Dunk Dials In

Some excellent work by Justin Dunk analyzing a few key plays from the last couple games. Really good breakdown and terminology. Justin, who was a Ticat.ca beat writer & now a CFL.ca contributor, is fast becoming one of the good ones to read.

First ... Last week ... http://www.cfl.ca/article/dunk-a-famili ... steel-town

Dunk Dials In

It has been well documented the challenges the Ticats have had stopping the run through five weeks of the CFL season. Last week, RB Korey Sheets ecplipsed the 100-plus-yard mark. So let’s dial in and breakdown a couple of Sheets’ carries from Week 5.

In the second quarter with just over 5 minutes remaining before halftime, Riders down 17-12 and driving, the Green and White turned to their potent rushing attack. Saskatchewan lined up with an extra offensive lineman at tight end to the right, number 77 Dan Clark, with quarterback Drew Willy in shotgun and Sheets directly behind him in pistol formation. At the snap of the football Hamilton has eight defenders in the box, which Saskatchewan matches when receiver Chris Getzlaf motions in late. That gives the Riders a numbers advantage, with an even eight blockers for eight Ticat defenders.

However, it could have been Hamilton outmanning Saskatchewan at the point of attack. When Getzlaf came back into the box, Raymond Brown, the defensive back responsible for Getzlaf in coverage – remember we don’t know the exact defensive assignments – likely was supposed to ‘add in’. In other words, Brown should have added himself into the box when he saw Getzlaf motion in to block.

Instead Brown stayed out in no man’s land, which proved costly for Hamilton. Saskatchewan dialed up a zone running play to the right. The Riders offensive line did a near perfect job using their zone rules to get a body on a body, chip and climb to the second level. Getzlaf kicked out the contain defender and because Brown didn’t fill the run gap after Getzlaf motioned in to block, Sheets ripped off a 20-yard run and wasn’t touched until he was brought down. A simple fill by Brown could have limited the run to a short gain.

Now, the very next play. Saskatchewan lines up in a double tight end set with no receiver lined up on the weak or short side. Brown makes the right decision this time and adds into the box, covering up the tight end with no receiver to cover on his side of the field. Thanks to Brown bringing himself into the box, Hamilton has the numbers advantage, eights defenders to seven Rider blockers.

Once again Saskatchewan calls a zone running play to the right and short side of the field. Hamilton gets a free defender to the football based on simple numbers. It’s strong side linebacker Brandon Isaac, who’s forced to chase the play down from behind. If Sheets had turned back inside Isaac could have stopped him for a short gain.

Instead Brown, a defensive back trying to take on and shed an offensive lineman, can’t keep contain on the short side. Sheets easily saw that Brown had been sealed and kicks it outside for a gain of 17 before stepping out of bounds, untouched. On the ensuing play, the Riders scored a touchdown to take the lead for good.

And from the week before ... http://www.cfl.ca/article/dunk-isaac-br ... e-of-words
Dunk Dials In

In the front end of the Ticats and Riders home-and-home set, a 37-0 shutout win for Saskatchewan, the game was changed on a pair of Rob Bagg touchdown catches that were allowed way too easily by the Ticats defence.

It was 6-0 Riders in the second quarter with about four minutes left in the half. Darian Durant set up in shotgun, running back Korey Sheets in the backfield with him, three receivers strong and two weak.

Hamilton lined up in a clear cover one look, meaning each defensive back was locked up in man coverage with the safety, Courtney Stephen, free to provide help over the top. The Ticats sent six rushers against six Rider blockers and actually got a man free thanks to a well-executed slant to the strong side. Markeith Knowlton was the unblocked rusher, but Durant had the ball gone about three steps before Knowlton could have hit and sacked him.

As Durant was executing his slide drop, Bagg, the strong side wide out on the play, executed a precise go, fade or nine route (whichever you prefer). Number 6 for the Riders closed the gap between himself and Terrance Parks off the line of scrimmage before getting a free release outside. Parks never laid a hand on Bagg and he was unable to squeeze down the route against the sideline, and it was pretty much over from there. Bagg flew past a flat-footed Parks, worked to get back on the numbers and made a nice catch for a 28-yard score.

Remember how Knowlton was about three steps away from hitting Durant? If Parks had been able to get even a decent jam on Bagg to disrupt his pattern, Durant might have been forced to hold on to the football resulting in a Ticats sack. Or, at the very least, Durant would have had to come off Bag to his next read. Just one example of how missing little fundamentals can result in a big play for the opposition.

Jump to the fourth quarter 23-0 for the Riders with around 13 minutes on the clock. Saskatchewan lines up in the exact same formation as on Bagg’s first touchdown. A ‘3 by 2’ set with Durant in shotgun and Sheets the lone back in the backfield.

The Ticats again show cover one in the secondary. Durant was given lots of time in the pocket. Meanwhile, on the outside again was Bagg lined up on the right hand side of the field across from Matt Bucknor this time around. Bucknor was able to get a hand on Bagg, but the Riders pass catcher did a great job of fighting off the contact, releasing outside, climbing back onto the numbers and at the same time stacking on top of Bucknor to give Durant plenty of room to fit the ball in.

The Riders quarterback let go a beautiful ball and hit Bagg perfectly in stride for a 60-yard touchdown, his second of the game, both on the exact same route.

“We just got beat deep, period,? Steinauer said. “You turn the film on and we didn’t cover. There is nothing more that needs to be said about that.?

Each scoring catch from Bagg was allowed far too easily. In the back end of the home-and-home set, the Ticats must be more physical with the Riders receivers, especially Bagg, near the line of scrimmage.

Great stuff, Fender, thanks for sharing. I especially liked the analysis of the Cats not "adding in" to the box once Getzlaf came in to protect. Run defense is tricky. It can seem like a team just can't stop the run when in reality it's a question of details and split-second choices. One defender's failure to "add in" lets Sheets bust a big gain. And with that SSK O-line run-blocking like mofos for Sheets, you have to be assignment-sharp on run defense or they will make you pay, again and again.