Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Marisa and Rubi, a Tale of two Quarterbacks

Marisa "Cookie" Rivas
A recent posting to this blog profiled Marisa "Cookie" Rivas.  It was one of the most visited blog posts because  you like Marisa you like profiles.  

Let me know if I should do whatever it takes to profile more players and if so whom would you like me to feature.  Especially players who live near me in the Round Rock ares so it should be easy to schedule interviews.

Profiles give me one way to gain enormous respect for individuals who step outside of social norms, for women who play football.  Another way I gain respect is just watching them play. 

Rubi "Rae" Reyna
In a recent post I noticed stats that showed Rubi "Rae" Reyna is effective at quarterback and had some statistics to prove it.  Rubi has intrigued me because she strikes me as quiet, almost shy?, and petite.  She doesn't look like a football player.  Or she didn't until I started paying attention.  I have photos of her throwing the ball with authority.  I have photos of her running a pass route and receiving the ball. 

At Saturday's game with the Dallas Diamonds, I made a point of watching Rubi and Cookie.  And I came away impressed.  These are two quality athletes. 

TIn a separate post I'll talk a little about how difficult it is to get your offense in gear.   Offense requires coordination, timing, blocking, controlling opponents.  With a largley rookie team, offense is going to take time to develop. 

When the offense isn't scoring there are lots of reasons.  You try lots of things to see if you can fix it.  One thibng to try is switching quarterbacks.  Especially if you have the luxury of two good quarterbacks.  Especially if the one not playing quarterback can contribute at some other position.

In Saturday's game, Cookie got the nod and worked at quarterback.  Rae lined up in the backfield as running back.  How did that work?  Well, that's the point of this post.

Quarterback Cookie to quarterback Rae. 

First I was impressed by Rubi's play. She may seem to me physically petite but she plays big. As running back she took some abuse - that Dallas team was something else!  But she just kept on playing.

Having the football in your arm attracts attention.  Not
the kind of attention you want.  Rubi made a run for it
but it is hard to go fast with #47 hanging on to you.

This is the end of the above run.   Running backs take a lot of abuse in football games.
I was impressed at the way Rubi kept on jumping up and taking the game to the Diamonds.

I have a few shots like this one, Rubi making
certain the defense doesn't get to the punter.
She is close to a hold here but she has already
contained the defender long enough that the
kick is about in the air.
Rubi didn't back down, not once.  I was especially impressed by her punt blocking.  She lined up in the backfield to the punter's right and she wasn't about to let a defender get through.

She played some defense, too, and didn't hesitate to take on a much larger blocker.  Sometimes you aren't going to make the tackle but you can help your team by taking out the blocker.  I admired her grit when she threw herself into the blocker when it was obvious she couldn't get to the ball carrier. 

Rae takes on a much larger blocker.  Another Outlaw
tackler is coming up behind her.  If she can occupy the
blocker, her teammate may be able to make the tackle.

Meanwhile, Cookie was doing a pretty good job at Quarterback.  Against a really tough opponent.  Sometimes handing off is a whole lot better than keeping the ball.  And better to be hander than handee.  In spite of the best efforts of the line, sometimes tacklers get through. 

Handing off to  #34 Adriene Futrell.  Futrell had a pretty
good game.  But on this play?  Not so much.

Marisa passes left handed.  The key is to get rid of the ball quickly.  And appreciate  your blockers.  I've never fully understood how quarterbacks are able to find receivers when there is a wall of large lineladies in the way.

Cookie in the pocket looking for a receiver. 

Throwing the ball usually ends the quarterback's work on the play.  But sometimes a tackler
catches up just as you let the ball go.  That is a solid hit on Cookie. 
Lifted her right up off the ground. 

Cookie suffered a shoulder injury late in the game.  It wasn't on the play pictured here. 

Both Cookie and Rae are good athletes.  Both play hard with skill. 

The Outlaws' season is off to a rough start but don't worry.  This is a team of mostly rookies.  It takes time to get all the elements together.  With athletes like these two quarterbacks, the Outlaws will come together.  They will win some games. 

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