Bill and Pete's Excellent Adventure

Tony C

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Apr 13, 2000
12,366
There doesn't seem to be a lot of conversation about the game going on, what with "deflate-gate" and such. Thought I'd start a thread to focus on one element of the game that interests me: the BB vs PC match up.
 
To start, didn't realize Pete and Bill are buddy-buddy, or at least close enough to pretend to be buddy-buddy:
http://espn.go.com/blog/seattle-seahawks/post/_/id/11509/pete-carrolls-super-bowl-opponent-is-the-team-he-once-coached
http://espn.go.com/blog/nflnation/post/_/id/159387/bill-belichick-calls-pete-carroll-a-friend
 
This is an interesting sub-text to this game, in a few ways:
 
1: Will Kraft get to take a bow for having incredible insight into who to hire as a head coach? That's a f-ing great record.
 
2: Will New England and, in particular the Ron Borges' types who hounded Carroll during his time here, ever begrudgingly accept that he's been successful? I was living in Boston during Carroll's time and he was WEEI target #1 for his west coast ways that supposedly couldn't work, a favorite theme of Borges as well as all that pathetic crew. Despite all of Carroll's subsequent success, the way Borges painted him still seems to be the predominant view of New England fans (see the SoSH thread when CArroll got hired).
 
3: I do think BB and PC are more similar than their polar opposite public images indicate:
*-they each go decidedly against the NFL grain -- one of the reasons I like them both so much.
*-people often joke here about BB trolling the league/the media with his public grouchiness, and I've often thought the same about PC's cheerfulness: has always seemed a nice in-your-face way to say 'f the establishment' by acting exactly contrary to the macho Mike Ditka way that NFL coaches are supposed to act. Both could obviously easily be more mainstream and would get less shit if they did, but it's funny that they don't.
*-strategy-wise they're both risk-takers willing to buck common wisdom, contrary to mediocrities like, say, McCarthy or Pagano (both of whom I think are entirely competent, but bring no verve to their jobs).
*-maybe it's a sign of old-age, but I actually buy into the whole "create a culture" meme as key to winning. Sounds way too new-agey/Phil Jackson-y, but as I age I guess I do buy that a coach who just focuses on x and o's is missing the big picture. That organizations succeed over the long term by thinking much more big picture. BB has obviously done that in his meticulous control-freak way, and Carroll has done similarly in his own way.
 
So what about the coaching and systems battle? One basic difference is that Seattle seems to want to impose its system whereas NE is famously game-plan dependent. Who does that favor? McDaniels as well as Bevell and Quinn are obviously very highly regarded, and I think the SoSH consensus is that Patricia is also terrific. Any coordinator advantages?
 
 
 

nattysez

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Sep 30, 2010
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Tony C said:
So what about the coaching and systems battle? One basic difference is that Seattle seems to want to impose its system whereas NE is famously game-plan dependent. Who does that favor? McDaniels as well as Bevell and Quinn are obviously very highly regarded, and I think the SoSH consensus is that Patricia is also terrific. Any coordinator advantages?
 
 
 
An observation Trent Dilfer made along these lines last night was that all of the Patriots' monkeying around with who is eligible and putting guys in motion might be less impactful against Seattle.  Dilfer said that Seattle is not a very "reactive" defense pre-snap -- they just kind of line up the way they line up, then deal with what happens once the ball is snapped.  I have no idea whether this is at all true, but it was the first really interesting point I'd heard about the match-up.
 

Tony C

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Apr 13, 2000
12,366
One question along those lines is, since Sherman always plays the left side, who do the Pats send in his direction? Normally I'd say Edelman since that's exactly the sort of shifty guy that might give a tall CB troubles. But with the bad arm I wonder if the bigger LeFell (or even Gronk) might be a better call given that Sherman may not be able to be as physical as he'd normally be.
 

mascho

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Nov 30, 2007
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nattysez said:
 
An observation Trent Dilfer made along these lines last night was that all of the Patriots' monkeying around with who is eligible and putting guys in motion might be less impactful against Seattle.  Dilfer said that Seattle is not a very "reactive" defense pre-snap -- they just kind of line up the way they line up, then deal with what happens once the ball is snapped.  I have no idea whether this is at all true, but it was the first really interesting point I'd heard about the match-up.
That's right. They are similar to Baltimore in that they do not disguise coverages much. Basically line up in Cover 1 or Cover 3 most plays (and for them they use the same alignments in both schemes). Sometimes they use Cover 2 when the other team goes with an empty backfield. Their corners don't flip fields to stay with receivers either. So unless they just miss someone who is eligible, I don't think it will impact them much.