What are the Personnel Traits you look for in the West Coast Offense?
Not much to discuss as you have all the highlights listed, just want to add a bit to them using snippets from another WCO site I like that focuses alot on what Coach Walsh did with the scheme.
Football 101: The West Coast Offense
1. A field general QB who can make quick reads and has a strong arm and quick release, long-ball ability is a bonus.
One of the most obvious requirements for a quarterback in the West Coast offense is have the ability to pass. It is important to realize that arm strength and being able to pass are not synonymous. Some players can throw a football 80 yards, but they aren't good passers. Good passing involves accuracy, timing, and throwing a ball with enough touch so that it is catchable. Good passing also requires understanding both the West Coast offense and the receivers in the West Coast offense, and having a great sense of anticipation.
Not sure if you implied this with your comment, however, for me, anticipation is the key. The QB needs to be able to get a quick read of what is happening to his recievers and how they will run thier stem and make the associated adjustment to thier break, but to throw it to the spot before they get there.
Mix that with the number one criterial for WR's (precise routes) and you have a deadly combination that is pretty damn hard to defend.
2. Receivers that can run clean precise routes, early separation is key, and speed is a bonus. (Ball control receivers)
Don't want to post the whole snippet on the WR's, however, the keys are as follows:
1. The agility to change his body position is essential if a wide receiver is to be able to get his hips turned and his hands in position to catch a ball that is not perfectly thrown.
2. Wide receivers in this offense must also be relatively strong.
3. Soft hands are also vital.
4. Wide receivers must also have the ability to focus.
Then they start talking about speed.
Football 101: WR Role in WCO
3. Tight-ends that are superior route runners and pass catchers, a Tight End that can physically overmatch Linebackers(speed) and safeties (Size) downfield is a big plus.
Here is were we will probably differ in our analysis of how well our TE's fit the scheme.
Football 101: TE Role in WCO
The requirements for playing tight end depend primarily on the system a team deploys. Accordingly, a West Coast offense team must find the athlete who best fits the team's approach to the offense.
Basically I believe we have to have a variety when it comes to the TE for our scheme but ultimately I think that whatever type you run out there, the cat needs to be able to block as well as he can catch.
This type of TE (call him a "Inline TE") does not tip your hand with respect to what play you are gonna run.
Although Shanc appears to be our biggest weapon used with respect to our TE's, all of them can and will catch passes, but they are all blockers first.
Again, gets back to what variant we run which I believe is a "Run to setup the pass" variant more than it is a "Pass to setup the run" variant.
Long story short, most will disagree with me cause they love how the TE's are used in not only college but on other teams, but for our system, a Shanc/Sauce kindof of mix of capabilities is fine for our system.
In our base offense (Two WR's, Two TE's), both TE's can block first and catch second with Shanc being the one that will exploit the middle intermediate to deep if he is left with a LB or S in coverage and Sauce being the guy who is used to help keep the QB upright.
4. Running backs must be multi-dimensional, able to run the ball, pass protect, and run-routes/ catch pases like a WR
Again, I think you hit the nail on the head with respect to a "Pass to setup the run" variant. Problem here is that we kindof do the opposite or atleast try to be able to whichever depending on what the other teams weakness is, which is why AD is such a good fit.
5. Offensive linemen are generally more mobile and proficient at pulling and making the outside block than the norm and also proficient in the zone blocking scheme (ZBS)
Although I've never heard anyone say that a OLmen must be able to excell in a ZB'ng scheme, I would say that you are not to far off target.....
Again from the source web page
The one absolute essential trait for offensive linemen in the West Coast offense is natural body girth. In addition to girth, offensive tackles in this offense must be very strong and a have a high level of agility. Agility by the linemen in this offense is needed because of the quick three and five step passing game. An offensive tackle should also have strong, long arms to facilitate those blocking tasks involving tasks involving leverage. From a blocking perceptive, however, the timing of the block itself is the critical factor. In addition, the offensive tackle must have intuitive sense of feeling or knowing where to intersect defenders.
We've had alot of good threads done on this subject here on PPO, most of them go into the deep dark void that deals with how big our OL is as compared to a traditional ZB team.
At one point I went as far as to point out that our OLmen were not only bigger than (I used Denver at the time) a traditional ZB OLmen, but the were faster (using thier 3 cone/short shuttle times) as well.
I actually think our OLmen are picked because of thier abilities to run block first (again, back to the variant we run), pass block second.
Hope this helps lay the ground work for the differences in grades that you and I will both have. Doesn't mean either of us are right or wrong, just means we look at the scheme a bit differently is all.