Pierre Garcon to Play X According to Josh Morgan

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Pierre Garcon to Play X According to Josh Morgan

Postby The Hogster » Wed May 23, 2012 7:46 pm

Interesting read with a breakdown of why this is an interesting wrinkle for you football heads. Actual article has images that are worth a look if you don't know why this is significant.

http://www.hogshaven.com/2012/5/23/3039367/pierre-garcon-to-play-x-receiver-according-to-joshua-morgan

A good friend of ours here at Hogs Haven, Brian Murphy, posted his interview with newly acquired Redskins wide receiver Joshua Morgan today. It's an excellent piece, and I strongly suggest you go read the whole article (click here). But one particular point jumped out while I was reading it this morning.

"When I first got here, coach [Mike] Shanahan sat me and Pierre [Garcon] down in his office together on day one and said they wanted us to be a major, major part of the offense," Morgan said. "He said Pierre was going to be the X and I was going to play the Z. I think my biggest part is, when they call my number, I just need to be ready to make the play."

- Homer McFanboy, Getting to know Joshua Morgan.

This surprised me somewhat, because I was under the impression that Pierre Garcon played primarily the Z receiver role during his time in Indianapolis. Now I know at this point some of you are saying "UK, what the F@&K is the difference between a Z and X receiver?", allow me to explain.

The Z (or Flanker/FL) receiver is quite often the featured receiver of the offense. Years ago some west coast offenses would channel the majority of the passing plays to the Z receiver. But essentially, the Z receiver lines up a yard or so of the line of scrimmage and more often than not on the same side as the tight end (also known as the Y). The Z receiver would use this extra yard to help them avoid being jammed at the line of scrimmage by a corner; so generally the Z receiver would be a smaller guy with speed.

More after the jump.



X (or Split End/SE) receivers are usually more physical guys. They line up directly on the line of scrimmage, so have to be able to battle against a corner attempting to jam him at the line. This leads to the guys who are taller, stronger guys playing the X. The X will line up on the opposite side of the tight end.

For the more visual learners, here's what it looks like drawn up.



Notice how the Z receiver is slightly off the line of scrimmage, while the X is on par with the offensive lineman. The X is lined up on the opposite side of the offensive line from the tight end (who is marked as Y).

With that explained, lets go back to the Morgan quote. Morgan says that Shanahan told him Garcon was playing the X, while Morgan would be the Z. Now Garcon is listed as 6'0", 210lbs, while Morgan is listed as 6'1", 215lbs. As we learned earlier, generally the smaller, quicker guy would play the Z. But even as the smaller guy, Garcon is going to be played at the X, despite playing the Z for the majority of his time in Indy.

I was stumped as to why Mike Shanahan would do this. So I looked into the benefits, and the answer hit me. Play-action bootlegs and roll-outs. With Mike Shanahan's zone-blocking stretch running system, it's extremely easy to call bootlegs off of a straightforward run. Generally the fake run will go to the strong side of the line; that is, the side of the line with the tight end on it. We know from earlier, the X receiver lines up on the opposite side of the tight end, meaning he's on the backside of the play. On an average running play, the X would be ignored by the defense because he's on the backside of the run. This gives him a terrific chance to get open deep on play-action. If the defense is sold into believing the run, the could ignore the X, allowing him to run wide open down field.

Again, here's how it could look drawn up:



Even if the corner doesn't fully bite on the play-action, if Garcon gets a step on him, he can use his speed to run by him and get open deep. So my conclusion to Garcon playing the X is, prepare to see a lot of play-action bootlegs.

What do you guys think? Do you like the idea of Garcon playing the X, or should we stick to what he knows at the Z? Let us know in the comments below. As always, if you enjoyed this post, you're welcome to hit the recommend button.
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Postby The Hogster » Wed May 23, 2012 7:52 pm

After reading this breakdown and viewing the plays drawn up. Take a look at the defenders that would be left to stop RG3 on the bootleg play as drawn.


Football 101 - I can't wait to get a look at this.
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Postby Kilmer72 » Wed May 23, 2012 7:59 pm

Well, there is more on his plate now. I guess we will just have to wait and see.

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Postby tribeofjudah » Wed May 23, 2012 8:16 pm

Aug and Sept..........HURRY UP ALREADY....!!!
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so one person sharpens another.

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Postby The Hogster » Wed May 23, 2012 8:31 pm

tribeofjudah wrote:Aug and Sept..........HURRY UP ALREADY....!!!


+1 Basically
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Postby Countertrey » Wed May 23, 2012 9:02 pm

Remember... teams will be looking for the boot... this only works if the run game has earned respect. I suspect there's a pretty good chance of that...
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Postby rskin72 » Wed May 23, 2012 11:08 pm

Hogster, thanks for the post and the link. It is true, a picture is worth 1000 words. And to think i only used to drool at pics of neekid ladies! :P
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Postby HEROHAMO » Thu May 24, 2012 12:31 am

I dont want RG3s career being shortened by running too much. He has the skills to get it done by throwing it. With Cooley, Davis, Garcon, Hankerson and the rest of the group. We should have plenty of weapons for RG3 to throw to. It will be an exciting year for sure. I suspect our passing game may open up the running game. Either way defenses will have to play us honest.

Lets say we do go five wide and we go deep routes with all the receivers. That would leave RG3 one on one with probably a linebacker. 8 out of ten times RG3 is going to scramble for a first down. Or if they decide to leave a man open and spy that should leave a wide out open. Too many possibilities oh I cant wait. Ive seen Garcon really fly on more then one occasion. We all know Moss can hit a homerun. Just wonder if Moss has anything left in the tank. Maybe another miracle in Dallas?
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Postby skinsfan#33 » Thu May 24, 2012 1:47 pm

The Hogster wrote:After reading this breakdown and viewing the plays drawn up. Take a look at the defenders that would be left to stop RG3 on the bootleg play as drawn.


Football 101 - I can't wait to get a look at this.


Thanks for the post.

I think this will be run more so with that formation reversed w/the TE and Morgan to the left side of the LOS. The play will be a stretch to the left with a boot to the right.

At first glance you would want your faster and bigger WR in the X spot, but since Morgan is an exceptional run blocker it makes sense to have him on the strong side. While I would prefer to have him at the X possition since he has proven to be more explosive than Garcon, I can see the value of having him at the point of attack.
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Postby jr_uscg » Thu May 24, 2012 4:51 pm

I was going to say the samething, Morgan is known for his blocking skills. It makes sense. I like it.
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Postby The Hogster » Thu May 24, 2012 5:10 pm

I think the concept being drawn up is that when a run play is going strong side, the back side receiver is usually ignored. The idea is that on a playaction roll out back to the weakside, that bit of hesitation by the corner, will allow Garcon to use his speed to beat that guy deep.

It suggests that the playaction game will be something the Skins can exploit teams with, especially with RG3s speed.
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Postby chiefhog44 » Thu May 24, 2012 8:28 pm

The Hogster wrote:I think the concept being drawn up is that when a run play is going strong side, the back side receiver is usually ignored. The idea is that on a playaction roll out back to the weakside, that bit of hesitation by the corner, will allow Garcon to use his speed to beat that guy deep.

It suggests that the playaction game will be something the Skins can exploit teams with, especially with RG3s speed.


Right and to guard against the boot, you may have to leave a LB or safety on the weak side..which would take a defensive player out of the way of a strong side run.

Having options kill defense...meaning if you can effectively have a safety come up in the box and guard the strong side run AND the boot against a slow QB like Rex, you are pretty limited.

And this is why Shanny is drooling on himself to get this kid in his offense. Even though he may not the best prospect in the draft, he is a PERFECT fit for Shanny's offense and may even allow one of the greatest offensive minds to evolve his offense even more.
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Postby frankcal20 » Thu May 24, 2012 10:09 pm

I would imagine the TE would then sneak underneath on the weak side to be the checkdown IF the deep pass isn't open and the coverage is to the strong side.

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Postby The Hogster » Thu May 24, 2012 10:15 pm

frankcal20 wrote:I would imagine the TE would then sneak underneath on the weak side to be the checkdown IF the deep pass isn't open and the coverage is to the strong side.

Look at us talkin all football like!!!


+1

There are many options there. If you run it out of a single back, 3 wide formation, then you have Moss in the middle, or if you go double tight end, Niles Paul or Cooley is there.

The fact that your QB is capable of gutting you for 30+ yards opens up all of these options.

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Postby SouthLondonRedskin » Fri May 25, 2012 3:44 am

Thanks guys.

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