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Free and the coaches film

Discussion in 'Fan Zone' started by jobberone, Apr 5, 2013.

  1. jobberone

    jobberone Genetically engineered moderating Orangutan Staff Member

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    I've heard so much about Free that I decided to look at all the games and just focus on him using the all 22. I'd looked at an occasional all 22 and looked at Free some but I'm just going to look at him. It takes me less than an hour to watch a game including looking at some plays more than once. I did not watch the defense play much at all but that's not the goal here.

    If any others want to post their comments please do so. You don't have to have the all 22 to do so either. It would be nice to get some comments from the coaches film from others though.

    Game 1: Dal vs NYG

    Free had a pretty good game. He gave up no sacks, was decent in the run game and was very good sealing and getting to the second level. If he can make contact on a player off him then he will drive that player where he wants. He played well against the outside rush getting into position well with good balance and arm extension directing his guy way past Romo.

    Having said that let me say that he was only challenged a few times and when bull rushed he didn't do as well although he kept Romo up. He got caught holding on one inside move that could have been a sack. Romo escaped around the pressure to the outside and completed a pass to OT but it got flagged.

    NY just didn't rush us that much outside and we got the ball out quickly for the most part. Romo threw a pick when he had pressure up the middle and had to alter his throw as well as throw quickly and off balance. In other words he should have eaten it or thrown it away. He just makes so many plays while escaping and extending plays I can see why he doesn't want to give up. That's a big thing for him to work on. But the pressure came up the middle and not from the edge. He was sacked twice.

    I'd have to go back and look at NYs defense as I just concentrated on Free. They looked like they wanted push up the middle and contain on the ends and that's why Free didn't have to respond to much pressure. If anyone wants to comment on that we can let the thread drift as long as we come back to Free.

    I did notice that if he lets his guy get into his body he doesn't have the strength to stop the bull rush. I didn't watch his hands this go round but generally he got a punch and extension with good balance with the exceptions being bull rushed or a swim to the inside once. I'll try and watch how they are getting inside and creating problems on the next game. If I have time I'll go back and look at this game again but I'd like to get a few games in and see how the thread goes.

    All in all I'd give Free a B here. No A since when attacked he gave up ground a little too often even making Romo move around Free and his guy. So there were some problems I could see but they weren't exploited or challenged much in this game.

    If we get a lot of posts here then we'll just do a thread on each game. We'll just have to see how it goes.
  2. Hoofbite

    Hoofbite Well-Known Member

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    I'd like to go back and take a look as well.

    who's the poster who posts all the YouTube videos.....name is slipping me right now. I want to pull them off YouTube so I can get a little more freedom in rewinding and fast forwarding than what Replay allows.
  3. Doomsay

    Doomsay Well-Known Member

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    This is a great and productive offseason activity, thanks.
  4. Idgit

    Idgit Ice up, son. Ice up! Staff Member

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    hairic's great vids from that game, for reference

    http://cowboyszone.com/forums/showpost.php?p=4713601&postcount=10

  5. jobberone

    jobberone Genetically engineered moderating Orangutan Staff Member

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    Week 2: Dal at Sea

    This was a difficult game to watch. Basically thrown away with mistakes and unable to stop Lynch late.

    Free had another good game. He gave up no sacks and I don't have a lot to add to what he did in the last game. He got rushed less. The only trouble on his side was when they stunted. He and Bernie just weren't completely on the same page at times. He gave up no sacks but they did give up some pressure. Romo was again Houdini. He was sacked twice but it should have been more. The game was lost early by STs. Witten dropped multiple balls. Romo wasn't terribly accurate but pretty good for all the broken plays. He threw one INT and a couple more 'oh no Tony' balls that could have been intercepted. Austin wasn't able to run well and Tony overthrew him a couple of times and I think a healthy Austin makes a play on those balls.

    We stunk but Free had a steady but unspectacular day. No one's All Pro list but he didn't contribute to the loss at all, gave up no sacks, blocked well in the run game getting to the second and third level some, and was not challenged much in this game either. He handled the bull rush on a few occasions well to good enough once causing Tony to move in the pocket but nothing to be excited about. Again he did well with the outside rush and Seattle tried to rush from far outside some.

    Again I'd give him a B for a steady unspectacular game with little challenge from the rush. Stunts still a problem but nothing to jump up and down about.
  6. Yakuza Rich

    Yakuza Rich Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the post these are a very informative and fun to read.





    YR
  7. slick325

    slick325 Well-Known Member

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    Jobberone, thanks for these posts. Good stuff.

    Doug Free has not played to the level that someone paid what he is paid is expected to play. He definitely needs to improve his play or get released or benched.

    Having said that, I don't see RT as the biggest piece on the OL that needs to be addressed. Guard and Center are the primary issue in both the running game and passing game. Review of the All 22 for both Skins games and most teams that played against the Cowboys will show that we faced blitzes in the A and B gaps on a regular basis. Romo's athletic ability allows him to evade rushes from the edges. Jerry Jones was correct in that assessment. If he can see or feel edge rushers, Romo generally can avoid them. This allows average play from the RT and the production of the passing game can still excel.

    However, when Tony faces pressure in the A and B gaps, he is unable to avoid the pressure or makes "bad decisions". For example, Tony's last interception of the season which sealed our season, was caused because Hasslet dialed up another blitz in the gaps and our Guards and Center could not handle it. Romo at 6'2 is not the size of Flacco or Peyton Manning or Big Ben enabling him to see over the middle rush. Thus, it is imperative to give him a secure pocket.

    Like everyone else I believe the OL has to be addressed ASAP but I do not think RT is the first place I look. Clabo, Andre Smith, Winston are not priorities to me. Landing Brandon Moore and drafting Cooper or Warmack in the 1st or a G in the 2nd or 3rd is more important. I am fine with Free and Parnell battling it out as long as Free took a paycut.
  8. Angus

    Angus Active Member

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    Good stuff, jobbarone! Thanks.

    :)
  9. jobberone

    jobberone Genetically engineered moderating Orangutan Staff Member

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    TB at Dal

    Both teams played poorly. Romo was sacked four times and coughed the ball up twice. He also threw an INT. We rushed for 38 yds on 23 carries. Again Romo saved the day and he wasn't sparkling. He had his normal share of plays generated via scrambling.

    This game was no different for Free although I'm not sure about his effort. He did give up a pressure from an outside rush although he had good technique and blocked his man well. He just quit and the play got extended and his man was able to circle around and pressure Romo. He and Bernie did well with picking up the right man with overloads and stunts most of the time but there's enough confusion at times each game so far to call it a problem. That's creating occasional problems for Romo but so far I'd place the lion's share on Bernie and not Free. I didn't focus on Bernie but I saw him whiff a couple of times resulting in a sack or pressure. Free gave up a pressure eventually a sack (not his guy...but this was a breakout up the middle and his guy took away a potential escape route). He got his seals in the run game fairly well but looked anemic doing so. He's not much help with drive blocks but then no one else is either and they didn't do much of that in this game anyway. I haven't seen much of that in any game so far.

    Didn't focus on anyone but Free but Murray generates a fair amount of yardage when there is little to none. He also finishes most of his runs. He appears to look outside including cutbacks a lot but some of this is by design and the rest because there's not much inside. This generates about the same amount of negative and positive plays with a couple of big yardage plays so for in the season. I see him picking up his blocks well although again I didn't watch him every play.

    I'd give Free a C this game although some may grade slightly higher or lower. But I will go on record as he definitely was not terrible and hasn't been anywhere near that so far this season thru game three.
  10. jobberone

    jobberone Genetically engineered moderating Orangutan Staff Member

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    Chi at Dal

    This was a game of contrasts. The first half was a good game with the exception Romo threw a pick six in the first half. The half time score was 10-7 thanks to Romo magic at the very end of the first half. The second half got ugly though. There were 4 2nd half INTs and 2 fumbles both of which we recovered. We got 41 yds on 14 carries overall. We had 25 first downs and the Bears 18. Dal was 40 of 53 for 396 for 2 TDs and 5 INTs. So it's self evident how we lost. One of the worst games I've ever seen Romo play esp considering the first half was good excepting the pick six which I can't tell whose fault that was.

    Ok, onto Free we go. This was Free's best game yet. He only had a couple of bull rushes and he was adequate there. They mostly single rushed the DE outside and Free had little trouble with that. He was good in the running game what little we had. They didn't run to his side a lot. He sealed well and was mobile when called on although he and the team doing do much with those plays. I want to say he doesn't overwhelm his guy in the run. He engages well enough and his guy doesn't get into the play very often. But he looks adequate at it and not dominant. Not trying to be negative but I want the reader to get a picture of a guy basically doing his job adequately most of the time and not dominating at all.

    Again I didn't focus on anyone else but the interior looked porous and Smith gave up some plays as well. Romo was evading most of it and only got sacked once. It was a biggie though as he fumbled after we got a turnover and they ran it back. Romo never saw the guy who came at him from behind after he stepped up into the pocket. Romo was pressured too often IMO and he definitely was responsible for some of the INTs IMO.

    I didn't watch the very last part of the game as it was over and Orton was chunking the ball then.

    I'd give Free an A in the pass game and a B in the run game.
  11. RS12

    RS12 Well-Known Member

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    This is probably his biggest weakness, guys getting into his body and putting him on skates. His hands not quick enough to prevent that at times. Those gifs from a recent thread clearly showed that.
  12. conner01

    conner01 Well-Known Member

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    thats a technique problem. those are fixable.but he has always had that problem and he has'nt fixed it is where i have a problem with him. thats all about keeping your hands up. but players have to work on their weakness's and he has'nt seemed to have done that. thats where the comments about taking the money and quiting comes from. he has'nt quit but he has'nt worked on his weakness either
  13. CowboyMcCoy

    CowboyMcCoy Business is a Boomin

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    What I've noticed is Free gets beaten when the defender beats him off the snap count and a hand jams him in the chest. This causes Free to stand up right quickly. Once he's upright, the defender jams his chest with an arm and Free gets pushed back like it's nothing. It's like his core or lower back strength gives out on him. Further, he can be beaten by the defender if they beat him on the snap count and force him to use a lateral foot movement. Free doesn't have the quickest feet. I don't think it's strength for Free as much as it is timing. Once the hand goes to his sternum, if he's not set, he's toast. Beating him off the snap count is key to beating him. Some players recover from getting beaten by timing better than others....
  14. Picksix

    Picksix A Work in Progress

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    I gotta believe that's why he gets so many false start penalties. He knows if he gets beat off the snap, he's in trouble.
  15. CowboyMcCoy

    CowboyMcCoy Business is a Boomin

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    Yeah, which holds true for most OTs and offensive linemen in general. That's the key of the line game. But with Free, he's a little slower off the snap and also slower once he gets beaten. I noticed this last year. But after looking at it again, it's apparent. He also doesn't use his hands well to keep hands off his chest once they're in him.
  16. xwalker

    xwalker Well-Known Member

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    I believe that all of these were from that game:


    [IMG]

    [IMG]

    [IMG]

    [IMG]

    [IMG]

    [IMG]
  17. jobberone

    jobberone Genetically engineered moderating Orangutan Staff Member

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    1 and 3 I talked about. I don't have a problem gigging Free some for 2 although it's hard to call when you don't know assignments. It appears he should have been helping Witten. 4 didn't create a problem I believe. 5 was a sprint pass to Murray which was completed. 6 was what I've been saying about him being bull rushed. I don't remember if he was called for that or not. I want to say he got away with the hold but I'm not certain.

    If you cherry pick every bad play the guy had in that game then you get this. That is not indicative of the entire game but is what I've been saying about Free. He'll look good and then he'll have a play like one of the above. This was his worse game by far out of what I've seen so far.

    I'm reporting what I see and I know he had some worse games than the TB game which I'll eventually get to. He's also played well although I've mentioned he hasn't been challenged that much in some games (like NY). He's not handling the bull rush. Thru the bye that's his major problem and it hasn't been exploited much to date.
  18. RackofRibs

    RackofRibs Member

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    Free played very good against the Giants as you will see in the second game but I think it's because Tuck is done. Giants fans are hoping Tuck just had a bad year and bounces back to his normal form but I wouldn't be surprised if he's cut next year. Tuck was bad the entire year not just against the Cowboys.

    In the 2 games against the cowboys Tuck had 4 total tackles and he was lined up against Free :lmao2:
  19. birdwells1

    birdwells1 Well-Known Member Zone Supporter

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    People have been calling for Free to be cut, but so far it sounds like he needs to be givena pay raise.:D
  20. StanleySpadowski

    StanleySpadowski Active Member

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    A lot of the issues with the OL getting beat off the snap/false starts were cadence issues with the center. Cook had that issue all year long and Bernadeau wasn't playing the position long enough for the other OL to get a read.

    There's a reason Dallas fired off much better during Costa's limited action.

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