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Analysis from the Green Bay Packers coaches film

Originally posted by a49erfan77:
Originally posted by thl408:
Found it (from the Greg Roman thread). These stats were compiled on Dec 7 of this season.

Going back to the pass distribution for 2012, I don't think it would be correct to look at the final 2012 stats (16 games) to get a sense of how the pass distribution looks in this offense. My claim is that the top heavy pass distribution is due to Kap and how he heavily favors certain targets, not due to how Harbaugh envisions this passing attack to be. Kap ruins the validity of the 2012 end of year stats by becoming the starter in game #10. When Smith was playing the first 8 games of the season (games he played start to finish) the pass distribution was not top heavy like when Kap is the quarterback. Here is a breakdown of how the 2012 pass distribution looked at the end of game #8 (Smith was injured in game #9 so I did not use that STL game):

Crabs: 39
Ham: 28
Davis: 20
Gore: 16
Moss: 13
Williams: 10
Walker:7
Hunter: 7
Miller: 2
Celek: 2
Ginn: 1


^^That's a nice distribution of completions in an offense. I understand targets might be a better stat to use as opposed to receptions, but perhaps we can dive into that later if needed.

Below is the current catch distribution for this season (through 12 games of the 2013 season with Kap as QB):
Boldin: 61
Davis: 42
Miller: 18
Gore: 15
etc....


So this is comparing when Smith had a full offseason to prepare as the starter versus Kap as a full season to prepare as a starter. It's not the offense that causes this whacked out pass distribution, it's the QB. The reason I took the 2012 season and not the 2011 season with AS as QB is that the 2011 offseason was shortened due to the owner's lockout. Jim was new in town and I was not sure if he had time to fully implement his offense. By having a full offseason coming into 2012, and with AS as the clear cut starter, this made me use 2012 AS games.

To me, this says one of two things:
1) When AS is the QB, Jim likes to call AR plays that distributes the ball around, whereas when Kap is QB Jim wants to call AR plays that create a top heavy distribution. (
2) AS sees the field better and uses all his route runners, whereas Kap has tunnel vision. (quite feasible imo for a young QB)

I think this comparison is a bit flawed though, for a few reasons.

1st, Alex had been in the NFL for a lot longer than Kap. Granted the time in Harbaugh's system is the same, but experience reading NFL defenses benefits him greatly.

2nd, Alex had all of his receivers healthy, Kap only had Boldin and VD.

3rd, Alex rarely threw balls into tight coverage and therefore had to move on to other progressions. Kap trusts his rifle arm to get the ball into tight windows.

I think your first point supports what I am saying. That Alex sees the field better and therefore will distribute the ball. Can't dispute your second point. Your third point is valid. The main point I was trying to make with that post is that Harbaugh's offense has progressions and is not using an AR scheme as its foundation. Alex distributed the ball around by being able to see the field.

For those that say Harbaugh's passing attack is AR based, they should admit that when Smith was the QB, Harbaugh called AR plays that distributed the ball around to many WRs. Then when Kap became QB, Harbaugh only calls AR plays for VD and Boldin. I do not find this reasonable, which is why I say Harbaugh's offense is not AR based.
[ Edited by thl408 on Jan 10, 2014 at 2:05 PM ]
Ok, Thl, thank you. Sometimes over the last 5-6 weeks this conversation has drifted slightly into the weeds...your note of someone taking one play as an example of what kap did or didn't do. My take of this yr, trying to summarize it is this:

GB, wk 1: kap given green lite, firehouse football all the way, run whenever open and throw if you can. Not too sure there is any defense that would work well against kap in that game.

Games 2, 3. Coach H put the brakes on kap and said "pocket passing, bubba". Kap seemed to be lost in INDY and SEA games, and then:

We played a bunch of weak sister teams, and there were lot of AR plays...kap was learning, but it came slowly. We and he did fine until we ran into two more ELITE teams. The AR program and kap didn't do well there, it looked occasionally like comedy hour. He definitely wasn't ready for the big time,ie, ELITE teams.

Then came SEA #2 at home, and kap looked, oh, let's say, settled in a bit more. AR plays in that game for sure, not much progression plays.

Then CARDs at AZ. We looked like a very good team, and frankly, either team could have won and deserved it. Kap looked a lot more comfortable, and played his best game I thot .

Then last week at GB, more AR, but definitely as shown, some progressions. Whatever, kap has mentally got GB psyched out and they kind of looked like game 1. ARodgers played great, and in the end, again either team could have won, but our game was managed ( I think...maybe luck) to get the ball with 5 mins to go in game of subzero weather. GB obviously pre-game planned to stop frank and did most of game til the end we he got two really nice 1st downs. We win in absolute crap conditions, our QB looks excellent, and ARodgers played like the Texans at the Alamo.

Summary: combination of 3 all pro receivers now together healthy, kap coming on, has regained cocksureness, and is no longer intimidated. His progressions are more in number each week, and going into Carolina, we look ready. Sure a different summary than I would have written after first two game loss and then the 2nd two losses. Kap, AR sometimes, but coming on with progressions. This sure explains the 17 pass attempt games, and why untested receivers were not used against weak sister teams when we had 20-30 pt leads. To date we have won with overwhelming talent , better than opponents. Now we play an opponent that I still think we are better than at each position, slightly, but equal at Qb. But again, this game can be won by either side. I now am feeling better about HaRo because I understand what has been discussed for 6 weeks(more likely, almost 3 months), a whole lot better.

Thl, your ability to not take sides (yet present your take on physically what happened) has been most helpful, and I am, as noted, feeling better about HaRo, in that their hand was forced to play AR. Fascinating...and thanks.
[ Edited by pasodoc9er on Jan 10, 2014 at 2:53 PM ]
Originally posted by thl408:
Personally, I don't even feel it's right to compare him to other QBs his age. The reason he slipped in the draft was because of his mental readiness due to coming out of a college style offense at Reno. He was raw as can be and that caused GMs to shy away from him, selecting QBs like Dalton and Ponder before Kap. 2012 was an outlier to me as he took the league by storm. So I will just compare Kap from September 2013 to Kap of January 2014.

Jonnydel has shown some examples of his ability to work through progressions. I am dont' know what jonnydel thinks is the most improved aspect of Kap's game, but to me his most improved aspect is pocket presence. For us that have seen every 49er game this season, one of the things Kap struggled with mightily was his ability to sense pressure in the pocket. Below is a play I illustrated after the week 3 IND game, but now that I can make GIFs, I want to re-visit the play.

Game situation seen below: After the snap, Kap drops back and scans the field (first read is to the right side of the formation). The right side of the OL is serving pancakes and the left side has things under control.

[snip image]

Below: For no explicable reason, Kap decides it's time to bail out of the pocket. He rolls left. Vance is running the red arrow.
[snip image]

Below: Because Kap scrambles left, the pocket breaks down since Iupati can't be asked to know what Kap is doing (back turned to play).
snip image]

1 yard scramble
[snip image]

This is just one play and one of the things with using film to support a point is that we can't just take one play and say "this is what always happens". But if you've seen every 49er game, try to remember back to weeks 1-5ish and how panicked Kap was in the pocket (well maybe not week 1). This could be a big reason why Dilfer says things like, "Kap is remedial once his first read is covered".

I was terrified when I saw tendencies like this early in the year. This is typical Michael Vick crap. I was not upset that Kap missed Vance open. I was upset that Kap never gave the play a chance by standing tall in the pocket, to see Vance get open. One of the biggest struggles for a scrambling QB is knowing when to scramble. Guys like Peyton and Brady don't have to worry about this as scrambling is not option #2, or #3, or #4. For guys like Kap, RW, RG3, Cam, they have to weigh passing options before resorting to scrambling. Kap has shown remarkable improvement in this area in my observation.

Other areas of improvement are being able to float a pass over the LB and in front of the CB and just overall consistency.

I have watched all the games and my impression is pretty much the same as yours (what I bolded above). I think for a few games after the first Seahawks game that Roman/Harbaugh did call for more AR to make it easier for Kap to read the defense before and during the play. By the time the 9ers played the Seahawks the second time, though, I think they were well on their way to taking off the training wheels - of course, getting Crabtree back was huge. (Incidentally, I think that beating the Seahawks was THE psychological turning point for the whole team - after that game, I think they really began to believe they had a real shot at going the whole way - I think they came to believe that if they play a good game they can beat anybody).
[ Edited by 49erphan on Jan 11, 2014 at 8:07 AM ]
Thought I would weigh in on Kap's development through this season.

I really think it comes down to the receivers Kap had early in the season and the coaching staff putting an emphasis on trying to stay in the pocket. I don't think Kap trusted his receivers early in the season to get open. He had some reason to believe this, but there were also many instances of receivers getting open. So somewhere along the line losing some of his best targets from last season somewhat lowered his confidence in them.

But I also think the coaching staff put a bit of emphasis on going through reads and staying in the pocket. This is all to protect the QB since no coach wants to see their franchise QB get injured on a scramble, much less a read option type play (unless you're Shannahan...). I really believe this lead to Kap kind of "overthinking" the offense early in the season. It's pretty much the equivalent of a sophomore slump. We all know when people try too hard to do something to perfection things can get all screwed up. I can relate it to my golf game. When I'm out there having fun and not thinking about it too much, I tend to play much better than when I try to make sure my swing is mechanically perfect.

So when you put these two things together it could create a perfect storm of indecisiveness, bad decisions and overall poor play.

That being said, we've all seen that Kap can be a pocket passer and go through his progressions. He's a very young QB that has, by and large, played at a pretty high level. There have been lapses, but that should be expected from a guy coming out of Nevada, especially given the system at Nevada. If he can continue his development, I see no reason why he can't be one of the premier QBs in the league. He's got all kinds of arm with accuracy to go along with it, is very smart and has ridiculous athleticism.