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Author Topic: thoughts on defending the zone option formthe split 44  (Read 2222 times)

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Offline coachnick

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Re: thoughts on defending the zone option formthe split 44
« Reply #15 on: October 05, 2017, 07:34:55 AM »
Rip and Liz is a 2 high coverage with the S rolling to a Cov. 3 with the other S going to the flat.  It's not really something you'd normally run in a Split 4, or any 4-4 for that matter, because a 4-4 is basically a "pre-rolled" Cov. 3.  You can still carry #2 with the flat player in the 4-4... but that's not Rip or Liz.  That's just Cov. 3.

And even Rip and Liz is still Cov. 3.  The same weaknesses against the option are still there.  You have 3 guys responsible for deep zones, allowing only 8 to be involved in fast run defense.  In the 4-4, that puts only 4 defenders to a side.  If they're in twins and running zone read to that side, you have the 3 OL, 2 WRs, QB, and RB (7 offensive players) and only 4 defenders in the front to stop them on that side.  Even if you say the C and RB are going "backside" on the play... the offense still has 5 on 4.

The reason that spread teams in HS and college were able to just shred shred defenses with simple zone reads in the early-to-mid 2000s was because so many of them were trying to play Cov. 3 to it.  When Quarters with field/boundary principles became popular and widespread, the zone read and old-school zone read spread became a lot less effective because of how the secondary was more involved in the immediate run defense.

Just look at what happened to Rich Rodriguez's teams!  The guy invented the zone read and was unstoppable at West Virginia... but by the time he left for Michigan, the defenses were already catching up.  He's been 53-53 since then.
  hmm...as i understand rip liz it is a variation of cover 3....flat defenders/olbs/overhangs have number 2 out and or up...corners have number 1 vertical, ilbs drop hook curl off the single back....mof defender can be what you want him to be....game plan, down to down etc...so with the free safety playing run vs a team on the zone read and the corners carrying the verts...seems sound...yes its almost like man.....thoughts?

Offline coacharnold

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Re: thoughts on defending the zone option formthe split 44
« Reply #16 on: October 05, 2017, 10:37:44 AM »
  hmm...as i understand rip liz it is a variation of cover 3....flat defenders/olbs/overhangs have number 2 out and or up...corners have number 1 vertical, ilbs drop hook curl off the single back....mof defender can be what you want him to be....game plan, down to down etc...so with the free safety playing run vs a team on the zone read and the corners carrying the verts...seems sound...yes its almost like man.....thoughts?

And that's what I meant... Rip and Liz just means you're rolling into Cov. 3 by rolling the S up into the flat or on #2 to the Right (Rip) or the Left (Liz) from a 2 high look presnap.  In the 4-4 you're pre-rolled into Cov. 3 by alignment before the snap.  Either way, the post-snap rules are the same in Cov. 3 and what Saban calls Rip and Liz.  It's just semantics and how you get there.

If the MOF defender is playing run all the way, it's not really Cov. 3 or Saban's Rip/Liz stuff, it's more like a Robber coverage and yes, the rules do make it similar to man coverage.  Invert Robber from a 4-4 is better, but it isn't especially sound vs. spread teams because you get ouflanked on the edges so quickly.

That still doesn't address the weaknesses of Cov. 3 and Man against spread offenses.  My thought is that if you're playing a typical zone read team who's happy to run the QB and will also throw the ball, you're better off using neither of those and working from Quarters or 2-Read as your base.  That's sounder vs. the vertical threats, gets more secondary defenders involved in run defense, and 2-Read is also good against typical bubbles.

Now, how you'd get to Quarters or 2-Read from a 4-4 can vary in one of 2 ways.  You can roll the WOLB back to the deep hash on the boundary to be your second "safety" or you can put the WOLB out on the #1 WR to the boundary and put the CB deep as the "safety."

Neither one is really ideal if that's a kid who's not got coverage skills or doesn't have much training on how to play deep, but that's the reality of running the 4-4 against the spread.  That's why you don't really see 4-4s at the college level anymore.  Even VT had to change their dominant 4-4 defenses of the 90s and early 2000s, which made a living in Cov. 3 and Robber, into a 4-3 so they could play Quarters (as a "Double Robber" concept) and better defend spread teams.

Offline coachnick

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Re: thoughts on defending the zone option formthe split 44
« Reply #17 on: October 06, 2017, 01:15:52 PM »
good stuff......