do the bears need this mindset? The coach that never punts..

Discussion in 'Chicago Bears' started by beardownboilerup, Nov 14, 2013.

  1. beardownboilerup

    beardownboilerup Rookie

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  2. Henry Burris

    Henry Burris Head Coach

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    "Fourth and long"
  3. billatter

    billatter Veteran

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    Interesting story and statistically it makes sense.

    This actually been tried at the pro level years ago. Going back quite aways, the CFL used to use a two game, total point playoff format. Occasionally a team would rack up a lopsided win in the first game, so at the start of the second game, the team on the wrong side of the first game score was in a big hole. That team would use a no punt and onside kick approach to try and get a couple of quick scores to even things up. Don't recall it ever being successful. However, that was a desperation situation and not an offensive philosophy.

    The CFL tends to be a less conservative, higher risk taking, more gunslinger minded league, nevertheless the herd mentality regarding punting can drive me nuts. Some of the CFL stadiums are open at the ends so the wind can be a huge factor. Teams punt into the wind rather than go for it on third down if they are more than a yard away from a first down. Imagine the punt goes only 20 yards beyond the LoS. If the returner catches the ball in the air and he is crowded by the cover team the kicking team earns a 15 yard "No Yards" penalty. So the punt netted them 5 yards. This penalty is very common on short punts as the ball comes down in the middle of the cover team and they can't get out of the way in time. DUH! Go for it on third down against a strong wind. If you fail to make it, so what has been lost?

    So I suppose my point is: if the less conservative CFL coaches can't seem to get this through their skulls what's the chance it'll catch on elsewhere?
  4. Wolfman

    Wolfman Assistant Head Coach

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    Our HS football coach is rarely punt guy....they go for it on 4th down a lot....3 state championship in 4 years....working on their 4th....
  5. Jimmors

    Jimmors The Rhymenoceros Staff Member SuperFan

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    Problem is, the NFL is a different beast entirely. Defenses are bigger/faster, and coaches are smarter. On 4th and 1, sure, it does not take much to get enough of a push to convert, but if they know you are always going for it, most coaches will adapt, and start stacking the line. If you are playing crappy D's then you can convert most perhaps, but mediocre to good D's will stop you dead in your tracks.

    If its 4th and more then 1, now you have problems, since you will have to be creative or pass. And the fact that you are in 4th down territory to begin with demonstrates that you havent been successful on your previous 3 downs, so there is no guarantee you will be on 4th.

    And then there is the Field Position to think of. Football is a game of inches, and most NFL games are decided by a TD or less, so failing to convert on 4th downs and setting up the opposition with good FP is going to kill your chances of winning the game.
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  6. The Benjamin

    The Benjamin George Halas Staff Member

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    I went back to my HS to watch a game recently.... my friends and I had nothing else to do, plus they were playing the in city rival.

    Our school's team barely even passed the ball, full runs and QB sneaks just about the whole game, and never really punted. It seems common in HS.

    But no, the Bears should not do this.

    Fans went batshit crazy with Trestman not taking the points and failing to get the 1st. If he did it every 4th down, teams would get the idea they always do and learn how to stop them. The best they would be able to do would be may 75% conversion... maybe better. But every time they failed, fans would once again bitch and moan about him going for it on 4th.
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  7. Jimmors

    Jimmors The Rhymenoceros Staff Member SuperFan

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    Of course its common in HS, teens don't have the arm strength of 20 somethings, and defenses are not all that big (compared to college and Pros), so running is much more effective.

    And in college, Defenses are still slower than in the pros. This is the exact reason why the Spread Option is very popular in college ranks, but not used in the NFL. Running against a pro defense is very difficult compared to college. Sure, you might get your occasional athletic QB that scrambles alot for decent yards, but they are nowhere near as effective as they were in college, and they dont last nearly as long (one of the downsides to Spread Options is that your QB gets hit. A LOT. So, in the NFL that means higher likelihood of injuries).
  8. The Benjamin

    The Benjamin George Halas Staff Member

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    True. But the other team was passing almost all game. And punting and missing Field Goals :D
  9. billatter

    billatter Veteran

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    Which is exactly the problem. One fail and the fans plus media will be all over the coach like flies on shit, which is why they play safe.

    What Jimmors said would be true if the coaches in the NFL played going for it on 4th down conventionally. Stack the box and go brute force against brute force and ya, it'll usually end badly for the offence. Well there's alternatives to that if you have the cojones to pass on 4th and short, because then it becomes just another down. The D can't stack the box otherwise they get burned big time. Play action, draws, QB draws, rollouts, option, read/option, hitches, screens, etc. will burn any D for big yardage if they're unimaginative in this situation. I've seen it done, but it takes big time cojones to do it.

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