Film Struggle 1

Welcome to my latest series. I will cataloging my journey of improving my film watching skill and trying to connect all dots. I know my dude @14TeamMocker hates it, but holistically. Trying to take into account the whole picture, not just one players ability. Previously, outside of watching games and Redzone on Sunday, I have watched lots of Draftbreakdown.com to study college IDP and compare/project the players in the coming draft class.

I have started trying to watch as many games as I can with NFL Game Pass and the great “condensed game” feature. I don’t consider myself a real “film Guy” and it is possible I never do but I want to continue to get better at FF and more film is the natural next step. I usually focus on trade strategy and taking advantage of league dynamics or an owner’s bias. I use the knowledge and formulas from Chad Parsons and the rest of the UTH crew to help with player evaluation. Most of my writing has been broad and about the fantasy aspect, not the NFL. I only say this to help illustrate my path and thought process.

With the Miami backfield being such a hot button topic I figure, why not start watching Miami. I chose games at random, which may not be the best way to do it and in season I will be watching as many games as possible as they come. Let’s start with the first two games i watched.

First I watched Miami vs Houston, week six of last season. Miami won this game 44 to 26. The highlight shared the most of Jarvis Landry comes from this game. He jukes the whole defense basically and “flashes” some speed and shows great vision. It is interesting to think of players who we hear “showed flashes” or “flashes”. Just drawing from my horrible memory I think we reserve this for players who have already been labeled “athletic”. This is of course one of his best plays ever, I understand this. My point is I don’t remember people saying Landry “flashed” in year two when it seems to me he did.

Watching this game it seemed to me Tannenhill has to get the ball out quick and in short order because his line collapses quickly. This makes it so Landry caught a lot of passes at the line of scrimmage. What is interesting is Lamar Miller still finds good holes and gets plenty of Yardage. He ran for 175 yards on 14 carries, an average of 12.5 a carry. It makes me believe either Tannenhill is not as good as I perceived or Miller is better than I thought. The line is also in question for me, they can create holes but also seem to fall in on Tannenhill. The big question for me becomes, what do I need to learn about O-line play? Looks like I have more reading to do.

Next I thought I should start at the beginning so I jumped to Week One against Washington. Miami won 17 to 10, it looked like it would be fairly uneventful. I reminded myself the context of week one and how the teams are trying to pick up steam. I do believe they played the best they could at the time, I just also think they are shaking a bit of rust off. 

Tannenhill threw for 226 yards and a TD by connecting 22 of 34 attempts. In week six he threw for 282 yards with four TD’S, connecting 18 of 19 attempts. Looking at these two stat lines, I thought he had thrown more in week seven. The next thing I noticed is he was able to throw fewer attempts for more yardage later in the season. (Yes I know it is a small sample). In the Washington game I was impressed with Cousins a few times and seeing how much worse his stats look leads me to believe I have a lot to learn. This makes me excited though. 

I am learning a lot and hope my journey can help some of you learn as well. The second installment will be about later games with Landry and Parker but before that, here are some notes.

Key take aways:

The O-line is not very good at protecting Tannenhill. This seems to result in a lot of quick plays and short routes, if any. This does not get mentioned in the twitter debates I have seen.

Miami does not pass deep very often. According to Pro-Football-Reference.com Tannenhill’s Y/A is 7.18. In comparison Kirk Cousins is close to the same while guys like Andy Dalton and Ben Roethlisberger are over 8. Tannenhill did hit 300 or more yards six times during the season though. Watching whole games should help me understand this.

Landry is sometimes asked to not run a route, just wait for the short pass at or behind the line of scrimmage. I don’t think this is taken into account much. I am excited to see how things change with Parker on the field whose Y/R was 19 while Landry was 10.52. 

Miller is great at finding the hole and getting through it. I need to watch more Houston and check their O-line adjustments because they did not look very good against Miami.

I have a lot of work to do. Starting with finishing my literature from Chris B.Brown and Pat Kirwan.

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