Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Line Play - Messy

In one of the NFL games this weekend an offensive lineman was injured and pulled from the game.  That dramatically changed things.  They brought in a sub who had to play the opposite side of the line.  The first stringer on that side had to shift to injured player's slot.  The loss of that lineman affected the play for the rest of the game.  (I don't remember which game.  There are so many - isn't it great!)

The line is under-appreciated but critically important to team success. 

Did you see the Lions vs Bears Monday night?  Bear's QB Cutler was under constant assault because the Bears O-Line just couldn't stop the Lions defense.  I've thought Cutler isn't very good but he showed me a lot salvaging plays without much help from his line.

One on one.  A battle.
 I played in the line and so I'm biased.  Runners and QBs get all the glory and the line does all the work.  So today's posting is just about playing in the line.  

It is brutal on the line.  Play after play, individual battles, strength against strength.

Street fighting - hands to face illegal but you do what
you have to do.  In the mass of people the ref doesn't
always see the little deviations from the rules.

Is that a punch going on there in the middle?  Line play is a fight,
sometimes literally. 

These battle in the line protect the QB and running backs. 

I love this shot because the Outlaws defense is beating the Houston offense.  The ball is gone,
already passed from Houston center to QB.  Every Austin player is launched.  The Houston
players are still thinking about what to do.  A couple sub-points here:  The offense knows the
count so has an advantage of knowing when the ball will be snapped - and still they're getting beat.
Second, a big key in football is speed, quickness.  See previous posting where we talked about
having three seconds from the time the QB gets the ball to pass or hand off.  The Outlaws in
this photo are trying to cut that to two seconds.

No comments: