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Film Review - Offense vs Clemson

Discussion in 'Georgia Tech Football' started by Boomergump, Nov 19, 2013.

  1. Boomergump

    Boomergump Moderator Staff Member

    I hope you all like this. It is something I have made a habit of doing on another site. I am one of those who likes to watch every play of a game in slow motion a few times to formulate an opinion of what really happens on the field. For me it is a learning experience, but I like to share. So here goes. This is my take of the offensive performance against Clemson:

    First of all, what I heard from people over and over after this game (and some of the others) is "why can't our OL block. They are really not that good". Well, I will walk you through our first few futile series where the game was decided and you will see it was not really the OL at all, but rather, a myriad of bonehead plays and unlucky slips that had nothing to do with the blocking up front.

    Series #1 starts at our own 2 after Smelter's boner. 1st and 10 - called dive to Sims for 4. Not bad. Didn't get the DTs moved all that much, but a decent play considering position on field. Then the clown show started. 2nd and 6 - TO right towards boundary, Sims never moves at the snap, therefore no MESH, the LB assigned to the dive has free run at the play and forces ill timed pitch, RG gets 3 on his own. 3rd and 3 - (Clemson has 9 in the box we are unbalanced line to field side with a WR at short side TE) TO to boundary, well blocked, SD slips on his way to a first down and falls short untouched.

    Series #2 starts at our 15 after crappy return. 1st and 10 - Smoke route to Summers, Vad throws it low Summers has knee down on the catch, loss of 2. 2nd and 12 - (9 in the box again, we are unbalanced again to field side) Option to boundary, RG makes rare mistake trying to block wrong guy realizes it, then switches to totally miss his target. His man blows up play, loss of 2. 3rd and 15 - (8 in the box!) We are unbalanced on line again with Waller matched on Beasley at TE. He never touches him, Beasley runs unabated and forces early poor throw.

    Series #3 starts at our 22. 1st and 10 - TO right, Roberts leads the play but realizes he is trying to block the pitch key and pulls off only to miss his MLB assignment. Vad eats the ball, loss of 2. 2nd and 12 - Counter option left, well blocked by Mason pulling, it is a good thing because RG was too late in motion and never got to proper pitch relationship, Vad was all alone but got 6. 3rd and 6 - PA pass attempt, Sims totally whiffs #90 (trying to cut him) who runs unabated for sack.

    Series #4 starts at our 10. 1st and 10 - nicely executed throw over top of firing corner to Waller for 1st down. 1st and 10 - Counter option left, Mason slips and falls down on the pull , blocking nobody, Vad eats ball, no gain. (could have pitched) 2nd and 10 - TO right, Vad with good keep read strings play out and forces nobody to commit and pitches too soon, 2 yard gain. 3rd and 8 - screen to Waller for 6.

    The next time we get the ball we are down 20 and the clock reads 8:58 Q2. From that point on we start to play offense. They outscore us 35-31 the rest of the way. I guess my point for writing all this is that the OL really didn't have a huge part to play in the debacle. There were a lot of dumb mistakes spread all over the place.

    Clemson stacked the line and jumped the A gap often to try and stop the dive. On most every TO play the unblocked DE took the dive forcing the play wide where they fired corners sometimes. They did not react to motion with the safeties and generally anticipated counters very well by LBs watching the pulling guards. They lined up shallow across the field, crashed the run plays and dared us to beat them throwing.

    Position reports:
    OL - While I won't say that we did a great job of moving their interior guys, the OL held up their end of the bargain most of the time. They were taking the dive with the unblocked DE and crashing the A gap with an OLB. You could see they wanted to stop the dive and force VL to have to make decisions on the edge where he has not been comfortable. Overall, I would give the OL a B- on the day.

    WR - I was unimpressed with our ability to block them on the edge. It wasn't a good night. Even our cracks were executed horribly. That should never happen. Smelter is usually money blocking, but he wasn't on this night.

    BB - also had the worst blocking day imaginable. Sims is usually good here. Not on this day. We ran more true TO early than we have in previous games. The MESH read was keep most of the time they way they were playing us, so the carries were reduced for BBs. Then we had to pass a lot once we were behind.

    AB - I give mixed reviews. Obviously RG put up huge numbers as both runner and receiver, but even he joined the brain fart brigade blocking. Our ABs did an especially good job running routes I thought. There were a lot more guys open than there were guys thrown to. Bostic was Johnny on the spot, picking up a fumbled pitch and getting some yards with it on the edge.

    QB - Vad showed heart and he found a way to move the ball despite a bunch of poor decisions, tentative running, missed receivers, lousy pocket presence, and poor throwing mechanics. He is a frustrated and confused soul right now. The option game is just happening too fast for him. He is getting by on athleticism alone. JT looks better than VL at times, but he is way too loose with the football. He will try and force everything at this point in his development. He can make plays, but he is too high risk a player to win the position IMHO. If he just settles down, he will have a chance to win the position battle in the off season.

    Random note: Why were our guys slipping all over the field and their guys weren't? Did our equipment guy bring the wrong shoes for the field conditions? I have no idea but it wouldn't be the first time.

    In summary, we dealt with some self inflicted poor field position early and played with cobwebs in our heads and before you know it, the game was one sided. The pass opened up the run some for us and we got some offensive production but it was too little too late. Had our defense played a second half like UNC, we may have had enough to catch up. Hopefully the kids will learn from some of the putrid stuff they will see on film. We just have to get it pulled together soon.
    gtg609q, bat_082994, pinglett and 6 others like this.
  2. techman78

    techman78 Helluva Engineer

    Great to see you over here Boomer! As always, great job on you evaluation. I was disappointed by the outcome but I did see some good things at times. Our D looked good early on but when we kept going 3 and out they got gassed and that is no good with an O like Clemson has. I was reading somewhere else about the footing. Apparently our cleats were too short (no kidding right!) and we are supposedly ordering some alternates with longer cleats for better traction. Look forward to reading more of your evaluations Boomer!
  3. jayparr

    jayparr Helluva Engineer

    I thought Vad came on pretty well the second half. He seemed to have grown up some! Like I said some. How much we will see.
    kg01 and poodleface like this.
  4. kg01

    kg01 Get-Bak! Coach Featured Member

    I thought I saw the same thing jayparr. I remember in the 2nd half the announcers (in between disparaging comments from the dawg but that a whole other story) said STTE that Vad is really competing tonight. So many things went wrong early, as boomer pointed out, but Vad had a few drives late where he really showed a lot of heart and the offense moved the ball a bit.

    I'm kinda hoping that'll be a turning point for him and the offense as a whole.
  5. dressedcheeseside

    dressedcheeseside Helluva Engineer

    It's the same ol' song and dance if you ask me, for some reason we can't put together a complete game. We can't get every phase of our team playing well at the same time in these big games. In the first qtr, our D held their O to 2 field goals. It was looking like we had a ballgame as soon as the O would come around like it usually does (and did). Then, as soon as the O comes to life, the D completely falls apart.

    The special teams were special ed and kept putting us in bad field position, from kicking out of bounds, to dropping kickoffs, to poor kickoff blocking and coverage.

    This may have been a blowout, but at one point midway through the third qtr we were down by 10 points. Death Valley was an appropriate name because that stadium was a quiet as a grave yard. At that point, it's a ballgame, folks. Then the wheels fell off again. 2 minutes later we were staring at a 17 pt deficit and a rocking Death Valley.
    poodleface and GTJason like this.
  6. Eric

    Eric Retired Co-Founder Staff Member

    Great info.
  7. GTJason

    GTJason Helluva Engineer

    Exactly, I was thinking after the game as a DB at what point do you just start blatant interference with the CU wide receivers? I think White was in great position on some of those plays but you get burned enough times just take the 15 yards - I know hindsight is 20/20. We also did a poor job jamming their guys at the line. Watching the Broncos Chiefs game Sunday night, the Chiefs hit Wes Welker on every play. Seems like that would be a good strategy on Bryant and Watkins -hell any WR but especially the good ones.
  8. AE 87

    AE 87 Helluva Engineer

    Thanks Boomer. Good summary, and I agree with your focus on the first four drives.

    I'll just add a couple cents, if it's even worth that:
    1st Drive: 2nd play, I think the no-mesh was intentional. David went out and cut the crashing LB. 3rd Play was a triple a horrible read by Vad as the DE didn't even flinch toward the Dive. David went through the line untouched.

    2nd Drive: 2nd Play, The unbalanced front you mentioned was a bit odd, imo. Left of Center we had Braun at Guard and Micheal Summers where we would expect to see a Tackle. Mason, Roberts, and Jackson were on the line right of center with Smelter wide out. With 9 in the box, they had two guys within a few yards of the LOS on the side with only Braun and Summers. Vad seems to check the play, and then runs the triple in that direction. When one of them moves to the outside and into the backfield with the motion, Robbie moves off him and tries to get to the other one and gets stuck in no-man's land.

    3rd Drive: 1st Play, It was triple option motion, but again the B-Back doesn't mesh but cuts the LB crashing the A-Gap. So the DE that Chase Drive blocks to start with wan't the dive key as would be in a true triple. I think Chase's assignment was to drive the DE out and then pivot to seal the mike, but regardless, he whiffed on that block.

    4th Drive: 3rd Play (2nd Down), I'm not sure that Vad's read was that great. The DE didn't take the dive, but the Tackle completely avoided Braun's cut block and lept over and got Sims, so the Dive wasn't going anywhere. Unfortunately, that still left to many defenders for the perimiter. 4th Play (3rd Down), the WR screen was set up well but the lead blockers looked like they were running the chalkboard rather than looking for guys to block.
  9. Boomergump

    Boomergump Moderator Staff Member

    You may be right on every count, but I think Vad was expecting Sims to be there on the MESH on that second play, because he held the ball out and took a wtf peek back before moving down the line. It looked to me like it rattled him. Sims did recover to block somebody, but it threw the play off. Maybe Sims did the right thing and Vad brain farted? I dunno. Either way, they weren't together. On that 3rd play, I agree and think a give would have been good. I wonder what Vad is reading on the DE? Is it the shoulders? The movement? A combination of those? If I remember right, the guys shoulders were turned toward the dive, but he never moved toward it.
  10. AE 87

    AE 87 Helluva Engineer

    Maybe so. The first play of the 3rd Drive looked to be the same thing to me, though.

    I've seen the same thing in several games where the DE is clearly not taking the Dive, but Vad keeps at the mesh. I don't know what the story is.
  11. gtg936g

    gtg936g Helluva Engineer

    Great thread and discussion.

    I would like to throw in that the Clemson defense was probably the most disciplined defense that we faced (except maybe) the DEs and DTs did a good job of maintaing their gaps and stringing out plays. In real time watching the game I thought we were just out manned, but after reviewing the game it looks like we were just our own worst enemy. It seems like a theme this year.
  12. COJacket

    COJacket Helluva Engineer

    Thanks Boomer. Great to see your great game analysis over here. Hopefully, you will share more of your insights in the future.
  13. ToddM

    ToddM Guest


    I ask this because I have been of the opinion that Vad is concentrating so much on the option that he has no clue where his WRs are or what's going on around him, other than the 2 feet directly in front of him. After watching the tape do you get that feeling too or do you simply see it as a lack of pass calling by CPJ. I guess I am wondering where the passing issues are coming from. If it's Vad then I understand why CPJ isn't calling them


    If what you are seeing is the real problem doesn't it indicate that we don't have the people to even try and run the option ? I mean Sims should know how to block by now and even Waller should be able to get in the way, a little on the unbalanced line.
  14. Longestday

    Longestday Helluva Engineer Featured Member

    1st drive, 2nd down... Godhigh runs into Sims on the motion and causes Sims to lift his hands to stop Godhigh, which mess with the timing.

    1st drive, 3rd down looked like the same play as 2nd. Vad does not "hold" the mesh long enough to even make the DE think even if he was looking. In fact the DE was not even looking at Vad or Sims during the mesh, but looking at the tackle in front of him.

    3rd drive could either be a real fast read, as the read is definitely taking the BB, or a "called" keep. I want to say Vad is reading as the "fake" meshes look a lot more loose.
  15. Boomergump

    Boomergump Moderator Staff Member

    I have no idea how much Vad is concentrating on the option. From the outside looking in, it sounds like we are working hard to get the fundamentals of the option down, but I really have no idea what percentage of time is being spent on what. Regardless, so far, it doesn't appear as if some of the basics are sinking in. Quick reads are one thing, and he is a work in progress there. Not great, not horrible either. My biggest beef with Vad in the option game is twofold: 1. He is doing a horrible job selling the fakes. He is so casual about the fake MESH that it has no effect on the defense. None. When he does give on the MESH he is very casual about carrying out the fake run to the edge. It doesn't sound like much, but we need defenders at the second level to hold their pitch responsibilities for a half step longer if we want to spring runs on the dive. 2. He is not forcing defenders to commit on the pitch / keep portion of the option on the perimeter. Especially in the case of a crowded edge, you have to run AT the defense to force some kind of move to tackle you, if you want to give the AB a chance with the ball. Right now he is just stringing out plays into oblivion letting defenders hold their cards way too long. He may not be able to get a pitch off every time, but at least by getting turned up field a little he will gain 2 or 3 vs a loss of equal amount. Vad is fine when he has a clean edge, but he is horrible when things are crowded. Tentative and indecisive is no way to be in this offense. Make a decision quickly, right or wrong, and carry it out with 100% effort.

    As far as passing goes, I just don't think Vad has learned to see the field yet. My impression of what is happening is this: Vad goes to the film room and sees, "wow I missed seeing the wheel route 4 times last game". Then he goes out and looks for the wheel the entire next game when a certain play is called. This is OK but progressions need to happen. He needs to be able to recognize what the defense is doing more quickly and throw away from the defense. A QB needs to look for the defense and not his receiver. He already knows where his receivers are supposed to go. Throw the ball to the holes in the defense. The receivers will be there. It took Li'l Joe a couple years to get this too. If the entire front 7 are coming and the back 4 are dropping (which happens a lot against us, or maybe 6 coming and 1 QB spy just past the LOS) it should be obvious and the underneath throw should be the natural and quickly instinctive choice. Too many times we force balls deep in this situation. Vad plays as if he expects very little time, even when he HAS time. His pocket presence is terrible. His feet and weight are all over the place forcing him to make awkward deliveries. Vad CAN throw very well when he is comfortable. Most of the near misses like RG in the EZ or the overthrow in the flat to, I think, DH were purely rushed throws in a semi-panic. He may get flushed early, but he needs to do it under control with his eyes in the right place and his feet underneath him.
    AE 87, gtg609q and Eric like this.
  16. wingsrlevel

    wingsrlevel Ramblin' Wreck

    time to see Thomas and Laskey in the backfield. Sims has been horrible with fumbles and missed blocks and continues to play. Lee and his tentative play is really hurting the offense. Time to start looking ahead to next year.
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2013

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