The way our DBs defend passes

spidermayin

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Dec 4, 2018
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The way most of our defensive backs defend passes has bugged me for years. Usually, when the ball is passed, our guys 95% of the time have their back turned and just do the "Hold both hands up while keeping their back turned on the ball" defense. That results in pass interference most of the time. Trevon Diggs was the last CB I remember that turned around to try and make a play on the ball consistently. Is it really hard to turn around and make a play on the ball, or is that just how Saban teaches to defend passes? I would think if the defensive back sees the receiver turn their head for the ball, they would do the same, but that's not the case the majority of the time.
 
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gman4tide

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Nov 21, 2005
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If i were an opposing coach i'd 1) run a bubble screen on 1st down and 2) on 2nd and 3rd down run go routes to the 2 outside guys and tell the qb to alternate sides...but mainly throw to "our" side. At least until they stopped calling the PIs. Seems teams will run them a couple times in a game and get the pi call and then not do it anymore. Just thinking out loud. ;)
 

BamaJ

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Aug 25, 2021
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I've always said this. Constantly yelling at the tv during games "get your head around!" It's so irritating. Saban is a genius, no doubt, but I don't understand this one.
 

CB4

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What CNS teaches is to watch the receiver's eyes. If the ball is thrown to them, the receiver's pupils will "constrict" as the ball approaches. The idea is, assuming the DB is "in phase", is at that point to turn your head and locate the ball.
 
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27rings

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Jan 7, 2020
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"In Phase" just means being inside the route or under the route. Our DB's are getting beat and are "Out of Phase" and on under thrown balls they just throw their hands up and never turn their heads; which is always going to be a pass interference call.
 

UAH

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Nov 27, 2017
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If Bama DBs start looking for the ball the second the receiver starts his route, then fans will be griping because they are all getting burned deep.
Anyone can see from practice films that they work everyday on turning their hips and getting their head around for the ball. We know that CNS plays primarily man coverage on the outside where we see the opponents best receiver deep on the sideline one on one with our defensive backs. In many cases they get pushed off by the offensive player and the defensive player ultimately receives a questionable pass interference call. With CNS's system putting so many defensive players in the NFL it becomes only a question of experience and athleticism of Bama's defensive backfield not the technique they are taught.
 

Con

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CB4

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Anyone can see from practice films that they work everyday on turning their hips and getting their head around for the ball. We know that CNS plays primarily man coverage on the outside where we see the opponents best receiver deep on the sideline one on one with our defensive backs. In many cases they get pushed off by the offensive player and the defensive player ultimately receives a questionable pass interference call. With CNS's system putting so many defensive players in the NFL it becomes only a question of experience and athleticism of Bama's defensive backfield not the technique they are taught.
^^^^^^^This^^^^^
It drives me crazy more than the guy that gets beat and takes the DPI to prevent the huge play or touchdown. Often with the underthrow or the back shoulder thrown the receiver "clears out" with the off arm leaving the DB to try to fight their way back into position to make a play. And the DB gets called for the "interference" when it was the offensive player that created the contact. And it happens way more than it ever gets called. Kinda of like the offensive holding calls by our opponents.
 
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B1GTide

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^^^^^^^This^^^^^
It drives me crazy more than the guy that gets beat and takes the DPI to prevent the huge play or touchdown. Often with the underthrow or the back shoulder thrown the receiver "clears out" with the off arm leaving the DB to try to fight their way back into position to make a play. And the DB gets called for the "interference" when it was the offensive player that created the contact. And it happens way more than it ever gets called. Kinda of like the offensive holding calls by our opponents.
If a DB is in phase, the back shoulder pass almost never works. The back shoulder pass, or the DPI from the sudden stop in the route, occur when the DB allows the receiver to create separation and has to really run hard to catch up. Get out of phase and the receiver has a huge advantage, and the chances of getting penalized for DPI go way up. That is why QB are so willing to throw to receivers who create separation - the advantage is HUGE.
 

CajunCrimson

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The annual “phase” thread.

does it cause15 yard penalties?
yes, sometimes

Does it reduce the number of long passes attempted against us? Yep

if the QB sees no separation - he won’t throw it. Until they are desperate — and have to throw it on third.
 
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BamaJ

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Aug 25, 2021
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If Bama DBs start looking for the ball the second the receiver starts his route, then fans will be griping because they are all getting burned deep.
Luckily, I didn't say anything about getting their head around when the route starts. Many have said that Saban teaches them to get their head around when they see the receiver looking up for the ball and his eyes get wide. If that's the case, I have seen very few plays where that actually happens. It's a legit concern. We get a lot of PI penalties because of it.
 

AlexanderFan

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I've always said this. Constantly yelling at the tv during games "get your head around!" It's so irritating. Saban is a genius, no doubt, but I don't understand this one.
Well, it only took four games.

Here’s a simple test for you. : Go outside and find a flat place to run. Start running. While you’re running, turn around like you’re looking for a fade route. Notice how much you slow down when you turn half your body around to defend this pass.

“In phase” simply means close enough to the receiver that this slowing down doesn’t interfere with your ability to defend passes. If you turn around to defend a pass and you’re already behind the receiver you won’t even be able to make the tackle when they catch the ball. If you want something to blame, blame this shift to offensive football, where even breathing on a receiver gets you a penalty.
 

JustNeedMe81

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Sep 30, 2011
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The way most of our defensive backs defend passes has bugged me for years. Usually, when the ball is passed, our guys 95% of the time have their back turned and just do the "Hold both hands up while keeping their back turned on the ball" defense. That results in pass interference most of the time. Trevon Diggs was the last CB I remember that turned around to try and make a play on the ball consistently. Is it really hard to turn around and make a play on the ball, or is that just how Saban teaches to defend passes? I would think if the defensive back sees the receiver turn their head for the ball, they would do the same, but that's not the case the majority of the time.
Please read up on this: Nick Saban schools you on how to play pass coverage | Smart Football