look at another example of the Giants getting pressure with four defenders against seven-man protection (Fig. 3). It's first-and-10, and the Giants are in their base personnel set and 4-3 defense. Chris Canty (99) lines up in the "2i" technique; he's over left guard Roberto Garza, but he's shaded to the blocker's outside shoulder. At the snap, he fakes an inside move, then works outside. Garza never gets his footing.

On the right side, it's Tuck's turn to pick on Shaffer. Tuck delivers a great initial blow and keeps working outside. That first punch knocks Shaffer out of position, and the right tackle completely loses discipline in his footwork. Shaffer has to turn and run to keep up with Tuck, and that's trouble for any lineman. The only reason Tuck doesn't get a sack is because Canty beats him to Cutler. Once again, Forte releases inside, looks for someone to block, and finds no one, even though there are several candidates.

Garza and Schaffer are two of the veterans on the Bears line, and Forte is an all-purpose back who is supposed to be a capable pass blocker. If these guys can't protect Cutler, then the Bears are doomed, 3-1 record or not. Players like Tuck and Umenyiora are going to get some sacks, of course, but they cannot be running free to the quarterback against seven-man protection.

Let's do this one more time. Figure 4 is a diagram of the strip-sack that starts the second quarter. It's the third time Cutler is sacked in the game. Or maybe the fourth. Anyway, the Bears put both Manumaleuna and Greg Olsen (82) in the backfield on third-and-7, while the Giants show blitz with two defensive backs. There's no blitz, but the Giants do run a little stunt on the offensive right side, with Tuck looping around Pierre-Paul, who works inside against Shaffer.

Figure 4: Cutler Sack 3

The Bears plan to roll the pocket to the right side, with Manumaleuna giving extra support to Shaffer for reasons that should be obvious by now. That rolling protection leaves Olsen one-on-one against a charging Umenyiora. Olsen may have a fighting chance blocking in-line against Umenyiora, but he has no hope in the open field, where Umenyiora has a head of stream and room to maneuver. By design, Cutler is supposed to slide to the right, but Umenyiora forces him to sprint instead of sliding. Cutler fumbles into the air, and Olin Kreutz (57) appears to get his first-ever reception and a few yards of YAC, but centers are ineligible, and the play is ruled a sack.

And so it went on Sunday night. Martz can put together all the seven-man protection packages he wants, but they aren't going to work when no one but Kreutz appears capable of handling his assignment. The Bears face the Panthers without Steve Smith this week, which gives them a great opportunity to try to patch some flaws in their offense: thirteen points should be enough to earn a win. Martz has to find a way to get his linemen comfortable and keep defenders from teeing off as pass rushers on every snap. That means he may have to do the one thing he hates more than anything else in the world. He may have to call a few running plays.

You can do it, coach. It's for everyone's good.

The Linc Files

I spent last Sunday at Lincoln Financial Field, covering the latest Game to End All Games for The New York Times. I had the "crazy crowd" beat, though the crowd turned out not to be very crazy, which was encouraging in the "Hope for Humanity" sense but disappointing in the "Funny Article" sense. Selfish interest aside, it was great to see my fellow fans on their best behavior. The Times article captured as much of the flavor of the day as I could cram into 800 words, but I came away with a lot of impressions that had to be omitted for brevity's sake.

Inspector Castro: I spoke to Inspector Dan Castro in the days leading up to the game, and he told me that the Philly police are instructed to "use discretion" and "be wise" when engaging unruly fans. He also told me that the police would deploy a helicopter to monitor the crowds, something they normally reserve for World Series games and other national events, like political conventions. The helicopter would be used for traffic control and later debriefings, but the appearance of a little extra surveillance goes a long way. I was disappointed that I never saw the chopper, but as fate would have it, I bumped into Castro at the corner of Broad and Pattison, and he took me for a ride in his cruiser. My first time in the front seat!

I wrote about stadium parking and traffic long ago, so I had some idea what Castro and the rest of the Philadelphia police force must go through on football Sundays. Castro pulled up behind someone who decided to park on Broad Street. In front of the Linc. In an obvious driving lane. One moron like that can make a thousand people late for a game, or more importantly, cause an accident as drivers merge around him. Castro flashed his lights and called for a tow truck. A fan looked into the cruiser window, pointed to the illegally parked car, and joked, "Is that reserved parking?" Castro laughed. "Just wait and see how reserved it is."

Later, we passed a two-car accident three blocks from the stadium. A minute earlier, we rolled through that same intersection and it was clear. Suddenly, there was a van with a smashed-up front end and a car pushed against the light pole. There were two police cars already on the scene. The quick response kept both auto and pedestrian traffic flowing. Again, flow is important not just for convenience, but for safety.

Police around the stadium are able to jack right into the traffic light system and change lights from red to green right at the source. Castro showed me two cops working in tandem, one holding a red light to get traffic through a turn, another looking down Broad Street to monitor how many cars are coming off the freeways. It's thankless work, but in the hour before kickoff, traffic was moving throughout South Philadelphia. That's an amazing feat: Anyone who has been to the Philly stadium complex knows that Interstates 95 and 76 just dump you into a confusing wasteland of warehouses. Most visitors know only one way to get to the stadiums, if they know any way at all, and GPS systems aiming for "Broad and Pattison" only make matters worse.

When we pulled up at Roosevelt Park so I could watch the radio rally, Castro stopped his cruiser behind a woman loading breast cancer awareness materials into her van. "You aren't stopping for me, are you officer?" she asked. Castro joked with her and helped her get squared away. Later, I saw an officer arrest a drunken kid; he was about 18 and staggering around next to a parking lot gate. The officer spoke with the kid, spoke with the kid's friends, put the kid in the back seat, shook hands with the other tailgaters after explaining the situation, then drove away. Nearby partiers chuckled that the kid had it coming. It was great police work, and I think that is a major contributor to the mellow atmosphere around the Linc. People can party if they don't get out of hand, they can get to the game without an hour in traffic, they can interact with the police in non-emergency situations. They just can't park right in front of the damn stadium.

Patrick Moeller: Words cannot do Moeller's RV justice. You need to see a picture of it. Luckily, I took a few.

The Vick Van

Moeller said that the Michael Vick mural took him two days to complete. I can't imagine what he could do if he devoted a week to it. Moeller's RV also had a shrine to deceased defensive coordinator Jimmy Johnson over the back wheel, a 60-inch HDTV built into the side, and an interior décor that does for midnight green what Prince did for purple. Not a detail was missing: Before climbing the steps to enter the RV, visitors step onto a One Eagles Way doormat.

Moeller, who runs a construction and remodeling business, told me about driving home from Detroit in the middle of the night, his kids asleep in the RV's spacious bunk beds. He said that when the Eagles are on the West Coast, he splits driving duties with a friend or two while his family flies to meet them. His tailgate team might number 12-15 people in Detroit or Jacksonville, but it balloons to 30-35 people for home games.

But the mural is the big story. I asked Moeller on Sunday afternoon if he would replace Vick with Kevin Kolb if Vick got injured. He said he would "play it by ear." I suggested Trent Cole, and he thought it was a pretty good idea. I couldn't reach him for a follow up this week, but I am guessing he'll stick with Vick, who is only out for a few weeks, rather than trying to repaint the RV in the rain.

I've seen my share of Eagles buses, Eagles trailers, and Eagles RVs, including a few as tricked-out as Moeller's, except of course for the ripped-from-the-headlines artwork on the side. These mega-fan vehicles are great reminders of how important football is to so many people. It's a lifestyle-defining passion, and an integral part of some people's social and family life. Moeller had no ill-will toward any former Eagles quarterbacks, and he wanted to see a great game about as much as he wanted to see an Eagles victory. He got neither, but at least he drove home in style, and meeting folks like Moeller is a great antidote from dealing with the slobbering "Win or Else" set.

Sir Charles: Charles Barkley just happened to be walking through the crowd near the Flyers' arena. There was a reporter with him, but most of the crowd either didn't recognize him, didn't notice him, or else they simply gave him some respectful space. Pretty amazing, really: A local sports legend (in the great Philly tradition, he's a polarizing figure who left town with many crying "good riddance") walking among thousands of tipsy sports fans but only having to deal with a dozen or so politely starstuck well-wishers seeking photographs, autographs, or quotes for an article.

I only learned later that Barkley was recently on Howard Eskin's radio show, and that his Redskins No. 5 jersey was part respect for a fellow Philly icon, part publicity stunt for Eskin, about whom I have a predictable opinion. If the point of the jersey was to stir the pot, it failed. If the point was to draw parallels between Barkley and other players who endured a love-hate relationship with the local fans and media, it succeeded. Knowing the radio personality involved, it was just an attempt to stir the pot.

I walked about five miles on Sunday, in and out of parking lots and sports complexes, and rode for a few more miles in a police cruiser. I talked to dozens of fans, most of them nice, a few of them rude, one or two of them sober. Next time you are tailgating, look to your left and your right, at the car behind you and the car in front of you, and think: This same thing is happening, over and over again, over acres and acres around you, thousands upon thousands of charcoal grills and icy coolers and beanbag tosses, an amazing collective experience, joy and beauty and deliciousness among off-ramps and vacant lots. When it works, it's at once tipsy and wholesome, rowdy and peaceful. It's something to be cherished.

Jury Duty

This week's Walkthrough is a little light for a few reasons. One is jury duty. Instead of breaking down tape or writing jokes, I'm doing my duty as a citizen this week. Hopefully, everyone will plea bargain so they can go home and watch the Phillies in the playoffs.

Speaking of the Phillies, I will be live-blogging Phillies playoff games for The New York Times. That's right: I am dusting off my old baseball chops to talk about Ryan Howard and Joey Votto, Jimmy Rollins and Orlando Cabrera, Roy Halladay and whoever the heck the Reds' ace is. Bronson Arroyo? If you say so. Halladay was nice enough to give me a no-hitter to get me started, which you can read about here. Keep an eye out for lots of Baseball Prospectus-type stat talk (I've been dying to write LOOGY for a long time), a few Strat-o-Matic references, and discussion of how the Philly fans treat Scott Rolen. (The way things are going, he'll be mayor by the third game.)

Also, keep checking Football Outsiders for links to my articles in the Times, Rotoworld, NBCSports.com, and elsewhere, not to mention the best football coverage anywhere, as written by the whole gang. Just because I'm twiddling my thumbs at the Camden courthouse doesn't mean you have to twiddle, too.

Posted by: Mike Tanier on 07 Oct 2010

44 comments, Last at 12 Oct 2010, 9:16am by RichC

Comments

1
by Flounder :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 12:23pm

They need to fix the byline on the front page. It's your civic duty, not your civil duty.

13
by Kevin from Philly :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 1:25pm

Well, he didn't rip the Philly fans this time. I consider that fairly civil of him.

34
by Bobman :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 9:23pm

Well, if the Colts/Pats games are tabbed The War of 1812 (ugh) maybe the Skins/Eagles games can be the Civil War.

Cripes, what rivalries get stuck with the War of the Roses, The Pig War, The Ron Mexican-American War...?

2
by The Ninjalectual :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 12:43pm

The first diagram is HILARIOUS! The funniest football or non-football related thing I've read all year. I've been writing a football blog of my own this season; you've shown me how far I have to go. Wonderful, wonderful stuff, Mike. Now I'm going to finish the rest of the article.

15
by dmb :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 1:35pm

I don't know which diagram made me laugh harder: the first one in this week's Walkthrough, or the one he did of his kids awhile back. Both were simply marvelous.

3
by narticus :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 12:49pm

In sack #2, if Canty is in a 2i technique, wouldn't he be shaded over the blocker's inside shoulder, not outside shoulder? Outside shoulder would be 3-technique, would it not?

4
by ammek :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 12:58pm

Very good breakdown of the Bears' woes which, in the best tradition of FO, debunks the lazy, was-once-so-always-will-be explanation ("Martz gets QBs killed") in favor of what your eyes would tell you if you watched the game (the blockers weren't picking up the rushers). It's particularly worrying for Bears fans (and Cutler's medical insurers) that the extra blockers — tight ends and running backs — are contributing to the failure. I don't think the Packers' or Vikings' lines are much better than Chicago's, but at least the RBs and TEs do their bit.

Incidentally, the Lions' line has looked very good the last two games. Jeff Backus did a great job on Clay Matthews Sunday. Could Detroit have the best line in the division?

(The police and tailgate stuff was nice to read about, too, Mike. It's the kind of feature I'd expect Peter King to do in the offseason, only better written.)

6
by Jonadan :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 1:06pm

As a long-suffering Lions fan, I'm pretty sure I must be high right now (although I can't recall how this would have happened) because I just read somebody, apparently seriously, ask "Could Detroit have the best line in the division?" Now if only we could translate that into some wins...

12
by Kevin from Philly :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 1:22pm

Wow, and I thought the Eagles O-line had problems.

32
by Shogun (not verified) :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 7:55pm

Philly hasn't played New York yet. Just wait.

43
by zlionsfan :: Sat, 10/09/2010 - 2:53pm

It's possible that they do have the best line, but I think more because the other OLs have gotten worse. Sims seems to have been a solid pickup so far this season, and Cherilus and Peterman are playing better, but I think it also helps to have a healthy Pettigrew in the lineup; sometimes a line looks better when they get blocking assistance from other positions.

5
by Will Allen :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 12:59pm

Well, Delhomme would have thrown a pick-six before leaving the field, so nobody can say Panthers management doesn't carefully evaluate personnel!

7
by JasonG (not verified) :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 1:09pm

Thank you. Best analysis of the Bears massacre I've read all week. Four men were IMMEDIATELY and CONSISTENTLY beating seven blockers. That's the bottom line everyone. Martz wasn't perfect. Cutler wasn't perfect (and probably concussed most of the night, too), but freaking A, focus on the major problems.

You want to focus on Martz calls? There were seven blockers! You want to focus on Cutler holding the ball? Seriously? Two or three men were on him in .5 seconds nearly every snap. And how many times was he prepared to throw then pulled it down? The receivers, over and over and over, weren't getting open. This happened in the Pack game, too. Give the guy a break. His line can't block and his receivers can't get open. He's being left on a tee to get drilled. And he is getting drilled. But he's taking it (without a hint of attitude btw). And yet somehow he's still making some chicken salad rather regularly considering.

Sorry this digressed into a Cutler defense, but (and I'm not saying he's perfect) he's got no running game, porous protection and suspect receivers. But he's standing in there, competing, trying to produce, but taking a beating. He's not berating anyone, and who could blame him if he did? The guy is definitely tough and I think he's showing real leadership. I'm just sick of hearing all the same old whining, not tough, crybaby stuff about him. It's 180 from what he has demonstrated as a Bear. The guy doesn't just take hits, but will willingly absorb hits to make plays. He hasn't had any issues with receivers, lineman or coaches. I just hope the line can come together for him before he's put on IR. Cutler has weaknesses, but toughness, leadership and attitude are not at all where they lie.

8
by JasonG (not verified) :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 1:12pm

Also, thank you for pointing out Forte's massive regression as a pass blocker. And the big TE, too. Two major disappointments causing severe problems. Very frustrating.

26
by tuluse :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 5:58pm

Forte was a very willing and pretty good pass blocker the past two years, I wonder what's going on. Maybe is having trouble with Martz's playbook? Or maybe Cutler and Kreutz were confused by the Giants and were calling out the wrong protection.

Something is wrong.

11
by JasonG (not verified) :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 1:22pm

And news just broke that Cutler is out for this Sunday. Prudent move. Concussions are no joke.

23
by BJR :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 4:05pm

Good grief, the Panthers/Bears game this weekend is going to be an eye-bleeder.

25
by Raiderjoe :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 5:51pm

who is goign to be Bears quaretback? Is it oging to be T. Collins or other guy Cleb Hansie? Hansie look like have betetr arm. Colins like statue. He is old now too. Put Hansie in there. at least he cna move around a litt.e

17
by Eli (not verified) :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 2:16pm

There was one sack where Cofield was double teamed by the C and RG and neither guy so much as slowed him down as he made his way to the QB. It was amazing.

35
by Ambientdonkey :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 9:28pm

But why is he giving Kreutz a pass? He's the guy that calls the wrong protections, almost never blocks his man, and when he had a clean shot at Corey Webster in the open field Webster was still able to make the tackle. He didn't even move him.

44
by RichC (not verified) :: Tue, 10/12/2010 - 9:16am

Kreutz has been consistently terrible for about 3 years now.

9
by Karl Cuba :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 1:16pm

If you recall the Martz offenses in their St Louis pomp, the defenses that used to cause them the most trouble were those that could beat their offensive line with a four man rush, allowing them to maintain deep coverage (I'm thinking of the Saints, Giants and Bucs). That would be a pretty good description of the Giants game. The problem for the Bears is that their line is going to be in that situation more regularly than the Rams because their line sucks. They should calling every play they have that makes the ends hesitate in their pursuit of Cutler. All types of screen, draws, off-tackle runs, roll-outs and quick hitting pass plays would be nice. However, Martz's ysytem thrives on finding that big play when the defense blitzes or working a receiver open when allowed time against more conservative coverage (big-4 routes under a clearout etc.) and it really doesn't work very well when a team doesn't have to blitz and can prevent the slow developing deep outs and digs. The only upside for the Bears is that they won't be facing a line that with as much quality across the board as the Giants' unit.

14
by Will Allen :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 1:32pm

I was too busy counting rushers and blockers Sunday night to get a handle on how many seven step drops Martz was calling. I'd guess it was a lot, but a guy isn't completely nuts to think he can call for a deep drop when he is devoting 7 guys to protection. It'll be interesting to see how Martz modifies if the debacleing continues.

18
by DGL :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 2:17pm

"the defenses that used to cause them the most trouble were those that could beat their offensive line with a four man rush, allowing them to maintain deep coverage..."

Isn't this true of pretty much every offense?

20
by Karl Cuba :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 3:01pm

No, it isn't, at least not to the same extent. While teams with a good pass rush and good coverage will always be in a position to succeed, some offenses rely to a much greater extent on either exploiting match-ups (ie Green Bay) or quickly delivering the ball to receivers and backs outside the hash-marks (the New England style spread as now employed by KC). Remember the Carolina-Patriots Superbowl where New England couldn't hold up against the dominant Carolina pass rush, so they never tried to hold the ball for more than a three step drop. The Rams used to move the ball and make big plays against plenty of good defensive teams, it was the teams that could use the plan I outlined that stopped them consistently.

10
by Karl Cuba :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 1:20pm

PFT is reporting (actually someone else's article that they're 'amalgamating') that Todd Collins will start for the Bears this weekend.

27
by tuluse :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 6:01pm

It's on the official website.

I'm actually disappointed they're not giving the start to Hanie. He always looks good in preseason, and Collins looks done as a QB can look.

Get ready for a lot of Forte up the middle for 2 yards.

28
by JasonG (not verified) :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 7:38pm

Apparently with Martz, backups get no reps during the practice week, so perhaps that's Collins excuse. Plus he was getting just as bombarded as Cutler. I'm not saying Collins will necessarily play well, but let's give him a fair shake. With a week with the 1s, and hopefully with some line improvements (or playing a worse defense, whichever), why can't Collins succeed?

30
by tuluse :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 7:50pm

why can't Collins succeed?

Because it looked like he had no idea what was going on or where receivers were going to be. When he did throw the ball it didn't look he had any accuracy or arm strength.

Stick a fork in him.

29
by JasonG (not verified) :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 7:43pm

Oh, and how about letting Taylor take a crack at gaining some yards? Can't be worse than Forte, right? And what about all this performance accountability? Doesn't it apply to Forte? Free Taylor. Or Manumaleuna? Free Kellen Davis. He's a beast. Always liked him.

31
by tuluse :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 7:52pm

Taylor has been getting carries, it just looks the same. Dive into the middle of the line for 2 yards, or run to edge for no gain.

16
by Barfolomew (not verified) :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 1:59pm

Maybe Cutler's blockers don't like him? That would explain the abysmal blocking, they're trying to get him out of the game.

19
by WeaponX (not verified) :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 2:22pm

wow, Diagram 1 sure was zinger. *bike horn, spinning tie*

21
by dmb :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 3:08pm

For those of you who like video to go along with the diagrams:

Figure 2, Figure 3, and Figure 4. This was the best I could do for Figure 1...

22
by Karl Cuba :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 3:39pm

No fig 1????

24
by Dean :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 4:10pm

Click on the word "this" above.

36
by Bobman :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 11:06pm

"This" was okay and all, but, no offense, I was kinda hoping you'd spent some time creating a little animated chaos. Rats. Hopes... dashed.

40
by dmb :: Fri, 10/08/2010 - 8:06am

None taken -- sorry to disappoint! I wish I had the skills to do something like that, but sadly, I don't. Although I hoped that I could scrounge up a clip filled with more futility, I thought it was more appropriate if it had one with Claussen, not Moore ... so all those mind-bendingly bad interceptions from the first few games were out. But I thought the clip of choice did have some things going in its favor:

1) The Panthers had managed to put themselves in a fourth-and-almost-impossible;
2) Dwayne Jarrett runs a route that's just a smidge short of the first down on this crucial fourth down;
3) Clausen actually throws the ball to Jarrett just short of the first down;
4) Jarret drops the ball;
5) The play essentially ended the game, so the players were about to head for the tunnel.

I must say, I'm very impressed by the loyalty of the Panthers crowd. It's not unusual for montages of bad moments for disappointing players to pop up, but I couldn't find any such creation for Jarrett. (Of course, one of his few highlight videos from the pros notes that it's "like finding a needle in a haystack to find footage of this guy." One of the most passive insults I've encountered...)

33
by Michael LaRocca (not verified) :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 8:56pm

The picture of the van is very much appreciated. As would be a picture of that box of Ohs cereal. Or your boy swallowing chicken nuggets whole, although that's probably got more potential on YouTube. Gulpthrough.

37
by Raiderjoe :: Thu, 10/07/2010 - 11:45pm

Is clothier drunk? Better to advertuse on fahsion website or clothes fan message boarrd.
This is football place. It is wherre we go to write and read about football a nd lookk at stats. Not here discuss clothes unless football jesery.

38
by Dan :: Fri, 10/08/2010 - 1:38am

Martz can put together all the seven-man protection packages he wants, but they aren't going to work when no one but Kreutz appears capable of handling his assignment.

To be fair, on the Giants' 8th sack Cofield embarrassed Kreutz (and Louis).

39
by Dan :: Fri, 10/08/2010 - 1:45am

Here's a video review (by "Your Boy Roy") of the 9 Cutler sacks which does a nice job of showing what happened - protection problems, receivers running into each other, Cutler holding the ball too long. I've linked to the third sack [figure 4], where Roy thinks that Cutler was first concussed.

I posted my summary of the 9 sacks in a couple other threads, and I might as well put it here too. I'd say that 4 were primarily a protection problem (including the 3 diagrammed here), 4 were primarily on Cutler, and 1 was primarily a coverage sack. Here they are in order:

1st quarter
13:36 3-10 Umenyiora [figure 2]
6 block, 4 rush plus Tuck spies & comes late
Primarily a protection problem. Cutler made a 7-step drop, but as soon as he got back there the pocket was collapsing as Jason Pierre-Paul was coming around the offensive right side. Cutler tried to step up, but Umenyiora was right there coming up the middle, and Tuck was also closing in.

10:11 1-10 Canty
6 block, 4 rush [figure 3]
Another protection problem on a 7-step drop. Tuck came around the offensive right side and Canty broke through up the middle, giving Cutler no time and nowhere to move to evade the rush.

2nd quarter
14:27 3-07 Umenyiora (fumble) [figure 4]
7 block, 4 rush
Primarily protection, and Cutler may have been a split second too slow to get rid of it. The Bears try a designed rollout with Cutler moving to the right, but Tuck comes flying around the offensive right side to contain him and keep him from continuing to the right, and Umenyiora comes all the way around from the offensive left side, quickly beating Olsen and getting to Cutler as he throws to force a fumble (caught by Kreutz).

11:25 1-10 Tuck (fumble)
7 block, 4 rush
Primarily on Cutler holding the ball too long, plus Manumaleuna let Tuck go right around him on the offensive right.

09:59 3-19 Umenyiora (fumble lost)
6 block, 4 rush
Primarily on Cutler holding the ball too long. Umenyiora came around the offensive left, but was forced wide and around. Cutler stepped up and clutched a couple times but didn't get rid of it, and Osi eventually got to him for the strip sack turnover.

07:05 2-07 Goff/Cofield (out of bounds)
8 block, 4 rush
This was on the coverage and Cutler. It was a three-step drop but it looked like the player wasn't open on the quick slant so Cutler held it, scrambled right, and went out of bounds.

06:26 3-09 Tuck
7 block, 4 rush
Primarily on Cutler, and not great protection. Cutler slips at the end of his 7-step drop, then resets his feet but doesn't throw. By then the pressure is there and he moves around in the pocket to try to avoid the rush but can't escape.

05:07 1-10 Cofield
7 block, 4 rush
A protection problem. Cofield blew right by the center (Kreutz) and then the right guard (Louis) and came right at Cutler.

00:58 1-10 Ross
5 block, 5 rush
Cutler doesn't make the read. Bears go five wide, Ross blitzes from the slot on the offensive left and comes unblocked, Cutler doesn't see him and make the quick throw so he takes the sack. Not sure if someone on the OL was supposed to pick up the blitzer - perhaps the left tackle Omiyale?

41
by Anonymouse (not verified) :: Fri, 10/08/2010 - 11:00am

... and would bring the car back. I bet the driver would be willing to pay more for better service.

42
by The Other Ben Johnson (not verified) :: Fri, 10/08/2010 - 12:26pm

Can we have a link to your twiddle feed, or is that a violation of the fifth amendment?