Author Topic: Situation: 2nd and 4 or less  (Read 597 times)

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Offline GP

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Re: Situation: 2nd and 4 or less
« Reply #15 on: May 15, 2018, 02:18:56 PM »
Close, Bob. I actually just don't like the word "baseball." 

Interesting 1st down strategy though. Here I've been foolishly coaching kids to get as many much as possible every play. Hopefully this analytic breakthrough will catch on with simple-minded coaches like myself - will be watching for it on Saturdays & Sundays this fall!  :P
"Motivation is simple. You eliminate those who are not motivated." - Lou Holtz

Offline Bob Goodman

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Re: Situation: 2nd and 4 or less
« Reply #16 on: May 15, 2018, 02:29:42 PM »
BTW, the waste down is something that could easily be considered a design flaw in American football going back to 1882.  If I ever get a pro league going, there'll be a way for the defense to concede 1st downs.

Offline DumCoach

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Re: Situation: 2nd and 4 or less
« Reply #17 on: May 16, 2018, 05:10:48 PM »
Pros: Big play potential
Cons: Could get sacked and put us in a bad 3rd down situation. Incomplete pass could feel like it takes the "wind" out of our sail and ruin the rhythm of our offense.

What do you coaches think?

There's much more than just "big play potential".  You just spread the ball around.  Spread the FUN.  Most of our players will never play HS ball.  We are their last chance to get the ball and score.  Their careers end when they leave us. 

I remember coaching "pound the rock".  I never passed.  First to pass was first to lose back then.  They were like automatic INC's by any team that tried it. The reason was simple.  We did not know how to pass (This was back in the 90's.).  So I'm coaching our last game of the season - playoff or championship (I don't remember which.  I do remember we weren't winning.).

So I called a pass and we actually completed it for a first down and then went on to lose the game ("First to pass. First to lose." came true).

So game is over.  Heads are down as the team trudges to the locker room in disappointment to turn in their gear.  All except one of my kids.  He's bouncing around, all excited, thrilled as can be, feet ten feet off the ground.

And I'm like, "Why is he so happy?  We just lost."

So I kind of sneak over to listen in to find out why this kid is so pumped when we lost.     

He's the kid who caught the pass.

It turns out he had played TE for me for four years and he caught his FIRST pass in his LAST game for me. 

And I had to think about that.  Four years at TE to get the ball ONCE?

And I asked myself this question:

"Would I have fun playing for me?"

Truthful answer?  No.  I had two kids that had fun and they both carried the ball.  I had a hand-off machine at QB and eight blockers.  Period. 

After that game I changed.  I viewed every player on my roster as ME.  That player was ME when I was his age.  Now how was I going to get ME in the end zone with the ball for the score? 

You get a nobody kid in the end zone for a TD and he will remember that forever.  I put total klutzes in the end zone.  I put kids in the end zone that could not catch, could not run, and would fumble the ball if tackled (I ran them on reverses on EXP plays).  Kid got the ball once in a game but he got it.  And when he got home and was asked if he had fun, he said, "Yeah.  I SCORED!"

I would take the tiniest kid on the team, put him at QB, and run Super Power Wedge (Think rugby) and let the other team try and find him in all those bodies.  He was so small he could pop out anywhere.  I don't think he ever got less than 8 yards.  Kids like this are not only having fun, they think they're GOOD.  They take pride in themselves.  They see themselves as important.  I had this one kid that was about as useful as a cheerleader in a wheelchair.  I went through my playbook and found the ONE play he could run.  Ran it five times and scored five TD's.  Immediately he quit the team to sign for school ball to get for his stating starting position for the Patriots.  Kid thought he was the rising talent of all of football (I don't think he could even tie his own shoelaces.).  But that kid thought he was really GOOD.

So when it's 2nd 4 and you get that ball to Freddy Fudpucker he becomes the center of his own universe.  For six seconds, he is the STAR.  And Mr. and Mrs. Fudpucker?  They think you're the greatest football coach ever.   

Now!  You have to remove all the things that can go wrong (Otherwise they will go wrong.).  QB sacks and INT's are solved the same way.  Roll the QB out and with the instruction to run if the receiver is covered (I had mine aim for the first down stick and go out of bounds as my QB's were 72 pounds sopping wet.).   A QB that runs counts as a completed pass because it conflicts the defender.  He doesn't know if he should stay in coverage on the receiver or come up and get the QB.  Meanwhile, QB got the first down.  Five plays later, try it again.  Watch that defender come up this time.  I still remember a coach hollering in victory to his team on his sideline.  My QB had just run for 7 yards.  Why was the coach celebrating?  It was the first time we hadn't completed a pass in the entire game.  He considered that stop for a 7 yard gain as VICTORY!

Make sure when you run your routes, you never have two receivers within 7 yards of each other.  One defender between two receivers less than 7 yards apart can cover both receivers.

Run all your pass routes in practice against NO DEFENSE.  If you can't complete it 3 of 4 throws with no defense, THROW THE PLAY OUT (Got that from George Allen while he was with the Redskins).  You'll find you get rid of a lot of pass plays that way but those that are left ALL WORK.

The reason you throw 1 in 5 plays is because the defender learns that if he plays the run, he has an 80% chance of being right but, if he plays the pass, he has an 80% chance of being wrong (Taught to me by Army's Don Sutton.).  So he'll play the run even on pass.

Maintain a fairly consistent throwing distance for your QB.  My QB threw from only 4 yards from behind the LOS.  That allowed him to run for an extra yard if the receiver was covered plus throw one more yard downfield.   The average distance he threw from where he stood to where the receiver caught it was 10, 12, 14, and 17 yards.  The 17 yard throw was an "area" throw (QB throws to a spot on the field and receiver runs to that spot.).  The 10-12-14 yard throws were standard hookups but, if he could hit the "12" (Route #2), he could usually hit the "10" and the "14" too even though thrown to different receivers on different routes.       
 
 

"Football is for the kids - But let's win anyway."

Offline Bob Goodman

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Re: Situation: 2nd and 4 or less
« Reply #18 on: May 16, 2018, 08:04:59 PM »
There's much more than just "big play potential".  You just spread the ball around.  Spread the FUN.
Sooo much that.
Quote
Roll the QB out and with the instruction to run if the receiver is covered (I had mine aim for the first down stick and go out of bounds as my QB's were 72 pounds sopping wet.).   A QB that runs counts as a completed pass because it conflicts the defender.  He doesn't know if he should stay in coverage on the receiver or come up and get the QB.  Meanwhile, QB got the first down.  Five plays later, try it again.  Watch that defender come up this time.
I got a strong feeling of deja vu about this thread.  Trouble is your best passer has a high likelihood of being your best runner, and it's a cinch one of your best 2 runners will be among your best 2 passers.  And the trouble is, he's going to have the correct judgment thqt his odds are with beating that defender 1-on-1 even if he plays the run.  So the pass is open but doesn't get thrown, and the kid who has the usual fun has some more of it.