Muskie Quarters


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1/4\'s Coverage

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Muskie Quarters

  1. 1. Muskingum College <br />¼’s Coverage Made Simple<br />“The Muskie Way”<br />
  2. 2. Table of Contents:<br />Introduction<br />1. Why Quarters (1/4’s) Coverage<br />2. Terminology<br />3. Offensive Formations – How They Affect Coverage<br />4. CB’s Reads<br />5. Safety’s Reads<br />6. Big Picture – How it all fits together<br />
  3. 3. Introduction:<br />The purpose of this presentation is to dispel some of the notions about ¼’s coverage. For some people when you mention ”quarters” there is a sense of uneasiness that comes over them. A sense of not knowing, as if ¼’s coverage was some newfangled invention. We are not reinventing the wheel. Quarters coverage is not as difficult as many people would have you believe. I hope this manual will help clear up many of the questions that you might have about the coverage. <br /> (*At least as far as this simple football coach can understand it!!)<br />
  4. 4. Chapter 1: Why Quarters Coverage<br />Why Quarters coverage (1/4)? Why do we need to reinvent the wheel when cover 3, cover 2 (2-deep), cover 1 (man free), and 0 (no one free) seem to handle all of the situations in football that we encounter. In the game of football, we still need to stop the run, that is the name of the game. In my opinion there is no other coverage that allows me to commit up to 9 players to defend the run. The displacement of personnel also allows us to defend the field for the passing game.<br />
  5. 5. Chapter 1: (Cont.) Why ¼’s Coverage<br />Whatever your defensive scheme you need to be able to commit as many people as it takes to stop the run. There is nothing worse than defending someone that is running the ball at will on you and you can’t do anything to stop it. Now they can throw at will because we have everybody thinking run. We must stop the run and make them throw when we want them to throw.<br />MAKE THE OFFENSE PREDICTABLE – NOW THEY LOSE ANY ADVANTAGE THEY MIGHT HAVE HAD!!<br />In looking at the chart on the previous page one can see how many players can be committed to the run and pass in certain coverages. Some defenses or coverages pull more or less people into the coverage. It seems that the trendy defense is the 8-man front (at least in Hs.) The 8-man front is a great front, however the last time I checked 9 was still more than 8. The utilization of ¼’s coverage allows the defense depending on certain formations to play a 9 man front to stop the run. It also allows for a robber coverage scheme vs. the pass that unfolds differently each time it is run because of the offensive pattern that is run into it.<br />The versatility of the coverage does not stop with the numbers advantage. The coverage also allows for the ability to disguise coverages between 2 deep and 4(1/4’s) which are very different. The Qb’s pre-snap read is the same every snap with many different variations unfolding once the ball is snapped.<br />The main objective of any defense should be to stop the run first. In stopping the run you know when the opponent is going to throw. If we know when the opponent is going to throw the ball, we can now game plan and scheme specifically for the pass. We have taken away at least half of the offenses arsenal which should make it more predictable. In doing this we now gain an advantage.<br />
  6. 6. Chapter 1: (Cont.)Why ¼’s Coverage?<br />ADVANTAGES OF QUARTERS ¼’s<br />1. Have 9 players involved in the run game. (large % of time)<br />2. Give QB’s the same pre-snap read every snap, while playing many different coverages.<br />3. Have a robber scheme within your coverages (gain an extra player to help out)<br />4. Play one coverage that unfolds differently vs. each route the offense runs.<br />5. One coverage with 4 different techniques (CB’s), 2 techniques (Saf.)<br />6. Work one coverage / allows for mastery of techniques through repetition.<br />7. Vs. Trips routes we end up with a double robber coverage. (Interceptions!!)<br />8. Allows us to play a zone tech. = eyes to QB while in reality playing a match up zone. (Squeeze man in your zone)<br />9. More interceptions on defense because we are playing a zone tech. most of the time with our eyes to the QB. (Man coverage DB’s don’t see the QB or ball most of the time)<br />10. Most interceptions come in Zone coverage as opposed to man because you have more eyes on the football and you get more people breaking on the ball.<br />
  7. 7. Chapter 2: Terminology<br />TERMINOLOGY: The terms we will use from here on out are the terms that I would use in talking to our players. From here on we will use this terminology to discuss our cover 4.<br />Defensive Calls:<br /> - Our defensive calls are given by each safety to the CB and LB’er on their respective side of the field. <br /> - Each Safety’s call is made independently of the other.<br /> - All calls made by the safety should be echoed by the CB and Sam or Will, to insure that all 3 people are playing the proper technique.<br />* For the most part our Safety’s will make one of 6 calls:<br /> - Read (puts the safety into a robber mode playing RUN first)<br /> - Alert (puts us into a soft cover 2)<br /> - Flat (Tells the CB/Safety to read #2’s release / #2 to the flat the CB jumps)<br /> - Cloud (Tells the CB to play a hard Corner / Re-route)<br /> - Gilligan (Our base answer to 3 x 1 (trips) – commit our backside safety to the front side #3)<br /> - Clue (Tells our CB and Safety to play IN / OUT on #1 and #2 / OLB handles #3, used vs. over-split by offense trying to remove our OLB from the box for run support)<br />
  8. 8. Chapter 2: Terminology<br />
  9. 9. Chapter 2: Terminology<br />
  10. 10. Chapter 2: Terminology<br />
  11. 11. Chapter 2: Terminology<br />
  12. 12. Chapter 2: Terminology<br />
  13. 13. Chapter 2: Terminology<br />
  14. 14. Chapter 3:Offensive Formations – How they affect Coverage<br />1. Any Defense that try’s to maintain a 2-deep shell can be manipulated to a certain degree. Most offenses are trying to gain a #’ s advantage either inside the Tackle Box or Outside the Tackle Box. <br />2. As a general rule of thumb if they get 5 in the box they will run. (Down and Distance will factor in)<br />3. 6 players in the box =‘s pass. (Down and Distance will factor in)<br />4. Are they spreading you out to Run or Pass?<br />5. Certain formations will dictate LB’er displacement.<br />6. Certain personnel groups will dictate LB’er displacement. <br />7. Certain personnel groups combined with motions and shifting of formations will all dictate LB’er displacement.<br />8. Linebacker displacement is how the offense will decide whether to run the ball and where to run the ball.<br />
  15. 15. Chapter 3:Offensive Formations – How they affect Coverage<br />
  16. 16. Chapter 4: CB’s Reads<br />Our CB’s reads and or rules vary depending on the ¼’s call that we are playing.<br />1. READ – CB’s Rule is “inside and on top” of #1. If we are playing “Off” we utilize a Zone tech. by watching the QB through the 3 step before getting our eyes back to the #1 receiver. We will handle all vertical routes including the POST. (Ends up being an “off” man concept)<br />2. ALERT – CB’s Rule is “squeeze #1 until #2 crosses your vertical”. Zone your ¼ do not chase #1. On an inside release by #1 get your eyes to #2. As with a read call, we watch the QB through the 3 step before snapping our eyes back to the #1 receiver. (Ends up being a zone concept)<br />3. FLAT – The focus of our attention is now the #2 receiver. We will read #2’s release. If #2 is vertical we play ALERT, if #2 goes out we jump the route and it puts us into a CLOUD call, or a hard corner.<br />4. CLOUD – Tells the CB to play a hard corner / Re-route #1 receiver getting eyes to #2.<br />5. GILLIGAN – Our base answer to trips. This call refers to the CB on the backside of trips (any 3x1). The call tells that CB that he has no help, he is on an island. He has #1 man to man.<br />6. CLUE – Tells our CB and SAFETY to play IN / OUT on #1 and #2, the OLB handles #3, used vs. over-split by offense trying to remove our OLB from the Tackle Box for run support.<br />
  17. 17. Chapter 5: Safety’s Reads<br />Our Safety’s reads and or rules vary depending on the 1/4’s call that we are playing.<br />1. READ – (9-10) yds. Off of #2, reading #2’s release.<br /> If #2 is vertical lock onto, if #2 out eyes to #1, if #2 drags work on top getting vision to QB. Find work!<br />2. ALERT – (12-15) yds. Off and on top of #2. Read release. If #2 vertical lock onto, if #2 out get eyes to #1, if #2 drags eyes to QB. Find work!<br />3. FLAT – (12-15) yds. Off and on top of #2. Progression is the same as the Alert call, exception is #2 to the Flat. Safety will have to Drive on #1 because the CB is jumping #2 in flat.<br />4. CLOUD – (12-15) yds. Off and on top of #2. Progression is the same as Alert call. (1/2 field Defender)<br />5. GILLIGAN – Our base answer to trips. The backside safety away from trips bumps his read to the trips side. He reads #3’s release. #3 vertical = lock, #3 out look for deep inside cut by #1 or #2. #3 drags eyes to QB. Find Work! (Look to help on backside #1, post or dig.<br />6. CLUE – Tells our CB and Safety to play IN / OUT on #1 and #2, the OLB handles #3, used vs. over-split by offense trying to remove our OLB from the Tackle box for run support.<br />
  18. 18. Chapter 6: The Big Picture – How it all fits together<br />In Summary, we have found that the Quarters package with adjustments has been the best fit for us in defending both the run and the pass. There are a lot of people that chose not to run the coverage because of what they say are the pattern reads and the time that it takes to teach. Well as in anything else when it comes to football we don’t pattern read every route that is out there. WE work the top 5 or 6 routes that our opponent runs. It is just like defending the Running game, you don’t practice all runs equally – we practice what we are going to see. From week to week we may change how we are going to handle certain route combinations – but again this is tweaking to us, not overhauling. <br />We have found that once the initial concepts are learned the coverage takes on a life of its own. This is a coverage that we have utilized at all levels from the High School level to our current situation at Washington University. It is a coverage that can be taught to any an all levels of football. I expect our players to perform the coverage, set your sights high and accept nothing less. <br />Have fun with the coverage it has been great to us!!<br />
  19. 19. Shap Boyd<br />Asst. Head Football Coach<br />Defensive Coordinator<br />Defensive Backs Coach<br />Muskingum College<br />163 Stormont St.<br />New Concord, Ohio 43762<br /><br />Cell: 740-255-6333<br />Office: 740-826-8311<br />