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Official Greg "the mad scientist" Roman Express

Originally posted by dtg_9er:
mac--you are correct about Harbaugh concentrating elsewhere, but Chryst has handles the in game attention, giving Smith and CK photos of each play in each drive and going over the mistakes/good plays. I do notice Harbuagh asking Smith what he saw on various plays when he comes off the field...particularly when a pass goes awry.

Yeah, same here.. not long discussions, but yeah.
Originally posted by NCommand:
Agreed...although, 1.5 years we should see WCO basic principals in the passing game and right now, I don't see those.

Originally posted by dtg_9er:
Great video that really refutes so many anti-Smith claims! I love the fact that Walsh says--"If the DB is behind or next to the WR you go somewhere else." and that decision is made quickly so you can hit open routes. In other words, when the anti bunch claims there are open receivers just because the DB is ten yards deeper, Walsh would say don't throw the go route.

If Walsh was coaching this team he would have a blast with this receiver group. He didn't need them to be super to be Super Bowl winners. And I agree that Roman is the antithesis of BW...but perhaps those are things to come as they mature in the system.

There are a lot of WCO elements to Roman's passing game. In regards to the vid, these are fundamentals for the qb, but I'm pretty sure any OC worth his salt already knows of these ideas. Back to the deep ball issues. Pretty sure dtg is right. Deep routes are generally looked at first. Doesn't take very long to recognized if the defender is beaten and/or the safety is in position to make the play on the ball. There are times were the deep route is only used for clearing out for something underneath to get that critical 1st down.

2 examples of these in the last game: Playaction with Randy Moss as the only WR in the formation. After the playaction Smith whipped his head around to look at Moss going deep downfield. Randy was bracketted by his defender and the safety on top. Smith quickly turned to his right to make a wide open outlet RB route throw to Hunter(?) resulted in a 1st down or very close. In this example, Randy was part of the initial read progression.

Another one is the throw to Manningham underneath, with Randy Moss running deep into the left corner of the back of the end zone. Initially Randy got the attention of his defender and the safety, but once the safety recognized Manningham was wide open underneath, he had to leave Randy to defend the pass to Mannigham. In this example, Randy is mainly the decoy to get Manningham the underneath.

Guys like Randy is giving us the underneath stuff more often than not. That's why we are see so many 'checkdown' as the Zone known it to be -- any short underneath throws

The deep pass required a lot of timing on the throw. Even if the receiver have got his defender beaten, the qb has to account for the safety coming over. And even then the qb is guessing that his throw will beat the safety with the timing. This is why it's such low percentage. Remember that Walsh said, for every step a qb take in his drop back the defender can cover 3-4 yards. You applied that to a qb hesitation or lack of timing in his deep ball throws and that safety can cover a lot of ground to make a play on what seems to be an open receiver.
[ Edited by qnnhan7 on Nov 1, 2012 at 8:14 AM ]
Originally posted by qnnhan7:
Originally posted by NCommand:
Agreed...although, 1.5 years we should see WCO basic principals in the passing game and right now, I don't see those.

Originally posted by dtg_9er:
Great video that really refutes so many anti-Smith claims! I love the fact that Walsh says--"If the DB is behind or next to the WR you go somewhere else." and that decision is made quickly so you can hit open routes. In other words, when the anti bunch claims there are open receivers just because the DB is ten yards deeper, Walsh would say don't throw the go route.

If Walsh was coaching this team he would have a blast with this receiver group. He didn't need them to be super to be Super Bowl winners. And I agree that Roman is the antithesis of BW...but perhaps those are things to come as they mature in the system.

There are a lot of WCO elements to Roman's passing game. In regards to the vid, these are fundamentals for the qb, but I'm pretty sure any OC worth his salt already knows of these ideas. Back to the deep ball issues. Pretty sure dtg is right. Deep routes are generally looked at first. Doesn't take very long to recognized if the defender is beaten and/or the safety is in position to make the play on the ball. There are times were the deep route is only used for clearing out for something underneath to get that critical 1st down.

2 examples of these in the last game: Playaction with Randy Moss as the only WR in the formation. After the playaction Smith whipped his head around to look at Moss going deep downfield. Randy was bracketted by his defender and the safety on top. Smith quickly turned to his right to make a wide open outlet RB route throw to Hunter(?) resulted in a 1st down or very close. In this example, Randy was part of the initial read progression.

Another one is the throw to Manningham underneath, with Randy Moss running deep into the left corner of the back of the end zone. Initially Randy got the attention of his defender and the safety, but once the safety recognized Manningham was wide open underneath, he had to leave Randy to defend the pass to Mannigham. In this example, Randy is mainly the decoy to get Manningham the underneath.

Guys like Randy is giving us the underneath stuff more often than not. That's why we are see so many 'checkdown' as the Zone known it to be -- any short underneath throws

The deep pass required a lot of timing on the throw. Even if the receiver have got his defender beaten, the qb has to account for the safety coming over. And even then the qb is guessing that his throw will beat the safety with the timing. This is why it's such low percentage. Remember that Walsh said, for every step a qb take in his drop back the defender can cover 3-4 yards. You applied that to a qb hesitation or lack of timing in his deep ball throws and that safety can cover a lot of ground to make a play on what seems to be an open receiver.

Great post!

I think this is the fundamental difference in Roman vs. Walsh/WCO; Roman calls specific plays designed to get ONE guy the ball while the others play a significant role in the success of that play (e.g. Randy draws 2 guys, we hit Hunter/Gore underneath while Manningham, down field, is already blocking when the ball is in the air).

This is fundamentally different from the WCO where there are primary receivers (usually one or two WR's), an alternate read (TE) and an outlet (backs) and it starts with the top-down progression reads. We certainly don't do this esp. with VD, Gore/Hunter.

Roman's plays seem to target one receiver by design and we have no consistent alternates or real outlets. I am starting to see a few more progression reads but to me, clearly, plays are mostly designed to get one guy open and if that guy is covered (by a physical secondary), we really don't have a plan B.

In the WCO, there is a plan B, C & D built into "virtually every single play." ~ BW
[ Edited by NCommand on Nov 1, 2012 at 11:29 AM ]
There is a 7-series of these videos and it starts with this one: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F-MfNd-SjZo&feature=relmfu

They are short videos and I highly recommend watching but just in case, here are my notes. After watching/reading, I recommend you watch one of our games to compare:

West Coast Offense: Bill Walsh
Part 1 - Offensive WCO philosophy - "To me football is an art form...it's a science but it's an art form. The pass offense was high percentage, timed passing. The same system of football being refined continually. That's the essence of coaching - isolating skills that are needed in the game of football and finding the best drills to teach those skills. " ~ BW
Part 2 - The dropping back game - "Cross-over, hitch step, hitch step, throw. (demonstrating proper positioning of hands, where snaps should be and how critical the first right step is for timing) Joe, can you just show your hands...notice the length of his first step...now you'll notice Joe actually covered up to 3 yards on his first step and that's the key to QBing. (on throwing motion) You'll notice that the ball is brought right up to the shoulder, its always delivered above the shoulder and the tip never goes below the waist. Everything is released above the shoulder and caught above the shoulder...never throw a ball to a receiver below the waist. If the ball is caught below the waist, it affects their stride." He covers the three step quick out/hitch pattern here (good stuff re: the defensive positioning). Don't turn that head to the right when you're throwing to the right until you step to throw (on telegraphing throws)...keep your head straight forward as long as we possibly can. (on the slant pattern) 10 yards deep to the inch. (on progression reads). He covers the primary (almost always a WR), alternate (always a TE) and outlet (RB)...on virtually every play. (this one is awesome b/c he highlights how by the time he gets through the first two covered reads and when he passes to his TE/back (outlet) as the third option he needs to practice it moving/running b/c the pocket will most likely have collapsed and he will have to avoid his own blockers and defenders - epic. Right, to left and back to Brent, the third receiver."
Part 3 - Covers 5-step drops (toughest for the QB), throwing left and right; 5 big steps, hitch-step, throw. Alternate receiver throw..feet are always moving; you never stand stationary when throwing to an alternate receiver. Pass to a back - 22-Texas pattern (how we beat Seattle d/t the LBers clearing and instrumental in "The Drive" finished with the 5-step Seam Post).
Part 4 - 7-step drops (3 big, 4 small/quick). Designed to get receivers deeper or clear out space for underneath receivers. It's much harder to throw left...helmet still facing straight ahead. "For every extra step back here Joe has to take and look at a receiver, a defender can run 2 or 3 yards...your feet and your mechanics...have to be perfect." How the ball needs to be in the air before the recevier breaks. If Joe does decode to throw it and not look to the alternate, "The ball is going to be half-way there when the receiver breaks." 7-step, 2 hitch steps, throw - to clear out the defenders (get clear of them) and to avoid the DE's rush. BW talks about how soft (catchable) accurate Joe threw his balls...Joe said it's b/c he couldn't throw hard. LOL.
Part 5 - Go patterns - "The go-pattern used to be 45, now it's 35" (d/t Joe's weak arm). LOL. There are three components to this pattern: 1. Position of where you're at on the field (depth you have) 2. The defense itself and 3. The time you need to get your man open. You don't throw it if the defender is deeper than your receiver. You throw it ONLY if they are parallel (or behind) and if the defender is playing on the inside of the receiver (never on the outside) and you are confident in your receivers speed. Know your personnel...time each one of them for precision; "That's just what you do." On press coverage, they throw go patterns on 3-steps. We could destroy teams (Giants, Hawks, etc.) on this one! 5-step go route with a hitch step (45 yard pass). They do it with a 7-step too but its the same pass every time; trajectory on it and to the outside if possible. Practice it until perfect (receiver needs to get to that spot). Go-route (covered) so go to alternate route (TE) and then the outlet (RB). "Most coaches will call it and just throw it one way or another and hope for the best" - is this the Kaepernick bomb or what! "But we'll call it often...if we call 10...4 or 5 will go to our TE's and backs."
Part 6 - Screen passes (used to offset a good pass rush esp.). "The thing you can't do on a screen is to telegraph the ball." 5-step screen...helmet still straight ahead. Often screens work better left, than right. 7-step drop, right...QB moves slightly towards the right side to shorten the distance of the throw. The timing needs to be perfect. "The mechanics of it, have been conditioned into them (Joe/Roger) for so long (even years after retiring it's still perfect) that it's just automatic." There are 3 categories of passing: 1. Your drop back game (3, 5, 7-step drops); 2. Action passes (where the QB is on the move, away from the pass rusher and closer to the receiver). "You don't want the ball in the air very long on any pass if you can help it." Square outs. Waggle - play motions/sweeps left, QB runs naked right and the reverse action (where he wants to roll out but he's cut off and has to step (pull) up instead and throw). Joe notes that his eye is always on the LDE (in case he needs to pull up) first and then the receiver. "Don't waste any movements/motion/steps." More precision. Getting a QB's feet set rolling to the left is the biggest problem. Play-action passes - the key to this play is a great fake handoff (total sell by both QB/RB)...it's an actual handoff but the RB opens arms a little more and QB pulls ball back to himself and fools the secondary just enough. Uses the draw and fake-draw play to demonstrate it. "It has to be practiced...so the mechanics look identical."
Part 7 - More philosophy & Sweep Pass Right, Z Out - "One of the key plays in franchise history." The QB drops back like normal pulling the DL (pass rush) to him and then sweeps right (past the pass rush) and passes. The Patriots used this one as well in Superbowls. Sprint right option - the Catch (pick play); it's a Paul Brown (Cleveland) play from the 50's in the North Ohio River Offense (LOL). BW was the OC. It was hard to defend b/c it offered so many receiving options esp. near the EZ (in the RZ). Everybody runs it now and have added to it...including throwing all the way back to the other side of the field to a wide open receiver (since everyone flowed to the side the QB went). BW would only sprint to the QB's strong arm...right if he was Montana and left if it was Young. 1. is a quick throw, 2. is to QB run and 3. pass to the corner of the EZ. Montana thought it was odd b/c it's was a designed play that they practices...but to him it was a play you do out of necessity/ad libing. BW said they practiced that play for three years, thousands of times in practice before the (fulfillment) Catch.

"We took the field and executed...and that's the essence of the WCO...it's the repetition and dealing with the contingencies and over and over practicing these things to where there isn't anything really verbal that has to be done!" ~ Bill Walsh (Mr. Automatic)
It all comes down to Walsh preparing his qb for every details so they can be successful on the field. Can't have anyone better than that as a coach.
Originally posted by qnnhan7:
It all comes down to Walsh preparing his qb for every details so they can be successful on the field. Can't have anyone better than that as a coach.

Without a doubt...that said, not sure how much of any of the original WCO compares to what we are doing now with Alex/cast.
Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by qnnhan7:
It all comes down to Walsh preparing his qb for every details so they can be successful on the field. Can't have anyone better than that as a coach.

Without a doubt...that said, not sure how much of any of the original WCO compares to what we are doing now with Alex/cast.

Agree and believe McCarthy still teaches a QB clinic in the Walsh mold every off season. Time will tell if Roman is capable of coaching and calling a passing game in the WCO manner. It takes longer to install and learn the passing game than the running so maybe he is just getting started. Cross our fingers!
Originally posted by dtg_9er:
Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by qnnhan7:
It all comes down to Walsh preparing his qb for every details so they can be successful on the field. Can't have anyone better than that as a coach.

Without a doubt...that said, not sure how much of any of the original WCO compares to what we are doing now with Alex/cast.

Agree and believe McCarthy still teaches a QB clinic in the Walsh mold every off season. Time will tell if Roman is capable of coaching and calling a passing game in the WCO manner. It takes longer to install and learn the passing game than the running so maybe he is just getting started. Cross our fingers!

For sure. This is the first time Alex has had a chance to work on his own mechanics. I'd like to see him working on WCO-mechanics next; the timing, precision, repetition, knowing the speed of each WR, their tendencies, his movement within the pocket on his third read, step-drops, accuracy, etc. and I'd like to see Roman start to implement some/more WCO plays as we have all the parts in place (Moss, Manningham/Crabtree as the primary receivers and VD as the TE/alternate and Gore/Hunter as the outlets).
Im not impressed with Roman and his funky play calling. Personally I would not be upset if he gotta another job in the off season.
Originally posted by susweel:
Im not impressed with Roman and his funky play calling. Personally I would not be upset if he gotta another job in the off season.

I initially wanted to give Roman props for having to switch gears yesterday but b/c our OL was a sift re: pass protection, it was hard to even determine what plays he WAS calling. He did come out throwing more screen passes yesterday but almost all were to Gore...hello, Hunter is your best option for outside the T, RB screens...hell, any screen. The middle screen would have been open all day with the pressure they were bringing with their front 4.

But to date, I don't see as many WCO plays and principals as I'd hoped to see after 1.5 years esp. when you review the QBing WCO I highlighted above ^.
Originally posted by susweel:
Im not impressed with Roman and his funky play calling. Personally I would not be upset if he gotta another job in the off season.

There are times that the camera pans to Harbaugh on the sidelines and he seems to be thinking the same thing! I like the general approach given the short time they have been using the system but am wondering if Smith should call his own offense. I doubt it would be as...looking for a negative word that isn't too negative...er...lackluster!
[ Edited by dtg_9er on Nov 12, 2012 at 10:15 AM ]
Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by susweel:
Im not impressed with Roman and his funky play calling. Personally I would not be upset if he gotta another job in the off season.

I initially wanted to give Roman props for having to switch gears yesterday but b/c our OL was a sift re: pass protection, it was hard to even determine what plays he WAS calling. He did come out throwing more screen passes yesterday but almost all were to Gore...hello, Hunter is your best option for outside the T, RB screens...hell, any screen. The middle screen would have been open all day with the pressure they were bringing with their front 4.

But to date, I don't see as many WCO plays and principals as I'd hoped to see after 1.5 years esp. when you review the QBing WCO I highlighted above ^.

That toss sweep in OT that lost yards was just mind boggling.
Originally posted by susweel:
That toss sweep in OT that lost yards was just mind boggling.

Yes! The Rams are hell bent to put pressure on CK and they call that? Yikes! Gore into a stack would have been preferable...and I hate that play!

Edit: but as much as I hate that play, Gore made it work a number of times...great running!
[ Edited by dtg_9er on Nov 12, 2012 at 10:17 AM ]
Originally posted by dtg_9er:
Originally posted by susweel:
That toss sweep in OT that lost yards was just mind boggling.

Yes! The Rams are hell bent to put pressure on CK and they call that? Yikes! Gore into a stack would have been preferable...and I hate that play!

Edit: but as much as I hate that play, Gore made it work a number of times...great running!

In that situation it was the worst play because considering we were already in FG range.
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Originally posted by susweel:
Originally posted by NCommand:
Originally posted by susweel:
Im not impressed with Roman and his funky play calling. Personally I would not be upset if he gotta another job in the off season.

I initially wanted to give Roman props for having to switch gears yesterday but b/c our OL was a sift re: pass protection, it was hard to even determine what plays he WAS calling. He did come out throwing more screen passes yesterday but almost all were to Gore...hello, Hunter is your best option for outside the T, RB screens...hell, any screen. The middle screen would have been open all day with the pressure they were bringing with their front 4.

But to date, I don't see as many WCO plays and principals as I'd hoped to see after 1.5 years esp. when you review the QBing WCO I highlighted above ^.

That toss sweep in OT that lost yards was just mind boggling.

That CUTE bulls**t pissed me off so bad. Just run down hill, don't put your team at risk of a TFL or a fumble(see the rain slicked fumble on that toss sweep last year).

Seriously our coaches biggest coaching flaw that I will never get used to is Roman's inability to go basic when its the right call to do so, its like he has to do something unique and he continually picks horrific situations to do it. Even that Toss Sweep to Gore earlier in the game pissed me off and that one worked.