Well played, Field Street Forum. Well played.
Anti-SEC smack laid down by, of all people, a Virginia Tech blogger.
Ian Boyd has another informative post up, this one about how defenses are shifting away from traditional 4-3 and 3-4 sets into a variety of sets allowing them to better face up against spread attacks, get their best athletes on the field, or both.
For example, this one should sound familiar to us:
The 2-4-5 is ultimately a defense of specialization as the main pass-rushers are going to be the two stand-up edge rushers. The defense deploys them on the edge because that’s the easiest way to utilize a pure pass-rusher and they aren’t asked to do a great deal other than control the edge and provide pressure. The defensive tackles will tend to specialize in clogging up the interior and helping collapse the pocket while the linebackers are running free as support players.
Without access to the kind of elite pass-rushers that can attack the edge and overcome an offense’s best efforts at pass protection, the 2-4-5 is not a superior nickel package. It can also struggle against the run if defensive tackles aren’t sturdy or the linebackers are deficient. However, it is the simplest and best way to allow big, fast, and powerful athletes to impact the game and attack the quarterback.
Having access to elite pass-rushers isn’t going to be something Jeremy Pruitt worries about this season. Struggling against the run? Well, we’ll just to wait and see.
Derek Dooley, good on teaching personal hygiene, not so good on recruiting and developing talent.
I watched this Bulldog Illustrated interview with Mark Richt…
… out of interest about what changes are being made on offense (no surprise with regard to nomenclature, as it makes too much sense for the mountain – a forty-year old system that traces its roots back to Bobby Bowden – not to come to Mohammed, i.e., the guys who will be calling the plays this season), but the most interesting part comes at the clip’s end, starting at about the 2:25 point, when Richt talks about the search he underwent for Bobo’s successor.
“With so many people going to the spread, it’s hard to find a guy that truly wants to do it the way we want to do it…”
And that meant there was a bigger pool of candidates for Richt to sift through at the NFL level than in college.
I’m a fan of contrarian thinking as an offensive philosophy. There are clear advantages to being able to run a power, pro-style offense in a world where college defenses gear up more and more to deal with the spread. But in light of my earlier post today, you have to wonder if there’s a limit to going against the grain. You’ve got fewer kids coming out of high school who can step right into a pro-style scheme in college. And now you’ve got fewer college offenses running pro-style attacks. Georgia’s already doing its best to deal with that. What happens if the paradigm shift at the NFL level I hypothesized about in my last post actually comes into play?
Obviously, I’m not predicting that. But Richt has to stay nimble with what he’s doing on offense, because a lot of the surroundings have changed – and keep changing – on him. And that’s not just a matter of terminology.