The only tackle in the league with zero holding
penalties. I think he graded out overall in the top 3 or
so at his position.
Had the niners won more than 4 games, Mac would
have been 1st team all pro.
on the same line is perhaps the biggest indictment of Kelly's tenure.
In the last 112 seasons, only nine teams had offensive linemen that lined up next to each other both named consensus first team All-American. It happened almost every year before that, because at that time All-American basically meant All-Ivy League. Those teams are:
1909 Yale (Unanimous national champions)
LT Henry Hobbs
LG Hamlin Andrus
C Carroll Cooney
1927 Yale (National champions by 1 of 11 selectors)
LG Bill Webster
C John Charlesworth
1934 Pitt (National champions by 1 of 14 selectors)
C George Shotwell
RG Chuck Hartwig
1943 Notre Dame (Unanimous national champions)
LT Jim White
LG Pat Filley
1944 Navy (Lost to #1 Army by 16 in #1 vs. #2 matchup to end season)
LT Don Whitmire
LG Ben Chase
1947 Notre Dame (Consensus national champions)
LT George Connor
LG Bill Fischer
1994 Nebraska (Consensus national champions)
RG Brenden Stai
RT Zach Wiegert
2012 Alabama (Consensus national champions)
LG Chance Warmack
C Barrett Jones
2017 Notre Dame (Lost to #2 Georgia by 1, #13 Miami by 33, and #20 Stanford by 18, #11 final ranking)
LT Mike McGlinchey
LG Quenton Nelson
7 of the 9 teams garnered at least partial national championship mention, the 8th played in a defacto national championship game, the 9th lost three games, two to teams outside the top 10, both by more than 17.
DC to scheme against them.
Inside zone, outside zone, zone read. Note no power plays, sweeps, counters, traps, etc. Our scheme somewhat neutralized our immense skills on the OL.
After a little film was out there, our opponents adjusted and turned
33 Trucking into 33 Sucking.
They do run a G play where the backside guard pulls and leads through the frontside hole. They also have a buck sweep type of play, which they like to run to the boundary I’ve noticed. I believe Dexter’s 97 yard TD run against Va Tech was the G play
That being said, I am extremely unimpressed with the run game. I believe, like many here, that Kelly doesn’t spend enough time on it in practice. I also agree with jt’s post below, that their formation and personnel groupings tip off what they are going to run and where.
you can only have a few plays but if you can run any of them from a variety of formations you can still be very successful.
if you tip what you're going to do via personnel and formation, you have almost no chance of prolonged success unless you have a clear personnel advantage, talent wise.
with Clemson's current roster or Alabama's current roster. I know he wouldn't beat it with any other team's.
Even if he recruited better than anyone ever has at Notre Dame, I don't think he'd get over the hump. I'd rather be done with him and take my chances with someone else than live with a perpetual ceiling at #5 and floor at who knows where. But I guess if the prevailing wisdom continues that it takes a decade or two to build a program, we're all just pissing into the wind anyway.
Kelly had historically great talent on the offensive line and his offense was still exploited. Fewer than 3 ypc for running backs against quality opponents (Miami, Stanford, LSU). Every quarterback that he has coached (with perhaps the exception of Rees) peaked towards the end of this first year and then slowly regressed.
Surely at some point you have to look at your scheme and realize that it doesn't work. Right?
these meddling kids keep screwing it up.
holy shit, that guy's tape was unbelievable. I recall a play against Georgia when he was in a slide pro to his left (so, B gap left side of the line) and Georgia brought a Pirate blitz from the right off the slot (DE and DT crash in, OLB rushes C gap, slot corner blitzes in B gap). If Nelson hadn't done anything, nobody would have blamed him; Georgia had the right defense called and our qb slid the protection the wrong way (GA probably had a scout that said that we like to slide away from our rb).
Instead, Nelson has his head on a swivel, sees the nickel blitz from the slot through B gap, and comes off and just crushes the dude and Wimbush gets the pass off. Holy shit, that is just impressive stuff. That is NFL all-pro type of stuff and he's completely changed the mentality there on the line in Indy.
Now, McGlinchey is a stud as well, don't get me wrong. He had a downfield block this year against the Raiders that only a freak of nature could do--basically led the rb 50 yards downfield. He had a great year, was a great pick, and hopefully will anchor that line for years to come. But Nelson is just a freak of nature once in a generation type of kid--like the Rocket Ismail of guards.
I've only seen it from behind the OL, never from this angle which shows the depth to where this blitz was coming from. This sort of play is unbelievable and even more impressive seeing it from this angle.
issue here to point out--based on that initial front, why the fuck are we sliding to the left? We have 2 DL on each side and a stand up guy outside the TE in a 90 technique to the right with a MLB in a 10 or even just a 0 with depth. This is obviously a right side heavy front, and your only worries back side pre snap are the 2 DL and the MLB whereas to the right side you have to worry about the MLB, 2 DL, and OLB; the safety then rotates last second and that gives you another guy to the right side.
This is the scheme stuff I was talking about during the game last week. There is no fucking reason to slide left here, unless you always slide away from the TE or away from the running back. And guess what? if you put that on film and teams notice it, they're going to design their scheme around the stupid shit you do and then you're going to get the recruitniks wondering why we can't pick up the blitz, we need to get better players, we don't have the speed of Georgia, Climpsun, Bama, $c, whoever.
This is just flat getting outcoached here, IMO. This is a clear 3 or 4 man slide right or a 5 man slide right with the rb picking up the stand up OLB (3 to the right side instead of 2 to the left) and if you had done this correctly your left guard doesn't need to be a hero. The back could help backside B gap and your tackle would be man-on (McGlinchey). You could also do a 3 man slide right and leave McGlinchey and Nelson man-on to the backside with the back helping backside A gap (or man on the MLB).
I mean, the only other reason to slide left is if you didn't trust your tackle in man pro but our left tackle is a freaking all american so you know that isn't the case.
Not only that, but we're sliding our protection to the boundary when we have trips to the field side! If that boundary corner blitzes, that is either the qb's read or the running back can pick him up late. Defenses can do so much from the field side in the high school and college game (NFL has tighter hash marks) that it is pretty much just stupid to slide pro to the boundary with your extra wr's field side. It's very easy to blitz the slot corner in trips, for example (basically this same blitz but with a corner coming and not a safety).
Just fucking stupid, IMO. Thank God our best player bailed us out.
I'm looking to be educated here, I don't see any noticeable shifting with the OL in their blocking.
and are responsible for that gap if anyone comes through it and they do not chase a man; that's why in the video the guy talks about Nelson "looking for a looper." The RT is responsible for #2 on the LOS (5 technique usually, but can be a 7 or a 9 depending) and the back is helping outside to inside (probably should be vice versa but he doesn't pick up the blitzing safety and either way he's fucked in this scenario).
That's a 4 man slide. In a 3 man slide, the center "turns" the protection and slides in a direction with half of the line (guard and tackle to the side he turns it to) and the other side of the ball is in man protection--guard has #1 man on the line of scrimmage, tackle has #2 and they follow them wherever (preferably working as a tandem to pass guys off if there's loops/stunts/whatever). In a 6 man protection the back will be responsible to either get # 3 LOS or the backer at depth, usually inside to outside first (in other words, if both guys go, he takes the guy with the shortest route to the qb). In a 5 man protection the back is hot if one of those guys blitz.
That's why the qb and center identify the MLB pre-snap. Depending on the protection called they're either sliding to or away from him and it lets the back know where to go.
to my amature eyes. Thanks for the tutorial.
and you can see it easily there, just watch the center.
...which is clear, concise, and very informative to a football layman like me. It also reinforces what I've been saying since the Cotton Bowl debacle: it is the coaching. No one criticizes the French soldiers at the battle of Waterloo--it was Napoleon's responsibility to design a strategy appropriate to the forces he commanded, to the forces he faced, to the geography, the weather, etc., and then to implement it soundly. Here is what Clausewitz said about Napoleon--it might sound familiar:
"Bonaparte and the authors who support him have always attempted to portray the great catastrophes that befell him as the result of chance. They seek to make their readers believe that through his great wisdom and extraordinary energy the whole project had already moved forward with the greatest confidence, that complete success was but a hair's breadth away, when treachery, accident, or even fate, as they sometimes call it, ruined everything. He and his supporters do not want to admit that huge mistakes, sheer recklessness, and, above all, overreaching ambition that exceeded all realistic possibilities, were the true causes."
What's your opinion on why the running game faltered? Various (not necessarily exclusive) explanations I've heard but don't have the knowledge to evaluate:
The offensive line was worn down due to small injuries or just poor conditioning.
Opposing coaches had enough film to "figure it out" and better plan for it.
We went away from some running plays that had been working.
We were just playing against better defenses.
there are a few things that might have caused this. I have embedded the video down below again for reference. Ok, that said--
First, let's look at the formation. Notre Dame is in 11 personnel with a "heavy trips to the right/field side with a spread wr to the boundary." The TE to the 3 wr side is what makes it a heavy call, but the back is also to the TE side which does 2 things at least. One, it makes that side truthfully a 4 wr side, as he can easily flare out to the side and be a "hot" receiver on a blitz. The fact that this is the field side also is an attempt to force the defense to defend the flood zone with the 4 eligible wr to that side. Two, it really negates the "heavy" side as the run strength because most gun teams don't like to just turn and hand it to the back on the same side he lines up on, they want him to come across the qb's face and build momentum side to side so he can then make his zone read and cut.
Basically, Notre Dame is telling Georgia that there is little threat of run with this formation. Granted, it's 3rd and 11 but in my opinion you're almost better off just emptying out if you're going to do this because you're making their protection reads so easy and your adjustments harder.
Georgia is in what I would call a true "even" nickel front with the Sam Over; a db is in for the WLB, the DL is in outside technique on both the guards and the tackles (to set up the one on one threat on both sides of the line), and a MLB is in a head up to slight shade on the center at depth with the Sam playing over the top in an outside shade on the TE. In truth, I suppose it could be a dime with a SS in there for the Sam, but I don't know there personnel so I will just call him a Sam and with where the Sam is playing, he can cover the rb on a flare or even the TE on a quick seam. They definitely have "numbers" to our right but we have them outflanked on any run play or even a quick circle route by the rb or a drag by the TE to the offensive left.
Georgia is absolutely giving us an inside handoff to the left on this play, betting that they can rally to the ball and stop us before we get 11 yards. They're also very heavy to the offensive right side, daring us to turn the protection that way (I'm recalling that their DE gave McGlinchey a hard time this game, so they might have been trying to make us think that they want to set up the 1 on 1 between those 2).
Ok, I could go on for days on that, but basically here's what the possibilities are that fucked up this call, IMO:
1) Wimbush fucked up his call and turned the line the wrong way. I tend to think that is very doubtful, as he is sliding his protection away from "numbers" and away from the field side is contrary to what he's likely been taught.
2) because the DE was their best pass rusher, we were trying to give Mike help by allowing the slide protection to go to his side so he can overset to take away the outside rush and have help back inside with Quenton in case there was a stunt with his man inside. I think that this was the more likely scenario
3) we always slide our protection one way or the other (away from the TE or back). While this is possible, I tend to doubt this as well given the personnel we're looking at as well as the fact that, if anything, we would slide protection to our "weaker" side (2 AA's on the left side of the line, 2 newer guys on the right).
Basically, I think Georgia baited us into a slide left in a cat and mouse game between their front and the one on one matchups (Kelly thinks that they're trying to set up the 1 on 1, but they can't fool him, he's smart! We'll slide that way anyway!). Instead of letting our stud LT try and handle that guy one on one and slide the protection right, we'll help him out and stay short handed on the numbers side because we don't think they'll really blitz there anyway. I think that we out think ourselves in this respect ALL THE TIME and it shows up on tape.
Here's what I humbly suggest would be a better option here and where the guys over on Final_Flanner and FOFM's board get all pissy and start complaining that it's not 1988 anymore. I would have had the qb hand it to the running back going right to left and I would have run inside zone to the left with the rb making his read on the MLB. I doubt that we would have made the first down, but it's 3rd and 11 anyway and a pass is low % as well. By taking the numbers, we at least give them something to think about.
Another option would have been to move the TE back off the line as more of an H and then motion him across the formation. This would have caused Georgia to tip man or zone coverage and it would allow our TE to chip on the DE before going into his route, if we were really worried about that. You could have also moved the back to the opposite side pre-snap, which would also cause a defensive adjustment. Basically, that SAM backer is what is causing the numbers issue and by motioning or moving him you can solve your numbers issue.
Truthfully, the OL is taught that whenever a guy blitzes from depth he is the qb's "man" and they aren't responsible for him, and I wholeheartedly agree with that. Wimbush needs to read that and move/create time until a route develops. However, this is a young qb in one of his first starts and that's an advanced move to make.
I think that we overthought this, I think that we tried too much to help an All American and there were other things we could have done here to help him more (namely, run it right at them), and I think that our protection scheme here was exposed. I would have almost preferred man across the board with the center getting depth and helping on a looper, letting the guard come off his man to take a blitzer if needed.
And for years to come
Might be two offensive guards from ND - Nelson and Martin.
As JT pointed out, he's changed the culture of a line that had been a disaster since Tarik Glenn retired.
Nelson is a relentless disruptive force. A goon. A bully. A lunatic. And, perhaps my favorite Colt ever.
but perhaps not as strong.
I saw Larry play when he was at Sonoma State; still one of the most impressive feats I've ever witnessed in person. Dude was blocking at least 2 guys at once on every play, and he would sometimes get 3 just by pushing the 2 guys he was blocking into the next level to wipe out a backer.