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Coaches Film Analysis: 2017 Season

  • thl408
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The weekly film threads will be merged into this thread so that at the end of the year there is a compilation to see how the season unfolded. This is the armchair coach thread.

Links to the beginning of each merged thread:
Game 1: vs Panthers - Post #2
Game 2: at Seahawks - Post #216

Some common terms that will be associated with the 2017 49ers are listed below.

Head Coach Kyle Shanahan will be installing his form of the West Coast Offense with the primary traits being a timing based ball control passing game, a large variety of personnel/formation, and an outside zone run scheme. It will use lots of presnap motion to manipulate defensive formations and to create mismatches. Core WCO passing concepts are seen throughout his playbook such as Drive, Sticks, and Slant-Flat.

Outside Zone Run: A run blocking concept that can be recognized by seeing all 5 OLmen run in unison towards a sideline. With well timed, movement based blocks, gaps to run through appear.


Triangle Stretch: A 3 route combination, run in a variety of ways, that causes a vertical stretch and a horizontal stretch. A staple concept in Bill Walsh's playbook, it tries to create a 3v2 outnumbering situation that favors the offense.
Red + Orange create a vertical stretch. Orange + Yellow create a horizontal stretch.


Defensive coordinator Robert Saleh will be bringing back a base 4-3 defensive scheme. A defense the 49ers have not run as base since 2004, the year prior to Nolan becoming coach. It will be a one gap scheme that asks its down linemen to penetrate and disrupt. With Saleh's coaching background, the 49ers are projected to play a zone dominant coverage scheme that adopts a 'bend don't break' philosophy.

Cover 3: A zone coverage with 3 deep zone defenders and 4 underneath zone defenders (+4 pass rushers). The three deep defenders are to prevent the big play. Able to put 8 defenders in the box for run defense. Variations of Cover 3 provide different strengths and weaknesses (Sky, Buzz, Cloud).


Cover 1: A man coverage defense with 1 deep safety. 5 defenders assigned to each route runner in man coverage (+4 pass rushers). The last defender can be used to blitz, play an underneath zone (robber), spy the QB, or double cover a WR. The leverage (inside/outside positioning) that a man coverage defender wants to play with will depend on where the WR is lined up, and where the defender has help (team mate/sideline).


These concepts, and others, are described in the NinerTalk thread linked below as well as the web.
Coverages & Concepts

  • thl408
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Game #1


49ers 3
Panthers 23
  • thl408
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Another 49er season, another new offense and defense to watch. It's nice seeing presnap shifts and motion back. Chip Kelly's idea of presnap motion is turning around to look at the sideline. This season's two new coaches bring a completely opposite world view compared to last season. The offense is complicated with lots of personnel groups, formations, and motioning. The defense is now simplified.

The defense used a group effort to contain the CAR run game. While the 49ers DL might lack in pass rush, in this game they showed strength to not be moved off the ball. 49ers used more Over fronts than Under fronts in an effort to stop the run and held CAR to a 3.1 average ypc. Even when CAR ran Counter to take advantage of the Over front, the 49ers were able to hold their ground. Bow had a nice game in run defense. While his start and stop will be questioned from here on out, his ability to read and react to the run game is still top notch. Other notable run game defenders were Buckner and Mitchell. CAR displayed a good variety of run concepts and the 49ers were up to the task all game long.

The 49er pass defense had a number of blown coverages in this game which we all saw. The good part is since a high majority of what they play is forms of Cover3 and Cover1, repetition will bring development. There were three safety packages with James in the game. When the 49ers blitzed, they backed it up with man coverage, not zone. That crossing route from the #3 slot WR was ridiculously getting open. The mistake did get corrected in game, but not before it struck for a TD, and almost another TD.

The 49ers runs game had some pop runs, but CAR really did a good job stopping it later in the game. Charting only Hyde's runs, he started off with two inside zone runs for 20 yards. Then 2 outside zone runs for another 20 yards. Great start. Proceeded to have another four carries for a total of 5 yards. His 9th carry was the long lateral screen on 4th and goal. On the only two inside zone runs, Hyde got 20 yards (+8, +12), and didn't go back to it the rest of the game. The score more than anything took away the run game.

Hoyer made good throws in the first half and good decisions. On the sack fumble, it looked like he was about to target Kittle on a Corner route, and Kittle had won the leverage battle. There is no all22 of this play because the video is screwed up. The bomb to Goodwin on a 3rd and short went right through Goodwin's hands. On the first 4th down try of the game, Taylor created space against Kuechly. Hoyer looked right at Taylor as Kuechly was about to pick up man coverage. Have faith in the little dude to dust any LB in the league on a crosser. Besides the two shot plays, a lot of the passing game was short range, just like a WCO would be. Open up the game with a FB screen? Nice call. There was some familiarity in play here from the ATL/CAR divisional rival days because they knew when the bootleg was coming and blitzed right into it. Perhaps familiarity also tipped off Kuechly on his INT as he was not fooled one bit by the playaction.

The decision to be so aggressive early came back to bite the 49ers and made the game out of reach by the middle of the 3rd quarter. Despite the 1st quarter TD given up, which came off a turnover to give CAR good field position, the 49er defense was playing well. After that first TD, the 49er offense sputtered two consecutive drives with a sack and holding call. I think this got Kyle impatient and the next drive ended on the 4th and 4 just past midfield. The score was 7-0 in the 2nd quarter with the defense playing well. Kyle said he regretted this one call and should have pinned CAR deep with a punt. This isn't the Ryan and Julio show. Still, fun to see aggressiveness. Just wait till he gets better toys on offense.

Cut ups later on.
Thanks for the break down swaggy-t.
Good to hear a reasonable and knowledged mind keeping it real.

This is you vs the 49ers bashful.
Thanks for the summary thl. Really encouraging our d did not barf out on run calls. The most important progress.
YAS
I'd like to have some analysis on wtf Kyle was thinking on that long developing dive to Juice coming across the formation on 4th and short. Quite possibly one of the worst playcalls I've ever seen.
  • thl408
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Originally posted by Ensatsu:
I'd like to have some analysis on wtf Kyle was thinking on that long developing dive to Juice coming across the formation on 4th and short. Quite possibly one of the worst playcalls I've ever seen.

I'll show that play. Misdirection FB dive right into the teeth of the CAR defense? "They'll never see it coming!"
Originally posted by thl408:
Originally posted by Ensatsu:
I'd like to have some analysis on wtf Kyle was thinking on that long developing dive to Juice coming across the formation on 4th and short. Quite possibly one of the worst playcalls I've ever seen.

I'll show that play. Misdirection FB dive right into the teeth of the CAR defense? "They'll never see it coming!"

That was the one play call that was a real head-scratcher. Got a little cute when we just needed a yard. I've got no problem handing the ball to Juice, he's a bruiser, but having him come across the formation like that was weird. Took too long to develop and didn't allow him to run downhill. Made it too easy on a Panthers front that was dominating the LOS most of the day.

Another thing about our lack of pass rush: Carolina used a lot of max protection. It felt like they had an overwhelming numbers advantage on most plays.

That and guys were getting chipped.
[ Edited by Heroism on Sep 13, 2017 at 8:03 AM ]
Never thought about the fact that NFC South teams know Kyle very well. They might give us trouble, till we get better weapons.
Originally posted by Heroism:
Another thing: Carolina used a lot of max protection. It felt like they had an overwhelming numbers advantage on most plays.

Good observation. Carolina typically likes to max protect throwing vertically off their run game. Probably made it easier to handle our 4 man rush. With so many players in coverage to cover a few receiving threats, we did alright but there were a few glaring breakdowns. I'm sure Carolina was counting on that to happen. Was hoping to see us send a little more extra pass rush to counter. Newton had all day to throw.
[ Edited by SofaKing on Sep 13, 2017 at 8:00 AM ]
Originally posted by SFTifoso:
Never thought about the fact that NFC South teams know Kyle very well. They might give us trouble, till we get better weapons.

I think it mostly has to do with personnel. The NFC south was very familiar with him last year and got smoked anyways. The key concepts of this offense have been around a long time, teams know them. Comes down to the players and how Shanahan strings playcalls together.
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