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Just How Bad Was Buffalo's Run Game Aside from Josh Allen?

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the fault lies in many sectors....incl the o line, the WRs and the QB.You dont respect the passing game u can cheat on the run defense.

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3 minutes ago, Tcali said:

the fault lies in many sectors....incl the o line, the WRs and the QB.You dont respect the passing game u can cheat on the run defense.

 

That's probably a natural assumption, but the NextGenStats don't really support it.

 

https://nextgenstats.nfl.com/stats/rushing#percent-eight-defenders

 

McCoy and Ivory faced 8 or more defenders in the box 16.15 and 20.87 percent of the time--respectively--which ranks as 39th and 34th-most often among 55 qualifying backs.

 

Additionally, McCoy and Ivory spent an average of 2.98 seconds and 2.86 seconds (again, respectively) behind the LOS on their carries.

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McCoy needs to be a 3rd down back (mostly, only). He'd be a very expensive 1 down back.

Ivory (and Murphy?) need to slam it in there 1st and 2nd down and get to 3rd and manageable.

If McCoy wants to dance around on 3rd down to try to get the 1st, then so be it.

Dancing on 1st/2nd down is a drive killer.

 

other option is to put Shady in the slot sometimes

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For guys that came in and said they wanted to run the ball...I can only say...wow.

 

They inherited the NFL's best running game. In yards and ypc, they were at the top or at least in the top 3. In some areas, they were pretty dominant. Carries of 20+ (they had something like 27 of them). TD's, at the top. In terms of yards before contact on the left side of the line...they led the league with an ungodly high number.  They made guys like Mike Gillisee and Karlos Williams look like all pro players.

 

They liked to pound people, run some misdirection and use their  QB to freeze LBs or on options.  In a very smart move, Anthony Lynn improved on Roman's playbook and got plays in quicker...but he used it as a  base because it worked well in 2015. He made it better.

 

Then the new guys come in...saying they want to run the ball. But in a mindnumbingly idiotic decisions in some time...the OC that came in decides to change the playbook to a stretch play dominant run game. I think they led the league in that regard. By the bye, some of the O players were begging to bring back some plays from the prior years. They did for about 2-3 games, and it was working, but then Dennison went back to his old habits.

 

To this day, I can't figure it out. Damn...they were given the playbook to the best running game in the NFL...and chose not to use it.  

 

In 2018, after their starting center is forced into retirement, they trade their LT and piss off their Pro Bowl guard. The replacements are less than adequate. On a normal running play in 2018, Shady is met by 2 defenders in the backfield or with an clogged hole. But its because he lost a step. Or something.

 

For guys who came in talking about having a good running game...their aptitude has been wanting to say the least, on a number of levels.

 

 

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47 minutes ago, Buddy Hix said:

The Oline and running backs need to be upgraded. Unfortunately, Beane has already committed to keeping McCoy. I don’t understand how Beane can justify not moving McCoy at the deadline and paying him top dollar next season, very concerning. And Ivory was also a disappointing pick up. Two over the hill backs on bad contracts...at least Shady’s deal is done after next season.

 

I’m hoping the Oline can get fixed next year and two years from now the O will be above average. I predict next season will be another below average season on O just based on all of the holes, tough to fix that many issues, especially when Beane can’t see how bad McCoy is now.

What he says no means nothing.  

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So many "experts" here come up with rationales for why McCoy is "toast."  They look at the stats and the runs and don't see upper tier averages, which makes it easy for them to post that McCoy has lost a step, no longer has his burst, is too old, or whatever.  When he first came here, many "experts" complained he was too old and would accomplish little.  They were proven wrong.  Before you throw Shady under a bus, determine if the problem rested other than with him.  Very few backs can do much without a solid line in from of them.  What we had this season was quite frankly a disgrace.  Only the likes of Jim Brown, Cookie, and possibly a few others would have felt they could function behind it.  The "experts" should give McCoy a break until he proves he cannot run behind the three or four new, effective offensive linemen that hopefully we'll have next season.

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2 hours ago, BADOLBILZ said:

 

My first thought is that the McDermott hire has wrecked the running game/scoring offense the way the Rex hire ruined the defense.

 

But unlike the Rex defense........which was mostly resolvable with simplified scheme..........the running game is going to require a much broader overhaul.

 

New offensive lineman.........new running backs..........new receiving targets to keep safeties out of the box.........and of course better offensive line coaching and run game design.

 

In fairness to the new regime........Wood, Incognito, Shady and Clay were going to age out..........their absence and or decline is significant in the equation.

The truth is in your last paragraph.  No NFL team can recover from losing 3 veteran olineman in 1 season. Shady & Clay pretty much have aged out. They'll first have to evaluate which lineman left are worth salvaging. Dawkins is probably safe as a starter and maybe Mills as a backup RT. After that anything can happen.  Clay will be released this spring but I think McCoy is given 1 final year in Buffalo. Don't know what will happen with Ivory, Murphy and Ford? I can guarantee you we'll draft a RB.  I absolutely love the fact that JA can run. I just want him to tone it down and force himself to develop more pocket skills. The bottom line is everything starts with the OL.....

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1 hour ago, BarkleyForGOATBackupPT5P said:

"even though our offense looked bad. When you REALLY examined it.. it was even worse" hahaha that's a great way to put it. The offense truly was worse than what the eye test showed. And the eye test wasn't pretty.

 

JA will benefit just as much from a real NFL rushing threat backing him up as receivers and pass blocking. They really all need to be fixed. I think correcting run blocking to improve from.. worst in the league.. to passable, and getting a blueblood RB under 30 (why get Ivory.. ugh too old) through draft or FA is the first easiest fix really. Since we're so bad at that, it's not that hard to improve. And I think Shady has more in the tank but he should be getting 40% if we truly find a better talent at RB. Even improving run blocking and Shady will be servicable. But we really should get a better RB to get the lions share of carries and be less injury prone.

 

 

Soooo much right with your comments above, Peterman (which you will always be to me :wub:    :P).

 

So many things are so bad that if they improve everything as you stated above and given the rushers we have (which I fully agree with you on) AND, I MIGHT REGRET WRITING THIS, BUT PLEASE LET THIS BE "SUPER HYPOTHETICAL TERRITORY", this team could be 11-5 next year and yet Allen may only be a 24 TD, 3,800 yards passing QB.  In other words it may not be all passing yards and passing tds.  It may matter more just to be plain better everywhere on offense.

 

I know, I know...it is a sin in this day and age to say a QB with those numbers is "good", but it may be the case.

 

GO BILLS!

 

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2 hours ago, RyanC883 said:

O-line is HUGE.   Look at the Steelers O-line, then look at Bell, Connor and even J. Sanders success.  Of course, those guys are all skilled and younger than our backfield. 

 

We fix the OL, get a guy like Coleman in FA, and/or draft a stud in Rd. 2 and we will be on our way to fixing the terrible running game. 

Correct. This also shows not only how bad of a season the RBs had but shows the bad play from the OL. The RBs would have done a little better if the Oline wasn't so bad,  however the RBs (McCoy) has a habbit of dancing and losing yards and I believe some of it is on him as well.

 

I think you start with the OL though, get that revamped and get some good/solid guys up front and it should drastically improve. That itself would help Allen out a lot. WRs however are a different story. I think we all know that has to be addressed outside of Foster.

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Seems like it was a combination of O-Line and our RB1 inability to break the first tackle. O think Barkley would have found a way to run. I hope we get a speedy bruiser.

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3 hours ago, CommonCents said:

Revamp oline, Revamp the backfield. I don’t care what McCoy fans say, he is toast. If by some miracle he has another season over 4.5

it’s still better to be a year early than a year late. Get a stud in the middle of the draft. 

 

I say keep him through camp and let him earn a job.  He still has value to me as a 3rd down style guy - can block, can catch, still tough to tackle.  I think his days as a 20 carry bell cow are done though.  The 7 million we save by cutting him isn't money that we need at the moment.

1 hour ago, Formerly Allan in MD said:

So many "experts" here come up with rationales for why McCoy is "toast."  They look at the stats and the runs and don't see upper tier averages, which makes it easy for them to post that McCoy has lost a step, no longer has his burst, is too old, or whatever.  When he first came here, many "experts" complained he was too old and would accomplish little.  They were proven wrong.  Before you throw Shady under a bus, determine if the problem rested other than with him.  Very few backs can do much without a solid line in from of them.  What we had this season was quite frankly a disgrace.  Only the likes of Jim Brown, Cookie, and possibly a few others would have felt they could function behind it.  The "experts" should give McCoy a break until he proves he cannot run behind the three or four new, effective offensive linemen that hopefully we'll have next season.

 

I mean - bring in others.  He should feel like his job is on the line... because it is.

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2 hours ago, BuffaloBillies said:

McCoy needs to be a 3rd down back (mostly, only). He'd be a very expensive 1 down back.

Ivory (and Murphy?) need to slam it in there 1st and 2nd down and get to 3rd and manageable.

If McCoy wants to dance around on 3rd down to try to get the 1st, then so be it.

Dancing on 1st/2nd down is a drive killer.

 

other option is to put Shady in the slot sometimes

Shady still has wheels left. If we go and fix the OL then Shady won't have to dance around like he did last season

1 hour ago, dneveu said:

 

I say keep him through camp and let him earn a job.  He still has value to me as a 3rd down style guy - can block, can catch, still tough to tackle.  I think his days as a 20 carry bell cow are done though.  The 7 million we save by cutting him isn't money that we need at the moment.

 

I mean - bring in others.  He should feel like his job is on the line... because it is.

He knows that he's approaching the end. I say keep him and add the best young guy we can. Shady still has some left in the tank and is a leader in the locker room. He'll add value for another year, then decide.

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4 hours ago, Hapless Bills Fan said:

 

In the first handful of games, it can not be over-emphasized how mind-bendingly abysmal our run blocking was.

 

At least part of the problem appeared to have been that our guys simply didn't have it to win 1:1 battles. 

 

The initial solution was a lot of cut-blocking, at which they did not excel.  And by "did not excel" I mean "attempts resulted in our OL on the ground with defenders hurdling them enroute to the ball carrier or QB".

 

Later in the season, we did move to heavy sets on pretty much every run play, which of course telegraphs the play but was more effective nonetheless.  But we were still losing battles.

 

Thank you for the definition! Lol

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2 hours ago, foreboding said:

Seems like it was a combination of O-Line and our RB1 inability to break the first tackle. O think Barkley would have found a way to run. I hope we get a speedy bruiser.

 

It was lousy OL play plus a mismatch between blocking scheme and RB style in Shady's case.

 

That's why, imo, it's critical that Daboll have input in the OL coach hire--the blocking scheme needs to match the overall offensive philosophy 

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4 hours ago, BuffaloBillies said:

McCoy needs to be a 3rd down back (mostly, only). He'd be a very expensive 1 down back.

Ivory (and Murphy?) need to slam it in there 1st and 2nd down and get to 3rd and manageable.

If McCoy wants to dance around on 3rd down to try to get the 1st, then so be it.

Dancing on 1st/2nd down is a drive killer.

 

other option is to put Shady in the slot sometimes

I could tolerate the behind the line dancing 2 years ago when he was reeling off 15 yard runs but now he just reminds me of Spiller....

7 minutes ago, thebandit27 said:

 

It was lousy OL play plus a mismatch between blocking scheme and RB style in Shady's case.

 

That's why, imo, it's critical that Daboll have input in the OL coach hire--the blocking scheme needs to match the overall offensive philosophy 

Couldn't agree more. Daboll has to have a say in who the new OL coach will be. And it has to line up with his scheme. 

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6 hours ago, thebandit27 said:

Team                   Rush Att             YDS                   QB                   Rush Att            YDS              Non-QB YPC

Baltimore              547                   2441              Jackson                147                 695                   4.37

Houston                472                   2021                Watson                99                   551                   3.94

Chicago                 468                  1938                Trubisky               68                   421                   3.79

Carolina                 416                  2136               Newton                  101                 488                  5.23

Jacksonville         416                   1723              Bortles                   58                   365                   3.79

Seattle                   534                   2560                Wilson                  67                  376                   4.68

Tennessee            454                   2023              Mariota                  64                  357                    4.27

Dallas                     439                  1963               Prescott                75                  305                    4.55

TB                           389                  1523            Winston/Fitz            85                  433                    3.59

Buffalo                  468                   1984              Allen                       89                 631                    3.57

 

I think that it’s an interesting point-of-note that of the “rushing-est” QBs in the league that only one is a franchise QB but that’s entirely because of his passing numbers. 

 

Having said that, TD/INT ratio is a far better indicator as to franchise QBs. 

 

Wilson’s was 5/1 this season and is 3.1/1 career.

 

The others’ this season were as follows: 

 

Watson’s is 2.9/1

Trubisky 2/1

Newton 1.8/1

Jackson 2/1

Bortles 1.2/1

Prescott 2.8/1

Mariota 1.4/1

Winston 1.4/1

Fitzpatrick 1.4/1

Allen  .8/1 

 

Point being that no QB made franchise status predicated upon his rushing much less his raw athleticism. 

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6 minutes ago, TaskersGhost said:

 

I think that it’s an interesting point-of-note that of the “rushing-est” QBs in the league that only one is a franchise QB but that’s entirely because of his passing numbers. 

 

Having said that, TD/INT ratio is a far better indicator as to franchise QBs. 

 

Wilson’s was 5/1 this season and is 3.1/1 career.

 

The others’ this season were as follows: 

 

Watson’s is 2.9/1

Trubisky 2/1

Newton 1.8/1

Jackson 2/1

Bortles 1.2/1

Prescott 2.8/1

Mariota 1.4/1

Winston 1.4/1

Fitzpatrick 1.4/1

Allen  .8/1 

 

Point being that no QB made franchise status predicated upon his rushing much less his raw athleticism. 

 

Well done missing the point of this thread. 

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27 minutes ago, thebandit27 said:

 

It was lousy OL play plus a mismatch between blocking scheme and RB style in Shady's case.

 

That's why, imo, it's critical that Daboll have input in the OL coach hire--the blocking scheme needs to match the overall offensive philosophy 

good analysis

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5 hours ago, All_Pro_Bills said:

These stats confirm the 'eye test'.  When I watch games with teams that have a good offensive line I see linemen down field and on their feet after the play.  With the Bills I saw linemen on the ground in the backfield.  It would be interesting the see stats, if they are available, how many of those rushing attempts had first contact behind the LOS. 

 

Especially early in the season, a lot of this was by design (unsuccessful attempts at cut blocking).  These continued through the season especially by the TE. 

 

But even where the blocking was successful and there were holes, we simply couldn't hold the block and neutralize the defender.  The defenders were able to shed the blocks and stuff the run at the LOS or behind.

 

It will be a key question, how much of the unsuccessful blocking schemes was on Daboll and how much on Castillo.

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9 minutes ago, TaskersGhost said:

 

I think that it’s an interesting point-of-note that of the “rushing-est” QBs in the league that only one is a franchise QB but that’s entirely because of his passing numbers. 

Point being that no QB made franchise status predicated upon his rushing much less his raw athleticism. 

 

Errrmmmmm....  methinks the point of this thread was to assess what the Bills run game was like independent of Allen.

You're looking for one of the threads about Allen ....down two flights, turn left, end of the hall.

 

 

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2 hours ago, ProcessAccepted said:

Shady still has wheels left. If we go and fix the OL then Shady won't have to dance around like he did last season

He knows that he's approaching the end. I say keep him and add the best young guy we can. Shady still has some left in the tank and is a leader in the locker room. He'll add value for another year, then decide.

He has always danced a little too much. Even when the OL was pretty darn good. It's just who he is. Sometimes it works and most times he losses 2-3yds. Even with the OL (hopefully) getting a lot better next season, I guarantee you will still see him dancing too much majority of the time.

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4 hours ago, dollars 2 donuts said:

 

 

Soooo much right with your comments above, Peterman (which you will always be to me :wub:    :P).

 

So many things are so bad that if they improve everything as you stated above and given the rushers we have (which I fully agree with you on) AND, I MIGHT REGRET WRITING THIS, BUT PLEASE LET THIS BE "SUPER HYPOTHETICAL TERRITORY", this team could be 11-5 next year and yet Allen may only be a 24 TD, 3,800 yards passing QB.  In other words it may not be all passing yards and passing tds.  It may matter more just to be plain better everywhere on offense.

 

I know, I know...it is a sin in this day and age to say a QB with those numbers is "good", but it may be the case.

 

GO BILLS!

Much love DtD 😍. There will always be a part of PetermanThrew5Picks in me. The loveable curmudgeon that drunkenly felt the need to create an account the second half of last year's Chargers game and spam the specter of organizational incompetence that brought a negative Peterman cloud to my character. That Chargers game will always be the pivotal disillusionment in my Bills fandom. A loss of innocence if you will.

 

(also to be the SaviorPete antogonist the world needed. LOOK AT ME NOW SAVIOR PETE!! If Peterman was Jesus than I was the Antichrist.)

 

but with Peterman finally gone I'm a changed man. I've faced trials and tribulations, an identity crisis and was a wayward soul until Barkley restored my faith in the Bills backup Quarterback position. I will take the mantle as board authority on backup Bills Quarterbacks.

 

I may not know much. I may speak authoritatively on things I know nothing about with absolutely no fact checking (facts are for nerds) But if I've learned anything.. I am obsessed with the backup Quarterback position apparently. And dangit if Matt Barkley didn't make me a more positive and healthy man.

 

I may always be PetermanThrew5Picks to some. But I'm a much more emotionally developed since those dark days.. I am.. BarkleyForGOATBackup.

 

question: HOW DO I CHANGE MY "VET/RFA/PS/PROSPECT" SLOGAN OR WHATEVER IT IS. I ACCIDENTALLY SET IT TO MY EXACT SAME NAME. I WANT TO BE A...

 

PRIMADONNA LOCKERROOM POISON HOLDING OUT FOR MORE PAPER

Edited by BarkleyForGOATBackupPT5P
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6 hours ago, Nextmanup said:

The run game will magically improve when the O Line does.

 

Guys who can dart through a hole in the line are a dime a dozen in this league.  If there is no hole and the O line gets no push or movement, things bottle up fast!

 

 

O-line made it impossible to run consistently.  Pass protection was also a joke.  Look no further than Indianapolis to see what an improved O-line can do in a one season turn around.  Their two backs are dime a dozen guys and had good seasons because of excellent line play. We can only hope the FO does its homework and brings in the right free agents and/or draft picks.

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Food for thought: 

 

Is the running game suffering because of our incapabilities as a passing offense, or does our offense struggle to pass the ball because of the awful running game? 

 

Chicken or the egg? 

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