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Rathman is really a key guy now

Some months ago, everyone seemed to approve the hiring of Tom Rathman as RB coach, and rightly so.

In light of recent events, it appears that Rathman's role has become very important, early on.

Using a high draft pick on RB Glen Coffee and the signing of UDFA RB Kory Sheets, after an extensive background review by the team, gives Rathman two raw pupils to get up to NFL-speed. Don't know about you, but I can't think of a better "pro" for that job. By all accounts, Coffee is very coachable, a veritable sponge. And while Sheets has had his differences with coaches at Purdue, I don't see Rathman having any problem getting and keeping Sheets attention. The two rookies (and Niner fans) are really fortunate to have Rathman as their position coach
.
Also, other than re-signing FA FB Moran Norris, it seems significant to me that the club has NOT signed a back-up FA FB or a taken a young FB in the draft or UDFA. Maybe I am wrong, but that tells me that the club sees Rathman as the guy who can finally develop Michael Robinson at the FB position. Think about it. Robinson has many of the skills that Rathman had as a FB: high football intelligence, toughness, respect of the other players, excellent hands, a willingness and strong execution in pass protection, a willingness to slam inside, as either a lead blocker or ball carrier, a no-frills approach to the game. If Rathman can develop Robinson to play with his head up in order to find his target in leading the run (as he clearly does on his ST assignments), the club could well have found its long-term FB, who suits the type of ball control offense that the HC wants. Seems to me that Rathman is the key to really tapping into Robinson's talent.

I'm really excited to see Rathman work with these 3 young players.
[ Edited by jimbagg on May 1, 2009 at 1:40 PM ]
Sorry Jim but nobody can make Rob a productive FB.
Originally posted by lamontb:
Sorry Jim but nobody can make Rob a productive FB.

You may be right, but I respectfully disagree. Robinson is extremely effective on ST, when he is not carrying the ball, and he is a very effective receiver (when he is not "carrying" the ball, but looking it into his hands and adding YAC). His ONLY shortcoming has been dropping his head and not using good vision or running instincts, when called-upon to carry the ball in short yardage situations.

In the Raye offense, I don't see the FB as a frequent ball carrier, even in short yardage. Gore or Coffee are going to carry the rock in short yardage. The FB's primary job will be to (a) lead block esp at the 2nd level (LB or Safety or CB), (b) pass protect and (c) be a hot receiver in the flat. Robinson is already very good at (b) and (c). If Robinson can cut through the blocking to be such an effective cover man on ST and also effective in lining-up his guy as a blocker on ST, it seems to me that Rathman can also tune him up, into an effective lead blocker from the FB position.

Why would you be so skeptical of Rathman tailoring Robinson for the Niners' FB job?
[ Edited by jimbagg on May 1, 2009 at 1:39 PM ]
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I think Robinson can be that pass catching FB in 3rd down situations. But other than that, Robinson is strictly a ST player, and reserve backup.
Originally posted by jimbagg:
Originally posted by lamontb:
Sorry Jim but nobody can make Rob a productive FB.

You may be right, but I respectfully disagree. Robinson is extremely effective on ST, when he is not carrying the ball, and he is a very effective receiver (when he is not "carrying" the ball, but looking it into his hands and adding YAC). His ONLY shortcoming has been dropping his head and not using good vision or running instincts, when called-upon to carry the ball in short yardage situations.

In the Raye offense, I don't see the FB as a frequent ball carrier, even in short yardage. Gore or Coffee are going to carry the rock in short yardage. The FB's primary job will be to (a) lead block esp at the 2nd level (LB or Safety or CB), (b) pass protect and (c) be a hot receiver in the flat. Robinson is already very good at (b) and (c). If Robinson can cut through the blocking to be such an effective cover man on ST and also effective in lining-up his guy as a blocker on ST, it seems to me that Rathman can also tune him up, into an effective lead blocker from the FB position.

Why would you be so skeptical of Rathman tailoring Robinson for the Niners' FB job?

JB:
I think you are right. I think that Rathman is a very, very important coach for this years team. I think he can also help Robinson develop into a quality RB/FB. I don't think Rathman was so much of a pounder through the tackles type of runner but he was tough at blocking, and had fabulous hands for getting a pass in the flats. He was tough, and provided great pass protection. Toughness, passes in the flat, and pass protection are all qualities of Robinson. If he can spring some blocking as well then he will fulfill our role of a FB.

I also think that Rathman has the potential to be assistant head coach or OC as well. Great pick up for Singletary.
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Zak Keasey was FB at today's minicamp instead of MROB
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I highly doubt they are trying to make robinson a fullback.
Originally posted by jimbagg:
Some months ago, everyone seemed to approve the hiring of Tom Rathman as RB coach, and rightly so.

In light of recent events, it appears that Rathman's role has become very important, early on.

Using a high draft pick on RB Glen Coffee and the signing of UDFA RB Kory Sheets, after an extensive background review by the team, gives Rathman two raw pupils to get up to NFL-speed. Don't know about you, but I can't think of a better "pro" for that job. By all accounts, Coffee is very coachable, a veritable sponge. And while Sheets has had his differences with coaches at Purdue, I don't see Rathman having any problem getting and keeping Sheets attention. The two rookies (and Niner fans) are really fortunate to have Rathman as their position coach
.
Also, other than re-signing FA FB Moran Norris, it seems significant to me that the club has NOT signed a back-up FA FB or a taken a young FB in the draft or UDFA. Maybe I am wrong, but that tells me that the club sees Rathman as the guy who can finally develop Michael Robinson at the FB position. Think about it. Robinson has many of the skills that Rathman had as a FB: high football intelligence, toughness, respect of the other players, excellent hands, a willingness and strong execution in pass protection, a willingness to slam inside, as either a lead blocker or ball carrier, a no-frills approach to the game. If Rathman can develop Robinson to play with his head up in order to find his target in leading the run (as he clearly does on his ST assignments), the club could well have found its long-term FB, who suits the type of ball control offense that the HC wants. Seems to me that Rathman is the key to really tapping into Robinson's talent.

I'm really excited to see Rathman work with these 3 young players.

At first I thought Rathman must have been much bigger than Robinson just thinking about pics, but here are both's measurables:

Tom Rathman
Height: 6-1 Weight: 230 lb

Michael Robinson
Height: 6-1 Weight: 228 lb

They compare in size. Who knows.... interesting thought though.
Originally posted by Norcal9erfan:
Originally posted by jimbagg:
Some months ago, everyone seemed to approve the hiring of Tom Rathman as RB coach, and rightly so.

In light of recent events, it appears that Rathman's role has become very important, early on.

Using a high draft pick on RB Glen Coffee and the signing of UDFA RB Kory Sheets, after an extensive background review by the team, gives Rathman two raw pupils to get up to NFL-speed. Don't know about you, but I can't think of a better "pro" for that job. By all accounts, Coffee is very coachable, a veritable sponge. And while Sheets has had his differences with coaches at Purdue, I don't see Rathman having any problem getting and keeping Sheets attention. The two rookies (and Niner fans) are really fortunate to have Rathman as their position coach
.
Also, other than re-signing FA FB Moran Norris, it seems significant to me that the club has NOT signed a back-up FA FB or a taken a young FB in the draft or UDFA. Maybe I am wrong, but that tells me that the club sees Rathman as the guy who can finally develop Michael Robinson at the FB position. Think about it. Robinson has many of the skills that Rathman had as a FB: high football intelligence, toughness, respect of the other players, excellent hands, a willingness and strong execution in pass protection, a willingness to slam inside, as either a lead blocker or ball carrier, a no-frills approach to the game. If Rathman can develop Robinson to play with his head up in order to find his target in leading the run (as he clearly does on his ST assignments), the club could well have found its long-term FB, who suits the type of ball control offense that the HC wants. Seems to me that Rathman is the key to really tapping into Robinson's talent.

I'm really excited to see Rathman work with these 3 young players.

At first I thought Rathman must have been much bigger than Robinson just thinking about pics, but here are both's measurables:

Tom Rathman
Height: 6-1 Weight: 230 lb

Michael Robinson
Height: 6-1 Weight: 228 lb

They compare in size. Who knows.... interesting thought though.

All "sizes" are not equal. For example, Bryant Young's weight was in his thighs, not his chest as much. Rathman was built differently than Robinson. One could easily first downs where the other could not.
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Originally posted by NinerGM:
Originally posted by Norcal9erfan:
Originally posted by jimbagg:
Some months ago, everyone seemed to approve the hiring of Tom Rathman as RB coach, and rightly so.

In light of recent events, it appears that Rathman's role has become very important, early on.

Using a high draft pick on RB Glen Coffee and the signing of UDFA RB Kory Sheets, after an extensive background review by the team, gives Rathman two raw pupils to get up to NFL-speed. Don't know about you, but I can't think of a better "pro" for that job. By all accounts, Coffee is very coachable, a veritable sponge. And while Sheets has had his differences with coaches at Purdue, I don't see Rathman having any problem getting and keeping Sheets attention. The two rookies (and Niner fans) are really fortunate to have Rathman as their position coach
.
Also, other than re-signing FA FB Moran Norris, it seems significant to me that the club has NOT signed a back-up FA FB or a taken a young FB in the draft or UDFA. Maybe I am wrong, but that tells me that the club sees Rathman as the guy who can finally develop Michael Robinson at the FB position. Think about it. Robinson has many of the skills that Rathman had as a FB: high football intelligence, toughness, respect of the other players, excellent hands, a willingness and strong execution in pass protection, a willingness to slam inside, as either a lead blocker or ball carrier, a no-frills approach to the game. If Rathman can develop Robinson to play with his head up in order to find his target in leading the run (as he clearly does on his ST assignments), the club could well have found its long-term FB, who suits the type of ball control offense that the HC wants. Seems to me that Rathman is the key to really tapping into Robinson's talent.

I'm really excited to see Rathman work with these 3 young players.

At first I thought Rathman must have been much bigger than Robinson just thinking about pics, but here are both's measurables:

Tom Rathman
Height: 6-1 Weight: 230 lb

Michael Robinson
Height: 6-1 Weight: 228 lb

They compare in size. Who knows.... interesting thought though.

All "sizes" are not equal. For example, Bryant Young's weight was in his thighs, not his chest as much. Rathman was built differently than Robinson. One could easily first downs where the other could not.

Thats the important thing. Weight is far more than just the number of pounds, it also how they play with their weight. Rathman played much bigger than M Rob. The hope I guess, if the 9ers are actually trying to turn Rob into a full on lead blocking fullback he could put on weight and hopefully in the right places. the upside is, if he were to turn into a FB he would be one of the better pass catching FB's in the league.
Robinson is an excellent athlete without a true position. I think he can still succeed if they commit him to FB, if not maybe somewhere on the otherside of the ball
[ Edited by RichmondPete on May 1, 2009 at 4:42 PM ]
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Rathman is an awesome coach...but to be honest I don't think M.Rob is going to ever develop into anything other than a special teams ace. After this draft you have to wonder if there will be enough carries and catches to even give him some type of productivity.
Quote:
Sorry Jim but nobody can make Rob a productive FB.

When I read crap like this it makes me wonder. Was the writer just trying to be a wise guy or does he really know that little? Michael Robinson is a wide receiver by trade. He's a very good one with great hands and tough to bring down in space. His senior year in college his coach asked him to switch from WR to QB because they needed one. He had never played the position and risked his opportunity of being drafted as a WR for the good of the team.

Did he piss and moan? NO. He learned the position, went 11-1, threw 17 TD passes and ran for 8 more, won the Big 10 and Orange Bowls, and was named Big 10 Offensive Player of the Year. At QB, a position he had never played before.

He comes to the Niners begging to be given a chance to play QB. Nolan says he's going to make him into a running back, another position he has never played. Nolan kept him most of the time on special teams and when we needed a backup RB, used Hicks and rarely ever gave Robby a chance.

He made some great plays in the few chances he was given, and now may be both the backup FB, and our wildcat QB, as well as an additional option as a receiving RB. We don't know if he's a good RB or FB or not because we have never seen him being given a real opportunity. We do know he's one of the hardest hitters on the field. He knocked Brian Dawkins cold and did the same thing to a kid in college. That's way beyond just running over players and Robby hits like Ronnie Lott when he tackles on special teams.

Michael has shown flashes of brilliance when he has had very limited opportunities. This kid is talented:

Here he is catching a pass from Hill with only 52 seconds remaining in the game against the Rams. He has great hands and is an outstanding receiver.
http://www.nfl.com/videos?videoId=09000d5d80c912bd

Here he picks up 20 yards up the middle against Atlanta:
http://www.nfl.com/videos?videoId=09000d5d803ebcdf


Here he is laying out badass Brian Dawkins while scoring a TD:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ttf4EmNm5k


This one shows his HEART. as he picks up 20 yards with a swing pass and breaks 5 tackles. MRob would be like Ronnie Lott if he played defense. The man HITS:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kcCyY6tub1Y


My point is that he's a great athlete than was mishandled by Nolan and that will now be given the opportunity to develop by Jimmy Raye and Tom Rathman. Keep your personal dislikes in the drawer and judge him by his performance.
[ Edited by ezrider on May 2, 2009 at 7:01 AM ]
Originally posted by ezrider:
Quote:
Sorry Jim but nobody can make Rob a productive FB.

When I read crap like this it makes me wonder. Was the writer just trying to be a wise guy or does he really know that little? Michael Robinson is a wide receiver by trade. He's a very good one with great hands and tough to bring down in space. His senior year in college his coach asked him to switch from WR to QB because they needed one. He had never played the position and risked his opportunity of being drafted as a WR for the good of the team.

Did he piss and moan? NO. He learned the position, went 11-1, threw 17 TD passes and ran for 8 more, won the Big 10 and Orange Bowls, and was named Big 10 Offensive Player of the Year. At QB, a position he had never played before.

He comes to the Niners begging to be given a chance to play QB. Nolan says he's going to make him into a running back, another position he has never played. Nolan kept him most of the time on special teams and when we needed a backup RB, used Hicks and rarely ever gave Robby a chance.

He made some great plays in the few chances he was given, and now may be both the backup FB, and our wildcat QB, as well as an addition option as a receiving RB. We don't know if he's a good RB or FB or not because we have never seen him being given a real opportunity. We do know he's one of the hardest hitters on the field. He knocked Brian Dawkins cold and did the same thing to a kid in college. That's way beyond just running over players and Robby hits like Ronnie Lott when he tackles on special teams.

Michael has shown flashes of brilliance when he has had very limited opportunities. This kid is talented:

Here he is catching a pass from Hill with only 52 seconds remaining in the game against the Rams. He has great hands and is an outstanding receiver.
http://www.nfl.com/videos?videoId=09000d5d80c912bd

Here he picks up 20 yards up the middle against Atlanta:
http://www.nfl.com/videos?videoId=09000d5d803ebcdf


Here he is laying out badass Brian Dawkins while scoring a TD:
http://www.nfl.com/videos?videoId=09000d5d803ebcdf


This one shows his HEART. as he picks up 20 yards with a swing pass and breaks 5 tackles. MRob would be like Ronnie Lott if he played defense. The man HITS:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kcCyY6tub1Y


My point is that he's a great athlete than was mishandled by Nolan and that will now be given the opportunity to develop by Jimmy Raye. Keep your personal dislikes in the drawer and judge him by his performance.

Huh? Michael Robinson is a WR by trade? Because he played a little in the slot in college? He spent some time splitting between QB, HB, and slot receiver one season - but then started splitting time mostly between HB and QB, before moving to QB almost exclusively. He was an athletic player with sub-par accuracy who transitioned to RB in the pros. If he was a WR "by trade", he would have been moved back there.

Oh and just because the Dolphins had some success with the Wildcat, doesn't mean EVERY team in the league is going to run it or needs a Wildcat QB on roster. If that was the case, Pat White probably would have been drafted by a team other than the Dolphins.