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simplification versus repition

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Old 12-02-2008, 09:41 PM   #1
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simplification versus repition

Ok so listening to the players and Zorn(because honestly the fan's opinion to start Colt really doesn't matter) is that some players feels that the offense can be simplified and perhaps that is why people are making errors. If you pay attention to Zorn's pressers he admits this as well.

But Campbell and Portis both admitted today that people were wide open at times, routes were mis-run, etc. Much like Zorn says, execution was a key problem. Not just one player, but JC would mess up, then a drop, after that a bad route, then a missed block, etc.

It was interesting because according to JC, the players and coaches had a candid meeting where they brainstormed ways to figure out what is wrong. So I ask what would you do as Zorn? Continue to chug along, and a good week of practice could lead to good execution? Or simplify things, to prevent mistakes? Remember we are playing a great D, so maybe they will be ready for simple stuff.
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Old 12-02-2008, 09:46 PM   #2
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Re: simplification versus repition

There is always a balance to be struck between simplification and innovation, and it (IMO) usually lies closer to the innovation side of the spectrum.

Obviously, it doesn't take a whole bunch of reps in practice to get a play down, and teams have plenty of time to go over the plays in the gameplan that week in practice. Ultimately, though, it's on the players to be able to handle what the coach wants to do if he needs to alter the gameplan.

There aren't a whole lot of complicated schemes in the offense, I don't think. Being uncomfortable is one thing, but not being able to handle the workload is another entirely. I would hope the players issues are with the former (meaning time will improve them), as opposed to the latter (meaning we need new players).
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Old 12-02-2008, 09:46 PM   #3
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Re: simplification versus repition

Plus, a month ago, this exact same offense was working just fine.
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Old 12-02-2008, 09:48 PM   #4
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Re: simplification versus repition

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There aren't a whole lot of complicated schemes in the offense, I don't think. Being uncomfortable is one thing, but not being able to handle the workload is another entirely. I would hope the players issues are with the former (meaning time will improve them), as opposed to the latter (meaning we need new players).
I don't think it is, because beside certain positions we do have really good players. I just hope it is something time will fix, plus I think the players aren't too content with all the blame being on themselves.
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Old 12-02-2008, 09:50 PM   #5
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Re: simplification versus repition

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Plus, a month ago, this exact same offense was working just fine.
Good point, so either teams are figuring out how to play Zorn or the additional plays he has added will take some time to absorb.
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Old 12-02-2008, 10:10 PM   #6
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Re: simplification versus repition

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Good point, so either teams are figuring out how to play Zorn or the additional plays he has added will take some time to absorb.
That's I think why we're seeing the volatility in production over the course of the season. It's a cat and mouse game between an inexperienced gameplanner, and other gameplanners that are not experienced yet with Zorn.

The final year averages will show a pretty clear picture of where the Zorn offense is at. Right now, it's still very good overall. Even considering the last four weeks (twice when he was facing a team the second time around), We're still significantly above average in every offensive category but points. And since points are the product of everything else you do on a football field, they figure to come at some point. Once we stop shooting our offense in the foot.
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Old 12-02-2008, 10:39 PM   #7
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Re: simplification versus repition

Good thread!

The offense appears to be relatively simple still @ week 13 and I think it is indicative of the abysmal execution on gameday. Zorn sees it, talks about it and probably spends countless hours thinking about how to fix it. Point is he can't very well innovate when guys are failing at the basics of blocking, route running and, oh yeah, catching the f'ing ball. In all seriousness, if we executed Zorn's plays properly I believe the only losses we'd have today would be week 1 against NY and Pittsburgh.

The hard truth is to become a consistent win team we have to both innovate and get back to basics. The playbook should be augmented significantly but we have to start executing way better as well. It's a very tall order from where the offense is sitting today.
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Old 12-02-2008, 11:19 PM   #8
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Re: simplification versus repition

I don't see anything wrong with "getting back to basics", to toss out a cliche for those that love such a thing.
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Old 12-03-2008, 12:25 AM   #9
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Re: simplification versus repition

I would probably go with simplification but I really think the problem is this. We haven't even been in this offense for 1 year yet. Even McNabb has said it takes 3 years to run this offense as a QB. JC is smart, but we expect him to do what other QB's couldn't do with the WC in their first year. Compound that with being the 4th most sacked QB in the league, rookies not contributing as soon as expected, dropped balls etc. We didn't change the run game and look how Portis is doing. There is no substitute for time. Our passing game is going to take time. Now I'm one of the guys who's been yelling to throw the damn ball. If we don't, our running game will suffer. I've heard that Zorn has mentioned not giving JC as many options... to simplify things. From what I've heard, the word around the league is JC checks down on his receivers too quickly. Now that may be from running for his life or not trusting the receiver, either way, simplifing things may be the answer for now. Jason Campbell is a good QB. The truth is, given the play of the o-line and the receivers, he's probably doing better than should be expected, but he can not run this offense like he's been in it for 3 years when he's been in it for less than one. Simplifing, not giving up, the passing game may help.
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Old 12-03-2008, 01:03 AM   #10
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Re: simplification versus repition

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Originally Posted by GTripp0012 View Post
Plus, a month ago, this exact same offense was working just fine.

In terms of yardage it was, but it has what been 5 weeks since we played the Lions. Yardage wise we dominated, but I can't say the offense was working just fine since we had trouble scoring. Zorn has to tweak his system to maximize what he has to work with. Shorter pasing routes negates Santana's speed, etc. To me this might be like what Rodriguez is facing up here at Michigan. He inherited players from a previous system that aren't acclamated to the system he has brought in. The results are that U of M is staying home for the holidays for the first time since 1975. The results for coach Zorn probably will be missing the last wildcard spot unless they can turn it around very soon.
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