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Inqui

A few fairly detailed links about the Xs and Os of a Kubiak offence

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So we're all excited about what Gary Kubiak might be able to do with this Ravens offence. As I have a few days off, I thought I'd head around the internet and read what I can about how our new OC's been running his past offences. What I found may or may not be of interest.

 

First, a Russell Street Report take:

http://russellstreetreport.com/five-features-of-a-kubiak-offense/

A very quick and fairly basic read to help with a few unique concepts. Worth a nice little preliminary read.

 

Here's a Texans blog piece detailing how the West Coast Offence works:

http://www.battleredblog.com/2011/5/13/2166901/houston-texans-west-coast-offense-gary-kubiak-andre-johnson

A lot of people will know this stuff already, but there's still some interesting stuff.

 

Now we get to the more detailed stuff. Here's a piece on the "wide zone" take of the ZBS:

http://grantland.com/features/chris-brown-gary-kubiak-houston-texans-running-game/

Whenever someone next complains about the ZBS, they'd best have read that first. Covers every lineman, TE and WRs' responsibilities, and should give some insight as to how Kubiak can seemingly bring in guys off the street and help them make 1,000-yard rushing seasons. If you only read one thing today, read that article (and this thread, because, y'know, you're kinda here already....). This old NFL Playbook video brings that stuff to life.

 

And a piece on the passing game in a ZBS scheme:

http://www.rockytoptalk.com/2009/8/26/999603/the-passing-game-in-a-zone

Take this one with a pinch of salt as it relies on a different kind of ZBS and it's a college piece to boot.

 

And if you feel like some really detailed reads, here a couple of Kubiak's/Mike Shanahan's old playbooks.

2002 Broncos (ahead of a Colts match):

http://www.footballxos.com/download/offense/pro-offense/2002-Denver-Broncos-Mike-Shanahan.pdf

And the 2004 Broncos:

http://www.footballxos.com/download/offense/pro-offense/2004-Denver-Broncos-Offense-Mike-Shanahan.pdf

(Gets really interesting around page 10, and you can see a lot of these talked-about responsibilities brought up in the playbook itself)

 

As a final way to unwind, here's something from our own BR.com that you may have read already:

http://boards.baltimoreravens.com/topic/58305-news-first-impressions-of-gary-kubiaks-playbook/

The players obviously get paid to say good stuff, but if that doesn't get you excited for our new offence then I don't know what will.

 

------------

 

Feel free to disagree with these points or add any yourself, but I also thought I'd try to present some takeaways in the name of good discussion:

*This offence could make or break Joe. There's been a bit of discussion going around as to whether he can play the timing game, and we could find out soon enough. He might be relied on to accurately throw his guys open.

 

*On the other side of that, Ravens-specific wrinkles are going to cash in on Flacco's mobility and probably involve more deep balls. Better yet, we won't just see the deep balls on go routes every time we face a third and long, but the deep passes should actually be geared around taking the top off a defence once they fear the short-passing game. Imagine that! And with Joe's mobility as a factor, he could be looking more like a far more talented version of Russell Wilson.

 

*Juice is going to get some big air time. I can see Kubiak throwing him all around the formations and getting him to do all kinds of things. If he pans out, he could be a real x-factor that gives defences headaches. I'm not too sure we draft another TE unless we get a compelling reason to.

 

*The more I read about this, the more I feel we'll be drafting another WR. Steve Smith looks like a nice addition and Marlon should come along nicely, but I feel like we go for another routes guy who can help with blocking if needed. Building up depth looks like an important part of this offence to keep it clicking.

 

*I possibly am biased here (*ahem* possibly), but I really really like Odell Beckham for this stuff. LSU had him blocking downfield a lot, and he showed he was willing and able. He's also been used at length to pull two or three defenders away from the LOS. Plus he can be a deep threat so teams wouldn't be able to just watch Torrey or Jacoby. Think about having three or four WRs that can come on any time and be YAC threats on short balls or be just as lethal downfield.

 

*I think we go for an RB in the draft, but I think we wait until day three unless there's someone who fits the main criteria (good vision and decisive) but can also catch reliably. Not angry at you Ray, just disappointed.

 

*It'll be interesting to see how Castillo's ZBS meshes with Kubiak's. Castillo works a bit more laterally, although I suspect he'll still have an easier job adapting than he did to Caldwell and Moeller's philosophies.

 

I posted this pre-draft on purpose, so anyone can talk about draft strategies and personnel with this stuff in mind. And when the draft's over, this can get dredged up again to discuss player fit and generally keep the rest of the offseason ticking ove.r

 

Thanks for reading. I do apologise if you already knew most of this stuff and I effectively wasted your time, but a lot of the content at this level is fairly new to me and I found it fascinating and figured others may be interested in finding this stuff out too. Aside from the playbooks, every link I provided is very readable.

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Its never a waste of time posting good reading material even if its stuff people already knew. Its good to rehash your brain once in a while. Right now I'm on break but I'll read a couple of those articles soon enough. Taking those days off one week early. Lol.

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Its never a waste of time posting good reading material even if its stuff people already knew. Its good to rehash your brain once in a while. Right now I'm on break but I'll read a couple of those articles soon enough. Taking those days off one week early. Lol.

Cheers mate. Hope you enjoy them at least half as much as I did.

 

I'm pacing myself on that 04 Broncos playbook, but I'm finding it gripping now that I know all this other stuff. I think a really telling difference between what we're going to see and what we're used to in Cam's Air Coryell is the route tree. The Coryell tree had 9 variations to it, while this WCO one has anywhere between 22 and 42 depending on your position, and they all attack different points of different defensive levels.

 

We wanted creativity and flexibility, and we wanted to disguise our looks. Seems like Joe finally has a system that does all of that.

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Thanks for the post this will help a lot. I didn't read the ZBS stuff yet but I think Ebron, Cooks and Lee will all be perfect for this offense. I also haven't written off Jarvis Landry in round 3 for us.

I also want to see pick plays with Torrey and Steve Smith those can do some damage.

 

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Good thread and a good read. My take? Anxious, excited and nervous as hell to see this offense; new tools, new coaching, new scheme etc. Hope Flacco and Co. are up to the task!

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So we're all excited about what Gary Kubiak might be able to do with this Ravens offence. As I have a few days off, I thought I'd head around the internet and read what I can about how our new OC's been running his past offences. What I found may or may not be of interest.

First, a Russell Street Report take:

http://russellstreetreport.com/five-features-of-a-kubiak-offense/

A very quick and fairly basic read to help with a few unique concepts. Worth a nice little preliminary read.

Here's a Texans blog piece detailing how the West Coast Offence works:

http://www.battleredblog.com/2011/5/13/2166901/houston-texans-west-coast-offense-gary-kubiak-andre-johnson

A lot of people will know this stuff already, but there's still some interesting stuff.

Now we get to the more detailed stuff. Here's a piece on the "wide zone" take of the ZBS:

http://grantland.com/features/chris-brown-gary-kubiak-houston-texans-running-game/

Whenever someone next complains about the ZBS, they'd best have read that first. Covers every lineman, TE and WRs' responsibilities, and should give some insight as to how Kubiak can seemingly bring in guys off the street and help them make 1,000-yard rushing seasons. If you only read one thing today, read that article (and this thread, because, y'know, you're kinda here already....). This old NFL Playbook video brings that stuff to life.

And a piece on the passing game in a ZBS scheme:

http://www.rockytoptalk.com/2009/8/26/999603/the-passing-game-in-a-zone

Take this one with a pinch of salt as it relies on a different kind of ZBS and it's a college piece to boot.

And if you feel like some really detailed reads, here a couple of Kubiak's/Mike Shanahan's old playbooks.

2002 Broncos (ahead of a Colts match):

http://www.footballxos.com/download/offense/pro-offense/2002-Denver-Broncos-Mike-Shanahan.pdf

And the 2004 Broncos:

http://www.footballxos.com/download/offense/pro-offense/2004-Denver-Broncos-Offense-Mike-Shanahan.pdf

(Gets really interesting around page 10, and you can see a lot of these talked-about responsibilities brought up in the playbook itself)

As a final way to unwind, here's something from our own BR.com that you may have read already:

http://boards.baltimoreravens.com/topic/58305-news-first-impressions-of-gary-kubiaks-playbook/

The players obviously get paid to say good stuff, but if that doesn't get you excited for our new offence then I don't know what will.

------------

Feel free to disagree with these points or add any yourself, but I also thought I'd try to present some takeaways in the name of good discussion:

*This offence could make or break Joe. There's been a bit of discussion going around as to whether he can play the timing game, and we could find out soon enough. He might be relied on to accurately throw his guys open.

I agree, this could be a problem though for Flacco because he doesn't really lead his receivers really well. Most strong armed QBs struggle with this because they wait for their WR to come open, then gun it to get it in there. He has improved greatly in the last 2 years in this regard, but it will be interesting to see how the coaching staff helps him improve in this.

*On the other side of that, Ravens-specific wrinkles are going to cash in on Flacco's mobility and probably involve more deep balls. Better yet, we won't just see the deep balls on go routes every time we face a third and long, but the deep passes should actually be geared around taking the top off a defence once they fear the short-passing game. Imagine that! And with Joe's mobility as a factor, he could be looking more like a far more talented version of Russell Wilson.

*Juice is going to get some big air time. I can see Kubiak throwing him all around the formations and getting him to do all kinds of things. If he pans out, he could be a real x-factor that gives defences headaches. I'm not too sure we draft another TE unless we get a compelling reason to.

Yes, I think Juice is in for a huge role in this new offense. He is a mismatch for most LBs and if he can improve on his blocking, he could be a real weapon for us.

*The more I read about this, the more I feel we'll be drafting another WR. Steve Smith looks like a nice addition and Marlon should come along nicely, but I feel like we go for another routes guy who can help with blocking if needed. Building up depth looks like an important part of this offence to keep it clicking.

Agreed, we defiantly need another weapon outside in the passing game. We don't have very many, if any, guys on the outside that can beat press coverage consistently. I don't think everybody understands this. We can't just put anybody out there and expect him to win. With where we are picking this year, we have a realistic shot at a guy that could do that for us. I just hope we capitalize.

*I possibly am biased here (*ahem* possibly), but I really really like Odell Beckham for this stuff. LSU had him blocking downfield a lot, and he showed he was willing and able. He's also been used at length to pull two or three defenders away from the LOS. Plus he can be a deep threat so teams wouldn't be able to just watch Torrey or Jacoby. Think about having three or four WRs that can come on any time and be YAC threats on short balls or be just as lethal downfield.

*I think we go for an RB in the draft, but I think we wait until day three unless there's someone who fits the main criteria (good vision and decisive) but can also catch reliably. Not angry at you Ray, just disappointed.

*It'll be interesting to see how Castillo's ZBS meshes with Kubiak's. Castillo works a bit more laterally, although I suspect he'll still have an easier job adapting than he did to Caldwell and Moeller's philosophies.

Yeah, from what I have read, Castillo's ZBS differs greatly from Kubiac's. It kind of makes me wonder why Dennison isn't out Oline coach. I realize the QB coach aspect, but what's better for the team?

I posted this pre-draft on purpose, so anyone can talk about draft strategies and personnel with this stuff in mind. And when the draft's over, this can get dredged up again to discuss player fit and generally keep the rest of the offseason ticking ove.r

Thanks for reading. I do apologise if you already knew most of this stuff and I effectively wasted your time, but a lot of the content at this level is fairly new to me and I found it fascinating and figured others may be interested in finding this stuff out too. Aside from the playbooks, every link I provided is very readable.

All in all great read, and some great ideas. It will be very interesting to revisit this in a couple of weeks after the draft is over.
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I will check some of these out in a little bit (once I'm out of micro class), but I'm must say I love Marqise Lee for the west coast offense because he's so smooth in his routes and he's so good at working the middle of the field, but can also get deep. I also haven't seen anything that suggests he's a bad blocker. Cut blocks when he can't make a block to help his teammates and is willing to get up there and try to block. Could stand to add a little bulk, but he'd be my first choice

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Good thread and a good read. My take? Anxious, excited and nervous as hell to see this offense; new tools, new coaching, new scheme etc. Hope Flacco and Co. are up to the task!

I think I'm even more excited after reading through all this. The articles seem to emphasize a recurring theme -- the OL has to consist of guys who have high motors and never take plays off, as well as being technicians. Sounds like Monroe, Zuttah, Yanda and Wagner are the right kind of guys to have around for this scheme

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I think I'm even more excited after reading through all this. The articles seem to emphasize a recurring theme -- the OL has to consist of guys who have high motors and never take plays off, as well as being technicians. Sounds like Monroe, Zuttah, Yanda and Wagner are the right kind of guys to have around for this scheme

I sure as hell hope so. I cannot stomach another offensive output like last year. Across the board, everyone sucked!

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According to the home page, Kubiak's system is much simpler. Caldwell's was too complicated and it showed - everyone kept missing their assignments or running the wrong routes. Then the players said the formation flexibility in Kubiak's system will allow them to take advantage of mismatches, and I was like "What's a mismatch"?

It's going to be such a relief to finally have an OC who knows how to call a pro offense. 

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What I like about this new O is the one cut philosophy. No more jitterbugging and dancing or you gonna be having your OLine cussing you out. Another thing that I really haven't seen mentioned but I've noticed before with the Texans is we're gonna see a lot more motion instead of the statue O we've been witnessing lately. Better chance to free up receivers and recognize if they're in man or zone coverage.

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Good thread and a good read. My take? Anxious, excited and nervous as hell to see this offense; new tools, new coaching, new scheme etc. Hope Flacco and Co. are up to the task!

The way I see it, there's no reason they can't be up to it. This was the system that made the Texans a playoff team under Matt Schaub. We have a real QB and know how to win playoff games.

 

What I like about this new O is the one cut philosophy. No more jitterbugging and dancing or you gonna be having your OLine cussing you out. Another thing that I really haven't seen mentioned but I've noticed before with the Texans is we're gonna see a lot more motion instead of the statue O we've been witnessing lately. Better chance to free up receivers and recognize if they're in man or zone coverage.

It's all so beautifully simple, and puts a lot of pressure on the RBs to get into the habit of making the right reads. The RSR brought up the motions. It sounds like they tend to get receivers to shuffle around for the sake of it at times (although the recognition doesn't hurt either. Peyton's a master of this). Joe's going to have to improve his pre-snap reads too, but no reason he can't. Again, Matt Schaub looked good with all this.

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I think I'm even more excited after reading through all this. The articles seem to emphasize a recurring theme -- the OL has to consist of guys who have high motors and never take plays off, as well as being technicians. Sounds like Monroe, Zuttah, Yanda and Wagner are the right kind of guys to have around for this scheme

I'd say you're right, and I hadn't thought of Wagner being a great fit like that. Plus KO and Yanda can straight-up beat their guys, and I don't think work ethic's a question for either (I was actually thrilled we don't have McKinnie anymore as I was reading). There could well be a reason they haven't touched RT, but I really want to see what Ozzie has planned for the draft dammit! 

 

 

I agree, this could be a problem though for Flacco because he doesn't really lead his receivers really well. Most strong armed QBs struggle with this because they wait for their WR to come open, then gun it to get it in there. He has improved greatly in the last 2 years in this regard, but it will be interesting to see how the coaching staff helps him improve in this.

Yes, I think Juice is in for a huge role in this new offense. He is a mismatch for most LBs and if he can improve on his blocking, he could be a real weapon for us.

Agreed, we defiantly need another weapon outside in the passing game. We don't have very many, if any, guys on the outside that can beat press coverage consistently. I don't think everybody understands this. We can't just put anybody out there and expect him to win. With where we are picking this year, we have a realistic shot at a guy that could do that for us. I just hope we capitalize.

Yeah, from what I have read, Castillo's ZBS differs greatly from Kubiac's. It kind of makes me wonder why Dennison isn't out Oline coach. I realize the QB coach aspect, but what's better for the team?

All in all great read, and some great ideas. It will be very interesting to revisit this in a couple of weeks after the draft is over.

I agree about Flacco. He's going to have to take the bull by the horns and address three of his bigger weaknesses (throwing guys open, decision making and pre-snap reads). But if he can do that, he'll be closer to becoming the All-Pro guy we feel he can be.

 

But I think we need a guy who can play the short game really well in case he struggles with parts (especially the decision making). That Tennessee article went over several ways to compensate, and I wouldn't back Marlon and Torrey to consistently control the field and move the chains if Steve Smith went down. And like you say, we need someone who can break from press coverage. While the RB role gets reduced, the WR role increases and I suspect Texans fans were right to complain about their depth.

 

It's an interesting point about Dennison. I can't help but wonder if Castillo is part of a Ravens-centric wrinkle in some way. It's interesting to note the Andy Reid references through the WCO and ZBS articles. We'll have to see what happens.

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I sure as hell hope so. I cannot stomach another offensive output like last year. Across the board, everyone sucked!

I think we should all come to an agreement and simply refuse to ackowledge 2013 ever happened

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I think we should all come to an agreement and simply refuse to ackowledge 2013 ever happened

To make sure what never happened?

 

;)

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I see the site's just announced the pre-draft press conference for tomorrow. Be interesting to see what's said about offensive personnel - not a whole lot, I'm guessing. But still.

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I feel now and have always felt this was the perfect offense for Flacco and the rest of the guys. One of the things I love about bringing Kubes in is the fact that his system doesn't call for the oline to be individually great, but more about being great as a unit.

I agree about Flacco. He's going to have to take the bull by the horns and address three of his bigger weaknesses (throwing guys open, decision making and pre-snap reads). But if he can do that, he'll be closer to becoming the All-Pro guy we feel he can be.

 

But I think we need a guy who can play the short game really well in case he struggles with parts (especially the decision making). That Tennessee article went over several ways to compensate, and I wouldn't back Marlon and Torrey to consistently control the field and move the chains if Steve Smith went down. And like you say, we need someone who can break from press coverage. While the RB role gets reduced, the WR role increases and I suspect Texans fans were right to complain about their depth.

 

It's an interesting point about Dennison. I can't help but wonder if Castillo is part of a Ravens-centric wrinkle in some way. It's interesting to note the Andy Reid references through the WCO and ZBS articles. We'll have to see what happens.

I disagree with those being 3 of Flacco's biggest weaknesses, instead I'd say those are three areas that our previous system really restricted him from thriving. I don't really wanna do the compare thing and derail this thread, but I look at it the same way as a Drew Brees leaving a system that made him look like a talented 1st round pick who always showed the potential to turn the corner but never really did, to entering a system that allowed him to just take over and show what he really can do. I see the same with Joe in this system.

I was watching NFLTA and they were doing draft grades for the past 5 years in the AFCN. A comment was made how Ray Lewis made Ozzie's job of drafting defenders easier because Ray got the most out of guys. Well I see the samething with Kubes offense. I'm so excited to see how young guys like Juice, Marlon, Frustenberg, Mellette, Wagner and Peirce in year 3.

It's gonna be interesting to see how the o-line teaching comes together. I get the feeling Dennison will be spending a lot of time withthe oline and even with Castillo just fusing both of their systems together.

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Every QB has areas to improve in and as a fan (not knowing how much was Flacco or his OC), but my opinion would agreed with Inqui regarding pre-snap decisions and leading receivers. My third concern would be Flacco's accuracy on the short/intermediate passes which this scheme relies heavily on. Not doubting Flacco's ability but imo, he don't seem as comfortable throwing the short passes.

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The more I read up on this offense, the more I think Pierce will be featured. Is it just me or does Pierce made better reads than Rice? Decision making is crucial in this run offense. He's also a better north-south runner with a "dead leg" similar to Foster's.

...at least it felt like he was in 2012.

I actually bought a book awhile back with the exact piece the grantland link covered. Weird because I finally started reading it yesterday and there it was after I decided to pop in here!

Had no idea Alex Gibbs believed in running only two run plays. How many different run plays do you guys think we'll run?

Also looked at Rick Dennisons history last night and found out he was one of Gibb's protege's, so that's encouraging. Even though Rick is listed as QB coach, I think his primary focus will be helping Joe understand the blocking scheme. But this kinda scares me since everyone has to be in sync with each other and we have a bunch of new guys.

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The more I read up on this offense, the more I think Pierce will be featured. Is it just me or does Pierce made better reads than Rice? Decision making is crucial in this run offense. He's also a better north-south runner with a "dead leg" similar to Foster's.

...at least it felt like he was in 2012.

I actually bought a book awhile back with the exact piece the grantland link covered. Weird because I finally started reading it yesterday and there it was after I decided to pop in here!

Had no idea Alex Gibbs believed in running only two run plays. How many different run plays do you guys think we'll run?

Also looked at Rick Dennisons history last night and found out he was one of Gibb's protege's, so that's encouraging. Even though Rick is listed as QB coach, I think his primary focus will be helping Joe understand the blocking scheme. But this kinda scares me since everyone has to be in sync with each other and we have a bunch of new guys.

Most team that don't run option run around six. Dive, Power, Trap, Sweep, and Stretch. There are just a ton of variations. this offensive is tailor made for Pierce and definitely not a fit for Rice. I see Rice being the out of the orginazation after this year due to Pierce/Taliaferro's play.

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Most team that don't run option run around six. Dive, Power, Trap, Sweep, and Stretch. There are just a ton of variations. this offensive is tailor made for Pierce and definitely not a fit for Rice. I see Rice being the out of the orginazation after this year due to Pierce/Taliaferro's play.

 

I doubt it but we shall see.

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The more I read up on this offense, the more I think Pierce will be featured. Is it just me or does Pierce made better reads than Rice? Decision making is crucial in this run offense. He's also a better north-south runner with a "dead leg" similar to Foster's.

...at least it felt like he was in 2012.

I actually bought a book awhile back with the exact piece the grantland link covered. Weird because I finally started reading it yesterday and there it was after I decided to pop in here!

Had no idea Alex Gibbs believed in running only two run plays. How many different run plays do you guys think we'll run?

Also looked at Rick Dennisons history last night and found out he was one of Gibb's protege's, so that's encouraging. Even though Rick is listed as QB coach, I think his primary focus will be helping Joe understand the blocking scheme. But this kinda scares me since everyone has to be in sync with each other and we have a bunch of new guys.

If you wanted my honest opinion. 

 

If you take Pierce and you put him in this scheme and he actually manages to stay healthy... He'll be a pro bowler..... He's got skills and is a great athlete.......

 

Sadly, I'm not sure about the healthy thing

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If you wanted my honest opinion.

If you take Pierce and you put him in this scheme and he actually manages to stay healthy... He'll be a pro bowler..... He's got skills and is a great athlete.......

Sadly, I'm not sure about the healthy thing

Now give me your not so honest opinion lol.

I agree though. His durability is the biggest concern. I'm not sure how well Rice will fit at all. I haven't watched any on "LT" but I'm assuming his style is more like Pierce than Rice? I read he's good at pass protection which is great, but what else does he offer?

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Now give me your not so honest opinion lol.

I agree though. His durability is the biggest concern. I'm not sure how well Rice will fit at all. I haven't watched any on "LT" but I'm assuming his style is more like Pierce than Rice? I read he's good at pass protection which is great, but what else does he offer?

Lorenzo is a good receiver. That's about it...... I'm not impressed with him AT ALL.....Words cannot describe my hatred for that pick.

 

But yeah.. Sort of. He fits the scheme, so he could be decent here 

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Now give me your not so honest opinion lol.

I agree though. His durability is the biggest concern. I'm not sure how well Rice will fit at all. I haven't watched any on "LT" but I'm assuming his style is more like Pierce than Rice? I read he's good at pass protection which is great, but what else does he offer?

He's better at pass protection and catching. He's not going to rip off massive gains with his speed, but he's faster than he looks imo. His vision isn't as flash, but he's plenty decisive and doesn't mess around making a decision - even if he makes the wrong one. No reason he can't become an Arian Foster meets Bernard Pierce imo (assuming his hands heal up in time).

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I doubt it but we shall see.

With his price tag plus perfromance, I doubt he stays.

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With his price tag plus perfromance, I doubt he stays.

He will cost us money to cut next year as well unless we do post June 1st. My guess is we cut him in 2016 when we save a cool 3 mil by doing so

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He will cost us money to cut next year as well unless we do post June 1st. My guess is we cut him in 2016 when we save a cool 3 mil by doing so

ok then, your probably right. i hadn't looked up the cost of cutting him

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With his price tag plus perfromance, I doubt he stays.

 

Regular season hasn't started yet and I expect Ray Rice to have a  great year this year. So I doubt he doesn't leave but we shall see.

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