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NCAA spread offense and the impact on the NFL


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With only a two game sample, it's early, but I think there is a trend occurring which is real.  The more college teams operate from the shot gun, run pass option, spread the field, the worse we see OL and QB play in the NFL.  We as Colts fans aren't operating in a vacuum - there are terrible OLs in Houston, Cleveland, New York, Green Bay, Seattle, SF, Carolina, and on and on.  And the hit or miss with the QBs from these same offenses means teams are as likely to find the starter in the seventh round as the guy taken in the first (Denver...).  Scoring is down, quality of play is way down (to me), ratings are absolutely down, and attendance is down.  How much of this is to be blamed on mediocre talent all over the NFL, kids who are being asked to play a pro-style of football they've never been exposed to, and failing? 

 

How much of the bad line and QB play that we're seeing is caused by techniques not being taught at a college level, and the NFL not adapting to the talent available to them?

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That is why projecting QBs and OLs at the next level has become difficult. It also places a premium on OL coaching, than ever before. That is one thing Colts fans don't realize, how well Philbin brought along rookie OL because not all of them played in a pro offense in college. It might take them a couple of years to get the hang of everything, IMO.

 

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I love this OP.  The product as a whole is starting to go down and the NFL see's it already.  College has great programs but they are producing bad technique for these guys at the next level.  Add the lack of training and practice in the NFL now you have disasters for a lot of teams looming in the future.  You still have a few stud's each year but the numbers look like they might be dwindling. Good topic!

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Spread offense is basically a one read system...get the ball out quick and find the mismatch. OL generally don't have to protect very long and the qb doesn't have to make many progressions....its check with the coach and then look for the primary receiver on the play...very few make progressions...8/10 if the primary is covered they check to a rb or a crosser. I agree its going to take extra coaching and better scouting to find OL help. Teams like New England and some others that have great coaching will figure it out...teams with turn-stiles at the coaching position will be in constant flux and have constant OL issues. You look at Seattle and they know its so bad a problem they don't spend draft picks on it or pay to fix it....they just grab people off the defensive side and use them. Investing in fixing it can be an expensive solution but also there are no guarantees even after spending all that money it will work. Right now defensive get after the passer is just way ahead of these young kids who aren't strong enough and disciplined or skilled enough to protect for more than a couple seconds. Watching Eli and the Giants play the other night I thought he was going to get his neck broken ala Peyton a couple times.....it's definitely an issue...but one teams will have to solve if they want to be elite.

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On 9/19/2017 at 12:29 PM, Dirty Mudflaps said:

{snip}

 

How much of the bad line and QB play that we're seeing is caused by techniques not being taught at a college level, and the NFL not adapting to the talent available to them?

 

That's a real factor.  however, the elephant in the room is the CBA.  No 2 a days.. only 14 padded practices in the 16 week season.  Players cannot develop the skills and techniques necessary for the NFL on the line running in shorts and helmets. In fact, shorts/helmet practice invites and instills bad habits. 

 

Every coach abhors the situation.  Polian despises it.  i think this parody is attributed to Bill Belichick.  Running practice in shorts for O linemen is like... well here it is, I found it...

 

"It's like, you go out to the driving range and hit drives and hit balls, but you can't go on the putting green," Belichick told reportes.  "And then, to think that your putting is going to be at the same level as your driving when you can't really practice it, it's not really realistic. But, again, all teams are operating under the same set of rules, so it is what it is. But it's hard. It's hard at that position. It's hard to tell a guy, 'This is what you should do,' but he really can't go out and practice it."

 

Bill Polian sounded off on the O line play recently too ( Worst play in his memory!! )-

 

http://blog.siriusxm.com/2017/09/19/bill-polian-nfl-offensive-line-play-worst-in-my-memory/

 

So it's a myriad of items, and some players and some coaches can navigate the rough water slightly better than others.  But don't expect a change in the next CBA.  There will be even more of a move to 11 personnel for O and Nickel for D as base offenses and defenses.

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Spread style offenses have changed the NFL for the last 30 years. If you want to historically date this, then the Oilers Run-N-Shoot and Buffalo's K-Gun offenses were the first that really legitimatized a spread offense into the NFL running multiple wide receiver sets and various shotgun plays. The West Coast Offense was still in it's primitive state back then. 

 

The spread style offenses are the reason why the Bears style 4-6 defense became completely obsolete in just a matter of a few years, and quite frankly the reason they never won another Super Bowl. The 4-6 looks unbeatable against offenses running Smashmouth and other run heavy style offenses without a lot of passing. When you run the 4-6 up against a spread style offense, or even just something with good blocking and deep ball play (see 1985 Dan Marino carving it up, or any year in the playoffs where the Bears had to face Washington or San Fran who did the same thing), it's going to get exposed every single time. 

 

I don't think it has anything to do with bad o-line play. In that time of span, we've seen several teams manage to run pass happy spread style offenses and have terrific o-line play. 

 

The teams mentioned in the first post don't really put a lot of work into offensive line play. There are still some teams who make O-line play a top priority and invest heavily into it. Teams like Atlanta, Dallas and New Orleans focus on o-line play. 

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Good thread......    glad someone else posted it.....

 

It's a league-wide problem.       If every team needs 9-10 O-lineman,  then the NFL, as whole,  needs 300 O-lineman and that's NOT counting the Practice Squad.

 

Most O-line coaching is now being done on the NFL level,  not college.     Colleges are NOT preparing these kids for the NFL game.     Most teams are winning with some variation of the spread.     That's not preparing O-lineman for the NFL.

 

Philbin worked magic last year.    We started the season as one of the worst O-lines,  and finsihed with a solid O-line and that was with TWO rookie starters,  and the last three games,  we had THREE rookie starters.      And people here didn't notice or care.

 

And now that we don't have Kelly, and Mewhort's knee is acting up,  and Haeg, Good and Clark are all struggling with one thing or another,   the drumbeat of "Philbin sucks as a line coach is back."       People here couldn't be more wrong,  but opinions matter far more than facts,   so,   here we are....

 

Fans all over the NFL think their O-line is a problem.     It's a problem everywhere,  not just with the Colts.

 

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4 hours ago, NewColtsFan said:

 

Good thread......    glad someone else posted it.....

 

It's a league-wide problem.       If every team needs 9-10 O-lineman,  then the NFL, as whole,  needs 300 O-lineman and that's NOT counting the Practice Squad.

 

Most O-line coaching is now being done on the NFL level,  not college.     Colleges are NOT preparing these kids for the NFL game.     Most teams are winning with some variation of the spread.     That's not preparing O-lineman for the NFL.

 

Philbin worked magic last year.    We started the season as one of the worst O-lines,  and finsihed with a solid O-line and that was with TWO rookie starters,  and the last three games,  we had THREE rookie starters.      And people here didn't notice or care.

 

And now that we don't have Kelly, and Mewhort's knee is acting up,  and Haeg, Good and Clark are all struggling with one thing or another,   the drumbeat of "Philbin sucks as a line coach is back."       People here couldn't be more wrong,  but opinions matter far more than facts,   so,   here we are....

 

Fans all over the NFL think their O-line is a problem.     It's a problem everywhere,  not just with the Colts.

 

 

No matter how you slice it, there's a lot of truth in there...

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    Everybody here is right..

 

Seattle's line is keeping Russell Wilson on the run all day and all of the night.

 

Denver is 2-0 and Trevor Siemian has still been sacked 7 times....

 

Packers backup tackles almost got Aaron Rodgers killed last Sunday night.

 

Houston's O-line is a revolving door.

 

If you tape games a watch 'em twice...you see $5 - $10 million dollar guys being beaten so bad they cant even hold the rusher

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I'll tell you how bad O-line play is....

 

On ESPN.com.....   after week 1,   someone analyst made a list of the worst O-lines in the NFL....

 

It was the 5 worsst,  and the NEXT 6....   so 11 in all.

 

Here is the story:

 

http://www.espn.com/nfl/story/_/id/20688504/nfl-2017-o-line-calamity-index-trouble-front

 

This was AFTER the Rams game.      And the Colts were NOT on the list.

 

Now,  I'm not arguing that,   I think the list is wrong.    I'm only saying it goes to show how wide spread the problem is throughout the entire NFL.       

 

And while the 2018 NFL draft will be better for O-lineman,   that's relatively speaking.     It couldn't be worse than last year.     And EVERY NFL is going to want to draft a good lineman.      But there still won't be enough.

 

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