USA Today: Three theories why the offense is struggling


Keepin' it real!
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Nov 2, 2003
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Orange County, CA
Kyler being short the batted passes has been discussed more than most topics before the draft. Batted passes wasn't an issue in college for him. Does that mean that it was discussed by the FO, of course we will probably never know, but I would hope that it was.

I think his inability to throw down the middle IMO has to with more the pocket collapsing as well as Kyler not being able/not willing to step up in the pocket, not necessarily his height. I think batted passes are up across the league this year.
Murray's batted passes were 18 last season, 15 so far this season, on pace for 20. I haven't looked it up just now but i believe i read somewhere that last year's number was below league average. We're all seeing the problems Murray is having this season throwing over the middle. (I haven't seen his passing chart from last season lately.) His height hasn't changed but it seems that defenses, and the kinds of patterns receivers are running, have. Not sure whether his height factors into that, but i agree with all who have said that Kingsbury needs to figure out a way to attack the middle of the field so that defenses have to defend it.



Oct 19, 2018
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Lexington KY
On the pick six Kyler has Hopkins open on the shallow cross for an easy first down - locks in on the Kirk and Isabella cluster route

Kyler is not going to second reads nor quick enough

I think going under center is an option they have to consider to work play action using it out of shotgun is of no benefit


ASFN Lifer
Jan 10, 2020
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Weird, i could've sworn i saw Arnold catch a TD pass last weekend on a crossing route that completely broke the Rams' secondary. :shrug:


That's not even remotely what I was talking about Daves.

It's nothing to do with the route. Yes, we run crossing routes.

What I was talking about is that often if you watch other teams run routes out of trips on one side the routes they run are designed to work in combination to get at least one of those receivers open. So as I said in my original post, say you have Kirk out wide and Fitz and Arnold stacked in the slot. All 3 guys have a DB in off man 5 yards away. In this situation nearly every other team has some form of pick play or switch route in their locker, we don't. The most common of which is to have you outside guy (Kirk) run inside underneath and your slot guys who run outside.

That way the DB covering Kirk has no path to cover him as his path his congested with Fitz and Arnold and the two DB's covering them.

We run routes out of trips to one side a bunch, and if you watch them all the routes are isolated. They aren't designed to work together to get anybody open.

Take the image below. This is with 20 seconds left in the 2nd quarter trying to get some points back before half time and with trips to one side Kliff runs 4 verts against a top 3 defense. You aren't going to beat a top 10 defense running basic Air raid concepts like 4 verts. (We get lucky on this play with a pass to Nuk he was never catching that drew a PI flag)

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The very next play same again. Isabella runs a post instead of a vert but basically the same concept. All of the routes are run in isolation, no play design to help anyone get open. This one Nuk runs another out right for a short catch at the sideline and we end up kicking a FG.

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I don't think it's fair to criticize the WR's when they get no help from play design. Air Raid concepts are designed to be simple because kids are stupid and make mistakes. You give them complicated routes to run and they are going to mess up. You keep it simple so they get it right and in most games the WR will have superior speed and athleticism over the DB's at the college level. That just doesn't fly at the NFL level.

Here's an example of what I'm talking about.


Compare the routes our WR's run vs what McVay or Shanahan is doing to get their receivers open.
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Have a Nice Day!
Mar 14, 2003
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Maybe the simple answer her is the Air Raid offense is not destined to work long term in the NFL.