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NFL.com: Defending the Wildcat

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by JSn, Nov 19, 2008.

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  1. JSn

    JSn Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    Leading into our match-up against the Phish, who smoked us with the Wildcat, here's some neat insight into the package.

    **Mods - I thought this was relevant given our opponent this week. If not, feel free to relocate it.

    Not just a wild idea, Wildcat may be here to stay

    Excerpt:

    Interesting: Vince, Guyton, Mayo tracking some fishes for a big hit? SWEET!
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2008
  2. BradfordPatsFan

    BradfordPatsFan In the Starting Line-Up

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    Very interesting article. Thank you for sharing. I wonder who the "key" defender for the Pats would be in each of those situations.
     
  3. NEPatriot

    NEPatriot Banned

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    Dolphins uses wildcard to hide their weakness.
     
  4. unoriginal

    unoriginal In the Starting Line-Up

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    To put it simply, the reason it is effective against us is because it requires quick penetration and a man advantage at the point of attack. The Pats defense prefers gap control and deep zones.
     
  5. JSn

    JSn Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    How do you suspect they'll manage personnel in this case? The last game seemed to show we have to let our speed demons attack because otherwise we're going to drown in a rising tide of short passes and YAC's.

    How would YOU assign personnel for this kind of D, based on who we have?
     
  6. unoriginal

    unoriginal In the Starting Line-Up

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    I'd follow Cowher's advice, except the contain rush advice. Miami made a bunch of good gains on the Pats in the first game from quick off-tackle stuff. An upfield contain rush would take the contain players out off the play; Brown or Williams would just run underneath them. Alternatively, you could have the contain players use wrong-arm technique, but that's more a 4-3 Cover 2 technique, it might be sub-optimal to devote that kind of practice time to the problem.

    I think instead you slant away from the QB/receiver and blitz a QB-side corner or linebacker for contain. I think you keep the backside safety to play downhill on Pennington, because you'd be willing to trade a few 10-yard completions there for one or two stick-em hits.

    You shouldn't be vulnerable to counters because hopefully a penetrating lineman or the backside contain blitz could get into the backfield mesh before the play developed. Weak power runs would be a concern, because Miami's o-line is quick enough to push off the slant and reach the ILBs. Unless your safeties are really fast you could give up some big gains there.

    But that's the whole point of the single wing, you're trying to hit home runs with the running game.
     
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    Last edited: Nov 19, 2008
  7. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Great analysis. Looking at how Cowher defends the wildcat package, you have your DEs coming in outside the tackles and your NT and both ILB coming in between the C and G. That leaves both gaps between the G and T open. A RB with the quickness of Brown or Williams could hit the hole and get past the OLBs - with the help of those G's - leaving only the S between the RB and the end zone. If I recall correctly, that's exactly what Brown was able to do once or twice when Miami played the Pats earlier this season.
     
  8. unoriginal

    unoriginal In the Starting Line-Up

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    Close. In the Pats defense, the OLB's are the contain players, not the DEs (or the CBs, which sometimes happens in Cover 2). DE's are doing gap-control on both sides of the tackles. But if the TE or the T pushes the OLB upfield, which is easy to do because they're light, standing up and heading that way, and you get a hook on the DE, you can lead off-tackle on the Stud and pick up good yardage. Which is what you remember from the first game - especially plays on the goalline when Miami would motion an H-back from backside to give themselves even more power on the OLB-kickout. ILBs can't run that down consistantly.
     
  9. jays52

    jays52 In the Starting Line-Up

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    Or, if we really want to have fun with this, why don't we fight high school fire with high school fire? If they want to run the single wing, why not run a 44? Hypothetically, one could crash the ends and give the outside linebackers c gap responsibility. Playside outside linebacker is in charge of turning the play inside, backside keeps contain. Have your playside inside linebacker blow up the inside downblock or pull and backside inside linebacker flow to the ball to clean up.

    Thoughts Unoriginal?
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2008
  10. unoriginal

    unoriginal In the Starting Line-Up

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    I think the major problem with the "Wildcat" package is that it is essentially the same as the standard Pro Set package, from a personnel standpoint. You can't run a 4th DL on the field, because Pennington could just line up at QB with Williams and Brown split behind him, or one of them in the slot.

    If the Dolphins wanted to run a classic wing variation against a defensive package designed to stop it, no doubt they would just leave Pennington on the sidelines and put another tackle or end on the field.
     
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    Last edited: Nov 19, 2008
  11. Alex24

    Alex24 Banned

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    The fins usually run this play two to three times a game at most lol,we might not even see it cause they know BB has his D ready for it.
     
  12. JSn

    JSn Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    Really?

    I think Bill estimated closer to eight times and they can run it from a regular personnel package, meaning they can use it at almost any time.
     
  13. Leave No Doubt

    Leave No Doubt PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    Great thread/article Js, thanks :) Unoriginal's insights are just outstanding as always:rocker:
     
  14. Lloyd_Christmas

    Lloyd_Christmas I can delete my own crap! PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The article only make a brief hint at the defense simply pummelling the QB (who is split out as a WR) on running plays which the wildcat usually is.

    It says that the offense normally runs to the side away from the QB so as not to put him at risk. Is there are rule against a hard block to an offensive player who is away from the action?

    Even if leveling the QB is not an option, shouldn't the defense at least expect the run to be more likely to go away from the QB and defense it that way, cheating the defense in that direction? If the RB tries a cutback, the CB/Safety covering the QB at a distance, immediately runs to and drills the QB as hard as he can and the defense take their lumps on a potenially longer gain on the run.

    It won't take long for that QB to start complaining about any runs to his side of the field and the coach is likely to stop doing it even if their is no complaint for fear of losing his starting QB.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2008
  15. JSn

    JSn Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    It depends. When we tried it (poopfest) and a few times I've seen the Jets or Dolphins run it, the QB is split out WAY wide. Unless you're genuinely afraid of of a high YAC miracle catch by the QB, I don't think spending a guy on a full-out block is worthwhile.
     
  16. unoriginal

    unoriginal In the Starting Line-Up

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    Yes, that is called unnecessary roughness. I believe the competition committee clarified the rules regarding the above after the Warren Sapp - Chad Clifton incident.
     
  17. Leave No Doubt

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  18. Palm Beach Pats Fan

    Palm Beach Pats Fan In the Starting Line-Up

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    They've run it exactly 59 times in 10 games, but recall they started using it in game 3, so 59/8 = 7.4 plays per game on average over the last 8 games.

    There was a game or two where Ricky W was banged up and they used it less, so I think it is fair to say they would like to use it 7-10 times per game if it is reasonably effective.
     
  19. FinNasty23

    FinNasty23 Practice Squad Player

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    Heres the problem...

    Whatever personnel changes you make must be made to your base defense. You cant sub in a special package of players to defend it... because you cant tell by the personnel in our huddle that we are going to run it.

    Like the article says... all you can do is design a check defense.


    Now, the way this describes how to defend it is talking about the Wildcat with the end around. We rarely use the end around in the Wildcat now. It changes every week into something new. I mean, against the Seahawks we ran a wishbone offense, lol.
     
  20. FinNasty23

    FinNasty23 Practice Squad Player

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    Unless you are going to run a 4-4 against our base offense... then it wont work... b/c you cant sub in that extra LB, b/c you never know its coming based on the personnel. Thats why we leave the QB out there instead of putting in another playmaker...

    You can move your SS up in the box to be that 4th LB, and play the 4-4 defense like that... but you cant sub in the extra LB.
     
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