I am going to go into detail a little detail on how we self scout and evaluate our offense during the off-season. Typically this is the first thing we do and I usually start the day after our last game (usually I can’t believe I’m not game planning that day anyways).
First I make a cut up of each one of our blocking schemes in the run game (Inside Zone, Stretch, Power, Counter, Trap, and Iso) and each one our passing concepts (Smash, Curl/Flat, 4 Verts, etc) then I begin to evaluate the efficiency of each run.
When evaluating efficiency I do not divide the total yardage by number of attempts to create a yard per play average (I.E. 10 attempts for 100 yards = 10 Yards per attempt) because one of those plays could have been an 80 yard gain, which would greatly skew the results and the perception of the efficiency of the play. Due to this I picked up this system from the University Of Maryland:
For the offensive run game a play is efficient if…
1st & 10: Gain 4+ Yards
2nd Down: Gain Half the Total Distance to Go
3rd Down: Gain A First Down
Also as we evaluate a runs efficiency we note the why the play was/was not effective. I.E. Didn’t combo off to LB, Ran into unblocked defender, etc.
We make these cut ups and break down efficiency for these reasons:
1. Evaluate What Plays Have Been Most Successful For Us
2. Evaluate Why Or Why Not These Plays Were Or Were Not Successful (focus offseason and teaching emphasis)
3. Cut Ups Of each Concept Make For Great Teaching Tape
After completing the off-season efficiency report we then begin a detailed self scouting report. This self scouting report consists of:
2. Down & Distance
1. Formation Breakdown – When we break down formation tendency we are primarily looking for two things. The first is strongside/weakside run. We want to ensure we are balanced running the ball to either side of the formation. The second thing we look for is run/pass ration from each formation. We want to find the run heavy formations from the prior season that you might not have picked up on during the season. If we find this uneven mix we want to try and either add a play action or drop back passing compliment out of this formation.
2. Down And Distance – The next thing we want to do is compile a thorough down and distance report from the prior season. Our offensive philosophy is to strive for balance. We want to ensure we are striving for balance within our down and distance situations as well as the entire game. Forcing this balance as an offensive play caller in all down and distance situations will limit defenses from finding glairing tendency from down to down.
3. Hash – There are certain hash tendencies that you can’t avoid. For instance we had a serious hash tendency to only sprint out to our right, because our right handed QB could not throw to his left. This was a hash tendency we as a staff knew about and were willing to live with (we did sprint to the left just, but the QB typically kept the ball). There are other tendency you will find from the hash (I.E. run to the field, pass to field, etc) that you will want to know about as a play caller.
4. Personnel – This is huge for us. We use so many personnel grouping that we have to make a conscious effort to not become predictable from our groupings. If you are a Wing-T team that never changes personnel then this obviously isn’t important. Very often when I was coaching defense we would run into those teams that put a particular runningback in for screens, or a different Receiver to run the fly sweep.
After finishing these reports we get direction as to what we want to research, and get better at, as well as how we can get better at the installation process.