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SMashMouthMike


Joined: 01 Dec 2005
Posts: 4515
PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 2:41 pm    Post subject: Grade Haley Reply with quote

Todd Haley is quietly doing an effective job at his position. Sure there are weaknesses and a lot of posters on the other forums moan and wail that he is not doing a good job here and there, etc. Missing from all the hoopla and complaints is the context of strategy and tactics and history. Instead we get a lot of emotional noise, loud, furious and ultimately misplaced and meaningless. I'm guilty of this like all fans.

You might disagree with his philosophy but that doesn't mean it's wrong for this team and will fail. Already we've seen a commitment to a running game early on. This is wise even if it's ineffectual. It should in theory, keep Ben and his arm intact. It keeps the clock running. It gives the Defense a breather and should compliment their style and geriatric status. It keeps Ben from getting sacked. It goes well with our division and playing in all types of weather conditions. It sucks up extra defenders into the box so in theory, it should pay dividends later on like a 3rd and 16 or in the goal line. Eventually, I believe we'll see some effective play action. Heck, it may even win us some games later on if we improve. ETC.

The one great limiting factor for this offense is blocking on the line of scrimmage from our oline. Ben can't make long progressions and hold on to the ball like he did under Arians, or he will get the stuffing beat out of him. So what happens when the oline is unreliable and the shoddy running game fail? He goes to the short passing game. In fact, a lot of our passes appear to be completed to a hot route or a primary receiver. We'll start to see defenses bump our receivers at the los and blitz and I'm worried that Ben might not learn to go through his progressions like other elite QBs and that this may limit the offense in the playoffs. But we got to give it a chance.

Important Efficiency stats should go up, gross stats should go down though. But who really cares if this leads to more victories and hardware? I don't.
-Points per drive will go up.
-3 and outs should go down.
-top will go up.
-#of drives will go down, and all sorts of limiting stats over the course of the season like total yardage.
-ypa will be lower, ypc should be a little lower
-completion % should inch higher, IDK about passer rating.
-ypa will be lower than we're accustomed to, and it needs to improve...
...but Ben must be preserved at all costs. It is the right thing to do - to take a career threatening injury off the table if at all possible, so that we have as many seasons as possible with him.
-avg games missed per season by Ben should go lower even as he ages.

I'm no genius. But, already I see progress in our gameplans that are situationally and strategically superior to what we had under Arians. Brucie did some good things, and he will continue with Luck, but I couldn't be happier he has moved on and that Haley is here at the moment.

Apologies for the simpleness of this and the long windedness of this.

What concerns should we have going forward? What grade would you give Haley thus far? Incomplete?

I'd give him a B+ or an A-.



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kwabalicious


Joined: 31 Jul 2011
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 3:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I love what Haley is doing here. He's taking a lot of time off the clock, mixing up runs with passes, and quick passes with long ones. Our offense has been pretty efficient, and we've been moving the football slowly, but effectively.
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3rivers


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 5:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The OL can't run block, but that is not Haley's fault. Kugler better get those players to help the RB's.

Haley has done well with the players on this team. I would prefer a real FB and running game but doubt it will happen this year.
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Gatoradus


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 6:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

3rivers... We have been using a fullback and his name is Will Johnson. He's have been exceeding our expectations of him.

Things I liked from Haley:

1). spreading out the offense.

2). Throwing more to RBs, we have been missing that a lot.

3). Using a true fullback.

It's still too early to make a decision but there are ALSO things that I want to see more from Haley and those are;

1). Better rhyme. Our offense finally started to get going when we abandoned running for a bit and afterward we were able to grind it out when ahead on scoreboard. However we need a better rhyme, because we are able to succeed at slower rate doesn't mean we have a good rhyme, it could be all Big Ben and last game vs Jets, I bet you that was all Big Ben when he was practically playing dodgeball with opponent's D-line.

2). I want to see some of Whisenhunt movement. He left a long time ago (football-length wise) and what he did that I loved most was throwing and attack the defense hard... Then keep our defense out of 2nd half by pounding the ball. We not only can be like this; we ARE a much better team than what Big Ben had when it was 2005. Despite our O-line, that will always be our woes but we have MANAGED this before, as the issues isn't within the O-line; it's the style we play. Big Ben move a lot, he's really big and people doesn't realize that when he shuffle a bit, it's a yard or two away from where he was standing in the pocket so it's harder for O-line to stay within their flow but they have been adequate lately.

3). Release our weapons free. I liked what we saw but I felt like we are really maximizing our offense within Haley's playbook. I don't see this as a problem at all, as I predicted a while ago that we would start 2-2 but finish strong because of the lack of offense rhyme (Mike Wallace, I'm looking at you... but welcome back tho!) but if we keep winning I hope Haley just doesn't stick to the script because it "works" like Bruce Arians does. Speaking of which;

just for a bonus...

I don't know if this is really an issue but i'd like to see much more improvement with our running game. Haley and Bruce Arians currently stands in same position as for the running game itself. I want to say... It's because Rashard Mendenhall isn't playing or maybe because our back-ups (Redman and Dwyer) always lightning it up in pre-season that they couldn't go same way against 1st strings but I like many, believe that our running game is much more talented than the media and other fans think. Run outside more often, give our RBs some space to run. Dwyer and Redman isn't blazing fast but for some reason noticably, they evades by DBs better than I thought.

Right now, I give him just a B grade because despite our missing star during Denver game, our offense was practically still at their strongest point and we couldn't overcome that game.

Give him some time, I loved the hire but doesn't mean it will pan out or meets our expectations.
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Dook


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 6:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If the opposing defense puts 9 or even 10 in the box, like the Bronco's did at times, it doesn't matter how good your run play is or how good your OL is, you're not going to be successful at running the ball.
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at23steelers


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 8:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just curious how people would rank our previous OC's: Whiz, Mularkey, and Bruce Arians, and how do you think Haley would fit in that group (even though it's really early).
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3rivers


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 8:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gatoradus wrote:
3rivers... We have been using a fullback and his name is Will Johnson. He's have been exceeding our expectations of him.

Things I liked from Haley:

1). spreading out the offense.

2). Throwing more to RBs, we have been missing that a lot.

3). Using a true fullback.

It's still too early to make a decision but there are ALSO things that I want to see more from Haley and those are;

1). Better rhyme. Our offense finally started to get going when we abandoned running for a bit and afterward we were able to grind it out when ahead on scoreboard. However we need a better rhyme, because we are able to succeed at slower rate doesn't mean we have a good rhyme, it could be all Big Ben and last game vs Jets, I bet you that was all Big Ben when he was practically playing dodgeball with opponent's D-line.

2). I want to see some of Whisenhunt movement. He left a long time ago (football-length wise) and what he did that I loved most was throwing and attack the defense hard... Then keep our defense out of 2nd half by pounding the ball. We not only can be like this; we ARE a much better team than what Big Ben had when it was 2005. Despite our O-line, that will always be our woes but we have MANAGED this before, as the issues isn't within the O-line; it's the style we play. Big Ben move a lot, he's really big and people doesn't realize that when he shuffle a bit, it's a yard or two away from where he was standing in the pocket so it's harder for O-line to stay within their flow but they have been adequate lately.

3). Release our weapons free. I liked what we saw but I felt like we are really maximizing our offense within Haley's playbook. I don't see this as a problem at all, as I predicted a while ago that we would start 2-2 but finish strong because of the lack of offense rhyme (Mike Wallace, I'm looking at you... but welcome back tho!) but if we keep winning I hope Haley just doesn't stick to the script because it "works" like Bruce Arians does. Speaking of which;

just for a bonus...

I don't know if this is really an issue but i'd like to see much more improvement with our running game. Haley and Bruce Arians currently stands in same position as for the running game itself. I want to say... It's because Rashard Mendenhall isn't playing or maybe because our back-ups (Redman and Dwyer) always lightning it up in pre-season that they couldn't go same way against 1st strings but I like many, believe that our running game is much more talented than the media and other fans think. Run outside more often, give our RBs some space to run. Dwyer and Redman isn't blazing fast but for some reason noticably, they evades by DBs better than I thought.

Right now, I give him just a B grade because despite our missing star during Denver game, our offense was practically still at their strongest point and we couldn't overcome that game.

Give him some time, I loved the hire but doesn't mean it will pan out or meets our expectations.


Johnson has played well, but I would prefer if he was in there more, that is my complaint. The main complaint is the OL run blocking, as it just is not where we need it to be. A lot of the yards were from good 2nd and 3rd efforts, not because of OL. Colon made a great block on the Red TD, I hope to see more of that.

As for Wisball, remember he had a real OL back then as well as a HOF coach for that OL. Grimm would have never allowed the roster of recent years that we (along with ben) have had to tolerate.

Haley is an improvement over arians, but time will tell how well he is accepted here Razz I still think if the OL can run block, it will open up the playbook and create better success with the plays called. If the other team shows 8 or 9 man box, there should be a pass play to counter that.

I hope the OL gets their run blocking going and then Haley decides to ground n pound to wear out the opponents. Regardless of what people say, this will work even better now that teams are built more for pass D.
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FourThreeMafia


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 17, 2012 9:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

3rivers wrote:
Johnson has played well, but I would prefer if he was in there more, that is my complaint. The main complaint is the OL run blocking, as it just is not where we need it to be. A lot of the yards were from good 2nd and 3rd efforts, not because of OL. Colon made a great block on the Red TD, I hope to see more of that.

As for Wisball, remember he had a real OL back then as well as a HOF coach for that OL. Grimm would have never allowed the roster of recent years that we (along with ben) have had to tolerate.


Really?

Then perhaps you can explain why the Cardinals OLines are always mediocre under him?

Russ Grimm was a HOF PLAYER, but has always been incredibly overrated as a coach. He walked onto a team with an elite guard (Big Red), and good OT (Marvel Smith) and they picked up Hartings the same year we hired Grimm. Grimm did nothing with Kendoll Simmons, Max Starks looked better AFTER Grimm left, and we had other developmental OLineman he never did anything with. And in Arizona, their OLines are never much better than ours, if at all, especially run blocking which is always horrid there.

So glad we didnt hire him as a HC and doubt our line would be any better here with him on the staff.



3rivers wrote:
Haley is an improvement over arians, but time will tell how well he is accepted here Razz I still think if the OL can run block, it will open up the playbook and create better success with the plays called. If the other team shows 8 or 9 man box, there should be a pass play to counter that.

I hope the OL gets their run blocking going and then Haley decides to ground n pound to wear out the opponents. Regardless of what people say, this will work even better now that teams are built more for pass D.


We have a highly paid, top 6 QB, 3 amazing WRs, a good TE, an OLine that is built to pass block better than run block, and you want ground and pound?

No offense, but that continues to be beyond ridiculous. Thats not the league anymore. We arent built to run an offense like that. Do we need to run more efficiently? Yes. Ground and pound? Absolutely, positively NOT.

If thats what you are looking for, go pop in videos from the Cowher days, because thats as close as youre going to get anytime soon.
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JustPlainNasty


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2012 3:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I like what I've seen so far, I love the ability to control the ball and clock, it just makes sense. We aren't just chucking the ball up every other play just to take a shot, theres some discipline. I always took it as disrespectful to the rest of the team ie the Defense (Arians & Ben's lack of awareness of how lack of ball control wears on the Defense).

I also feel like many of the issues we are having are just growing pains. Haley getting used to the feel of what they as a group and each individual can do and synthesizing it. As well as the players getting used to it, such as some up front mistakes by Colon & other new position or young players etc that I don't expect a couple weeks from now.

I would admit though that i was a little frustrated at the beginning of this weeks game.
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steelcurtain29


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2012 4:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Haley's offense - A
Haley's playcall - D-


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jebrick


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2012 9:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Gatoradus wrote:
3rivers... We have been using a fullback and his name is Will Johnson. He's have been exceeding our expectations of him.


Really??? I always think a FB should be able to block. I do not think Johnson could block his way out of a paper bag. He is a athletic specimen and has great speed and pass catching ability. If he were taller he would be a great TE. He is not a good fullback in the classic Vonta Leach/ Jon Witman mode.
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JDLefebvre


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2012 9:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

steelcurtain29 wrote:
Haley's offense - A
Haley's playcall - D-

Mad


Why D- ?

Only play I really didn't like was the fake backside handoff reverse to Rainey...
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Gatoradus


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2012 11:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jebrick- you now are overrating the fullback position. Yes its nice to have one but doesn't mean we has to have an all-pro fullback. Leach is among nfl's best blocking fullback but that's pretty much all he can do. Witman, really? You know will johnson is very close to witman, a fullback who also could catch. I assume you meant kreider.

Fullback's only good if your OL can block, if they can't block, how is a fullback useful if there's two, 3, even 4 players coming at once? Way we use will johnson is great, I'm satisfied and he's got the athleticism to get out on end and block defensive backs. Not many fullbacks can do that.

Ground and pound is long gone, folks. Nfl gets their players from college, which means nfl mostly rely on the schematic, type of players, and situations that many NCAA use. Steelers offense are one of few teams that still use pro offense WITH a pro bowl qb.
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Dcash4


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 18, 2012 2:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

So far so good I think. There is a lot of potential for this offense from what i have seen so far, but as long as we are still not calling it potential at the end of the year it will be a success.

Overall i think he has done very well. I do feel like we have been very predictable on early downs, and that Ben has bailed us out more than once on 3rd downs, but all in all its good.

I would personally like to see us throw a little more on early downs out of run heavy formations. Also, taking a deep shot or 2 early in the games on early downs, just to show the defense your willingness to do so. I am in no way saying we go back to Bruce ball where we go deep 3 times and punt, but a few shots down field to our All World Deep threat would be nice.

I think this offense is still in the early stages of development and we will see progression from week to week. Still to early to grade Haley, but so far i think he has done a very good job.
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JustPlainNasty


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 19, 2012 4:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think we've been very fortunate with Will Johnson. David Johnson could only block if the guy stood still directly in front of him, God for bid if he had to turn his hips or adjust. And catching a pass, he plays more like a catcher than any kind of receiver.

Johnson provides a lot more versatility and ability to locate the defender and make contact. Much of the problem we have had in the run game has to do with poor TE blocking or missed blocks all together.
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