Friday, April 2, 2010

Cut Back Adjustment On The Zone Read - Michigan Spread Offense

I've always enjoyed breaking down Rich Rodriguez's spread offense, especially in the run game. I truly feel Michigan is on the brink of turning it around, and even in 2009 it wasn't the offense that let down the team as much as the defense.

I found two videos below showing a variation of the zone read run concept that really makes it difficult to defend Coach Rod's zone read.

In this first video in a 2009 game versus Penn State, you'll see the traditional zone read play to the tight end side of the formation, which is actually the weak side of the offense, opposite trips.

Penn State's defense looks they're in a classic Ron Vanderlinden Stack Cover 3 defense versus the trips formation.

Now in this play, Michigan is in the same offensive formation as above (and Penn State is in the same defensive alignment), but watch the difference in the zone read play.

Look at the right tackle on the offensive line, instead of zone blocking and trying to cut off the defensive linemen like in the first zone read play above, he blocks out or 'fans' the defensive end to set up the nice cut back run by the tailback. What's great is not only the cut back by the tailback, but the concept that the QB still needs to be respected by the Eagle linebacker (which is what Penn State calls him... he's really the Sam, #11), keeping him on the perimeter and hesitant to squeeze down hard on the tailback, honoring the QB read keep that the traditional zone read presents.

Keep spreading e'm!