I posted on the Patricia thread that we sucked last year because of our turnover ratio. I never thought that Austin got enough credit for what his short handed D was able to accomplish. And yes, we ran a vanilla O that was designed to simply keep us in the game and not make mistakes, and that contributed to fewer turnovers and all the comebacks. It was actually pretty smart, because it worked. Thinking that we were going to improve on 9-7 was a pipe dream, esp in year one of changing over to a D that we didn’t have the personnel to run and an O that had no depth. This… https://www.yahoo.com/sports/lions-focused-forcing-more-turnovers-2019-201913223--nfl.html
I share your appreciation for Austin. That could have been one of the best defenses ever had they given him Donald instead of wasting the pick on big mouth Ebron.
I liked Austin a lot too
I think the first year of Patricia was a throw away year, getting rid of players that didn’t buy in and getting players they think fit their mold was definitely giving them growing pains last year.
I thought the Lions rarely created turnovers and gave up too many TDs on defense. Improve on both those this year and they will be respectable.
It’s about cutting down on turnovers as much as it is creating turnovers. Stafford struggled mightily by not having NFL players at TE and losing Tate. He needs some real vanilla to start the season, hi percentage short yardage passes combined with an actual running game. Get the timing down, get in a rhythm and then you get to throw long. Caldwell was criticized for being too predictable on O, and I think that is/was legitimate. To what extent it would have changed Staffords turnover numbers to have opened up the playbook is impossible to tell, but not having a legitimate running game really made that challenging to impossible.
The problem is that “not having a run game” wasn’t exactly true. They opted to substitute short passes to backs for “rushes”. (25%+ of the pass yards in 2015 were to backs. THAT was your run game) This also helped the passer in that he was in shotgun an awful lot. Easier to scan the field if you’re not backing up. You also get a cleaner pre-snap read.
We took tiny backs and ran sparingly. We took OL that was good at pass pro.
A lot of what should have been run game got counted in the “passing game” stats. Without those stats (and cutting down INTs because they’re rare to non-existent throwing quick to a back behind the LOS), maybe Stafford doesn’t look so awesome.
I do not accept the “lack of run game” as an excuse as it created much more of a benefit than a burden to Matt Stafford.
Not saying at all it wasn’t a viable game plan, but don’t act like the thing that made him look great in the stat book was some kind of fatal blow to his game.
Short passes are in no way the same as running the ball. And I don’t act, I state facts.
A lateral (toss behind the passer) is scored in the stat book as a “run”. A “pass” could be 6 inches out in front of the passer and it’s a “pass”.
Is a 10 yard pass down field the same as a short pass behind the LOS?
Just curious what your OPINION is.
It isn’t my opinion unless or until they add your opinion as an actual stat. I’m not sure that you get how this works. Saying that a pass is actually a run is simply telling me that red is blue.
I agree - short passes are defended very differently than runs. We have not kept defenses honest at all with our “run” game. Also - having OL that are good at pass pro? Our OL weren’t good at anything. Our QB has been running for his live on an average play.
Run game with some play action passing should be fun to watch, provided the OL can give an okay showing most weeks.
They ARE defended differently. You can call a pass a run if it makes you feel better, but it doesn’t make it true.
That’s a long drawn out way of saying the oline couldn’t run block to save their lives!
LOL - Exactly, brother. This is my only concern for this year…OL. If Bevell can use this bunch to any level of competence, I think we’re looking at 10 wins and playoffs, this year.
I’m feeling pretty damn good about the rest of what’s going on.
I asked you if a 10 yard pass down field is the same as a short pass behind the LOS.
You didn’t answer that question. Could you answer it please?
Are long passes are defended differently than short passes?
How are defenses not kept honest by not running?
Are all pass plays the same?
All run plays the same?
There are usually gambles on D, in guessing what a team is going to do. We did nothing to keep a defense off balance, guessing, honest (whichever way you choose to word it). We were ultra-predictable with pre-snap reads, for the defense. Play action is a total waste of time and energy if you don’t have the OL or RBs to be successful in the first place. It impacts blitz packages, types of coverage, etc. Far less guessing when you play the Lions. Couple the lack of creativity with subpar OL, injured OL, Injured WR, and you’ve got yourself a highly predictable offense.
…or you can just blame the QB.
Not having a run game is one less thing they have to worry about. If you are going to stick with the idea that a short pass is the same as a run, i can’t change your mind. You get to think whatever you want. If you need more help with that, I’ll try to find some articles for you.
Is it essential to you to condescend?
We were in shotgun a lot. Why was that? What are all the possible reasons we did that?
Are you 100% sure that you’re attributing the success (failure) on the right problem?
We deliberately picked the RBs that we picked. Why did we opt for so many 5’9" 198lb backs with good hands instead of a bigger guy?
Might not it have been predictable because we almost never passed when snaps were taken under center? If I’m the defense and I see Stafford go under center, I expect a run. If we’re in shotgun, we either pass (most of the time) or we run a draw, where the pass rushers just grab the little guy on the way to Stafford.
You can play the greatest game on turf if you have the right throwers and catchers. But we had neither. Stafford is avg at best at touch and accuracy. Wrong fit for small ball. Linehan had him in the situation he was best in and he failed at it 2 years in a row (2012, 2013). Threw a sh-tpile of picks until Caldwell came in to “fix” him by taking away the long ball and giving him dinks to backs.
Hmmm, another post about actual stats with re to both D and O and you inject Stafford w/o addressing the actual merits of the article. You’re really boring…