Pressuring the QB - Bama vs Texas A&M

CoachJeff

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Jan 21, 2014
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One of the problems Bama had in the game was not being able to pressure the QB. While TAMU was able to pressure Bryce Young seemingly all night. Here are some clips showing why that was the case:

In this case Dallas Turner drops into coverage while Christian Harris tries to get to the QB along with 3 down lineman. Texas A&M has no problem picking up the 4 man rush with their 5 linemen and a TE and the QB is able to find the other TE for an easy catch in the middle of the field vacated by Harris.


In this case Bama brings both TooToo and Harris. Dallas Turner has to drop into coverage and can't get to the RB that's coming out of the backfield which results in an easy throw and a first down. So Bama only brings 4 on this play, but there's no pressure and both ILBs are wasted.


This one isn't a blitz from TAMU, but it sure looked like it based on the lack of time for Bryce.


On this play TAMU has 7 guys on the line and it's not clear who is coming on the blitz. The play clock is dwindling so there's not a ton of time to make sure the protection is set (this happens a lot in the first half but Bama adjusts to this better in the second half). 4 of the 7 guys actually come after the QB but TAMU brings a safety on a blitz so now there are 5 guys coming after the QB. Bama has 5 o-linemen plus a RB so you've got 6 guys to block 5. That should work. Instead the RT gets beaten badly and the LT stands by while #3 for the Aggies beats Roydell and pressures the QB. Two different players could have sacked Bryce on this play.

This play is indicative of the game. You have the RT just getting beat over and over. The is no TE to help chip the DE on that side nor is there a RB to help on that side either. The offensive line doesn't know who is getting who. It's just a lack of communication.


On this play TAMU once again has a blitz look showing with 6 guys on the line. Bama has no idea who is coming and who is dropping into coverage. Right before the snap (which is easy to predict as it's a silent count, so once the guard taps the center you know the snap is coming) a safety comes down to blitz too. One of the guys drops into coverage and TAMU ends up bringing 6 guys. Bama keeps an RB in so you have 6 blocking 6 in theory. In practice the RG blocks no one and the RB is tasked with blocking two guys. The result is a sack.

https://youtu.be/pHZIloveFO4?t=1619

On this play Bama has 3 down linemen and shows that they're bringing both ILBs. So this is an attempt at a QB pressure. The problem is that even before the snap it's clear who each lineman should block. It's an easy pickup. So Bama has 5 guys and so does TAMU. Bama only has 6 guys in coverage against 4 WRs. The ILBs don't appear to actually try to get to the QB on this play. So you might as well have kept them in coverage and not left the middle of the field open for an easy completion.

https://youtu.be/pHZIloveFO4?t=1794

This play isn't a sack by TAMU, but it's close. TAMU has 5 guys on the line and then brings the ILB at the snap. This play appears to be an RPO. If so, it should have been a handoff because they have numbers on the left hand side. Instead it's a pass. Latu comes across the formation at the snap and blocks a defender. This seems to confuse the RT who is a step slow to react to the DE and it also results in a sack. Just a mess of a play. If BRob gets the ball there he probably gets 20-30 yards or even a TD.

https://youtu.be/pHZIloveFO4?t=2373

On this play Bryce makes a hell of a play. TAMU shows pressure with 2 guys with a hand in the dirt and 4 guys standing and looking to blitz. It's overloaded to the right hand side with only 1 guy to the left of the center, 1 over the center, and 4 to the right. Looks like trouble from the get go. However, TAMU only brings 3 guys with two LBs spying the QB. Latu does a great job blocking the DE while Bryce looks for an open guy. There are only 3 guys running routes against 6 in coverage so Bryce has to buy time. He moves to this right to where the open field is, which is a good decision. For some reason the RT is turned 180 degrees from the line of scrimmage and is looking at the QB as the defense starts their pursuit. The RT then realizes he needs to find someone to block but it's too late. Fortunately Bryce makes a guy miss (while the RT watches the play instead of blocking the OTHER guy trying to sack the QB) and finds BRob who leaked out in all the confusion.

https://youtu.be/pHZIloveFO4?t=2408

On this play TAMU again shows pressure. They have 6 guys that look like they're coming to blitz. Bama is in an empty set with no TE. This is trouble from the get go. Bryce has time to check the protection or even change the play. Instead he snaps it with 20 seconds left on the play clock. One of the rushers drops into coverage on the slot, so only 5 guys are actually coming on this play. So you have 5 guys to block 5. Should be a stalemate. But it isn't TAMU brings 4 guys from the center to the left which means you have 3 guys to block 4 (and 3 to block to the right) which results in a free rusher. The unblocked guy doesn't make the sack though, it's the guy the RT was supposed to block.

https://youtu.be/pHZIloveFO4?t=2481

On this play TAMU looks to be bringing 5 guys. Bama has a TE and RB in the formation. However, right before the snap a DB comes in to blitz. He times is perfectly since the snap is very easy to determine as mentioned before. A LB that seemed to be in coverage also blitzes. He does an excellent job of hiding his intentions until the snap. At the snap the TE sort of tries to maybe chip a blitzer before sort of kind of going out for a route. One of the guys that looks to be a rusher drops into coverage on the TE, so TAMU is bringing 6 guys. There's a RB in to block so in theory Bama is okay. But as happened several times there's miscommunication and you have some OL doubling guys while other defenders are coming in untouched. Bryce is nearly sacked but manages to throw the ball away.

https://youtu.be/pHZIloveFO4?t=2523

On this play Bama is bringing pressure. There are 4 guys on the line plus TooToo is blitzing. A CB also appears ready to blitz but instead peels off to get the RB as he goes out as a receiver. TAMU picks up 5 rushers with 5 linemen but no one is open and the QB scrambles and just barely gets past the original line of scrimmage. It's not a bad play by Bama, but shows the difference in being able to block when have equal numbers. The blitz isn't exactly exotic either, which makes it easier.

https://youtu.be/pHZIloveFO4?t=2606

This play is nearly a sack. I'm not entirely sure what the goal was here. There was no attempt to block the DE on the naked bootleg. Young is nearly sacked but manages to throw the ball away.

https://youtu.be/pHZIloveFO4?t=2750

Last one. This is an example of a good blitz pickup by Alabama. TAMU has 5 guys on the line and then brings the an extra guy at the snap. One of the guys on the line goes with BRob as he leaks out for a pass. So now it's 5 on 5. Bama has had a hard time picking this up so far but on this play they pick it up and Bryce throws a crossing route to Metchie for the first down.


https://youtu.be/pHZIloveFO4?t=3078

Conclusions.

Bama has an issue at right tackle. That must be addressed by either moving someone else into that position or keeping TEs and RBs in to help chip those DEs b/c currently the RT cannot block speed rushers.

Bama is otherwise doing okay on the line in terms of man to man battles. The other 4 guys aren't getting beat very often.

The offensive line has got to communicate better. Teams are going to start putting 6-7 guys on the line of scrimmage and making Bama pick out who they're going to block from now on. If communication doesn't improve teams will be able to get pressure with 5 guys routinely. This will be a big problem on the road where it's harder to communicate. The team did a little better in the second half by getting to the line earlier and giving them time to figure out what was going on. Maybe you could go the other way and have the team do some HUNH which would make those more exotic blitzes less likely.

On the defensive side I'm not sure what there is to do. The blitz packages aren't very creative and when the ILBs rush they're not physical at all and so they don't get home. The blitzes are pretty easy to see coming and rarely did the TAMU line have to figure out who to block once the ball was snapped - they knew it pre-snap because Bama wasn't disguising anything.

Bama did okay in the second half when they rushed 3 and dropped 8. They didn't pressure the QB with 3, but there also wasn't anyone open. I think that's the way to go going forward. Maybe a D lineman can step up and get pressure anyway.
 
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TitleWave

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You know, Coach Jeff, you really oughta take a cue from Dreyfuss's character in "The Big Fix" and burn this "defensive" film...
 
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denver

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With the way we defend the pass, if we don't pressure their QB who will throw 50+ times...the over/under on DPI is double digits! ( and SEC refs calling it)....what you taking?
 

CoachJeff

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With the way we defend the pass, if we don't pressure their QB who will throw 50+ times...the over/under on DPI is double digits! ( and SEC refs calling it)....what you taking?
If you bring 5-6 then you only have 4-5 guys in coverage. If you don't get to the QB you might be in trouble.

If you rush 3 and have 8 in coverage the QB is going to have to find an open guy when there may be 8 guys guarding 3 or 4.

I would imagine most of our DPIs are when we bring extra guys and leave the DBs in one on one.
 

twofbyc

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I will say this: Owens needs to be back at center. I can’t imagine his backup at tackle being worse and he’s got more experience at center than Dalcourt.
He can’t pass protect on the end - he’s not long or quick enough. But that’s just my opinion and I sure as hell ain’t a coach. 🤔
 

RollTide_HTTR

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I will say this: Owens needs to be back at center. I can’t imagine his backup at tackle being worse and he’s got more experience at center than Dalcourt.
He can’t pass protect on the end - he’s not long or quick enough. But that’s just my opinion and I sure as hell ain’t a coach. 🤔
At this point I have to believe the young guys aren't ready at RT for some reason. Nothing else make sense to me because we haven't been afraid to play true freshman at the tackle spot before
 
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Cruloc

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Sep 1, 2019
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In the 3rd quarter vs A&M, did we not typically just rush 3 or 4 and have 7 or 8 in coverage? They had no answer for that in the 3rd quarter. Why did we go back to blitzing on that last drive especially?
 

twofbyc

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At this point I have to believe the young guys aren't ready at RT for some reason. Nothing else make sense to me because we haven't been afraid to play true freshman at the tackle spot before
[/QUOTE

Put em in and give em help. Bama has two excellent tight ends. I can’t believe an OC couldn’t scheme for that.
Either there is a mandate from the boss not to, or O’Brien can’t figure it out. In any event, somebody better come up with something. Owens at RT ain’t it.
 

deltatider

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At this point I have to believe the young guys aren't ready at RT for some reason. Nothing else make sense to me because we haven't been afraid to play true freshman at the tackle spot before
I hate it but would have to agree with. If there was someone better for that RT spot you gotta believe that a change would have been made. I’m surprised Randolph isn’t able to slide in at that spot. Maybe he struggles in pass protection?
 

bamadwain

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I will say this: Owens needs to be back at center. I can’t imagine his backup at tackle being worse and he’s got more experience at center than Dalcourt.
He can’t pass protect on the end - he’s not long or quick enough. But that’s just my opinion and I sure as hell ain’t a coach. 🤔
I think Dalcourt has played well Owen's is a swing guy on the line so it has to be no freshmen is ready
 

Bama Lee

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I will say this: Owens needs to be back at center. I can’t imagine his backup at tackle being worse and he’s got more experience at center than Dalcourt.
He can’t pass protect on the end - he’s not long or quick enough. But that’s just my opinion and I sure as hell ain’t a coach. 🤔
And I am not sure why we aren't letting those two all world tackles that we recruited get move experience
 

Ole Man Dan

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Apr 21, 2008
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How many times did A&M lay down hurt just when we are in rhythm on offense, then return next play? Even the announcers mention it. This needs addressing
Faking injury is a 'Standard' at TAMU. It's extra Time Outs, the player gets up trots/limps off the field, and sits out one play, then he is back in the game. Maybe the one play out needs to be changed to 3-5 plays out.
I'll bet that would stop the faking.
 
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