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Memo To McCarthy

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Memo To McCarthy

Not that he needs my help, but I offer it unsolicited for Coach McCarthy to do with it as he sees fit:

McCarthy needs to rethink his offense and get back to the basics of the West Coast Offense.

What both McCarthy and Rodgers needed yesterday was for 2009 Rodgers to get hurt, forcing 2007 Rodgers to come into the game. This would have forced McCarthy to do exactly what he did against the Cowboys when Favre got hurt in '07. Namely, scale back the offense, run some basic plays and get into a rhythm passing the football with some quick outs, slants and 10 yard In routes.

Yesterday was actually eerily similar to that Cowboy game in the way that Rodgers, and McCarthy to some extent, seemed hell bent on pushing the ball down field, circumstances be damned. I understand wanting to attack Roy Williams in coverage, but if your quarterback can't take a 5, let alone a 7, step drop without getting drilled, well, you could have multiple Roy Williams' in coverage and it wouldn't make any difference.

Now, don't confuse this with me telling McCarthy he needs to go 'basic', Install 101 style. Far from it.  That will only make life even more difficult.

McCarthy doesn't need to revert back to Football 101 the way he did with the 49ers his one year as offensive coordinator. This team has talent. But it won't be realized until he stops trying to make it do things it's not capable of doing. This team is not built to chuck it 2o yards down the field every play. It is designed to catch 6 yard curl routes that potentially turn into big gains. McCarthy needs to bring things back to the roots of the West Coast Offense, especially as he has no running game to speak of. Holmgren won a Super Bowl without a dominating running game, but he used the pass to set up the run, Bill Walsh style. McCarthy has the team to do that.

I get the feeling McCarthy is watching the Saints and thinking how that should be how his team looks on offense. Unfortunately, his quarterback is nowhere near as good as Drew Brees and the Saints offensive line is a bit better than the one working for McCarthy. (Surprisingly, the Saints line is not nearly as good as you'd expect. It's just that Brees is THAT insanely good.)

I know people are apocalyptic today and I certainly understand.  As IronMan pointed out in the comments section, fans have a right to be pissed after what they saw yesterday. That was a poorly coached, physically whipped football team and a lot of the mistakes we saw in 2008 seemed front and center.

But the season is far from over.

McCarthy and his staff can make the adjustments. The players can and will play better. Let's see what happens.

UPDATE: This quote from McCarthy's press conference this afternoon perfectly describes what is happening in the play above, with the line sliding to the right and the backs attempting to (and failing to) seal off the backside to the left.

Sometimes you slide one way, you put the backs another way. Sometimes you refer to pocket protection where the line stays and blocks the five in the middle and you have a back to one side. There are usually two types of protection. You usually slide one way, move the backs to the other way, or you block the four and the Mike and have a back helping on one side.

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"A school without football is in danger of deteriorating into a medieval study hall. "
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