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Is power offense making a comeback?

Discussion in 'Miami Dolphins Forum' started by LikeUntoGod, May 15, 2008.

  1. LikeUntoGod

    LikeUntoGod Season Ticket Holder

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    Will bigger be better?

    As we continue to see defenses get faster and more athletic to handle all the matchup problems offenses throw at them, perhaps it is time for offenses to try a different tact. The trend is to use 230-pound middle linebackers who can get to the deep middle, 250-pound defensive ends who are best known as pass rushers, safeties with corner skills who are a bit undersized from the old-school 6-foot-2, 225-pounder, in-the-box strong safeties, weakside backers who are converted safeties, and extra defensive back packages based on down and distance. The defenses did what they had to do -- build units based on speed.

    Marc Serota / Getty Images
    Don't be surprised to see new Dolphins boss Bill Parcells mold his team's offense into a jumbo unit that can bully undersized defenses.

    I get the feeling that a few offensive coordinators are starting to see a new opportunity emerging from these defensive tactics.

    It was suggested to me that a few teams may be considering an old-fashioned offensive mentality that might be more from the Vince Lombardi school than the spread offense of 2007. It just might be time to send two big in-line tight end types out on to the field with a big old-fashioned fullback and a power runner. It might just be time to punch these quick defenses right in the nose with some smash-mouth power football.

    One coach told me his team's divisional opponents dictate this switch -- tighten the line splits down so quick defensive linemen can't penetrate a gap, and roll a short-yardage philosophy out in the middle of the field.

    It's still in the formative stages, but here's the plan as I understand it: Force the undersized weak linebacker to play on the line of scrimmage; make the hybrid safety play in the box, make the undersized pass rusher play over the offensive tackle with a tight end able to block down on him and send a fullback, who is bigger than the middle linebacker, right at him. It might not be exciting football but it would be a very interesting way to attack speed defenses.

    The first team that came to mind when I had the discussion about attacking defenses this way was the Miami Dolphins. Picture the right side, with Justin Smiley at guard, Jake Long next to him and tight end Anthony Fasano next to Long. In the backfield, 250-pound FB Boomer Grigsby is leading Ronnie Brown. There would be some running room over there -- and it might look just as inviting going to the left.

    The Dolphins could shorten the game, not expose their quarterbacks and keep the team in games a lot longer. Everyone knows Bill Parcells always loved big defensive players; when he sees all of the undersized defenses popping up around the NFL, he knows they will struggle with bulk and power offense.

    The true test will come when a team uses this philosophy when they are down by six or seven points, deciding not to panic and throw more than they are capable of, risking turnovers. Last year, we saw the Raiders stick with the run when they were down in games and at times they were able to climb back in games by staying committed to the run. They had no other choice at the time; a team like Miami could be in the same boat this year.

    It's too early to tell if it will be a trend in 2008, but I do know offenses are getting very tempted to bring a power game to the undersized defenses around the NFL. As one offensive coordinator said to me: "Everything that goes around comes around, and it just might be time to dust off the tight splits and heavy personnel."
     
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  2. Themole

    Themole Season Ticket Holder

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    My brand of football LUG. It was good enough to produce "Perfectville", and IMO, the only way to repeat it.

    As far as it not being very exciting, to me, there is nothing more exciting than to watch your team absolutely dominate and demoralize the oppositions defense.

    Infantryman's Creed of the United States Marine Corps: "To locate, close with, and destroy the enemy by fire and maneuver; and to repel the enemy's assault by fire and close combat.

    I feel it coming, I'm anxiously awaiting it's arrival.
     
  3. Georgia Fin

    Georgia Fin Fin For Life

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    Couldn't agree more, there is nothing more satisfying than to watch your team impose its will on the defense and make it slowly bend until it completely breaks. If this is truly what Parcells and Co. have in mind, we are even more fortunate than we initially thought.
     
  4. SuncoastFinsFan

    SuncoastFinsFan Banned

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    The true test will come when a team uses this philosophy when they are down by six or seven points,

    If Parcells has influence on the coaching staff, we will run even more in those times. Remember the Super Bowl with the Giants vs the Bills? The Bills were leading something like 19-3 and thats when OJ Anderson took the game over.

    It discourages the opposing offense and it keeps your defense fresh.
     
  5. MonstBlitz

    MonstBlitz Nobody's Fart Catcher

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    Well power offense really hasn't been gone long enough to be making a comeback. If the Patriots had won the superbowl I would think the better title might be, "Power Offense gone for good?" But with the Giants smashmouth football winning the day, that idea gets shot to ****.
     
  6. Desides

    Desides Well-Known Member

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    The Patriots just won 18 games with a pass-heavy offense, and teams such as the Colts stomp the competition each year with the pass, not the run. Let's not forget that Eli Manning just made a Super Bowl-winning drive with his arm and two spectacular catches.

    Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying running the ball isn't important, but I think some people are falling too much in love with the concept. While I'd love to see Ronnie repeat the BJ Ward hit on a weekly basis, I'd also like to see the return of prolific passing to Miami.
     
  7. SuncoastFinsFan

    SuncoastFinsFan Banned

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    Well, the best way to help the passing game is get a good running game. That will help many things open up downfield.
     
  8. ckparrothead

    ckparrothead Draft Forum Moderator Luxury Box

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    The other thing to consider is that with the force-out ruling now being extinct, throwing in the red zone will get tougher because the back of the end zone and sidelines will be practically unusable.

    I think going to a more jumbo look where you can reliably run in the red zone is a good adaptation in light of what will come from that development.
     
  9. DOLFANMIKE

    DOLFANMIKE FOOTBALL COACH 32 YEARS Luxury Box

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    If you count pitching the ball wide 2-3 times a game as a "prolific passing" attempt you'll be happy! Other than that, I expect to see us pound the ball alot more than anyone else and chuck it deep and across the middle on drag type routes.
     
  10. texasPHINSfan

    texasPHINSfan New Member

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    i see a lot of references to power offense, smashmouth football, and the '72 fins...

    what worked for the '72 fins won't necessarily work now IMO.... this is a different era, and things work differently now. sure, there are some general facets of the game that still hold true, but if you took that '72 team today it would get spanked by a lot of teams.

    there's a nice balance of power and creativism.

    we must find it. :up:
     
  11. jdang307

    jdang307 Season Ticket Holder Club Member

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    Pittsburgh, Tampa Bay, Baltimore. Smash mouth for their times.

    Picking out two catches in one drive of one game is going to far in my opinion. Smashmouth is what kept the game within reach. And funny you mention the Colts. They couldn't win the big one with that pass heavy offense. And when they finally did Peyton was horrible in the post season. 3 TDs and 7 Ints. addai and rhodes slaughtered KC. Their defense and running game got them into the Superbowl. In the SB, he played pretty well despite the weather, but there were many arguments that Dominic Rhodes should have won MVP.

    Nobody is saying lets do the running game Dave wannstedt style. How about smashmouth Dallas 2006 style (maybe a little more running though). Primarily running but also effective passing.
     
  12. Themole

    Themole Season Ticket Holder

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    I agree but, Our offense was only half productive in the Wanny days due to Jay Fiedler not being able to sustain drives by connecting on the critical third down conversions. I still shake my head when remembering those so very important third down passes going high and outside, either forcing us to attempt long field goals or punting. The smashmouth worked, the inconsistency at QB is what killed us.
     
  13. Themole

    Themole Season Ticket Holder

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    That's true, but they couldn't win 19 could they? History will prove to you that you win more games when your offense is balanced with the run and pass. I happen to be a believer that given you have a balanced attack, the percentages are in the favor of the team that can prosecute with the heaver dose of ground game because you can control the clock.

    Eli Manning, was a very fortunate QB not to have that game changing pass result in an Oskie.
     
  14. Trowa

    Trowa A world of pain

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    The running game is important to control the clock, wear down the defense and set up the passing game. But you can't run the ball every play. You have to have some sembelance of balance and you have to be able to make critical throws when they are required.
     
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  15. FinSane

    FinSane Cynical Dolphins Fan

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    When you have pass heavy offense, they tend to wear your own defense down because the have to be on the field so much. The Chiefs, Colts, and Rams usually had that problem. Thats also the downside of not having consistent play at qb when you have a power offense. There has to some balance in the offensive play, because when we had Wanny's power offense, we never streched the field. We didnt have the personell or the coaching will to do it, it led to our whole offense, Ricky Williams, to quit. We thought Saban was going to do it but he was never in it for the long haul, and we needed to reshape this team on both sides of the ball.

    Now with Tuna were building a power offense, but one that will be complete with a QB(Beck? Henne?) and some creativity. Dallas started to put up a lot of points and began to strech the field when they needed to. Parcells/Sparano/Henning arent going to the "wad ball" strategy of run,run,run,run,pass. When you look at Dallas' offenses, they found creative ways to score, its not going to up the middle all day all the time.
     
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  16. Straz

    Straz Me and my girl :)

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    I'm looking forward to some series smash-mouth football this year. I also think if we establish the run earlier in the year, then whoever our QB is will have a big year off the play-action pass.
     

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