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zibby43

Colts utilized highest percentage of man coverage in Eberflus' tenure last night

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This approach probably caught the Chiefs off guard.  I don't think the Colts will be able to rely on this man-heavy approach exclusively going forward (Colts don't have the personnel, and it makes the defense more susceptible to the big play), but it was a very nice change of pace that gives future opponents something to mull over.
 
This more aggressive approach certainly helped the pass rush (and vice versa).

 

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Personally I hate zone defense, and I do think we have guys that can play man.  

 

I still dream of those crazy Baltimore lineups across the D line and those crazy blitzes.  You can get burned but it is exciting to watch! 

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Well it has been a bit baffling/annoying to see Ballard draft all of the athletic long arm guys (LB's and DB's), especially corners who excel in man coverage, just to watch them sit in zone coverage's and get picked apart. Let these kids play and utilize what they were drafted for. 

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Having defenders in the area of receivers would catch any opponent of the Colts off guard...brilliant subterfuge...

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57 minutes ago, BleedBlu8792 said:

Well it has been a bit baffling/annoying to see Ballard draft all of the athletic long arm guys (LB's and DB's), especially corners who excel in man coverage, just to watch them sit in zone coverage's and get picked apart. Let these kids play and utilize what they were drafted for. 


Yeah I really don’t get why man hasn’t been used as much either. It’s not like the scheme itself is inherently hard for young players to acclimate to. I also don’t buy the logic that the Colts don’t have the personnel for it either.

 

Yes, they probably shouldn’t run it all the time but if the KC game showed anything, it showed that running man coverage could certainly yield some positive results.

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1 hour ago, Restored said:


Yeah I really don’t get why man hasn’t been used as much either. It’s not like the scheme itself is inherently hard for young players to acclimate to. I also don’t buy the logic that the Colts don’t have the personnel for it either.

 

Yes, they probably shouldn’t run it all the time but if the KC game showed anything, it showed that running man coverage could certainly yield some positive results.

 

Except that man is hard for young players.  It's not because of the "scheme" of it - that's relatively simple.  It's the technique/skill component.  It's the reason why "lockdown" corners are so coveted.   

 

And personnel is 100% part of the equation.  Scouts specifically evaluate players to determine whether they're better in man or zone schemes.  Ideally you want to draft a player that is capable of man (Ya-Sin), but can understand the responsibilities and communication required by zone.

 

Don't let outcome bias cloud your judgment.

 

The greater utilization of man coverage (against tendency) worked against a KC team whose best receiver on Sunday night was a guy named Pringle (no Watkins). 

 

The fact that the Colts merely used more man is not the sole reason for the positive outcome on Sunday night.  You have to also execute the man coverage.  When you don't, you're going to get torched for big plays. 

 

All that said, I absolutely agree that the Colts should continue to mix it up more than they have (i.e., more than 25% man coverage in any given game), depending on the opponent and personnel availability (i.e., do we have the healthy bodies required).  It makes life much harder for QBs when you execute it properly.  It also potentiates the pass rush. 

 

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Heck of a game. However, I think it's a lot easier to play man against KC when Hill and Watkins aren't out there. Hopefully it gives confidence to the team to play man when needed and maybe be a little less predictable going forward.

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6 hours ago, zibby43 said:

 

Except that man is hard for young players.  It's not because of the "scheme" of it - that's relatively simple.  It's the technique/skill component.  It's the reason why "lockdown" corners are so coveted.   

 

And personnel is 100% part of the equation.  Scouts specifically evaluate players to determine whether they're better in man or zone schemes.  Ideally you want to draft a player that is capable of man (Ya-Sin), but can understand the responsibilities and communication required by zone.

 

Don't let outcome bias cloud your judgment.

 

The greater utilization of man coverage (against tendency) worked against a KC team whose best receiver on Sunday night was a guy named Pringle (no Watkins). 

 

The fact that the Colts merely used more man is not the sole reason for the positive outcome on Sunday night.  You have to also execute the man coverage.  When you don't, you're going to get torched for big plays. 

 

All that said, I absolutely agree that the Colts should continue to mix it up more than they have (i.e., more than 25% man coverage in any given game), depending on the opponent and personnel availability (i.e., do we have the healthy bodies required).  It makes life much harder for QBs when you execute it properly.  It also potentiates the pass rush. 

 

I kind of feel the opposite that with all the injuries in the secondary it was easier to go man coverages. Zone requires trust and feel for each other that comes with time and chemistry. Man coverages is just don't get embarrassed on national TV. 

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25 minutes ago, SLILLINGTON10 said:

Heck of a game. However, I think it's a lot easier to play man against KC when Hill and Watkins aren't out there. Hopefully it gives confidence to the team to play man when needed and maybe be a little less predictable going forward.

Not directed at you so don't take it directly, but I had a few conversations yesterday with football friends who were saying the same thing about them missing guys. I can't buy that because if your guys get injured what's the other team supposed to do, not play? Screw that, teams were pounding on us when we didn't have Peyton that one season and doing the same when Luck was hurt.

 

That excuse don't fly with me. Don't like it?? Stay healthy then.

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2 minutes ago, IinD said:

Not directed at you so don't take it directly, but I had a few conversations yesterday with football friends who were saying the same thing about them missing guys. I can't buy that because if your guys get injured what's the other team supposed to do, not play? Screw that, teams were pounding on us when we didn't have Peyton that one season and doing the same when Luck was hurt.

 

That excuse don't fly with me. Don't like it?? Stay healthy then.

 

Yeah I agree with you on this. Saying they were without Hill/Watkins is acting like we weren't missing both starting safeties and our all pro linebacker in this game... We dominated a talented offense that has dominated everyone without Hill thus far, with a bunch of rookie and 2nd year players out there. They got in the spotlight on SNF and shined. I'm looking forward to watching them build off that. This could be the turning point for this defense for the next several years... 

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Analysis is not excuse making.  It is worth noting that man coverage worked especially well because the Chiefs were missing some offensive playmakers

 

As to why we started seeing a lot more man in this game -- Eberflus was forced to trust the young defense to execute since a child could tell that Mahomes was going to shred the zone heavy defense he'd run so far.

 

I honestly think we saw as much zone as we did early in the year because Eberflus knows how young this defense is and wanted t work with his personnel before turning them loose.  I think the KC game was always the game  that Eberflus had circled on his calendar as the time to see what his young D could do

 

The fact that the team stood up to the challenge really well and proved they could handle man D does mean that Eberflus will probably be braver about resorting to it in future.  Which is a very good thing.

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8 minutes ago, IinD said:

Not directed at you so don't take it directly, but I had a few conversations yesterday with football friends who were saying the same thing about them missing guys. I can't buy that because if your guys get injured what's the other team supposed to do, not play? Screw that, teams were pounding on us when we didn't have Peyton that one season and doing the same when Luck was hurt.

 

That excuse don't fly with me. Don't like it?? Stay healthy then.

their fan base is pretty terrible.  yes they had injured players and so did the colts.  they dont even know who Hooker is, but assume he would not have mattered if Hill played.  Manic would have made the defense even better too

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23 minutes ago, IinD said:

Not directed at you so don't take it directly, but I had a few conversations yesterday with football friends who were saying the same thing about them missing guys. I can't buy that because if your guys get injured what's the other team supposed to do, not play? Screw that, teams were pounding on us when we didn't have Peyton that one season and doing the same when Luck was hurt.

 

That excuse don't fly with me. Don't like it?? Stay healthy then.

 

I could understand if that was the first game without Hill but he's been out since week one. All we've heard about is the plethora of weapons in Hardman, Kelce, Robinson etc and now ppl are making it seem like half their team was missing. Had they won nobody would mention Hill or Watkins.

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11 hours ago, Patrick Miller said:

They should keep it up.

 

Their corners are certainly more successful when playing man, since most of them are at their best when playing man compared to zone. 

 

Wilson, Ya-Sin, and Desir certainly are better at man than zone. 

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This shows that in the NFL, you need to be able to do it all. If you are in zone most of the time, you need to be capable of switching to man when the situation demands it. If you are a primarily man team, you need to be able to go zone. Everyone scouts everyone. If they see a tendency, any team can exploit it. At the same time, if you go away from a tendency, you can catch teams off-guard. No one is better at being able to switch tactics on offense and defense every game than the Patriots. The Colts need to great at some things and capable of others.

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11 hours ago, zibby43 said:
This approach probably caught the Chiefs off guard.  I don't think the Colts will be able to rely on this man-heavy approach exclusively going forward (Colts don't have the personnel, and it makes the defense more susceptible to the big play), but it was a very nice change of pace that gives future opponents something to mull over.
 
This more aggressive approach certainly helped the pass rush (and vice versa).

 

we give up way more playing zone 19 yards off allowing people to run freely uncontested..and we actually HAVE the corners for Man coverage we just refused to use Man because our DC is trying to make this cover 2 stuff work regardless if our players aren’t reading and reacting well..just watch anytime we play man and give up something big it’s either due to pass rush not getting there  or a Tight End running freely down field 

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Isnt a reason you have a guy like Hooker so that you can play more man to man? He has these elite ball hawking skills why not put them in their strength? 

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Can anyone give me a short primer on the positives and negatives of man vs. zone?  

 

I understand the concept that one is where a DB marks up with a specific man and tries to stay with him verses one where the DB covers an area of ground and attacks the ball when it comes into his area.  

 

How does that translate to outcomes?

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1 hour ago, Imgrandojji said:

Analysis is not excuse making.  It is worth noting that man coverage worked especially well because the Chiefs were missing some offensive playmakers

 

As to why we started seeing a lot more man in this game -- Eberflus was forced to trust the young defense to execute since a child could tell that Mahomes was going to shred the zone heavy defense he'd run so far.

 

I honestly think we saw as much zone as we did early in the year because Eberflus knows how young this defense is and wanted t work with his personnel before turning them loose.  I think the KC game was always the game  that Eberflus had circled on his calendar as the time to see what his young D could do

 

The fact that the team stood up to the challenge really well and proved they could handle man D does mean that Eberflus will probably be braver about resorting to it in future.  Which is a very good thing.

 

 We were getting gashed in the run game and not covering well with our LB's, and a puny pass rush. I still say Sheard solidified the D-Line and that helped immensely.
 Khari Willis is just more capable than Geathers also.
  And so it was time to start playing the D that has been planned for.

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29 minutes ago, NannyMcafee said:

Isnt a reason you have a guy like Hooker so that you can play more man to man? He has these elite ball hawking skills why not put them in their strength? 

 

I really thought with the Rock pick, Wilson, and Desir (bigger/physical DB's), they would play more Cover 3, with like you said, Hooker playing the middle of the field and letting the corners man up on the outsides. Hopefully this was the turning point to letting them loose and letting guys be in better position to make plays.

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31 minutes ago, NannyMcafee said:

Isnt a reason you have a guy like Hooker so that you can play more man to man? He has these elite ball hawking skills why not put them in their strength? 

 

  Those skills were the reasons Ballard and his staff had Hooker as #1 on their draft board.
  We need to be able to go man to man in critical situations.
With a good pass rush please.

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9 hours ago, zibby43 said:

 

Except that man is hard for young players.  It's not because of the "scheme" of it - that's relatively simple.  It's the technique/skill component.  It's the reason why "lockdown" corners are so coveted.   

 

And personnel is 100% part of the equation.  Scouts specifically evaluate players to determine whether they're better in man or zone schemes.  Ideally you want to draft a player that is capable of man (Ya-Sin), but can understand the responsibilities and communication required by zone.

 

Don't let outcome bias cloud your judgment.

 

The greater utilization of man coverage (against tendency) worked against a KC team whose best receiver on Sunday night was a guy named Pringle (no Watkins). 

 

The fact that the Colts merely used more man is not the sole reason for the positive outcome on Sunday night.  You have to also execute the man coverage.  When you don't, you're going to get torched for big plays. 

 

All that said, I absolutely agree that the Colts should continue to mix it up more than they have (i.e., more than 25% man coverage in any given game), depending on the opponent and personnel availability (i.e., do we have the healthy bodies required).  It makes life much harder for QBs when you execute it properly.  It also potentiates the pass rush. 

 


I get the logic but it doesn’t really apply to the Colts current personnel situation. Who outside of Ya-Sin is a young and inexperienced CB? Sure, when teams go with 4 WR’s or 5 WR’s you end up with some of the lesser skilled CB’s being on the field but that’s when I would expect the Colts to be in zone. Desir has been around the block and has been able to limit opposing WR’s one on one multiple times. Moore can matchup with slot WR’s and has been great there for the most part.

 

Ya-Sin is the only inexperienced CB in the top 3 and all indications have pointed to him being a better man-coverage player than zone. Wilson struggles regardless if he is in zone or man sometimes but he always seems to be in a position to make a play but misses the opportunity a lot of the time.

 

Again, not saying that the Colts should use it exclusively now but they definitely have shown they can utilize it effectively.

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I think zone coverage is frustrating to watch. 

 

In thinking of it it terms of limiting the big play, but allowing offenses to convert more ball control, I don't think we have that high scoring offense that makes playing a zone defense make sense.  I'm thinking in terms of the Polian/Dungy years.

 

Fortunately, I think our DBs are capable of playing man on a consistent basis.

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We’ve got big and physical corners in Wilson, Desir, and Ya-Sin. We really should be using man more, I hope this is the start of a new trend.

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2 hours ago, SLILLINGTON10 said:

Heck of a game. However, I think it's a lot easier to play man against KC when Hill and Watkins aren't out there. Hopefully it gives confidence to the team to play man when needed and maybe be a little less predictable going forward.

Agreed.  While zone is frustrating, its supposed to be able to contain dynamic players better than relying upon one defender, so to speak, to do it.

 

With man, the DBs eyes are not totally watching the play in front of them.  So when players like Hill and Jackson, or Hunt in the past,  would get the ball near the LOS in space, not to mention Mahomes scrambling, a DB could be taken downfield farther if he is playing man rather than zone.

 

With those dynamic players out of the game, and Mahomes hobbled, man coverage probably has more success, all other things being equal.

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42 minutes ago, Valpo2004 said:

Can anyone give me a short primer on the positives and negatives of man vs. zone?  

 

I understand the concept that one is where a DB marks up with a specific man and tries to stay with him verses one where the DB covers an area of ground and attacks the ball when it comes into his area.  

 

How does that translate to outcomes?

In my limited understanding, zone coverage allows the DBs to keep the play in front of them, their eyes in front of them instead of turning and running with the WRs.

 

KCs game isn't about their WRs.  Its about getting their athletes the ball in space, or allowing Mahomes to create space.  Having DBs turning and running with WRs or a streaking TE would open up space for the other guys, sometimes the TE too.  You want to naturally play zone against that O.  

 

But KC did not have its dynamic athletes available or healthy.  Also, it allowed the safeties to not have to roll coverage to one side of the field, depending upon what receiver was in the game.  Mahomes couldn't scramble well.  So man-ing up on the (nondescript) receivers allowed coverage longer and the pass rush to get home.

 

That's the way I see it in my limited understanding of the schemes.

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5 minutes ago, DougDew said:

But KC did not have its dynamic athletes available or healthy.  Also, it allowed the safeties to not have to roll coverage to one side of the field, depending upon what receiver was in the game.  Mahomes couldn't scramble well.  So man-ing up on the (nondescript) receivers allowed coverage longer and the pass rush to get home.

 

That's the way I see it in my limited understanding of the schemes.

 

 both teams were hurt, hooker and hill would off set each other some what.  Hill is a deep threat and that is hookers area.  darius leonard is probably our best blitzer too, among other things 

 

the injury excuse is ridiculous for winning this game

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53 minutes ago, Valpo2004 said:

Can anyone give me a short primer on the positives and negatives of man vs. zone?  

 

I understand the concept that one is where a DB marks up with a specific man and tries to stay with him verses one where the DB covers an area of ground and attacks the ball when it comes into his area.  

 

How does that translate to outcomes?

 

One (very basic) difference between zone and man coverage when playing corner is where you have your eyes focused. In zone, the defender is focused on the QB and where he is looking, all while using his peripheral vision to determine potential targets (moving) in to his assigned area (zone) and covering him or breaking up the pass/intercept as the QB looks and throws that way. In man, the eyes are focused on the player he is covering with knowledge of route combinations, tendencies and down and distance to get a feel for what route he is running and playing him off of that.

 

Covering fundamental techniques differ as well. Also, schemes can get a little more complex. Some schemes play a mixture of man and zone and even within certain zone concepts. For example, the defender plays man to man until that man clears his zone, then he peels off and looks for a secondary threat while a team mate in the next zone picks him up.

 

Zone corners don’t need the raw speed that their counterparts in man-coverage schemes do as the routes develop in front of them. Man defenders are often locked up one-on-one with speedy receivers running downfield and need to be able to match them step for step.

 

I think zone corners need to be bigger and tackle better, as they pass off a receiver leaving his zone and comes back to cover other receivers flowing in to his flat.

 

This is very basic, and D schemes are getting complex and mixed (Hybrid) and sub package dominated.

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Just now, aaron11 said:

 

 both teams were hurt, hooker and hill would off set each other some what.  Hill is a deep threat and that is hookers area.  darius leonard is probably our best blitzer too, among other things 

 

the injury excuse is ridiculous for winning this game

What are you arguing about?  

 

Injuries were on both sides.  How is Hooker, Leonard, and Geathers being out for the Colts an injury excuse for the Colts winning the game?  

 

Hill's threat is multiple, a lot of it getting the ball near the LOS.  He's not Phillip Dorsett.

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6 minutes ago, DougDew said:

What are you arguing about?  

 

 

exactly what i said.  some people, including you keep going on about the injuries to the cheifs receivers and how thats the main reason the colts won.  

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1 hour ago, Valpo2004 said:

Can anyone give me a short primer on the positives and negatives of man vs. zone?  

 

I understand the concept that one is where a DB marks up with a specific man and tries to stay with him verses one where the DB covers an area of ground and attacks the ball when it comes into his area.  

 

How does that translate to outcomes?

It's all about seizing the initiative, IMO.

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5 minutes ago, aaron11 said:

exactly what i said.  some people, including you keep going on about the injuries to the cheifs receivers and how thats the main reason the colts won.  

I think the OP is suggesting that the reason the defense gave up only 13 points is because the Colts played man coverage.  I tend to agree.

 

If you're suggesting that not having Hooker or Geathers on the field at all didn't matter very much, I won't argue.

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6 minutes ago, DougDew said:

If you're suggesting that not having Hooker or Geathers on the field at all didn't matter very much, I won't argue.

thats not  what im saying, Hooker would be great against mahomes imo.  PM throws lots of high lobs to the secondary.  thats what hooker is good at

 

i would make the safetys hooker and willis if it were up to me, and put geathers at dime back

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3 hours ago, SLILLINGTON10 said:

I kind of feel the opposite that with all the injuries in the secondary it was easier to go man coverages. Zone requires trust and feel for each other that comes with time and chemistry. Man coverages is just don't get embarrassed on national TV. 

That is what I said last week zone is making us look horrible and the man coverage showed just how good this defense is and how much better it can still get stop playing so much zone its terrible.

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11 minutes ago, aaron11 said:

thats not  what im saying, Hooker would be great against mahomes imo.  PM throws lots of high lobs to the secondary.  thats what hooker is good at

 

i would make the safetys hooker and willis if it were up to me, and put geathers at dime back

OK.  I didn't know this was a Hooker thread.  But he's fine.  I'm glad to see that Geathers is going to be replaced (prediction).

 

I think of dime back as a coverage guy.  That ain't Geathers IMO.  

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This all being said, maybe it would have been better to use more man against Oakland's short, quick passing game. I know. Hindsight is 20/20.

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