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15 Carries, 34 Yards - Why Run Woodhead Rather Than Ridley?

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by DropKickFlutie, Sep 24, 2012.

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  1. DropKickFlutie

    DropKickFlutie Rookie

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    What was the point of running Woodhead that many times? He isn't better than Faulk, and even in Faulk's prime he only came in on obvious passing downs (usually 3rd down). It was almost as if before the game ever started the plan was to minimize Ridley and go in spread formations with Woodhead back there. Does Woodhead or Ridley keep the defense more honest? Does running 15 times for 34 yards, most of the time from shotgun, make the defense even care about defending the run?

    All that aside, the Pats still had the lead in the 4th. Why still go with Woodhead in shotgun on some of those down/distance neutral situations, when what the team really needed was to grind out some 1st downs and kill the clock?

    Also - hope Edelman's hand is okay and love his fire, but he was targeted too much early on. This team's studs are Gronk, Welker, and Branch (plus Ridley). Edelman is a good 4th or 5th option, not the main guy. Gronk and Welker complete over 70% of targets to them which is excellent, while Edelman's is closer to 50-60% (last night was the same%). There isn't a good reason why he has suddenly become a main feature of the offense.
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2012
  2. nashvillepatsfan

    nashvillepatsfan Rookie

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    you forgot a certain WR who caught alot more balls than Gronk last night :D

    also, I agree about woodhead. I want more Ridley
  3. DropKickFlutie

    DropKickFlutie Rookie

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    Yeah, not surprised that Welker had a huge game 15 receptions something like 150 yards. It just shows that there was nothing wrong with Welker, just a completely irrational coaching decision to bench Welker in favor of featuring Edelman and Woodhead more in the first two games. Only Hernandez's injury forced their hand to play Welker more.

    Also, Gronk was only targeted 3 times last night. Again, makes no sense. Even if the O-line has issues, Gronk is a matchup nightmare who could have been targeted more on quicker-developing plays that did not leave the O-line vulnerable.
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2012
  4. Rob0729

    Rob0729 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Some thoughts:
    • Gronk was blocking a lot last night. They also doubled him a lot.
    • Edelman had a good game last night.
    • The Woodhead running did score the Pats a TD on one drive.
    • Ridley doesn't seem to fit into the Pats' up tempo offense. If people want the Pats to run the no huddle a lot, then they have to put up with less Riley and more Woodhead.
  5. nashvillepatsfan

    nashvillepatsfan Rookie

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    I wasnt talking about Welker, although he had a great game too. I was referring to Lloyd.
  6. hovis

    hovis Rookie

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    Ridley had 13 carries for 37 yards. That's 2.8 yards per carry versus Woodhead's 2.3. I know Woodhead and Edelman are this board's favorite whipping boys, but the Ravens have one of the best d-line's in the league, and none of our backs ran well against them. He had a few negative plays blown up in the backfield, whose fault is that? The only drive he had semi-decent blocking, he ran down the field for a TD...

    If you're looking for goats, try the O-Line, Steve Gregory & Devin McCourty (Keystone cops), and Arrington (abused by Smith).
  7. DropKickFlutie

    DropKickFlutie Rookie

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    How many total offensive snaps did Ridley play? Bc if every time Ridley was in the game and he ran, it would be a huge tell for the defense to just stack the box on Ridley.

    Also, Edelman did show flashes, but 4 catches for 28 yards isn't exactly lighting the world on fire, especially when he was still around the 50-60% career completion% of targets thrown his way. Most of Edelman's catches were those quick sideline throws, not much past 5-10 yards through the air.

    .
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2012
  8. sieglo

    sieglo Rookie

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    McDaniels is a moron. For some reason he thinks Woodhead is Jerome Bettis, running him up the gut straight at Ngata over and over again in defiance of all logic. Belichick ought to just fire him after yesterday.
  9. DefenseRules

    DefenseRules Rookie

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    #12 Jersey

    I doubt that BB will fire him, but I did find his use or over use of Woodhead annoying.
  10. Jose

    Jose Rookie

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    I blame Shane Vereen for not being good enough to replace Woodhead on the depth chart.
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2012
  11. Sicilian

    Sicilian On the Roster

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    I think the rational was a combination of things. 1) Woodhead is better in the no-huddle and 2) he's smarter with blitz pickup. That explains why he's on the field in a game like this, and you can't just abandon the run (even when it's not effective), so as long as he's there he's going to get his carries. And as has been pointed out, Ridley wasn't impressive either. It's almost as if the Ravens have a good defense. But that can't be right because only the Patriots control the outcome of their own games.
  12. DropKickFlutie

    DropKickFlutie Rookie

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    Agreed but Ngata is an absolute beast, and with Pats O-line weakness at right guard and also center, not to mention that Woodhead is probably 180 pounds soaking wet, it wasn't the best idea to run tiny Woodhead up the gut repeatedly straight into Ngata behind below average Pats inside-blockers. Suggs was not playing but they never tried to attack the perimeter on some off tackle runs where there might be defensive weakness. The play calls were a bit befuddling.
  13. Sicilian

    Sicilian On the Roster

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    I kind of agree, but really our interior lineman are just as good as our tackles when it comes to run blocking IMO. And every time the pats when horizontal with the running game, I basically conceded no gain. That Ravens defense is more than just Ngata, they move to the ball and set the edge extremely well.

    Besides, when a RB runs a draw from the shotgun, it's hard to get outside. You've already let the edge defenders in a little bit, and your best bet (usually) is to try up the middle or between the guard and tackle.
  14. letekro

    letekro Rookie

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    Vereen is hurt.
  15. DropKickFlutie

    DropKickFlutie Rookie

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    More evidence for why Brady should have been under center more. Since running outside in shotgun is sub-optimal and running a middle draw right at Ngata didn't make a lot of sense, why not use Ridley more and also try some more off-tackle runs where Suggs wasn't there anymore.
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2012
  16. Palm Beach Pats Fan

    Palm Beach Pats Fan Rookie

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    They also tackled him to the ground a lot when he did go out on a pass pattern, but usually it was Ray Lewis.

    You just can't go throwing flags on Ray Lewis, at home of all places, can you?

    The refs have a strong survival instinct, and 70,000 loud and drunk fans affected their performance.
  17. Sicilian

    Sicilian On the Roster

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    Because I think it's easier for Brady to read the defense in the no-huddle from the shotgun, and the no-huddle was really the only way we were able to sustain drives. You can't have it all, and they chose the no-huddle with Woodhead. And in the end, we're complaining about an offense that put up 23 points (not counting the short drive after the interception, for fairness), on one of the best D's in the league on the road. Combine that with the 7 points off the turnover, and that HAS to be good enough to win.

    I put this one on the defense (if I have to choose a Patriots related reason for the loss), not on McDaniels or the offense, because if we see the Ravens in the playoffs again this year, we're probably going to have to win with less than 30 points scored.
  18. DropKickFlutie

    DropKickFlutie Rookie

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    Right, well that's the value of shotgun is if everyone knows you're passing, you might as well give the QB some more space and let him see the routes faster. I just don't know about making it a core part of your entire strategy in situations where it's down-distance neutral, instead of at least giving a credible threat of a run at any time.

    The defense fell apart after the 1st quarter, but I basically take 14 bogus points away on 2 Ravens TD drives where the refs kept throwing out phantom PI calls, prolonging drives that were killed multiple times, until the Ravens finally scored.
  19. PATRIOTSFANINPA

    PATRIOTSFANINPA Rookie

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    #12 Jersey

    My patience is wearing thin on Vereen

    His second season and the injury bug continues.

    He must find a way back and show something before the team looks elsewhere
    next year.
  20. Coog548

    Coog548 Rookie

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    I agree. I am also done with this Woodhead experiment. He is in the game because of the hurry up/no huddle we are running but the guy can not get pasted first contact at all. Last night Ridley had some strong runs after contact.
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