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West Coast Offense Playbook


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29 minutes ago, RandomFan said:

Thanks for these. I just browsed the Intro a little bit, but I'll get around to digging into all of it at some point. Looks like good stuff, especially for people that have never seen anything like it before.

This is way too much info for the average fan but for those interested in the X's and o's it's good stuff. You can pick a few things up here or there that might help some folks. The route trees and terminology in part 4 for instance might be something to peruse. I'd be interested to know what people thought was useful to them if anything, This package is very basic when compared to what the playbook is for the Falcons and the terminology and hand signals for audibles and play calls is probably different but the basic concept is the same. 

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Also, I hope the terminology and the portion on audibling and shifts helps some of these folks who just can't understand why Ryan might have struggled last season.  Leaving aside even the footwork and concepts, when you're used to yelling "Snowman!  Snowman!" and the entire offense knows what that means, and you now have to call out the entire play, and use hand signals (which he did before, but the hand signals meant different things), AND the play designation sounds like what you did last year but is a completely different play, well, it's a lot to digest.  And that's not to even mention the calls at the line which can change plays, but technically are not "audibles," or the silent shifts, that are in most WCO systems.

He said as much when he said he could go "on autopilot" for the previous 7 years of his NFL career, and now he has to think before he runs a play, or even calls it.

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18 minutes ago, JDaveG said:

Also, I hope the terminology and the portion on audibling and shifts helps some of these folks who just can't understand why Ryan might have struggled last season.  Leaving aside even the footwork and concepts, when you're used to yelling "Snowman!  Snowman!" and the entire offense knows what that means, and you now have to call out the entire play, and use hand signals (which he did before, but the hand signals meant different things), AND the play designation sounds like what you did last year but is a completely different play, well, it's a lot to digest.  And that's not to even mention the calls at the line which can change plays, but technically are not "audibles," or the silent shifts, that are in most WCO systems.

He said as much when he said he could go "on autopilot" for the previous 7 years of his NFL career, and now he has to think before he runs a play, or even calls it.

I can see why. I looked at the intro and part 4 and was like WTF How the **** does anyone remember all of this? I can't even remember what day it is half the time. Surprised we didn't have delay of game every play last year.

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2 minutes ago, ATLFalcon36 said:

I can see why. I looked at the intro and part 4 and was like WTF How the **** does anyone remember all of this? I can't even remember what day it is half the time. Surprised we didn't have delay of game every play last year.

That's why I always laughed at people who said Mike Vick was stupid.  First, no NFL QB lacks intelligence.  Some are smarter than others, but none of them are dumb.  But second, no WCO QB can even call plays if he's an idiot.  You have to be pretty smart just to learn and execute the playbook.

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37 minutes ago, JDaveG said:

Also, I hope the terminology and the portion on audibling and shifts helps some of these folks who just can't understand why Ryan might have struggled last season.  Leaving aside even the footwork and concepts, when you're used to yelling "Snowman!  Snowman!" and the entire offense knows what that means, and you now have to call out the entire play, and use hand signals (which he did before, but the hand signals meant different things), AND the play designation sounds like what you did last year but is a completely different play, well, it's a lot to digest.  And that's not to even mention the calls at the line which can change plays, but technically are not "audibles," or the silent shifts, that are in most WCO systems.

He said as much when he said he could go "on autopilot" for the previous 7 years of his NFL career, and now he has to think before he runs a play, or even calls it.

Spot on JDave...by far the biggest reason for Matt's struggles last year was grasping the changes in terminology from what he was use to......as teams adjusted to our early success, Shanny tried to throw more complex plays, and matt just wasn't ready for them yet. 

Second biggest issue was his footwork.......

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4 hours ago, ATLFalcon36 said:

I can see why. I looked at the intro and part 4 and was like WTF How the **** does anyone remember all of this? I can't even remember what day it is half the time. Surprised we didn't have delay of game every play last year.

This isn't really the playbook per say. This just covers formations, personnel, defense recognition, terminology and route tree. The book with the actual plays in it is another large volume in itself. That I don't have.

Edited by slider
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4 hours ago, Vandy said:

Spot on JDave...by far the biggest reason for Matt's struggles last year was grasping the changes in terminology from what he was use to......as teams adjusted to our early success, Shanny tried to throw more complex plays, and matt just wasn't ready for them yet. 

Second biggest issue was his footwork.......

     It's like trying to learn a new language. You have to get to the point where the words and phrases themselves have meaning directly instead of having to translate them through your 1st language. Once that's accomplished you can then begin to expand the vocabulary. I don't think Ryan got to the expansion part last year, at least not successfully. The value of Schaub is that he has played his entire career including college at Virginia in the WCO. He was brought in originally to run Greg Knapp's system and help teach it to Vick. Now the same with Ryan but I think Ryan is off and running on his own at this point with the exception of nuances like timing throws to spots rather than watching the receivers.

     In the WCO the QB spends more time watching safeties and LB's than his receivers. Virtually every play is designed to influence defenders out of certain areas and the QB has to check for that movement then throw on time to the spot vacated, it's up to the receiver to be there on time. Of course as the pass is being thrown the QB will do a quick check for receiver position but unlike a traditional offense, the QB doesn't assess the status of the receiver during the route. This is very hard to get used to and some never do. Ryan still seems to be following receivers on a lot of these routes. He also has a tendency sometimes to throw to the spot even if the required clear out hasn't taken effect. The WCO, being a timing based passing attack makes it very difficult to go through a progression from primary to secondary and so on. As a matter of fact on most plays the QB should read the defensive movement and throw to the most open area serviced by a receiver. This makes all receivers essentially primary. That's one reason mobility is required because if the play doesn't work as  intended, it's many times sandlot time.

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Ok, so now that this has been brought to light and has opened some eyes... Can we lay off Matt Ryan a little and let him grow into this playbook! Trust me when I say that this is going to be the best thing for Matt and make him a better QB... but it can also break him too depending on how well he responds and adjusts.

We all really need to support this kid... He's going through analysis paralysis right now. This type of stress would be murder on all of us.

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Great thread, slider.  

Just to contribute, if anyone is interested, here is a 2004 playbook of Mike Shanahan's offense.  It's 124 pages, so of course it's not the whole playbook.  It's mainly install stuff.  After about 40 pages, then it gets into the protections, which are fascinating how detailed they are... then the run game, then some actual passing plays off of it.

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

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4 minutes ago, PeytonMannings Forehead said:

Great thread, slider.  

Just to contribute, if anyone is interested, here is a 2004 playbook of Mike Shanahan's offense.  It's 124 pages, so of course it's not the whole playbook.  It's mainly install stuff.  After about 40 pages, then it gets into the protections, which are fascinating how detailed they are... then the run game, then some actual passing plays off of it.

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

Showoff! One upper!:)

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34 minutes ago, slider said:

    He also has a tendency sometimes to throw to the spot even if the required clear out hasn't taken effect.

This is what was killing me to watch last season.  He would sit on the first read, then get to the 2nd, which was now also dead because the timing was off, but then he'd throw it anyway.  He mentioned it in an interview during the offseason where a ball to Freeman was picked because Freeman got redirected.  Ryan said something like "I have to realize that read is dead and go on to the next one."

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