Originally posted by thl408:
Originally posted by NCommand:
th and others, I wanted your thoughts/insight on this topic:
In watching some film, can someone theorize as to why we don't go with a predominant or even half-time pro style spread offense? I noticed when CK was in shotgun (ala Brady) and there were 4 or even 5 true receiving options (all running hard to get open) and he was allowed to stand back there, scan and find his man, he was terrific.
Wouldn't this suit our personnel much better as well?
QB: CK (we let BJ Daniels go)
RB: James and Hunter (maybe Lattimore out of the Q formation AND in power sets); Gore is an excellent pas protector and when used on a regular basis, has good hands
WR: Patton and Crabtree (I'm sure Boldin can play in any offense); not sure about Baldwin and others
TE: VD and esp. McDonald (Carrier)
OL: Boone, Staley, Kilgore (lighter but more mobile and athletic)
A real spread offense is something I feel can allow Kap to put up better passing numbers (fantasy football numbers), but it isn't what Harbaugh is about. A spread offense is basically the polar opposite of a power run offense and we know how much Jim likes his 2TE sets. The 49ers actually use a spread formation out of any personnel grouping as we have seen Vance, Miller, and Gore line up wide to create coverage mismatches, while keeping the defense's base personnel on the field. If you are referring to 3WR/4WR spread formations, then that is what goes against, what I think is, Jim's philosophy. If the 49ers field a 3WR+VD personnel, but bunch them together hoping to beat man coverage, would you consider that a spread look? Perhaps you are asking why don't the 49ers use more 3WR sets + VD lined up wide to give the look of a 4WR set.
I don't know if Jim has it in him to go to this type of offense (3WR + VD out wide) as base personnel. Is it an issue of philosophy, or is an issue of what he thinks is inadequate talent in the 13-14 season (WRs, OL pass pro, Kap's current level of development)? The fact that he forces the run shows he values the ground and pound game. Vance McDonald's post season quotes were telling in that Jim puts a lot of value in winning the war of the trenches, something we shouldn't be surprised to hear:
"I definitely kind of got the vibe of what we wanted to establish as an offense. We wanted to be a definite run team. We wanted to establish the line of scrimmage. And we had the players to do it and the offensive line to do it. We had the running backs to do it. I knew that was a big focus, so I definitely wasn't surprised."
The question is, as Kap gains experience as a passer and players like Crabs, QP, Vance, become more accustomed to the offense, will Jim throw the ball more, and if he does, will it be out of a 3WR set, or will it be out of a 2TE set? Does Jim love his 2TEs and Miller too much to do this? He has mentioned that he strives for balance. Not balance in run/pass ratio, but balance in being able to run and pass equally in effectiveness while being able to give a myriad of looks (22 personnel, pistol, shotgun spread). Sorry I have no answer, just more questions and it has to do with Jim's philosophy. I don't think any of us know because Jim only has 3 years NFL head coaching experience while working with 2 different types of QBs.
You may have added more questions but I had the same ones myself. I guess when I picture more of a spread offense, yeah, it's 4 receivers. Remember the gif you created with McDonald being one of those legit targets and even Gore IIRC also flared out wide? So there it was...5 legit receiving options with CK standing in shot gun with a number of different options (and he hit McDonald for a nice gain). That's sort of how I picture the strength of our team esp. when you start adding in others such as Hunter, James, (Gore used to be a good receiver when used on the regular), Patton, McDonald on top of seasoned veterans in Crabtree, VD and Boldin. CK stands back there in shotgun and scans the field and picks his target.
I think you hit the nail on the head re: balance...Roman studied and incorporated the Q formation into our power run offense. McDonald's quote drove home Harbaugh's "philosophy" as well, no doubt; I bet it was a little shocked for him coming from a spread offense and playing in the slot a lot to being a FT blocker and thrown one bone a game (if lucky).
While we saw a successful spread play here as illustrated, clearly, it's the offense that needs work here to get over the hump. I took Harbaugh's comments about Lattimore right after the NFCCG as a way to ween fans off Gore and start the process of ushering in Lattimore. But given the play selection and predictability of the first down runs, could Lattimore do better than 13 yards? I doubt it...so balance.
We have seen some WCO plays incorporated, started to see RB's flare out much more as the season progressed, saw some spread, some power run (jumbo packages), Q formations, etc.
Maybe the strengths of this team (film review of successes by all coaches) will lead to some serious changes in the base offense while still maintaining our power run philosophy?
[ Edited by NCommand on Feb 11, 2014 at 5:32 PM ]