Monday, October 8, 2012

Tara Andrickson, Defensive Player of the Year

Visit the Outlaws website and you'll learn things about the team. 

Tara Andrickson.
She doesn't look fearsome, does
she?  But there's an aura about her.
I keep my distance.  (This photo
was shot with my telephoto lens
from a safe distance.)
I learned Tara Andrickson was named defensive player of the 2012 season.  I wondered if I have any good shots of Tara in action.  And I found a few.  Quite a few.  So I figured she might make a good subject for a blog posting.  Or two postings.  I have more photos than fit reasonably in one post so I'm going to do two. 

This isn't one of my player profiles.  I've never met Tara.  Seen her on the field a lot but we've never talked.  I've told you I'm kinda shy.  I didn't even know her name until I saw the photo on the Outlaws website. 

So I've been quietly hanging around shooting action photos, some of which were Tara. I do find her interesting.  She might make a good subject for a player profile.  If you see her, ask her if she'd be willing to talk with me.  I'd ask her myself but I'm shy. 

Tara is #33 and generally lines up on the right side of the defensive line.  She's not small but not among the bigger players in the league.  So she often is facing blockers who have a substantial weight advantage.

Tara often lined up against blockers who were
much bigger than she.
In spite of the size differential, she manages to elude the blockers.  And sometimes opponents resort to breaking the rules to keep her away from the running back.  Like holding.  (Note a previous post about breaking the rules sometimes being a good idea.)
Yes, holding is illegal.  Wonder if the official saw
the foul.  Difficult to catch the runner when you're being held.
Another technique other teams use to keep Tara away from the ball carrier is doubling up.  Two blockers versus one Tara. 
Doubling up on Tara.  Makes it tough to get into the backfield.
A lot of gray jerseys between Tara and the quarterback.

Fighting off two blockers.  When two are blocking Tara, another Outlaw may go unblocked.
Unlike holding, ganging up is perfectly legal.  But when two blockers are required to contain one defender that means there may be another defender who isn't being blocked at all.

In spite of the best efforts by opponents, Tara managed to elude the blockers and avoid being held.  All she had to do then was catch the runner. 


A big challenge for a line player to chase down a
fleet-footed running back. 

And sometimes she caught the runner.  In fact, she caught enough runners to make her one of the leading tacklers on the Outlaws team.
Gotcha!  Gonna take the ball while I take
you down.
Somehow the runner managed to hang onto the ball.  But she definitely is on the ground. 
See why Tara intimidates me?
I have a few more shots of Tara.  I'll post them in a few days. 


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