O-Line Struggles Continue in Miami

Filmstudy O-Line Struggles Continue in Miami

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Offensive Line Model and Notes vs. Dolphins 10/6/13

Joe Flacco’s performance deserves a piece of its own this week, so I’ll forgo the normal Ample-Time-and-Space statistics other than to say Joe had ATS on just 11 of 34 drop backs.

That should get you prepared for some of the OL grades and whet your appetite for additional review and scoring of Eugene Monroe’s play with the Jaguars (CLICK HERE).

In addition to Flacco and Torrey Smith, the Ravens’ other big offensive weapon, Justin Tucker, hit 4 field goals and put the opening kickoff between the uprights from 75 yards away. I may have observed that previously, but can’t recall it to be sure. In a practical sense, that may provide an outside bound on the length of a free kick attempt should the need ever arise.

The Ravens ran 73 offensive plays against the Dolphins, excluding Flacco’s kneel.

McKinnie: I love the way Earl Weaver described Earl Williams in his book “It’s What You Learn After You Know it All that Counts”. Older Orioles fans will remember the team, in desperate need of a bat, trading away 4 players to acquire Williams, a slugging catcher, following the 1972 season.

Williams was overt about his late nights and lack of a work ethic. He was well known for giving up on infield practice almost immediately and had an article written about him in Sport Magazine entitled “My Favorite Position is Batter”. Weaver benched him on more than 1 occasion, but Williams would come to him and earnestly say that he wanted to change and address all of his deficiencies. As Weaver describes it, he’d try for a day or two, then go back to his old habits.

By the way, that book is out of print, but it’s one of the great leadership texts featuring real-world examples rather than manufactured hyperbole. It’s very easy to see why Weaver was so great even in his description of this management failure.

So, how does this relate to McKinnie?

The beleaguered left tackle took the field like a man playing for his job and made his first 10 blocks. That included 5 on runs to the middle or right where he often loses interest. From there he appeared to go into event-planning mode for the next Party Bus excursion and delivered his customary low-effort, run-blocking game. He missed or made no attempt on 11 blocks in addition to his negative events. McKinnie hesitated sliding to the outside versus Jordan (Q4, 8:24) and that allowed the 3rd overall pick to turn the corner and disrupt Flacco’s pass for Jones’ interception. Scoring: 57 blocks, 11 missed, 1 penetration, 2 pressures, 1 QH, 1/3 sack, 46 points (.63 per play). I would give him an upgrade for facing a fresh (21 snaps) Dion Jordan on many passing downs, but he got away with a -2 score on a play which resulted in the game-tying pick-6. D.

Shipley: Shipley saw his first action of the season as a replacement for the injured Osemele. The effort was apparent, but the execution was still weak. He had difficulty with Starks in particular who beat him for a pressure and a QH. I’ve been considering whether the -9 charge for a 15-yard foul is really proportional. Shipley’s facemask came on a play where he allowed the penetration that blew up Pierce’s run left for a loss of 1 (Q4, 9:33). Scoring: 56 blocks, 7 missed, 2 pressures, 1 QH, 1 facemask, 40 points (.60 per play). If I were to instead charge him for a holding penalty (-6) because the play set up 1st and 20, he would score .64, still an F.

Gradkowski: The Dolphins were not as aggressive with pressure as previous opponents (19 of 32 rushes with 4 men), but Gradkowski had a notable double miss when he was beaten through the right A gap by Ellerbe then Wheeler for a QH (Q1,5:15). On Flacco’s 2 longest completions of the day, he shared a QH (Q1, 12:20) and was driven back by Soliai (Q2, 13:40) into Joe’s face for a pressure. Scoring: 64 blocks, 5 missed, 1 pressure, 1.17 (1/2 + 2/3) QH, 1/6 sack, 57.5 points (.79 per play). I would adjust him by .04 per play for opponent quality making this a C-. While I’d like to think this represents actual improvement, the Ravens ran the ball much more frequently and I think that masked his pass-blocking weakness.

Yanda: Marshal had not allowed any portion of a sack since the 2011 divisional playoff versus Houston when he was beaten twice. On Sunday, he was party to 2 more. He was beaten outside by Odrick to flush the pocket (2/3 charged) on Vernon’s sack (Q2, 6:57). He was then bulled and beaten outside by Misi on the last play of the first half (Q2, 0:30, 2/3 sack charge). Scoring: 64 blocks, 4 missed, 1/2 pressure, 1/3 QH, 1.33 sacks, 54 points (.74 per play). D+. This is 3 straight bad games for Yanda. I have to wonder if he is hurt.

Oher: Amidst a big pressure day for the Dolphins, Oher did not have a pass-rushing play worse than -1 (the equivalent of a shared pressure). He had some indecision on assignment among his 11 missed blocks, something we won’t see frequently with Monroe. Scoring: 58 blocks, 11 missed, 1 pressure, 1/3 QH, 1/6 sack, 54 points (.74 per play). C. He’s been consistent and has played at a higher level than last season.

Osemele: Kelechi started and was relieved by Shipley after the first series. He shared a QH by Starks with Gradkowski (Q1, 12:20) then was beaten outside by Starks for a QH to Flacco’s legs to end the Ravens’ first drive (Q1, 10:34). I’d be interested to know if Kelechi started the game hurt or was injured during that first drive. He didn’t seem to be moving well at all, but Caldwell had him pull on his next-to-last play and he delivered a crunching shot. Scoring: 6 plays, 3 blocks, 1 missed, 1.5 QHs, -1.5 points (-.25 per play). Incomplete. Like most kids who don’t complete a class, Kelechi would have had trouble passing after that bad start.

Wagner: He made all 9 of his blocks as TE in the Ravens’ 6-man line.

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Ken McKusick

About Ken McKusick

Known as “Filmstudy” from his handle on area message boards, Ken is a lifelong Baltimorean and rabid fan of Baltimore sports. He grew up within walking distance of Memorial Stadium and attended all but a handful of Orioles games from 1979 through 2001. He got his start in sports modeling with baseball in the mid 1980’s. He began writing about the Ravens in 2006 and maintains a library of video for every game the team has played. He’s a graduate of Syracuse with degrees in Broadcast Journalism and Math who recently retired from his actuarial career to pursue his passion as a football analyst full time.

If you have math or modeling questions related to sports or gambling, Ken is always interested in hearing new problems or ideas.

He can be reached by email at [email protected] or followed on Twitter @filmstudyravens.

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