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Defending 2007 NE Five-wide sets - a question?

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Patriot_in_NY, May 1, 2007.

  1. Patriot_in_NY

    Patriot_in_NY Rookie

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    First off, forgive me if this is a dumb question. I'm a fan more then an x and o kinda guy. Obviously the Moss pick-up has me, and many of you, fantasizing about all kinds of new-found possibilities.

    One of the first things that came to my mind was the five wide set that we used to love so much (didn't see it as much last year it seems). Thinking about it, personnel wise, right now. It almost seems indefensible.

    I guess my question is. If you were a DC, how the hell would you go about defending a five-wide set that features:

    Moss
    Stallworth
    Welker
    Watson
    Gaffney/Caldwell/Washington/Thomas/Faulk/Morris/Brown/Maroney/ect..............

    (or any combination thereof).

    Good lord, can any defense handle that without some breakdown and someone quickly pulling wide open somewhere? If not several guys open.

    I mean this as a sincere question too...............

    Thanks.
    Last edited: May 1, 2007
  2. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    You go to church, pray alot, and then burn the stadium down the night before the game. :D

    Oh, you meant, how do you stop it on the field? Ummm.........:eek:
  3. Welker83

    Welker83 Rookie

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    Put in your dime defense with your fastest LB, and play a zone. The problem with the 5 wide is that defenses know what is going to happen, so they don't have to worried about being suckered into play action. just sit back and cover the field. You don't have to worry about screen passes because they won't work. Stallworth, Moss and Welker either won't, can't or are unable to run block.

    Also it's hard to get open when there are so many players running through the same spots. 7 guys on defense + 5 guys on offense clogs up the field rather quick. The downside of the 5 wide is that it can't play to a zone's weakness which is overloading one side. There is no RB threat so they can easily switch over, and if you put more than 3 guys on one side it takes to long for them to spread out to get the ball quickly.

    Also there is danger from a blitz. With no blocking help it's very easy to figure out a blitz to overwhelm one side without commiting too many guys to rushing. Then you have your guys play short zones to jump the routes and hope to hell your guys get some pressure so the QB has to throw it away

    I'm not saying it's a bad set, i'm saying it's a bad set to run all the time because it limits the guessing a defense has to do...Defense is all about guessing and reaction. When there are less possibilities and choices it makes the right choice easier to guess. I can almost guarantee that the 5 wide will be used, it just won't be a staple.
  4. Pujo

    Pujo Rookie

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    Now 4 receivers and a RB, to either give them the option of running or for blitz pickup, we'll see a lot of.
  5. Bobs My Uncle

    Bobs My Uncle PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #12 Jersey

    Employing a 5 wide set is done to either a) flood and seriously exploit a zone area of coverage or b) to exploit a weakness in 1 or more of the coverage DB's.

    If a team goes zone then they are going to rely on their DB's ability to not break down in zone protection. If a team goes m2m in coverage then they are going to rely on their DB's ability to stick with the wideouts.

    I can't imagine (m)any team(s) would be in position to effectively m2m 5 DB's deep against the 5 receivers the Pats could trot out there so it's probably going to be wiser to take a chance at going zone and hoping for no breakdowns.

    If Maroney had Faulks receiving skills and could be the 5th in a 5 wide set I think it would be almost unstoppable because the Pats could cross them up (Maroney runs and/or Maroney catches) endlessly. Faulk might be able to do so effectively however.
  6. theONLYJerseypatsfan

    theONLYJerseypatsfan Rookie

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    The way I honestly see it is there are two ways the pats will have bad games this year

    A. The O line doesnt hold up to give the plays enough time to develop

    B. Tom Brady has his 1-2 4 int games per year
  7. Pat the Pats Fan

    Pat the Pats Fan Rookie

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    #50 Jersey

    Good breakdown of how the defense would react.
  8. Fencer

    Fencer Rookie

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    #12 Jersey

    The prior analysis was excellent, but there are other possibilities as well. One is to simply drop 8 guys into coverage and hope that whichever of your DL is single-blocked will eventually make it to the QB.

    Getting more Patriot-specific: The book on Moss was zone (Cover 2) works better than man. I'm guessing that's still or will again be true despite the stories of him losing his burst, etc. I don't think covering Welker man to man is a lot of fun either, or for that matter Troy Brown if he's on the field. So I expect the Pats to see a whole lot of complex zone coverage this year. Maybe with the #1 CB trying to take Stallworth man-to-man to reduce the pressure on the rest of the secondary ...

    Watson complicates matters too. He's in that 1/3 or so of starting TEs who'll torture simple-minded zones by getting to the seams quickly enough to haul in big gains.
  9. NordicVoyager

    NordicVoyager Rookie

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    As I read about these five wide Patriot sets, I am reminded that Daniel Graham used to be part of such sets. Anyone miss Graham for the 2007 Pats? I do not, especially at a cost of $6 million per year for five years. All of our new WRs are cheaper than that contract at least for the first year and arguably better receivers. The interesting question is how much will Graham's blocking be missed. Thoughts?
  10. 363839

    363839 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I was just going to post how everyone seems to be forgetting one of our most important and underated fa pick ups.... Kyle Brady.
    Yup! Brady to Brady.
    Otherwise I would have worried about losing Graham.
    Besides, Graham lost a lot of time on the field because of injuries.
    KB might even be better than Graham as a blocker and a reciever. He's just older.
  11. Welker83

    Welker83 Rookie

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    Actually when moss was actually producing in minny teams ran a mofified man cover 1...all the CB's played man, and the safety over moss doubled him while the other safety played a deep middle zone....Receivers with great speed can literally run right through zone coverages to get to the safeties, and cordinators are smart, if they figure they will run a zone they will run their fast WR right at the SS to try and get a good match-up... Against teams with deep threats that like to throw long a lot it's safer to play man due to the fact that if moss runs a go route straght down the field he'll drag 3 guys over his way spreading out the defense and leaving EVERY SINGLE UNDERNEATHE ROUTE OPEN...(see culpepper; 70% completion rate below 20 yards).

    in the 5 wide it's different though because the D knows it's a pass, and there is no worry from play action. they don't need to worry about staying in place to support the run so they can back up as much as they want...

    Honestly, i can not stand the use of the prevent defense...there is a reason there are so many late 4th qtr comebacks in the NFL...and the reason is because it simplifies EVERYTHING for the QB..he knows exactly who is rushing, where they are rushing from, ad he knows how every DB will react. All he has to do is assign Receivers to clear out the zone and then get one of his guys there to make a catch...there is no guessing. Unless your D-line is extremely dominant you have to rush the QB...Especially when you can easily overload a side of the line...Which brings me to the point about overloading a side of the field with WR's... The defense loves this because the guys on the other side of the filed are free to rush without sacraficing coverage because they don't need to support the run...basically they can just blitz at will. Knowing this, the guys in coverage play short because they know it's either a screen, or the QB will need to dump it off really quick due to the blitzers...

    The best situation in my opinion is to start with a 4 wide single back (faulk), and then if you want the 5 wide shift faulk outside, or even smarter is to have him run a route from the backfield... The defense still has to account for the run so they are not free to blitz, if they do blitz, faulk could cut his route and chip block, and you still can get your best WR's matched up against the 3rd and 4th string DB's... As long as the defense can second guess themselves their reaction time takes longer giving the offense the advantage...
    Last edited: May 2, 2007

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