You guys know that I love to break down the X’s and O’s of the games. But, unfortunately words can only say so much. Today’s technology is awesome, though, and thru the magic of television, Vines and blogs, I can show you what I see when I watch the Alabama film! I hope you enjoy this – we hope to add this to our repertoire going forward as this is a wonderful medium to break down plays. This is basically a data dump to see if I can make this technology work for you guys – in the future we’ll just post a couple of Vines per article. Anyway, enjoy! And, if you enjoy this piece, feel free to follow me on Twitter @lneck25!
Alabama on Offense
We start our review with three horrific plays in a row for Dominick Jackson against the Blue Raiders of Middle Tennessee. The first play shows Jackson getting beaten like a rented mule. At the right side of the screen, Jackson was beaten so bad that fullback Michael Nysewander couldn’t help him and Henry ended up being stunned at this development. Take a look at the right side of the line. Jackson is #76.
On the very next play, Jackson commits the cardinal sin of giving up the inside rush, forcing QB Jake Coker out of the pocket. I call this the Blue Bayou block (blew by you).
We now show you the third consecutive play against the Blue Raiders and there’s a LOT going on in this play. First, the only thing missing from the poor play of Jackson is binding the Raiders’ hands and feet as he grabs his man and wrestles him to the ground. In the rodeo, that’s a takedown. In football, that’s holding. But, also watch Derrick Henry (#2) as he destroys the blitzing linebacker. And, finally, appreciate Jake Coker’ ability to climb in the pocket and get the throw off. He never panicked.
Next, we want to show you that sometimes it’s just not the quarterback’s fault. On 4th & 5, Alabama goes for it against Middle Tennessee. At the top of Coker’s drop, around the 48 yard line, you’ll see that he wants to throw the ball to #88, OJ Howard. At the snap, watch the two white jerseys across from Howard – they will blitz, leaving #88 wide open at the yellow line. Instead of recognizing the blitz, Howard continues loping down the field, oblivious to the fact that he is the hot receiver and he needs to turn around at the sticks.
I love me some Calvin Ridley. Check out the hands and then the awareness to burst up field and convert this third down pass against the Badgers.
Lastly on offense, this play was completely missed by everyone watching the Wisconsin game. You’ll probably remember seeing Cam Robinson block his man 30 yards down field, right? Well, on the very same play, at the top of the screen check out the block that Robert Foster (#8) made. BOOM!
Alabama on Defense
Here are a few goodies for you on defense. First, we start with a vicious special teams hit by #34, Damien Harris. Hello!
Alabama is using three-man fronts much more against the spread offenses instead of the classic 4-2 look that they’ve utilized in the past. Here’s a look at the Tide getting gashed in the 4 man front but then stuffing the run in the three-man front. Look for a lot of 3 man fronts today against Ole Miss as Bama will want to put a big beastie across the nose from the Ole Miss center.
Lastly, we are so impressed with Reuben Foster’s ability in pass coverage this season. We know Foster is a head hunter but he’s also a very instinctive player, as well. Check him out (#10 at the top of the screen) as he flows from left to right and nearly picks off a pass.
That’s it for this week – we’ll make more use of this technology in the coming weeks!