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It's Not the Running Backs Who are Broken (thru first 3 games)

Discussion in 'Chargers Fan Forum' started by Lance19, Sep 28, 2013.

  1. Lance19

    Lance19 BoltTalker

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    I know we're all disappointed that we haven't gotten more out of
    Ryan Mathews since, well, since he was drafted in 2010.

    Long-suffering fans really hoped he'd break out this year and so far we've seen nothing of the kind.

    But--as I said after 2 weeks, and it's still true after 3--
    the "no running back can be successful without holes" rule
    (anyone else remember LT's 17 carries for 7 yards in Philadelphia?)
    applies to the Bolts too...and this run-blocking is not producing holes.

    Almost every time Woodhead or Mathews takes the rock, if you freeze-frame
    (and the NFL Rewind Endzone cameras are priceless for this) there is nothing that looks
    even remotely like a lane. Or a small gap. Or even a sliver of daylight.
    Lombardi said "Run to daylight" but there has to be some daylight...

    I got a bit annoyed by one of the guys on XTRA 1360 (Thurs morning?) saying that RM was
    off to a poor start...the results are definitely disappointing, but both he and Woodhead are
    running very hard. Give either a small hole, they'll get 6, 7, or 8 yards.
    When (often) there's no hole at all, Mathews will carry guys for a two yard gain on sheer effort.

    Fouts--and lots of fans--keyed on that "hesitation" of RM's on the big 3rd & 1 attempt
    about 11 minutes into the Titan game. But Mathews was not being tentative or hesitant:
    Rinehart (78) was supposed to be pulling right from left guard...but he stumbled...
    and all 320 pounds of him plopped right in front of RM...Mathews had to stop...
    and quickly scan for another route...but on such an obvious running down the Titans had
    too many guys right there. And the Chargers had to punt. I think Mathews got some inappropriate blame.

    And this lack of running room is happening to all of our backs on most running plays.
    For this team to compete in the long run, the run blocking will need to be significantly
    different...maybe by scheme; maybe by personnel...but no running back can be consistently
    successful with blocking like this. I'll bust RM's chops when he deserves it, like for that inexcusable
    fumble in Philly (damn! Philly again!)...but his current lack of success is
    not for lack of health (that's refreshing!), talent or effort.
    It's simple lack of run blocking. (pass blocking's been better than feared)

    http://www.footballguys.com/05gamerecap-sdg-7.php
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2013
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  2. Ride The Lightning

    Ride The Lightning Join the Dark Side, we have cookies.

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    Win in the trenches, die in the trenches.

    We need more higher quality beef. This Wal-Mart grade beef isn't cutting it.
     
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  3. SuperCharger92

    SuperCharger92 BoltTalker

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    Our left side of our line are pure pass protectors, while our right side of our line are pure run blockers. No balance along the line and at times we make ourselves predictable.

    Hopefully Troutman and Fluker play on the right side tomorrow and open some holes we haven't seen the last 3 weeks.
     
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  4. AnteaterCharger

    AnteaterCharger Calibrating Bolttalk, Podcast by Podcast Staff Member Super Moderator Podcaster

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    It's progressional - you can't go from grade F meat to prime rib, you need a middle step or two. Still there's more and better holes than last year and Mathews still has a hard time making anything out of any hole.
     
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  5. matilack

    matilack #therealagent47

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    I think he's done a good job finding holes...but he's leaving yards on the field by trying to truck everyone, instead of running around them into open space.

    He doesn't hit the home run when it's there, and it has been once or twice.
     
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  6. CoronaDoug

    CoronaDoug Well-Known Member

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    For F's sake. This is the same crap that people spouted about Kaeding. Making excuse after excuse for the guy. :rolleyes:
     
  7. Lance19

    Lance19 BoltTalker

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    Yeah, I know that--on the internet--substantial, detailed, fact-based rational points will never compete with
    one-line, unsupported, cranky, whiny, irrational, out-of-the-butt, Dunning-Kruger, empty declarations...
    but hey, once in a while the cerebral approach should at least be offered for variety, yeah? :rolleyes:
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2013
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  8. CoronaDoug

    CoronaDoug Well-Known Member

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    So you want me to change my font color, type, and size, and use some witty reference to make a baseless point? Sorry I will leave that to you. I will not waste anyone's time by giving RM's stats, his injury history, or why the coaches pull him in certain situations. Everyone who has been following this team since he has been drafted knows how underwhelming he has been. But hey we can go with the (typical excuse) O-line is to blame if you want to. :rolleyes:
     
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  9. Lance19

    Lance19 BoltTalker

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    The logical problems with your statement are too many to address. But I'll knock down a few.

    My post was balanced: there was plenty in there for the non-thinking bomb thrower
    ( A) Disappointment since 2010, B) Not breaking through in 2013, C) RM's previous health issues D) RM's ongoing fumbling problems, etc.)
    and I've never, ever before this past week complained about the run blocking.

    Also, I made clear that there aren't holes for any of the backs...
    (Woodhead & Mathews are both below their career ypc averages)
    Mathews appears to be healthier than ever but his numbers are way down.
    A long look at the endzone footage makes plain that there aren't any holes.
    Sorry if that upsets your old, entrenched b/tchy perspective.
    I'm not saying that Mathews is amazing and will go on to have a big season, or career.
    Just pointing out that riding the same old lazy memes, stubbornly resisting facts, stats and realities
    just to feel justified in spewing the same old crap isn't good enough for everybody here.


    p.s. I'm glad to see that that watery Corona crap is strong enough to get someone messed-up
     
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2013
  10. Cheapseats

    Cheapseats Loud, proud Charger fan

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    Until the offensive gets healthy and gels together as a unit, they are basically rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. It looks to me like Coach McCoy will give Mathews every opportunity to prove that he belongs on the roster. If he is productive and hangs on the ball he has a shot. By December we should be able to see where things are going and if Mathews is a "situational back" in a committee and not a "featured back" by then I am thinking the team will be going in a different direction next season.
     
  11. Lance19

    Lance19 BoltTalker

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    I think that, overall, the passing game (and pass blocking) are already fairly formidable.
    Probably a bit better than most long-time fans expected early in 2013.
    In fact, Rivers' early sharpness has largely covered for the lack of a solid ground game.
    But you just can't continue for long that way.
    I have no idea (or strong preference) re. where Mathews will be next season.

    My reason for posting this thread was to point out that this lack of run blocking isn't going to be good for any back...
    or the Chargers. It's easy to blame the backs...but the line is the true issue right now.
     
  12. Cheapseats

    Cheapseats Loud, proud Charger fan

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    Agreed, the Chargers offensive line has almost no margin for error when healthy...and we all know that they are not even close to healthy. I am really hoping that they all take the "next man up" mantra to heart and that the coaches can have them ready to deal with the Cowboy's "D".
     
  13. CoronaDoug

    CoronaDoug Well-Known Member

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    Ha! Ha! Much to do again about nothing. A few font changes and a couple of jabs. :tup:

    Let me ask you these questions about the O-line. Do you think they are better this season at opening holes? Do you think they are better at pass protection? From the coaches film I would say they have been better but, I didn't stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night either. Then again since they are probably down 3 o-line starters for today's game, they could become worse than last year.

    Could there be a slight possibility that this is one of the worst (or the worst) running back groups in the NFL? Especially after cutting a guy that they could have developed (Fozzy)

    p.s. I'm glad to see that that watery Corona crap is strong enough to get me messed-up
     
  14. Concudan

    Concudan Caffeinated Commando

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    Who has tit, and who has tat?
     
  15. CoronaDoug

    CoronaDoug Well-Known Member

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    :confused: I don't have manboobs yet! :p
     
  16. Concudan

    Concudan Caffeinated Commando

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    No photo evidence to the contrary... jes sayin...
     
  17. Lance19

    Lance19 BoltTalker

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    Hey, we agree about one thing:

    If I were arguing from your position, and the other guy had staked out a position that revealed mine to be as transparent,
    yes, I too see the reasoning of trying to shift the conversation to fonts and text colors!


    p.s. Yes, of course not 'developing' Fozzy is dragging down the ypc (!!:confused:!!) & Mathews & Woodhead both simultaneously bizarrely forgot how to run...that is sooooo much more likely than it being a line problem! :)
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2013
  18. CoronaDoug

    CoronaDoug Well-Known Member

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    Glad you can see things in my posts that are not actually there. Cutting Fozzy has nothing to do with the YPC. Cutting Fozzy just eliminated any "bright spot" that this RB group had for the future.

    Mathews (underachiever), Woodhead (situation/COP back), and Brown (father time) do not bring fear to any defense. Brown has been the most productive of the backs rushing-wise if you are using the YPC as a barometer. This group lacks a straight ahead (pounding) RB. To place the blame on the O-line (which is improved from last season), is not something that can be measured.
     
  19. Lance19

    Lance19 BoltTalker

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    Yeah, actually it is. When every running back a team has, has lower than their usual ypc,
    that's quantifiable. You're suggesting it's a magical coincidence.

    There's no reason to believe that Fozzy was a bright spot, or "reason to hope" or someone who would
    buck this "no holes to run through" trend. I was pointing out the absurdity of that particular red herring.

    And no, Brown has NOT "been the most productive of the backs rushing-wise if you are using the YPC as a barometer."
    I "get" when you try to defend your irrational biases against certain players with poorly supported wisecracks,
    but how do you even get simple facts like ypc wrong? You're really going to argue that
    Ronnie Brown's 3.69 ypc is statistically superior to Woodhead's 4.14 ypc?

    Normally, I'm pretty comfortable defending the positions I take, what with my fondness for reality and all.
    But how am I supposed to argue with someone who just re-writes stats to try to prop up silly positions?
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2013
  20. CoronaDoug

    CoronaDoug Well-Known Member

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    Let me clarify. My mistake for misreading the total ypc stats. I was looking at RB's first two games. I wouldn't make up stats to defend this group. Ronnie Brown had been more productive the first two games with over a 5.0 ypc (last game wasn't a factor). The only thing that bumps Woodhead up is the 6.2 he had against Ten. He was 3.0 against Philly and had no carries against Houston. Throw in his one TD then I like (not like but..) Browns productivity. So after 3 games Woodhead does have a higher YPC as a whole. The minute shift in Wooheads YPC doesn't change that this group as a whole is horrible.

    As for Fozzy, yes he was the only thing the could have been positive for this group. Why? Because he was the only unknown. We know what these other guys are. So I will continue with my irrational biases towards this group of RB's.

    p.s. I owe Nate Kaeding an apology.
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2013
  21. Lance19

    Lance19 BoltTalker

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    Okay...if you'd just said that from the start, I wouldn't have wasted my time bein' all "facty" with you.

    p.s. So, we're allowed to include the facts that support irrational biases and throw out the games
    that bugger up our conclusions? Damn! That's awesome!
    If you just throw out the first and last efforts, the Chargers are stunning finishers under McCoy!
    :p
     
  22. CoronaDoug

    CoronaDoug Well-Known Member

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    No games were thrown out. It is all on paper. I admitted that I misread the stats. The YPC after 3 games is so minute that it is comical to argue over them. Does it really show who the best of these 3 bad backs are?

    Well it seems like you are happy with this group of RB's. So if they all go and rush for 100+ yards today then who will get the credit? O-line or RB? Hmmmmm.
     
  23. Lance19

    Lance19 BoltTalker

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    Re-read your posts: you arbitrarily add or subtract, depending on what you think helps your argument. :rolleyes:

    Let's re-cap: My original facty post was explaining that the lack of holes was creating a terrible ypc for this team.

    You responded with a lazy, unsupported claim...namely that you're tired of hearing that Mathews isn't as bad as you say.

    For you to now say that ypc really shouldn't be discussed is pretty silly. It's what the thread is about.

    (actually, you really made my point for me, :) by dragging Brown into it: I initially underestimated his carries,
    so left him out of the original equation. But your ill-fated attempt to (uncharacteristically) try to use stats only makes my
    argument stronger:
    Despite better than usual health, not just the main two, but all three Charger RBs are yielding lower
    than career ypc stats because the run blocking has been almost non-existant thru three games. Thanks, CD!)
     
  24. CoronaDoug

    CoronaDoug Well-Known Member

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    How creative of you. You still want to use YPC to blame the lack of run blocking? Again you cannot measure run blocking just by YPC because there are other variables (a guy actually has to run the ball). Your point is that it is the run blocking, my point is the lack of talent at RB.

    I do think Mathews is as bad as I say he is. I thought my original "lazy" post would not need clarification. I thought most people who have been following this team would know what Mathews is by now. This is not all about his YPC but run blocking and his versatility. Lost in the self serving attacks and the posts of grandeur (which I expect from a California forum), is the fact that the coaching staff is not comfortable with Mathews in certain situations. This team does not have a full time RB or even a RBBC leader.

    What you are essentially telling us is that this O-line is worse than last years since the YPC has decreased.
    Talk about an "ill-fated attempt to (uncharacteristically) try to use stats".
     
  25. Concudan

    Concudan Caffeinated Commando

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    Who has got the popcorn?

    Delima... Watch this or play Skyrim....
     
  26. Lance19

    Lance19 BoltTalker

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    Actually unlike your "Brown has been the most productive of the backs" :whistling: reckless approach to facts,
    my use of stats aligns with observable reality: The only way you can explain the way 3 experienced backs
    simultaneously all having lower ypc than their career averages--running behind a subpar line that isn't opening holes--
    is to just make up a mysterious and unexplainable theory that all three just randomly declined for no reason.
    That does match your grasp of stats.

    p.s. That you associate "California" with not getting facts wrong, as you've modeled, I'll take as an accidental compliment.
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2013
  27. CoronaDoug

    CoronaDoug Well-Known Member

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    Wow... how many posts ago was that? Did I not explain that? Let's bring it up in every post so that you can feel good about yourself. :rolleyes: Very typical here.

    Again I can't believe you think that this O-line has been worse than last years. This is what your stats prove, right?

    Like I said earlier, if the running game improves then the O-line must get all of the credit because these backs are 3 top experienced backs that would never decline in performance.

    Go ahead and have the last post on this (I can tell you like this). I am sure it will eventually lead to criticizing my use of punctuation or spelling.

    Fin.
     
  28. Lance19

    Lance19 BoltTalker

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    Actually, I was done...but since you're taking one last shot at distorting the record, okay, I'll make one final correction.

    The game film--specifically the coaches' endzone cameras--display an indisputable lack of holes.
    Though the O-line, so far, has been better at pass blocking than last year, it has been worse at run blocking.
    (all in my original post).

    If that were true, one would expect statistical reinforcement. Not one, not two, but all three Charger
    running backs show...well, exactly what you'd expect, given the lack of holes: lower ypc than their career averages.

    Your response is that they're just not good, dodging the obvious question:
    Why were all of them better before running behind this makeshift line?

    Look, CD, I've been here long enough to know your style: you specialize in the cynical, short,
    "this-is-how-it-is" strong opinion post. I don't begrudge you that. You're not a facty poster
    (that's why I kept bringing up your funny stat error...because you got away from doing what you do best--
    just blurtin' stuff out, as if your impression were fact).


    In this thread my (very different) style
    ("Here's something that may seem surprising or counter-intuitive to some, but let's look at the facts and see what they actually say")
    annoyed you...it absolutely didn't fit your style ("Not-uh!!") and you chose to jump in and criticize.
    Okay. But since a lot more effort, thought and fact went into my original post, than your (in your world, self-evident)
    response, don't be surprised when I respond back, that maybe your impressions/opinions will take a
    backseat to facts, for some of us. Anyway, there's plenty of room for both approaches...

    (I don't think that people who think as I do, often change the minds of people like you, or vice-versa).
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2013
  29. Lance19

    Lance19 BoltTalker

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    Well, those of you that saw game 4--v. the Cowboys--obviously don't need me to
    tell you that there actually were some holes for the backs to run through today.

    The luxury of using RM "rushes" to run out the clock will depress the final ypc a bit
    (and for injury/potential-fumble reasons, I'd have preferred QB kneel-downs)
    but overall the O-line did a much, much better job of run-blocking today
    (the "Coaches' Tape" isn't avail yet, but this week we had holes that could be seen from any angle...not just the end zone) :D

    Obviously the O-line is still of primary concern...and the one INT was more a failure of pass-blocking
    than bad decision-making by Rivers...but the bottom line is we've got to give this rag-tag collection
    of linemen an A, given the absurd circumstances. Hopefully the coaching staff understands why they were
    so successful today, because I don't think most of us fans entirely comprehend why the Chargers could
    run left, with the LT & LG out for the day. And kudos yet again for another strong start...

    Screen Shot 2013-09-29 at 8.07.30 PM.png

    Please do not look past the Raiders next week...they're gonna be hungry...
     
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2013
  30. SuperCharger92

    SuperCharger92 BoltTalker

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    I really hope Clary didn't win his job back, either Troutman, Schilling or Ohrenberger please.
     

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