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  1. #1
    Marrdro's Avatar
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    The Seahawks & the Zone Blocking Scheme

    I know this should probably go into the "General Forumn" but I found it interesting when it comes to some of the things we've been seeing the Vikes try to do the last couple of years especially when it comes to AD and his inability to both pass protect and hit the right holes.

    Case in point......

    when you run a real zone offense, you're talking about the offensive linemen stepping laterally at the snap, and running toward the sidelines, creating seams horizontally instead of trying to blow guys off the ball. Every offensive line uses some elements of zone-blocking, but teams like the Redskins and Texans do it predominantly. They have a very simple running game that is predicated on running toward the sideline."
    The Vikings don't do that with AD. I am not sure of the percentages, but I sure seem to chart alot of A and B gap runs. Alot more than one would think for a team that uses the ZB scheme.\

    But, I think the important part of the passing game is that it needs to be explosive." "That's what we want to do, it's what we want to be," Bevell explained. "It gives us opportunities to throw it, not just the little, you know, West-Coast Offense style where you're going five or six yards, we want to be able to get big chunks. If you're going to drive the length of the field, you're going to have to do that, and I think that's something that we're still working on."
    Our passing game, unlike the Seachickens is still Dink/Dunk.

    Said Payne, "I think it's true that you don't have to have a truly, Peyton Manning-type precision quarterback to [run the system effectively]......snip......The offense is predicated on] the line and the running backs," Payne went on. "If you listen to some coaches that talk about coaching the system, all they talk about is -- you almost have to look at the running back as an extension of the offensive line. That running back, more so than in a conventional scheme, really has to understand what those offensive linemen are doing, and it's up to the running back, more so than in a conventional blocking offense, to really read, and understand where a center or guard are taking guys, because they'll just wash them upfield if they're beat
    Don't get me wrong, as I love AD to death, but he still sucks at pass protection (the stuff they are talking about here.

    Anyone remember the video clip of our RB's coach getting in AD's locker room last year about how many steps, what he shows, etc etc etc.....

    The Seahawks & the Zone Blocking Scheme - Field Gulls


    Anyway, I just thought this was interesting especially when you compare it to the Vikes.
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  2. #2
    marshallvike's Avatar
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    Interesting read marr, but wtf. ONE POST today? Where is fast and furious marrdro? Zip in post in 20 threads in record time and slip out. I am disappointed Marty.
    Why must you defend everything this FO does....to the point of making your self look like a yes man.

  3. #3
    Mr Anderson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marrdro View Post

    Don't get me wrong, as I love AD to death, but he still sucks at pass protection (the stuff they are talking about here.

    Anyone remember the video clip of our RB's coach getting in AD's locker room last year about how many steps, what he shows, etc etc etc.....
    While I don't disagree that Peterson is a sub-par pass blocker, the author and contributing sources are in no way talking about pass blocking by a running back by calling him "an extension of the offensive line."

    Said Payne, "I think it's true that you don't have to have a truly, Peyton Manning-type precision quarterback to [run the system effectively]. If you've got a guy like Matt Schaub, who's a very intelligent quarterback, I was watching some games earlier today and I had forgotten how well he does throwing into the teeth of the blitz. He has a good sense for when blitzes are coming, and where to get rid of the ball when they come."

    The ability to stare down the gun barrel, as you'll hear John Schneider (quoting Jaws) say.

    [The offense is predicated on] the line and the running backs," Payne went on. "If you listen to some coaches that talk about coaching the system, all they talk about is -- you almost have to look at the running back as an extension of the offensive line. That running back, more so than in a conventional scheme, really has to understand what those offensive linemen are doing, and it's up to the running back, more so than in a conventional blocking offense, to really read, and understand where a center or guard are taking guys, because they'll just wash them upfield if they're beat."

    You may remember that sometime around Week 9 in 2011, the Seahawks essentially decided that despite the results, they were finally going to commit fully to the run. On first down, on second down, on third down - whether they were losing or not, installing that run-first identity was the most important thing. At that time, as it was explained by Cable after the season, Marshawn Lynch apparently accepted a fundamental change in his running style as proposed by Tom Cable: "We made a deal - you have to do it the way I tell you to do it, I ask you to do it," Cable said. "And he's done it. So a lot of credit, to me, goes to him because he was willing to kind of maybe push his ego or push own beliefs, to some extent, aside and then embrace something new."

    "Because," Cable went on, "this is a system that asks backs to do things a certain way. Once you get in and through the line of scrimmage, then do your thing. You can do all the craziness you want then. But you've got to do it this way from A to B. And he bought in from A to B. And after that, what you do from C on is you." Lynch began to improve on his runs from A to B - largely eliminating the dancing and fidgeting behind the line that had driven fans crazy early in the season and into last year. Then, predictably, has been a beast at point C, breaking tackles and consistently pushing the pile
    Where you cut off the article -- at "wash them up field they're beat."-- is the end of a quote used to set up the following paragraphs describing Marshawn Lynch's adaption to the scheme as a runner in 2011. Specifically, knowing if either of the guards or center are beat to get downfield, right away, rather than try to make something happen and taking a risk behind the line of scrimmage.


    Regardless, this is a very good article, coming from the horses' mouths on what has been a contentious and misunderstood topic on this site in the past. Great find.
    Last edited by Mr Anderson; 07-17-2012 at 01:04 AM.

  4. #4
    Marrdro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Anderson View Post
    While I don't disagree that Peterson is a sub-par pass blocker, the author and contributing sources are in no way talking about pass blocking by a running back by calling him "an extension of the offensive line."
    I kindof think they are to a point if you take into account what AD is supposed to do to sell run on a play that is supposed to look like a run (stretching it to the sideline) only to pass it deep.

    At least thats one of the things I took away from it.

    Where you cut off the article -- at "wash them up field they're beat."-- is the end of a quote used to set up the following paragraphs describing Marshawn Lynch's adaption to the scheme as a runner in 2011. Specifically, knowing if either of the guards or center are beat to get downfield, right away, rather than try to make something happen and taking a risk behind the line of scrimmage.
    Gottcha, nothing sinister behind were I cut it off. Just picked that point.


    Regardless, this is a very good article, coming from the horses' mouths on what has been a contentious and misunderstood topic on this site in the past. Great find.
    I thought you would jump on the discussion point about Bigger and Faster vs Small and Fast. I think that is the only real thing you and I have disagreed to on the whole Vikes approach to the ZB scheme.

    One thing I have been doing wrong is charting the OL as ZB'ing for a play based more on the outcome of a double (who disengages and who gets to the next level). From what I read of this, that is a twist on the original blocking scheme of everyone going to a zone (as they stretch to the sideline) and engaging whoever is in that zone/gap.

    In short alot less doubling that I thought in the original scheme. I am going to have to watch that real close this year to see if that assumption is correct.
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  5. #5
    Mr Anderson's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marrdro View Post
    I kindof think they are to a point if you take into account what AD is supposed to do to sell run on a play that is supposed to look like a run (stretching it to the sideline) only to pass it deep.

    At least thats one of the things I took away from it.
    I can see why, but what showed me they weren't talking about pass protection was Payne saying "where a center or guard are taking guys because they'll just wash them upfield if they're beat." To me it implies, one, the line is moving continuously and directionally throughout the play, something that doesn't happen in pass protection and two, there is no pocket to pass from, as no center or guard would allow penetration intentionally if they are beat on a passing play.

    Gottcha, nothing sinister behind were I cut it off. Just picked that point.
    I don't believe there was anything sinister to it either, just a misinterpretation I'm pointing out.


    I thought you would jump on the discussion point about Bigger and Faster vs Small and Fast. I think that is the only real thing you and I have disagreed to on the whole Vikes approach to the ZB scheme.
    Square peg, round hole. Like Cable said, you need size and power, but not without quickness. I like the "it's not a fat guy system, it's a big guy system" quote. Something that couldn't be said for our line in previous years. IMO, Hutchinson was the only guy from our squad over the past half decade who really fit into what he says there. Birk was old and banged up, didn't move that well. Herrera is simply not an athletic guy(by NFL standards, of course.) I wouldn't call Ryan Cook a 'fat guy' per se, but he certainly wasn't quick. 2006 through 2008 a running game is all we had. We had receivers like Ferguson and Taylor who were very good blockers downfield, one of the best lead blockers of all time at fullback and and a defense that wasn't complete garbage against the pass. It worked, but would have been even better with an offensive line built to execute the blocking scheme in place. Oh, and McKinnie, he was a fat guy.

    One thing I have been doing wrong is charting the OL as ZB'ing for a play based more on the outcome of a double (who disengages and who gets to the next level). From what I read of this, that is a twist on the original blocking scheme of everyone going to a zone (as they stretch to the sideline) and engaging whoever is in that zone/gap.

    In short alot less doubling that I thought in the original scheme. I am going to have to watch that real close this year to see if that assumption is correct.
    I'm not sure what you're saying here. Do you mean that you were calling guys chipping at the LOS and getting downfield blocking a zone, when they really were not? Or is it just a terminology issue, i.e. not calling a block a double team if it is not sustained?

    Because in typical ZBS you're going to have at least one double team after the snap of the ball. It's the progression linemen follow. 1) The man lined up on them. 2) The man in their playside gap. 3) Get downfield.

    So if there are 4 down linemen, there's going to be a double team, sometimes 2, depending on the positioning of the defensive linemen.



    I drew that up quickly to illustrate what I mean.


    I'm not sure where you're stuck, but if this helps, I'm glad. It and the article helped me grasp something I'd forgotten since playing in high school. We ran some zone plays with that progression. Man on, playside gap, backer.

    If you're on the double team, you react to where the defender goes. In the illustrated scenario, the playside DT stays inside, so the guard takes the will. Had he crossed the guards face, the center then takes the will.
    Last edited by Mr Anderson; 07-17-2012 at 04:00 PM.

  6. #6
    Marrdro's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Anderson View Post
    I can see why, but what showed me they weren't talking about pass protection was Payne saying "where a center or guard are taking guys because they'll just wash them upfield if they're beat." To me it implies, one, the line is moving continuously and directionally throughout the play, something that doesn't happen in pass protection and two, there is no pocket to pass from, as no center or guard would allow penetration intentionally if they are beat on a passing play.
    I think I'm losing you a bit. I agree with your statement above, when you divide between pass and run.

    What I'm trying to say is that when you pass out of play that is designed to look like a run using the traditional ZB scheme described. What the Back does is important to sell the whole concept of looking like a run so the DB's release and crash down/come into the box.

    Love these discussions by the way. Sure would be alot more fun at a wipeboard with some beers.


    Square peg, round hole. Like Cable said, you need size and power, but not without quickness. I like the "it's not a fat guy system, it's a big guy system" quote. Something that couldn't be said for our line in previous years. IMO, Hutchinson was the only guy from our squad over the past half decade who really fit into what he says there. Birk was old and banged up, didn't move that well. Herrera is simply not an athletic guy(by NFL standards, of course.) I wouldn't call Ryan Cook a 'fat guy' per se, but he certainly wasn't quick. 2006 through 2008 a running game is all we had. We had receivers like Ferguson and Taylor who were very good blockers downfield, one of the best lead blockers of all time at fullback and and a defense that wasn't complete garbage against the pass. It worked, but would have been even better with an offensive line built to execute the blocking scheme in place. Oh, and McKinnie, he was a fat guy.
    He was, but my side of the discussion was to use their combine times (compared to the Broncos under Shannahan) to show how much faster our "Fat" guys were than those cats. Would be interesting to compare the Deadskins and the Vikes OLmen now. MIght just do that. It probably would back up my assumption and that is we don't run the ZB'ing scheme I thought we did, which sequies into your next question....

    I'm not sure what you're saying here. Do you mean that you were calling guys chipping at the LOS and getting downfield blocking a zone, when they really were not? Or is it just a terminology issue, i.e. not calling a block a double team if it is not sustained?
    Nope, I'm only saying that I think, based on were we run to "A" and "B" gaps, that we don't run the ZB'ing scheme in its purest sense but some sort of bastardized version (remember the "tracking/railroading" thread a year or so ago I started) and that I have to look harder at what I'm charting.

    Because in typical ZBS you're going to have at least one double team after the snap of the ball. It's the progression linemen follow. 1) The man lined up on them. 2) The man in their playside gap. 3) Get downfield.

    So if there are 4 down linemen, there's going to be a double team, sometimes 2, depending on the positioning of the defensive linemen.



    I drew that up quickly to illustrate what I mean.

    You've found a new way to plug drawings in. How did you do that?

    I'm not sure where you're stuck, but if this helps, I'm glad. It and the article helped me grasp something I'd forgotten since playing in high school. We ran some zone plays with that progression. Man on, playside gap, backer.

    If you're on the double team, you react to where the defender goes. In the illustrated scenario, the playside DT stays inside, so the guard takes the will. Had he crossed the guards face, the center then takes the will.
    Again, I agree. As I said above, I'm just not so sure what version we are running and I'm really unsure if my charting has been accurate, especially the last year or two.
    Many many thanks to my talented friend Jos for the new Sig.http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v343/josdin00/Vikings/Marrdro_sig.jpg

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