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How much did we use zone blocking against the bucs?

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by Phokus, Aug 12, 2007.

  1. Phokus

    Phokus Rookie

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    It's really hard to tell what blocking scheme from the sideline camera, but when they had the camera directly behind the offensive line on some replays it was obvious they were zone blocking on those replays... did we exclusively use zone blocking during the game?
  2. zippo59

    zippo59 Rookie

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    Breer makes it sound like they were using it quite a bit.
  3. Box_O_Rocks

    Box_O_Rocks PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Look for AllWorldTE's posts in this thread, he seems to have the best analysis to date...
    http://www.patriotsplanet.com/BB/showthread.php?s=&threadid=24631
  4. rabthepat

    rabthepat Rookie

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    What ever it was it looked like the same old line blocking to me. Perhaps with Maroney and his cutting ability we'll notice a real difference.
  5. dryheat44

    dryheat44 Rookie

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    #75 Jersey

    Zone blocking vs. Man Blocking is going to be very hard, if not impossible, to differentiate on camera in most cases.
  6. TripleOption

    TripleOption Rookie

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    Not at all.
  7. dryheat44

    dryheat44 Rookie

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    Then you're much better an analyzing plays than I do. In the case of the Alex Gibbs scheme, it's obvious because the O-lineman are clipping the D-lineman, but, IMO, in the way the Patriots are going to play it, unless there's an obvious cut-back by the RB, I don't see how you're going to differentiate between the two. For example, on a run off-tackle, Mankins pulls left and takes out the Defensive End. Short of reading minds, I don't see how you know whether he's blocking the DE because that was his assigned man to block, or if that was the body who popped up in the zone he was responsible for.

    I'd love an education fpr how to tell. I'm all for learning new things.
  8. TripleOption

    TripleOption Rookie

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    For Inside Zone, watch for the double teams and then the playside OL releasing up to the LB. The Outside Zone (Stretch) is very distinctive. Also, watch for the backside of the OL pushing the DL down (cutting or driving) to allow for the cutback lane.
  9. unoriginal

    unoriginal Rookie

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    Brief illustrated tutorial on Zone vs. Man, part 1.

    [​IMG]
    This is a man blocking play. Mankins lined up cheating half a step back from the line in order to pull left and get the end. At the snap of the ball you can see him opening up back and left to get around Light, who is looking at his responsibility, the playside linebacker.

    [​IMG]
    Look where Light is in comparison to Mankins. He is blocking deep into the 2nd level on the linebacker in order to create the left side of the lane with Mankins and Koppen. The green lines above indicate where the lane is supposed to be. Evans is leading through there on the mike linebacker. Faulk is also distinctively pointed towards the hole called.

    [​IMG]
    Man doesn't try to move the defense line down the field. Man blocking tries to open lanes in the front 7 of the defense. Here the lane has been collapsed. Good blocking from Caldwell, Mankins and Light, by the way.
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  10. unoriginal

    unoriginal Rookie

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    Part 2.

    [​IMG]
    This is a zone play. The entire line steps into the defensive line's left shoulder and pushes upfield. The green numbers indicate the playside responsibilities the double-team (Mankins, Koppen) have to work through. The Will linebacker is marked 3 because Welker will be cracking on him, while the Mike is free.


    [​IMG]
    The orange line, as you probably guessed, is where the offensive line used to be. You can see how the initial double team on Hovan (1) creates the hole inside. Also note no one, save Welker, is heading for the 2nd level yet.

    What the picture doesn't show is that Faulk walked into the handoff to give himself more time to read the line, another hallmark of a zone play.


    [​IMG]
    Light makes an executive decision here to collapse his man inside, since his man is trying to close the hole. Zone blocking is loosey-goosey like that. Zone blocking doesn't care where the hole is, as long as the defensive line is moving downfield and there's a hat on every man. Faulk has to read it, make his cut, and get downfield.

    Only now, with the mike linebacker stepping into the play, does Mankins come off 1 and head for 2.

    This is the last you'll see of Welker on this play, btw.


    [​IMG]
    And after Mankins rubs off onto the mike, Hovan goes past Koppen for the stop. Note how everyone except Koppen is three yards downfield, all in a line. That's a zone play.
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  11. PATRIOTS-80

    PATRIOTS-80 Rookie

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    unoriginal, this has got to be the post of the year!!!!!!! thank you so much. It is nice to have pics to go with the breakdown.
  12. Vern

    Vern Rookie

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    GREAT breakdown there!

    On a side note, Koppen and the right side of the line seemed to be where TB got through to collapse the hole (man) or seal off the cutback lane (zone) in both plays.

    That could show:
    1. The power of the "speed" oriented Tampa-2 DL who's job is to chase down plays (that could also set up play-action very nicely later on though).
    2. Faulk is not as fast as Maroney getting to the outside on these plays.
    3. The right side (including Koppen) didn't seal off as well as the left, which dominated.
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2007
  13. PatsFan37

    PatsFan37 Rookie

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    Ditto. Great post. The pics are superb. I remember that play, had no idea it was zone blocking and I'll go back and watch it again.
  14. PATRIOTSFANINPA

    PATRIOTSFANINPA Rookie

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    Unoriginal....Extremely good explanation and pictures..Unlike your forum name that post was definately an 'original' that would be hard to do better.
  15. shakadave

    shakadave Rookie

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    Unoriginal, five stars aren't enough for this contribution; I give it six.

    Question: How new is zone blocking for our O-line? Is it a new undertaking this year, or have we always done it once in awhile, sort of like our defense playing the 4-3 to mix it up? I ask because I'm wondering if our O-line won't yet be as good at zone blocking as they will be in 2008.
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2007
  16. Krugman

    Krugman Rookie

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    Impressive,unoriginal,and very helpful,hell,even I can understand the concept,no small accomplishment.......
  17. gomezcat

    gomezcat It's SIR Moderator to you Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Wow. That was mind blowing stuff. I will go and watch tape to see if I can "get it" for myself.
  18. Phokus

    Phokus Rookie

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    Unoriginal, that was an awesome explanation :D

    That's the thing about the sideline cam that i hate though... whether it's man or zone, it always looks like a bunch of fat guys crashing into each other to form some sort of megablog that makes it hard to distinguish anything. I love replays that use the camera behind the offense, it's easier to see double teams, guards pulling, etc. :)
  19. Mike the Brit

    Mike the Brit Minuteman Target PatsFans.com Supporter

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    What he said!

    Knowledge, screenshots, commentary -- all absolutely outstanding!
  20. TripleOption

    TripleOption Rookie

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    I will quote American Football Monthly Magazine to simplify things and provide some things you may want to watch for...

    Zone blocking occurs when two offensive linemen are responsible for blocking two defenders in a certain area towards the point of attack. The purpose of using the zone blocking scheme is to stop penetration, create movement on Level I (build a wall) and also seal off the onside linebacker. All zone blocks initially start out as an inside-out double team. As movement begins, either the outside blocker or inside blocker will gain control over the defender on Level I, allowing the other blocker to come off the block to handle the linebacker. In this type of blocking scheme, it is critical to create movement on Level I before coming off for the linebacker.
  21. Frezo

    Frezo Rookie

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    #50 Jersey

    I saw zone blocking on Morris' first TD and the play before. The replay of the TD had an endzone shot after the commercial break that has a good view.
  22. FirstAndGoal

    FirstAndGoal Rookie

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    I saw a lot of zone blocking in the last game. I even saw a couple of stetch plays. The stretch is easy to pick out.
  23. letekro

    letekro Rookie

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    Thanks Unoriginal. You are a beast.
  24. SqivvyQ

    SqivvyQ Rookie

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    For years I've lurked obsessively re: bawston spawtz - here, KFFL, SOSH, ... -- but this is I think the first time I've ever posted. I just just now registered in order to post in this thread.

    1. Mostly to say Thank you, Thank you, and thanks, unoriginal. I yearn for such.

    2. I think there's a deep untapped market for this type of football education. As a nearly professional lurk n' browser, why have i NEVER seen actual gamefilm online? Nowhere really, save on that ESPN show with Jaworski (sp?).

    3. Few fans really understand much of what's going on in football. I've learned a little here and from FO, but I watch play with just about the same awareness as when Sam Bam was rocking my ten year-old world. The running back carries the ball how far -- nice juke there; he's throwing the ball to that guy; Russ Francis was inteferred with in friggin Oakland; Ellis Hobbs did not intefere in the endzone last AFC CG. How to watch the lines, where the safety plays, stunts?, the genius defensive shifts and disguises BB concocts... I dunno Why and how does a playbook contain seemingly hundreds of plays? HTF does everyone memorize all that?

    4. Speaking of my fav sports figure, it seems BB actually opens up, gets excited even, when talking about these kind of details, the nuts and bolts from studying game film, i.e. when he pulled out film from his father's career. Why isn't he asked to do so? Instead, the "journalists" whine on and on about BB's (typically tactical) reticence.

    5. ... because, as has been noted, the sports media are too... dumb? lazy? Especially on TV and radio (especially the latter), we're given simplistic speculation on the "character", motivations, "chemistry", heart, motor, etc. of kids in their 20's. Pure gossip, and crappy gossip at that (Inside Track relies on sources more diverse than pulled-from-own-ass). And, geez, one of the few benefits to being older than a 26 year-old is getting past your 20s... I don't much care about kids' dramas and feelings. Sports' fourth estate should report and anlayze primarily what happens between the lines.

    OK, I'll shut up (be grateful I'm a lurker!).

    What's my point, beyond deep gratitude? I dunno, just more, more, more, please; is game film, no matter the age, ever available? Can we kidnap BB and force him to break film down, say LT's greatest hits? Football is so complex, and he seems the best not only at the analysis but also making it understandable, insightful, educational, fun. BB and "fun", how remarkable would that be???

    OK, now back to voyeurism...
  25. Vern

    Vern Rookie

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    Well said. I've watched football obsessively my whole life, but the only people I know who really learn anything about the game are those who played it at some level (high school or college). Baseball fans had people like Gammons and Remy and Eck to break down every (boring) detail of that game.

    But when it comes to football it's like "just show a big hit and some coach making a joke" and that's all you get. You can't really buy books on this, not for the NFL level plays, and you can sit through hours of programming and learn NOTHING! Even the NFLN spends all it's time on transactions and news and reviews. Why not one or two hours a week on game film breakdowns? (Well, they have one show, where you get maybe three plays a week.)

    Though I mostly follow the game from the "GM" side of things, it wasn't until sites like Football Outsiders and others that you could actually find detailed analysis of actual plays. I've learned more online in the last few years, than in 30 years of NFL TV and Newspaper coverage. Thank God for the internet!
  26. TripleOption

    TripleOption Rookie

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    They call them "hardcore x's and o'
    s shows" and they believe there is a very limited market for them.
  27. Brownfan80

    Brownfan80 Rookie

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    Another "thanks unoriginal" post, though they are now becoming unoriginal themselves. Heh.

    Great stuff though, seriously. Thanks!
  28. Krugman

    Krugman Rookie

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    Good post Sqivvy(sorry if I misspelled that),you make some good points re the x and o stuff,and you are right on the money regarding BB and his breakdown of game films,thats a view of the man that many dont see,but its great to watch.
  29. unoriginal

    unoriginal Rookie

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    Too many nice comments to get to, thanks all for the compliments, I'm glad I could help. I view it as a little work early in the season will save me a lot of frustration later on. :D

    To be honest, immediately after completing my 2nd post my reaction was "to hell with this!" It was a very time-consuming process to look at the film, take the screenshots, try to edit them legibly, upload them to the interwebs somehow, and then finally write my posts. I'd say all 7 shots took roughly 90 minutes. Again, all the respect in the world to Box and pats1, who do similar tasks on a weekly basis.

    Plus, I wasn't too sure imageshack wouldn't just delete these images based on bandwidth draw. It's good to see they still are up.

    The favorable reaction has caused me to reevaluate my initial thinking. I'll try to do some more of these as time allows.

    To tide you over, I also did some shots of a play in the first quarter that I don't think many saw. The thread it was in fell down the board pretty quickly.

    http://www.patsfans.com/new-england-patriots/messageboard/showpost.php?p=480801&postcount=29
  30. unoriginal

    unoriginal Rookie

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    I should also note that an unintented consquence of my posts has been to show Chris Hovan is absolutely a beast on that Bucs D-line.

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