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Nolan Give His Take On How To Make A Hybrid Defense Work


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So now that we know that Lofton is moving on before I knew that I was searching for hints anything I could find that Nolan may have said in the past or present as to what he did with other defenses that he may have in mind for ours and I found a bunch of articles of questions that were emailed to him during his time as the SF HC by fans. I believe that he is getting ready to do that here soon because Jay Adams tweeted for us to ask Nolan questions and Nolan will answer them on whatever questions that we may have. Anyway I found these articles and one in particular is giving Nolan's take on how he feels a Hybrid has to be in order for it to work.

I think that you all will find this interesting for those looking to see a Hybrid defense as I know I would.

X's and O's with Nolan: Hybrid D Topic List < Prev Topic | Next Topic >

Reply < Prev Message | Next Message >

September 04, 2008

Head coach Mike Nolan is back with his latest round of X's and O's.

Find out his answers below, and be sure to send in your questions for

consideration.

Q: Hey Coach, the Niners are built to run a 3-4 defense, but you will

often switch up to a 4-3 to suit your personnel needs. From a play

calling and X's and O's standpoint, are there any advantages to

running this type of hybrid defense? Can it open up any new doors in

the playbook? -Chris Penoyer

A: If you use the 3-4 as your base defense you can switch to a 4-3.

If you are just a 4-3, then it is harder to go to the 3-4. We are a

blend of both. We were 50-50 last year. Our defense is based on the

talent we have and what our players' capabilities are. The purpose is

to utilize our best players and match up against opponents' players,

and that I feel assists us in making plays.

So, whatever our players allow us to do determines what style of

defense we play. Opponents will look at us and say we are a 3-4 and

some will say we are a 4-3. To be honest with you they're both right

and wrong. You could say it's a hybrid 3-4 defense. That would

probably be the most accurate way to say it. A team that is similar

would be New England. Other teams play the 3-4, but they aren't quite

as hybrid. They do a lot of things within it, like Pittsburgh does a

lot of blitzing, but it's a 3-4 most all of the time, it's never

assumed that it's 4-3.

Q: We have not seen a quarterback sneak for a while now. Of course I

am no head coach, but I feel it is valuable on short yardage

situations. Has the offense under Mike Martz practiced one (a

quarterback sneak) at all? -Richard "Chris" Mondragon, Sr

A: Our goal-line and short-yardage situations are an area that needed

to improve, and we have added some wrinkles and schemes that I think

will help. Certainly Mike Martz is prepared for those situations. The

quarterback sneak is like every other play you have and it must match

with two things 1.) The situation and 2.) Is the player able to do

it? Some players are better suited than others.

Q: Hey Coach, I just wanted to say first of all I'm very pleased with

what you have accomplished with our team and I'm very optimistic

about this season. My question is about the other OLB on the other

side of Manny, who's going to be our starter? Tully Banta-Cain had a

great pre-season and Parys Haralson seems nicked. And how about

Dashon Goldson at free safety? He's exciting and seems to cover more

ground than Mark Roman.

-Thanks, T.A.

A: If we are in a 3-4 then Parys Haralson will be the starter. He

entered the lineup last year when Manny Lawson went down and did

well. He is a tough guy, and like Manny he converted from a college

defensive end to a linebacker in the NFL. Tully has pass rush

ability. I hope after adjusting to our defense last year as well as

his first year as a starter that Tully will continue to get better

and showcase his pass rushing skills. To be fair to him, he was

battling through an ankle injury that plagued him for much of the

year. Dashon had a great camp. Mark Roman will continue to start at

free safety, but Dashon will be involved in our nickel and dime

packages. He started to get involved midway last season and showed he

can play at this level.

Q: I was wondering why coaches in the NFL, particularly offensive

coaches, do not do a better job of tailoring their systems to suit

the talents of the better players on the team? I know that to a

certain extent this is done (and that during your time with the

49ers, you have done this on defense) but I would like to understand

why it is not done more prominently? What are your thoughts? -Thanks.

Roger, Montreal, Canada

A: That does occur. In fact, Mike Martz on several occasions has said

that the players on the field will take you where you go. It's always

about tailoring a system to the personnel. That's what I like about

Mike Martz's offense. It allows you to move in the direction of the

strength of the personnel, whether it's in the running game or the

passing game, or the tight ends, backs or with a particular receiver.

It's not a rigid system where you're looking for a type of player at

any position. It allows you to look at the type of players that you

have and get them in the situation where they can take advantage of

it.

Q: Coach,Dominique Zeigler made amazing catches in camp, why was he

let go? Also, why was Thomas Clayton let go? Clayton showed he has

the burst speed the strength and a little awareness that with some

work can be a great back to have on the roster, why not him?-Epyon

Peacecraft

A: Obviously, we have an offense, defense and special teams that we

have to consider with our 53-man roster, and not just the receiver

position. So, it really comes down to how many of them we feel we

need to have the best team and who makes up the best team. Like I

said, if we had six or seven receivers or six or seven running backs

that made up the best 53, we'd have six or seven receivers and

running backs. Dominique was on our practice squad last year and did

well in practice. He had a chance to be with us during the entire

offseason program and had opportunities in training camp and in the

preseason due to injuries. He was eligible for the practice squad

again this year, and we will continue to work with him.

Thomas Clayton is also a guy who was with us on the practice squad

last year. He continues to improve. We signed him to our practice

squad again this year. Many players in this league that went on to

have great careers began on the practice squad. Those players are not

counted out. They are with us, and we will continue to coach those

guys.

Here is the link if you would like to continue to explore the site for other article on Nolan while he was with the 49ers.

http://sports.groups.yahoo.com/group/Forty-Niners/message/2139

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So now that we know that Lofton is moving on before I knew that I was searching for hints anything I could find that Nolan may have said in the past or present as to what he did with other defenses that he may have in mind for ours and I found a bunch of articles of questions that were emailed to him during his time as the SF HC by fans. I believe that he is getting ready to do that here soon because Jay Adams tweeted for us to ask Nolan questions and Nolan will answer them on whatever questions that we may have. Anyway I found these articles and one in particular is giving Nolan's take on how he feels a Hybrid has to be in order for it to work.

I think that you all will find this interesting for those looking to see a Hybrid defense as I know I would.

X's and O's with Nolan: Hybrid D Topic List < Prev Topic | Next Topic >

Reply < Prev Message | Next Message >

September 04, 2008

Head coach Mike Nolan is back with his latest round of X's and O's.

Find out his answers below, and be sure to send in your questions for

consideration.

Q: Hey Coach, the Niners are built to run a 3-4 defense, but you will

often switch up to a 4-3 to suit your personnel needs. From a play

calling and X's and O's standpoint, are there any advantages to

running this type of hybrid defense? Can it open up any new doors in

the playbook? -Chris Penoyer

A: If you use the 3-4 as your base defense you can switch to a 4-3.

If you are just a 4-3, then it is harder to go to the 3-4. We are a

blend of both. We were 50-50 last year. Our defense is based on the

talent we have and what our players' capabilities are. The purpose is

to utilize our best players and match up against opponents' players,

and that I feel assists us in making plays.

So, whatever our players allow us to do determines what style of

defense we play. Opponents will look at us and say we are a 3-4 and

some will say we are a 4-3. To be honest with you they're both right

and wrong. You could say it's a hybrid 3-4 defense. That would

probably be the most accurate way to say it. A team that is similar

would be New England. Other teams play the 3-4, but they aren't quite

as hybrid. They do a lot of things within it, like Pittsburgh does a

lot of blitzing, but it's a 3-4 most all of the time, it's never

assumed that it's 4-3.

Q: We have not seen a quarterback sneak for a while now. Of course I

am no head coach, but I feel it is valuable on short yardage

situations. Has the offense under Mike Martz practiced one (a

quarterback sneak) at all? -Richard "Chris" Mondragon, Sr

A: Our goal-line and short-yardage situations are an area that needed

to improve, and we have added some wrinkles and schemes that I think

will help. Certainly Mike Martz is prepared for those situations. The

quarterback sneak is like every other play you have and it must match

with two things 1.) The situation and 2.) Is the player able to do

it? Some players are better suited than others.

Q: Hey Coach, I just wanted to say first of all I'm very pleased with

what you have accomplished with our team and I'm very optimistic

about this season. My question is about the other OLB on the other

side of Manny, who's going to be our starter? Tully Banta-Cain had a

great pre-season and Parys Haralson seems nicked. And how about

Dashon Goldson at free safety? He's exciting and seems to cover more

ground than Mark Roman.

-Thanks, T.A.

A: If we are in a 3-4 then Parys Haralson will be the starter. He

entered the lineup last year when Manny Lawson went down and did

well. He is a tough guy, and like Manny he converted from a college

defensive end to a linebacker in the NFL. Tully has pass rush

ability. I hope after adjusting to our defense last year as well as

his first year as a starter that Tully will continue to get better

and showcase his pass rushing skills. To be fair to him, he was

battling through an ankle injury that plagued him for much of the

year. Dashon had a great camp. Mark Roman will continue to start at

free safety, but Dashon will be involved in our nickel and dime

packages. He started to get involved midway last season and showed he

can play at this level.

Q: I was wondering why coaches in the NFL, particularly offensive

coaches, do not do a better job of tailoring their systems to suit

the talents of the better players on the team? I know that to a

certain extent this is done (and that during your time with the

49ers, you have done this on defense) but I would like to understand

why it is not done more prominently? What are your thoughts? -Thanks.

Roger, Montreal, Canada

A: That does occur. In fact, Mike Martz on several occasions has said

that the players on the field will take you where you go. It's always

about tailoring a system to the personnel. That's what I like about

Mike Martz's offense. It allows you to move in the direction of the

strength of the personnel, whether it's in the running game or the

passing game, or the tight ends, backs or with a particular receiver.

It's not a rigid system where you're looking for a type of player at

any position. It allows you to look at the type of players that you

have and get them in the situation where they can take advantage of

it.

Q: Coach,Dominique Zeigler made amazing catches in camp, why was he

let go? Also, why was Thomas Clayton let go? Clayton showed he has

the burst speed the strength and a little awareness that with some

work can be a great back to have on the roster, why not him?-Epyon

Peacecraft

A: Obviously, we have an offense, defense and special teams that we

have to consider with our 53-man roster, and not just the receiver

position. So, it really comes down to how many of them we feel we

need to have the best team and who makes up the best team. Like I

said, if we had six or seven receivers or six or seven running backs

that made up the best 53, we'd have six or seven receivers and

running backs. Dominique was on our practice squad last year and did

well in practice. He had a chance to be with us during the entire

offseason program and had opportunities in training camp and in the

preseason due to injuries. He was eligible for the practice squad

again this year, and we will continue to work with him.

Thomas Clayton is also a guy who was with us on the practice squad

last year. He continues to improve. We signed him to our practice

squad again this year. Many players in this league that went on to

have great careers began on the practice squad. Those players are not

counted out. They are with us, and we will continue to coach those

guys.

Here is the link if you would like to continue to explore the site for other article on Nolan while he was with the 49ers.

http://sports.groups...rs/message/2139

The very first question he answered says it all . That it is difficult for a 4 - 3 team to switch over to a 3 - 4 . Some of the people on here are not going to like that . I can see us utilizing some different type of formations , but we're staying a 4 - 3 base defense .

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The very first question he answered says it all . That it is difficult for a 4 - 3 team to switch over to a 3 - 4 . Some of the people on here are not going to like that . I can see us utilizing some different type of formations , but we're staying a 4 - 3 base defense .

We will be a 4-3 base defense, but I'd be willing to bet we'll see a lot of 3-4 in passing situations. Nolan likes to send different blitz combinations and the 3-4 gives you a lot more blitzing options than the 4-3. I also think we could see more 3-4 against high passing offenses. We don't have the personnel to effectively run the 3-4 base because we don't have that NT that can plug the middle. We'd get owned on running plays. The 3-4 on passing downs is similar to a 4-3 though, in the fact that you are still sending at least 4 or 5 guys, the offense just doesn't know where that 4th and/or 5th guy is coming from (hopefully)

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