Sunday, January 19, 2014

Grantland: Who's laughing now?

Smart Football  author Chris Brown writes about Pete Carroll's 4-3 Under defense.

Hit the jump for a Barbie-looking girl.

Valeria Lukyanova


  1. I dunno, I think he's been laughing the whole time, mostly because he's a dbag. Building your season on as much pass interference as you can get away with, to me, is about as brilliant as the saints defense injuring players out of games on purpose. Its effective, but only for a little while, and in no way commendable.

    1. I'm not a great fan of Pete Carroll, but with regards to the pass interference thing, we used to tell our basketball kids, 'If the whistle don't blow, it ain't a foul.

      If a flag don't hit the ground .....

      This is Professional Football we're talking about here. As Al Davis so elegantly put it, "Just Win Baby!"

  2. Wonderful article! I like how Chris Brown explains things.

    I'm still not 100% clear on what exactly an offense's "strong side" is. I thought it was the side with the TE, but it's possible to have two TEs so I'm still a little hazy on all that. Anyone have a good explanation of that?

    1. Yeah, Chris Brown is the best. Among Thunder's better services around here is scouting Chris Brown for us, so we don't have too.

      A month or so ago, somebody around here talking about Rich Rod's, but really Jeff
      Casteel's 3/3 defense, offered that all defenses attack gaps, which is not the case. Chris Brown and Tony Dungy explain it better than I could.

      "The need to choose between one-gapping and two-gapping arises, according to Dungy, “because of simple math: You have eight gaps to fill and you only have seven front players.” A one-gap technique is much like it sounds: Each defender is responsible for attacking and controlling his assigned gap. By contrast, a two-gapping defender is responsible for the gaps on either side of the lineman across from him. How? He controls both gaps by controlling the blocker in between. A one-gapper attacks gaps, while a two-gapper attacks people."

      As an aside, Saint Bo was a hard core one gapper.

      And yeah, I wouldn't mind a conversation about what exactly defines the strong side either.

    2. And if I understand, it's possible to have a mix of one-gap and two-gap ... I think Chris Brown's "Smart Football" had a section on how Wilfork of the Patriots played two-gap while everyone else was one gap. Wilfork is so good he can play two-gap NT really effectively.

    3. From

      "The side of an offensive formation that has more players at the line of scrimmage. This usually refers to the side that the tight end is lined up on, but it can refer to a number of different alignments."

      Well, that makes some sense. The most ambiguous would be the "two tight ends and a balanced line" formation that Ufer used to talk about. Put the QB under the center, with a FB and TB behind that and that makes 10, all in a symmetrical, balanced formation. The 11th guy -- Anthony Carter -- lines up *somewhere* ... and that becomes the strong side.

      WDE and SDE must not have had as much meaning back then.

    4. My high school team (in the days of leather helmets) talked about Wide Side and Short Side. We'd flip our "monster" and occasionally outside linebackers and rotate toward the wide side.