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Stepping Up In The Pocket ....

Why doesnt Alex Smith ever step up into the pocket and let the pass rushers run themselves out of the play? I always see Manning, Brees, Rivers, Rothlisberger etc etc do this. It seems to work quite well. Pass rushers are so eager to get to the QB they will run themselves right by him 50% of the time at least if he could step up into the arc built by the o-line. Against the Eagles it was very noticeable how most of their pressure came from Alex's left side or at least it seemed that way because he rolled right every time to try to get away. We were 0-11 on third downs and I'm thinking he did this on every single one of them. II honestly dont feel we have the coaching in place to teach him how to play the position or even teach our guys about blitz pickup. Frank Gore or someone shouldve been chipping to the left side at some point to help out. Alex said the Eagles did unique stuff. Lets be real. Jimmy Raye is 70 years old he should've seen it all by now and have a clue on how to adjust. The Eagles did not do anything exotic they simply brought the house and dared us to beat them which we could not. Alot of it is instincts but by gosh yesterday was painful. People that dont even follow football can sense problems. My wife watched the game with me and simply said to me "babe yal need a new QB". She didnt make any excuse or qualms about her statement. I wanted to defend him but all I could say was yeah your right ...
He doesn't have pocket presence. Even Nate Davis stepped up in the pocket at times during preseason.

It's a sense and unless it's designed on the chalkboard and called presnap, Smith will rarely do it.
He tried on that 4th and 7 and got sacked for it. QB can't step up in the pocket when there's no space to do so and it's falling apart.
Originally posted by Joecool:
He doesn't have pocket presence. Even Nate Davis stepped up in the pocket at times during preseason.

It's a sense and unless it's designed on the chalkboard and called presnap, Smith will rarely do it.

give it a rest dude
Originally posted by WillistheWall:
He tried on that 4th and 7 and got sacked for it. QB can't step up in the pocket when there's no space to do so and it's falling apart.

Actually, on that one, there was space. His problem was that he kept moving forward after avoiding the edge rusher. All he had to do on that play was take on step up and then move over instead, he kept moving towards the LOS. He needs to learn that the edge rusher is coming so fast that all he needs to do is dodge him and reset. Smith, for some reason, keeps moving in the direction he starts in similar to his scrambling towards the sidelines.
Why does he not step up in the pocket? Because our guards are constantly giving up pressure up the middle.
I don't think smith realizes there is a left side of the field. Every time he gets pressure he roles right. And what happened to scrambling. He's a good runner yet he doesn't utilize that part of his game anymore.
Originally posted by LeadFarmer:
I don't think smith realizes there is a left side of the field. Every time he gets pressure he roles right. And what happened to scrambling. He's a good runner yet he doesn't utilize that part of his game anymore.

He scrambles away from our best blocker and throws at their best DB.
Because our guards continue to let players right through the middle, or our tackles let players come off the edge untouched. In either case, stepping forward is no help at all and the only way to avoid a sack is to run away from the pressure.

Specifically, in this past week's game, had Alex stepped up in the pocket, he would have taken 8 sacks instead of 3.

The other quarterbacks you have mentioned have good offensive lines. Good offensive lines create a pocket. In a pocket, a quarterback is able to step forward to avoid an outside rush.

We don't have a good offensive line. We don't have a pocket. Thus, our quarterback runs for his life. This isn't just an Alex thing, the same thing happened to Shaun Hill earlier in the season.
Let me put it this way. Do you guys honestly feel that 5 NFL starting linemen are giving up pressure constantly on every pass play without getting benched? Its called a team for a reason everyone must make each other better out there. McNabb and other QB's get pressured just as much hell Aaron Rodgers and Rothlisberger take alot of sacks but they also make alot of plays as well. There was a play action pass play that was horrible for the o-line Alex never had a chance but there are times he needs to make a damn play. 3 seconds is like the maximum amount of time he and we shoudl expect. Its like being a cornerback you cant cover a receiver forever and the o-line cant block guys forever and if its an overload Alex should see this quickly and let it rip .. once he hesitates the play is over .. thats what sucks .. he doesnt step up, he doesnt direct guys open with his eyes or pump fakes or anything ..
I'm straddling the fence here. I don't know. Alex looked lost yesterday. It just seemed like he didn't know what was going on out there - what the defense was doing. When that happens, he gets that deer-in-the-headlights look. That's what I saw yesterday.

You're never going to have the perfect situation ever, and teams that do are able to get to the big dance. I absolutely think the OL is just horrible and I attribute one turnover to poor pass protection. However the throw to Davis was overthrown - clearly. Yes Davis could have helped, but the ball was overthrown.

Smith confuses me sometimes and seems like he doesn't understand the difference between trying to "make" a play and "smart" play. He'll tend to lock-on to one target and look all the way giving the safety enough time to get over. Smith rarely looks off the coverage at the snap of the ball and immediately come over to his quick read. Oftentimes he'll just float to the check down.

He's still pretty raw to me and still hasn't learned this part of the game. I'm wondering if he's getting proper coaching again because in this day and age, you can't constantly throw against defenses without looking off coverage. I really believe this is why our WRs don't "appear" open.

I'm a Smith supporter and don't think he "sucks" I just think he needs a QB camp where he's taught how to move secondary players with his body language (ala Brees and Young).

Thoughts.
Originally posted by valrod33:
Originally posted by Joecool:
He doesn't have pocket presence. Even Nate Davis stepped up in the pocket at times during preseason.

It's a sense and unless it's designed on the chalkboard and called presnap, Smith will rarely do it.

give it a rest dude

Nate did it against backups and guys that are out of the league. Alex is doing it against a nasty Eagles defense and behind a young and not very good o line
Originally posted by Joecool:
Originally posted by LeadFarmer:
I don't think smith realizes there is a left side of the field. Every time he gets pressure he roles right. And what happened to scrambling. He's a good runner yet he doesn't utilize that part of his game anymore.

He scrambles away from our best blocker and throws at their best DB.

lol
Originally posted by WillistheWall:
He tried on that 4th and 7 and got sacked for it. QB can't step up in the pocket when there's no space to do so and it's falling apart.

I would say 30% of the time Smith has NO chance to step up and stay in the pocket.

But a LOT of the time he DOES have space to step up, he just doesn't know where or how to do it. He has never had the EXPERIENCE in college or anywhere that allowed him to develop pocket presence. He sprints out of the pocket, races to the sidelines and throws the ball out of bounds. About 30% of the time it is absolutely warranted. But most of the time it is not.

Smith plays better in the shotgun because he feels less PRESSURE and has more SPACE. But when the pocket closes around him he gives up on the play too easily.

Teams with poor quarterbacking ALWAYS blame the O-line, but good quarterbacks CONSISTENTLY bail out and hide the fact that their lineman get beat.

The best quarterback (IMO), is Tom Brady. If he had a DB blitzing at him free from the left, he wouldn't try and sprint to the sideline directly away from the DB, instead he would play AGAINST THE GRAIN and step forward and let the DB run right past him, all the while looking down field to make a play. Most likely he WOULD make a play, or at WORST throw a purposely incomplete pass at someone's feet. He would NOT sprint out of the pocket and try to outrace an NFL DB.
All of this comes from two things, raw DESIRE and CONFIDENCE.

Its almost like he has a HATRED of being sacked or not completing a pass, and Brady gets genuinely ANGRY with his players at times. THAT is what it takes to be a great quarterback in the NFL.
Brady is the ideal example, but other good quarterbacks are similar. Alex Smith has a long way to go before he gets there. Has Smith EVER gotten openly angry at another player on the field of play?

Two things show the signs of a solidified group of individuals, humor and anger. A friend you can laugh and get angry with, is probably a close friend. I don't see much of either from Smith, or several other players we have.

Its not just about a strong arm with accuracy, or even who you decide to throw to, its so much more.
Originally posted by NinerGM:
I'm straddling the fence here. I don't know. Alex looked lost yesterday. It just seemed like he didn't know what was going on out there - what the defense was doing. When that happens, he gets that deer-in-the-headlights look. That's what I saw yesterday.

You're never going to have the perfect situation ever, and teams that do are able to get to the big dance. I absolutely think the OL is just horrible and I attribute one turnover to poor pass protection. However the throw to Davis was overthrown - clearly. Yes Davis could have helped, but the ball was overthrown.

Smith confuses me sometimes and seems like he doesn't understand the difference between trying to "make" a play and "smart" play. He'll tend to lock-on to one target and look all the way giving the safety enough time to get over. Smith rarely looks off the coverage at the snap of the ball and immediately come over to his quick read. Oftentimes he'll just float to the check down.

He's still pretty raw to me and still hasn't learned this part of the game. I'm wondering if he's getting proper coaching again because in this day and age, you can't constantly throw against defenses without looking off coverage. I really believe this is why our WRs don't "appear" open.

I'm a Smith supporter and don't think he "sucks" I just think he needs a QB camp where he's taught how to move secondary players with his body language (ala Brees and Young).

Thoughts.

a perfect example was that one deep pass to Crabtree on 4th down...the one where it was an PI....... what he should have did was run for the first down...it was right there in front of him....but he threw it deep for some reason... Crabs is not a burner.....first I was like "OMG the first down is right there...RUN RUN RUNNNNNNN" then he threw it and i'm like WhereTF is he throwing it
..... we got lucky with that PI because it was under thrown.

another play was the last play against the Seahawks...he only needed 7 yards was it?....and he threw it deep to Morgan even though there were 2 people covering Morgan....as well as the guy who was covering Jason Hill......Vernon was running across the middle for the first down, and Alex threw it deep ....or hell he could have ran for it......either way he threw it deep and we did not get lucky that time with a PI.

also the last play of the game against the Eagles...its forth down and he got sacked....its bad enough he didn't throw it on that last step drop (he had time to) but saw the rusher and tried to evade him instead of getting rid of the ball and got sacked....not saying a miracle would have happened...but you do not take a sack right there, you find some way of getting rid of the ball....hell a lateral to a lineman while your going down.