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Thread: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

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    What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    Has it been all the injuries? Is it Fitch's scheme? Is it Skip's play calling? J'Mar's QB play?

    It might be something else.

    I wrote earlier this week that the one thing I would steal from FAU's playbook was the fact they go up tempo inside the 10 yard line. They've had enormous success with it in conference play. They just don't give defenses time to set up and react when their backs are against the wall. At the same time, they rarely go up tempo outside of the red zone. They do something else.

    I've gone back to look at their offense from a time perspective. It's very eye opening and perhaps sheds more light on why we've had so much trouble moving the football this year.

    FAU isn't an up tempo team, but they are a faster paced team. By shaving just 5 to 7 seconds off of the play clock compared to their opponents they really do keep a defense on its heels. In other words it just doesn't give a defender quite enough time to get set properly, take a look at the offensive formation, determine where the play might be going, and then very quickly react when the ball is snapped.

    As an offense if you can get just a couple of breakdowns from a defense on each play it adds up to a huge impact over the course of a particular drive and over the course of a game. It leads to long drives and big plays. At the same time it not so fast paced that it leaves a defense vulnerable. This is what happened in the FAU -North Texas game in Boca last month. At its core the FAU offense isn't all that different from Tech's. A lot of zone read. Simple stuff with a few trick plays mixed in. But the way they ran it left the Mean Green defense in shambles by the second quarter. FAU 41, North Texas 7. At the half.

    In many ways this is what Tech was doing from 2014 through last season. It wasn't up tempo, but it was faster paced. By slowing things down and then simplifying the offense at the same time we've given defenses within the conference advantages they never had in past years. Defenders look like they know our playbook in part because they have time to understand what they're facing, line up correctly, and then properly react. That's also led to fewer major breakdowns on defense from our opponents. You just don't see defensive backs blowing coverages or linebackers out of place. They all have time to set up and then react properly to what we're doing. Receivers don't get separation. Blocks have to be on target every play. All of that has put enormous pressure on the offense to be perfect on plays and to limit penalties and turnovers. There is just no margin for error.

    In theory, the advantage to such a slow pace is that it keeps the defense off the field and limits turnovers. The defense has improved this year. But I think much of that is thanks to a simplified scheme that's allowed the defensive backs, in particular, to play faster. Before the final drive in regulation against Southern Miss the defense had been on the field more than 80 plays and had only given up 19 points. I just don't think it's a factor.

    This offense has enough talent, even with the injuries, to lead this team to a division title in Conference USA. Could the play calling and scheme be better? Of course. But a small difference in the way we run plays has had a big impact on the season.

  2. #2
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    Re: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    Most negative impact?

    Lack of confidence our HC has in the QB he INSISTED be the starter. He dumbed-down the game for him when he didn't need to. How much more could J'Mar have learned had our HC allowed him to grow up. Who cares if we lost by 1 or 21? We've wasted those losses because our QB did not grow from them.
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    Re: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    Holtz running a “prevent offense”. The whole thing is designed to take minimal risk and as a result there is minimal reward. No guts, no glory... Holtz has proven it.

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    Re: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bone_afide_Dawg View Post
    Holtz running a “prevent offense”. The whole thing is designed to take minimal risk and as a result there is minimal reward. No guts, no glory... Holtz has proven it.
    Prevent Offense...that's a good way to put it-Low Risk-Low Return.

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    Re: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    It may not be one of the major contributors, but special teams play has really hurt us. Kick coverage giving up huge plays and kick return team not getting us into good field position has killed us.

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    Re: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    Most negative impact? Lack of development of our passing game. It has been terrible. We knew in the spring that we would need to develop our young QB and WRs, but we did little to make that happen. The QB was playing baseball, the backup QBs (who were putting in just as much work if not more) transferred out and our WRs never got used to having to catch 'flapping ducks' thrown 4 ft over their heads or in the turf in front of them.

    In short- We simply weren't ready for the 2017 football season. Unfortunately that is sloppy, amateur coaching that led to a pissed away cherry 7-game home schedule (a luxury we haven't seen in at least 40+ football seasons).

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    Re: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    Poor QB play. Abraham or Wilson would have gotten their shot had they stuck around.

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    Re: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    The poor line play we have this year would have made any quarterback/running back we have ever had look bad. Luke may be the sole exception. No one can be expected to do anything when the defense is in the backfield at the snap.

  9. #9
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    Re: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    Quote Originally Posted by stodgdog View Post
    Poor QB play. Abraham or Wilson would have gotten their shot had they stuck around.
    I'd like to think so, but Holtz does not have a history of always starting the best or of replacing his chosen starters.
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    Re: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    Quote Originally Posted by DogsWin View Post
    Most negative impact? Lack of development of our passing game. It has been terrible. We knew in the spring that we would need to develop our young QB and WRs, but we did little to make that happen. The QB was playing baseball, the backup QBs (who were putting in just as much work if not more) transferred out and our WRs never got used to having to catch 'flapping ducks' thrown 4 ft over their heads or in the turf in front of them.

    In short- We simply weren't ready for the 2017 football season. Unfortunately that is sloppy, amateur coaching that led to a pissed away cherry 7-game home schedule (a luxury we haven't seen in at least 40+ football seasons).
    ^^ Agreed. This, and a lack of offensive leadership. And I would argue that our passing game today has digressed from where it was earlier this season when we were stretching the field with deep passes. We don't even try to do that anymore. We haven't connected on a deep ball since game 4 or 5.

  11. #11
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    Re: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    Quote Originally Posted by HogDawg View Post
    We don't even try to do that anymore. We haven't connected on a deep ball since game 4 or 5.
    According to Dave, we tried several yesterday, but our QB missed on them.
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    Re: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    Quote Originally Posted by PawDawg View Post
    According to Dave, we tried several yesterday, but our QB missed on them.
    I didn't see that. And we certainly didn't connect on any deep passes yesterday - I'm talking about passes thrown 30+ yards in the air, to challenge DB's & Safeties, ala Carlos Henderson.

    Of course, I was trying to watch that game thru that horrible CUSA-TV network, and it was "hit and miss" at best.

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    Re: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    Quote Originally Posted by HogDawg View Post
    Of course, I was trying to watch that game thru that horrible Rotating UTEP Logo-TV network, and it was "hit and miss" at best.
    fixed

  14. #14
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    Re: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    Quote Originally Posted by HogDawg View Post
    I didn't see that. And we certainly didn't connect on any deep passes yesterday - I'm talking about passes thrown 30+ yards in the air, to challenge DB's & Safeties, ala Carlos Henderson.

    Of course, I was trying to watch that game thru that horrible CUSA-TV network, and it was "hit and miss" at best.
    Did not even try and watch yesterday, the CUSA-TV is not worth the extra frustration of a TECH game right now. I did hear Dave make comment on two different occasions, and one especially that one of the receivers was giving up on deeper routes sometimes before the play was over. I also heard Dave or Teddy comment that once a receiver finished his route, they were pretty well quitting, not extending or coming back.

    I did not see the game, and I don't think this was an isolated incident, this has happened before and there are other troubles. Sounds like some players have given up, just do not care, etc.

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    Re: What's had the most negative impact on our offense in 2017?

    Quote Originally Posted by Champ967 View Post
    fixed
    True. But the piped-in "music" was so great.

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