The experts break down Ryan Tannehill's tipped passes.
Written by Dave Blake
Friday, 14 September 2012
I am going to give you all several answers to why Tannehill's passes were tipped at the line of scrimmage this past weekend which started Miami's unravelling against the Texans this weekend. Then I will finish it all up with a youtube video clip of every single pass by Ryan Tannehill so you can see them for yourself. When you watch that video clip you have to be pleased with the way Tannehill throws that ball. He has a nice quick release and he throws the ball very well with good velocity. You will also see a few of his bad passes. His accuracy could use some improvement at times and he needs to learn to stop staring down his receivers. Overall I really like this kid and I think Jeff Ireland made a very wise choice in selecting Tannehill with our first round pick this year.
I am going to start this off with Rich's analysis. Rich's opinion is always well thought out and he does a nice job of taking his own personal feelings out of what he sees on the field.
After looking at several replays of Ryan Tannehill's throws, I am not seeing the mechanical issues people are talking about. I don't see the low release point, if anything, depending on the throw he is able to change his release point, which is good. He has a good, compact motion. He keeps the ball up so he can quickly fire his passes. He is able to put all sorts of touch. He actually moves around well in the pocket.
I don't really see anything that needs fixing aside from the typical rookie "starting down a receiver" issue, which is not going to get fixed in one week.
The real problem I see is that the playcalling was very predictable. Tannehill was setting up pretty much in the same spot, he was asked to do a lot of short drops and quick throws, which the defensive linemen picked up on, and he wasn't used to his strengths, which include throwing on the run and getting outside of the pocket.
Maybe thats a case of a shortened playbook, but if defensive linemen are sitting back to tip passes, then rolling out the QB is the right thing to do and taking longer drops to complete deeper throws should have happened earlier.
I put this on the offensive gameplan.
Former Dolphins/Jets starting quarterback CHAD PENNINGTON, who was well respected around the NFL for his smarts and savy, had this to say about it this week when pressed for an answer.
“Especially with the underneath routes, you have to have what they call a ‘high plant leg,’” Pennington said. “You actually have to throw it taller than what your body is. You have to get up on that front leg and be able to extend as high as you can and almost throw down.”
“Watch Peyton Manning – he gets really tall. Because those routes are not about arm strength. It’s about getting the ball over the defensive linemen and getting it back down to your receiver. You can’t stay at the same level that you would if you’re throwing a 20-yard out route.”
“But that’s something that’s certainly correctable. He has to work on it in practice every day. He’s got to get as many throws as he can before and after practice, to where when you’re in the game, you don’t have to think about it.”
“It can depend what the protection is. If you’re doing a quick pass, three-step drop, sometimes the offensive lineman’s gotta cut the guy, get their hands down. And you change up your protections sometimes. Sometimes you cut them, sometimes you don’t, sometimes you go after them if it’s a quick pass. … But a lot of times, man, it happens so fast that you’re not… you can’t look at where a defensive lineman is standing and jumping. I mean, you are looking at a picture downfield, it’s almost like a television screen … it’s part of your vision underneath, but behind it are receivers and defensive backs and you know your reading the coverage at the same time, you can’t tell that, unless it’s a screen pass or a dumpoff or something when you know you have time. But when you have patterns that are timing patterns, even when there down the field a little bit, that’s hard to judge that, either way, I don’t care who you are.”
Did you slide around?
“That’s part of it, too, but what I’m saying is that it’s the play call. What’s the play call? Is it a screen? Is it a quick three-step slant? Is it an out? Is it a high-low, is it a back underneath with a wide receiver or somebody behind it, and you know you are looking at a vertical high-low stretch. So, it’s all different, it really is…. Defensive ends, they’re not dumb, they see it, too. If the quarterback is setting up quick, they can see that through the linemen, and if he’s setting up quick and he’s not going to get there, he’s going to stop and jump. As soon as you snap it, cut him, you can do that, too. That’s legal. Not chopping down on someone (while engaged with another blocker) but straight-up, you can do it. … The other thing as far as being in the pocket and that, I remember when the offensive line used to go do one-on-ones [in practice] or maybe work on some team defense stuff, you go back there in the back of the pocket and take snaps with them and get a feel for the pocket. You don’t have to throw, just dump it off. You just do things like that. I used to do that all the time. I did that twice a week, where youi just work on moving in the pocket and dumping the ball … You slide around and you just get a feel for it. That’s a little extra work for you that you could do…. We’re coaching ‘em up right here!”
Here is JIM "CRASH" JENSEN's thoughts on what batted balls at the LOS.
“Any time Don Shula was faced with a good pass rushing team he would employ the three step drop (quick passing), but never out of the shotgun. He felt the time lost on watching the ball come to you to catch it, you could be watching the defense the entire time on your drop. So indeed, most quick passing was done from under the center. Anyway, as a good defensive coordinator you make adjustments to the quick passing and instead of worrying or thinking of getting to the QB you engage and time the jump with the hands up. Houston made adjustments defensively and Miami did not offensively. Quick passing, offensive-line wise, as the defense engages, the line is usually taught to cut. Then, after a lot of quick passing you take your shots down the field with deeper drops since the defense is not rushing as hard. Also, against good pass rushing teams the QB can use cadence to slow the defense down. Marino was an expert with cadence with amazing voice inflection. Screens and draws are effective against a good pass rush as well which keeps the defense on it's heels.”