No Pressure, No Screens

December 7th, 2012

Josh Freeman chatted on his WDAE-AM 620 radio show last night about how the Bucs haven’t seen much pressure fronts and blitzes from opponents this season, which has led to little use of the screen pass.

The way Freeman talked about it, he almost seemed surprised, “You know, really, we haven’t seen a whole lot of pressure this season,” No. 5 said. “You know, a lot of times when you set up a screen you want to call it into pressure so it looks like a back’s trying to block blitzer, and he peels off the blitzer, you dump it to him, and there’s nothing but a wall of O-linemen downfield.”

The comment came after a caller asked Freeman whether he can audible more for screens to Doug Martin.

So why aren’t the Bucs seeing more pressure? The easy answer is that teams believe they’re getting enough heat on Freeman. But that can’t be accurate. Freeman’s taken the third fewest sacks in the NFL, among regular starting QBs.

This week Greg Schiano concurred with Joe and told media that his offensive line is providing Freeman with enough time. As for the pressure on Freeman against Denver, Schiano was very clear that it was nothing unexpected in the NFL, especially from a strong D-line, and the Bucs only allowed one sack.

It’ll be interesting to see how the Eagles approach Freeman. Philadelphia has the second-lowest sack total in the NFC with 20. (Gulp) Only the Bucs have fewer.

15 Responses to “No Pressure, No Screens”

  1. Jim Says:

    Hey Joe. What’s your obsession of using sacks allowed to judge O-Line play?

  2. admin Says:

    Joe here,

    No obsession. It’s a fair part of the grading process. The O-linemen will tell you that themselves. Schiano talked about this the other day, as referenced in the post.

  3. John King Says:

    Joe – I was the caller that asked the question as I feel a many of us do that Doug Martin with the ball in space is a recipe for success, yet we don’t work as diligently I feel, to get him in that situation. Heck, if our two WRs are drawing two deep coverage (As stated repeatedly by Bucs personnel) then that leaves one, perhaps two LBs to make the tackle on D-Mart. I’d take those odds any day. If we run that four times, perhaps that alone brings the safety down and frees up Vincent or Mike for deep ball.

  4. Red86 Says:

    This statement can be look at from the perspective of pre snap read. In this same statement Freeman talk about( No. 5 said. “You know, a lot of times when you set up a screen

    ~you want to call it into pressure so it looks like a back’s trying to block blitzer, and he peels off the blitzer~

    , you dump it to him, and there’s nothing but a wall of O-linemen downfield.”)

    Meaning an audible.

    If no one acting like they’re blitzing before the snap, then you can think it’s a zone or man to man. Screens normally don’t work well with those two situations. But if there guy at or near the lne of scrimmage, then the play is either a blitz w/ man to man w/ a possible single high, Zone Blitz, or a bluff to confuse the qb. This is the best chance a screen with be effective.

    There also another way that screen are effective. That’s when the coordinator just call a screen on 3rd and 5-10 and the other team need to make the stop to comeback from behind on the scoreboard. A cordinator awareness of the importance of each down is a big plus. Also, flim studying the the defense response to certain situation like the example I’ve given can help making the right play call that hurt the defense the most.

  5. Miguel El Magnifico Says:

    I think some one is pushing the theory that an illegal block or holding is preferable to a sack.

    When a sack occurs, you lose yardage, a loss of down and possible injury to the QB.

    When holding, you may not get caught, you may lose yardage but the QB may not get hit and you get to replay the down.

    The Bucs gave up one sack last week to Miller but got busted for blocking penalties at least 5 times.

  6. Have A Nice Day Says:

    With a 34.3% pressure percentage, Freeman is seeing the 8th most pass rush pressure in the league.

  7. Kennedy Says:

    … yeah, if you subscribe to the gobbldegook subjective nonsense of the “pressure” stats.

  8. Have A Nice Day Says:

    He also has the 8th worst completion percentage(42.9%) when under pressure.

    Plenty of heat allowed and plenty of poor play because of it.

  9. Have A Nice Day Says:

    @Kennedy lol You know what you are talking about.

  10. Kennedy Says:

    laugh all you want. Those stats are crazy subjective and not really relevant.

  11. Have A Nice Day Says:

    @Kennedy What would be the point of watching film if the coaches could just check for “relevant” stats?

    Saying that a QB hit is not relevant? Really? Tell that to Freeman who got hit in the back against Denver and threw a pick six because of it. Tell Gerald McCoy that his disruption and pressure has meant nothing.

    I will laugh all I want, because you are talking silly.

  12. Have A Nice Day Says:

    @Kennedy – There is a method to PFF’s madness. You may call it subjectivity, but many coaches, GMs, and players have stated that PFF game grades and stats are the best out there and very much similar to their own in house grades/stats.

    They have been used in contract negotiations for heaven’s sake.

  13. Vic Says:

    PFF is one hell of a scam, a bunch of unqualified Englishmen breaking down film. They’re hardly the holy grail. Fun to read, but take it with a big grain of salt.

  14. RustyRhino Says:

    Red86, Right on the $ with a Called screen pass on 3-5-10 make them stop it.
    Like to see this play to all our backs. Fb as well. What’s the worst that happens, incomplete, INT, sack, might also get a first down or nice big gain even a TD. Thanks for the break down.

    How I can’t wait to see our Oline play next season. Pressure is pressure the Dline do not let up just because you happen to be “Next Man Up” 12 games in where 6-6 missing both of our starting Guards. Great job by our Coaches & Players.

  15. Pete Dutcher Says:

    Joe – “Freeman’s taken the third fewest sacks in the NFL, among regular starting QBs.”

    Except that Sacks are only part of the picture. Freeman has been under a lot of pressure aside from maybe 5-8 plays per game…if that many. True, those few plays have been really nice ones even if they didn’t produce yardage, but the pressure has certainly been there.