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BDL 2017 Week 4: Cuba Smugglers @ Berlin Blitzkrieg


Cuba Smuggers @ Berlin Blitzkrieg  

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  1. 1. Who wins?

    • Cuba Smugglers
    • Berlin Blitzkrieg

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  • Poll closed on 10/04/2017 at 02:00 PM

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Edited just now by Whicker
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QB: Kirk Cousins

RB: Dalvin Cook

WR: Julio Jones
WR: Kelvin Benjamin 
WR: Brandon Marshall
TE: Jack Doyle
LT: Joe Thomas
LG: Joe Berger
C: Eric Wood
RG: David DeCastro
RT: Rob Havenstien

RB: Tevin Coleman
WR: Terrelle Pryor Sr.
WR: Jamison Crowder
TE: Antonio Gates
OW: Tavon Austin 
RB: Frank Gore
TE: Jermaine Gresham
QB: DeShaun Watson

ROLB: Terrell Suggs
DT: Chris Baker
RE: Derek Wolfe
Edge: Calais Campbell
WLB: Brandon Marshall
MLB: B.J. Goodson
SLB: Derrick Johnson
RCB: Desmond Trufant
FS: Lardarius Webb
SS: Morgan Burnett
LCB: Richard Sherman

LE: Mario Edwards Jr.
SLB: Kyle Van Noy
RCB: Johnathan Joseph
NCB: Anthony Brown
FS: Josh Shaw
DT: Eddie Vanderdoes
LOLB: Jordan Jenkins
Edge: Derrick Shelby



Berlin Blitzkrieg

QB - Jameis Winston
RB - Lamar Miller
WR - Tyreek Hill
WR - DeSean Jackson
TE - Kyle Rudolph
TE - Hunter Henry
LT - Trent Williams
LG - Justin Pugh
C - Corey Linsley
RG - Gabe Jackson
RT - Ja’wuan James

OL - Mike Pouncey
OL - Taylor Moton
RB - Mike Gillislee
RB - D’Onta Foreman
WR - Taylor Gabriel
WR - Jordan Matthews
WR - Kenny Golladay
FB - Jalston Fowler

Blitzkrieg Defense
LE - Justin Houston
DT - Deatrich Wise
DT - Demarcus Lawrence
RE - Nick Perry
LB - Alec Ogletree
LB Kiko Alonso
CB - Gareon Conley
CB - Eric Rowe
NB - AJ Bouye
S - Tashaun Gipson
S - Haha Clinton-Dix

DE - Trey Hendrickson
DI - Christian Covington
DI - Adolphus Washington
DI - Davon Godchaux
DI - Rakeem Nunez-Roches
LB - Vince Williams
CB - Mike Hilton
S - Kentrell Brice

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Kirk Cousins is finally getting comfortable after a slow start. The obvious mismatch is Berlin does not have anyone who can cover Julio Jones. Unless he's double covered we will continually target him as AJ Bouye's physicalness can get some penalty yardage when Julio is not making plays. If Benjamin looks like himself we are opening the playbook. With Gareon Conley getting his second start we want to evaluate his ability to tackle. Benjamin is also big enough to make contested redzone chances if he is given opportunities. 

We intend to make the running backs a focal point of the offense. Dalvin Cook will get some more stretch plays where he can bounce runs outside and get to the open field. Berlin will tout their strong interior defensive line, but their injuries up front change our game plan. Jack Doyle will help Rob Havenstien against DeMarcus Lawrence or Justin Houston. Joe Thomas is playing like an elite player so he will seldom get help. Joe Berger/Eric Wood/David DeCastro (top graded guard via PFF) can handle Berlins interior line in pass protection. This is important because Cousins will run play action passes to keep Justin Houston and DeMarcus Lawrence guessing. We will not hesitate utilizing RPOs to assure Cousins can quickly release the ball. Additionally we'll begin using Coleman/Cook in the backfield together. Besides the fact we haven't shown this until now, this generally increases the likelihood we get a mismatch or single coverage opportunity on someone who can convert. Coleman and Cook should open Jack Doyle on intermediate routes, and potentially give us Julio and Kelvin Benjamin in single coverage down the field. Despite our starting lineup, this will be a FREQUENT formation.

We are opening the offense this week. Tavon Austin will have a chance to break the big play. We seek to get him up to 4 touches by the way of a screen or jet sweeps. His 8-10 snaps should increase the likelihood of press man, and in that coverage we will have Cousins utilize play action for Benjamin or Julio to beat single coverage. Towards the end of the game we expect to hold a lead and will have Dalvin Cook (who improves throughout the game) gobble enough touches to close this game out.

Feed our running backs. Run Dalvin Cook,  Telvin Coleman spells him. They will also play together. Run at Berlin's CBs (Namely Conley and Hilton). Allow Kirk Cousins a chance to get Julio Jones and Kelvin Benjamin the ball in single coverage. 

Tyreek Hill. Tyreek Hill. Tyreek Hill. Tyreek Hill. If you don't get it we are going to keep as much tabs as possible on Tyreek Hill. We won't hesitate to triple cover him. Before everyone ASSUMES we are doing it every play, we aren't. On boundary plays in the traditional two TE sets, we will have Desmond Trufant follow him around. If he is targeted with screens or underneath routes he is triple covered. Derrick Johnson will keep focus on him from the LB spot with Morgan Burnett also following him. Once Hill runs 15 yards+ anything longer we are going to have LaMarcus Joyner and Trufant keep tabs on him. This means on some occasions (primarily Berlins 2TE/2RB set) Hill will indeed be the responsibility of 4 players. When Berlin lines three receivers, let's be honest their receivers lack the physical height required of number one receivers. DeSean Jackson is one of the strongest deep threats in the NFL and Gabriel is a strong gadget weapon, so we have a good feeling of what is coming. Galloway being absence is important for this reason. Sherman will get some help and avoid press coverage for some cover 3 deep responsibility. Sherman may have some responsibility covering Hunter Henry. 

We've highlighted Berlin's strongest asset and our intentions to slow them down. The second priority is stopping the run game. Rudolph and Henry are credible receivers but are well rounded players because their ability to block. We lineup in a 4-3 for this reason. Berlins offensive line is the best unit we've played to this point and our defensive line needs to circle the wagons without Fletcher Cox. Chris Baker and Derek Wolfe will start the game inside. Mario Edwards, Eddie Vanderdoes, Derek Shelby, and Calais Campbell are the alternative interior defenders. Calais Campbell owns the single greatest mismatch against Ja'Wuan James. His size also gives a strong big bodied edge rusher who can stop Berlin from establishing stretch runs. Because we can contend with their offensive line, Derrick Johnson and Brandon Marshall will have easier assignments to clean up in the second level. This is run and chasing Lamar Miller and Mike Gillislee.  

Not a visual guy but a picture of Tyreek Hill suffices. We need to be aware of this guy on every play. Even when he doesn't get the ball we will have two guys on him. Otherwise, cover the boundaries. Awareness of screens and curl routes. Protect the deep threats second.



As per usual, we plan on starting with our run game.  With our two TE set and FB set(Jalston in for Rudolph), we plan on working off tackle quite a bit.  We want to force the LBs of Cuba to have to flow sideline-to-sideline as we think they will struggle in this regard.  They don’t have the speediest of LBs.  We will use more Foreman and Miller this game to accomplish this.  Look for stretches, tosses, and then counters and traps once we get their LBs moving.  Foreman and Gillislee will be used in short yardage and time control situations to run down the clock.  We want to dominate TOP.

Off of this, we go to our play action.  We want to really target their LBs in coverage as we think this is a weakness of this group.  We will look to our TEs and RBs to get open with regularity in the passing game.  This, along with our run game, will allow us to have long, consistent drives to keep their offense off the field.

That said, we will absolutely take our deep shots.  Sherman isn’t the CB he used to be and both Tyreek and DJax are exactly the kind of WR that can make him lose his cool.  If he is in single coverage, we will use double moves to get an open deep shot or quick underneath routes to get open.  We will also not shy away from Trufant.  We want to force Trufant to run deep and try to defend the deep ball.  We will also line up both WRs on the same side of the formation to force Sherman into coverage in Tyreek on underneath routes as we think we can win that match up with regularity.  

TL;DR - Make their LBs defend from border-to-border in the run game, attack them in the passing game, attack Sherman with quickness, and take our deep shots when we like the situation.  

Our strategy involves using numbers to force Cuba to throw the ball so we can play our Blitzkrieg package.  This ties in with our ball control offense as it will allow us to rest our pass rushers due to us having long drives.  Lawrence and Wise are between 265-275 so in the Blitzkrieg package we will slide them inside where they have played before with Perry and Houston outside to get four stud pass rushers on the field.  All four of these players are also very good run defenders so we don’t think we will be too disadvantaged.  By knowing they will pass, and with our home crowd noise, we will have an advantage at the LOS and can harass Cousins consistently.  

To do this, we need to win the numbers game.  Dalvin has been great to start the season, so we will put numbers in the box to limit his effectiveness.  If they go with a 3 WR set, we will have 7 in the box.  For 2 WRs, we will have 8 in the box with Vince coming in for Rowe and playing MLB.  Earlier in the game, we will have one or two of our DTs in to clog up the middle depending on the situation.  While yet unproven due to youth, all four of our DTs have played very well whenever they see the field.  We will also rotate them in on early downs to rest our pass rushers. But we want to play as much of the Blitzkrieg package as we can get away with. 

Haha plays up in the box to aid the run game and takes the TE.  He has proven to be great in man coverage and we trust him to win this match up all game regardless of the TE Cuba plays.  This will also allow him to be closer to the LOS to give us that extra man in the run game.

Alec and Kiko focus on Dalvin and watch him every play.  We will handle this the same way as last week.  They are keyed in on shutting down the run game.  In the passing game, if Dalvin releases to Alec’s side, he will follow Dalvin and Kiko sits in middle coverage and vice versa. 

Our primary goal in the passing game is to limit Julio.  Rowe has been very good this season, taking the starting spot from Malcom Butler, so he and Gipson will bracket Julio.  They focus on him and him alone.  We probably can’t keep him catchless, but we do think we can limit his big plays and keep him from beating us.  

Crowder is also a threat in the slot.  Bouye will take him in man coverage.  Crowder is solid, but Bouye is elite in the slot and can remove him.  

Cuba could play Marshall, Benjamin, or Pryor on the outside.  None of them have been very good yet this year.  Due to their size, we will put Conley on whoever they play.  Conley has been great so far as a rookie.  This is a big task for him as he will be covering whoever Cuba plays one-on-one.

If Cuba goes 4 wide, Conley and Rowe play outside, Bouye and Hilton play inside.  Haha takes the TE, Alec takes Dalvin…and we go full Blitzkrieg on their OL.  

TL;DR - Focus on Dalvin to remove the run game with numbers, force Cuba to pass so we can play our Blitzkrieg package, double Julio, and make their other passing weapons beat us.  



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Berlin isn't going to stop the run and that's a big advantage for Cuba. Cuba's WRs should be able to get open quite a bit as well. Cousins is gonna be under a decent amount of pressure but I don't think that's enough to counter Cuba's elite offense. Berlin's offense should be able to keep up for the first two Qs but eventually Cuba will wear out Berlin's defense with the running game and that will be that. 27-17 Cuba.

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17 minutes ago, bcb1213 said:

Eric Rowe has been very good this season may the best whopper i've heard so far this year

But it's true.  He's played very well when he has played, including starting over Malcolm Butler.  He's just had a bit of a nagging groin injury the past couple of weeks.

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I understand why Berlin went with the funky defense, but I don't buy that it would be at all successful against the run. I would definitely buy it as a sub-package going forward. In this game though, the Cuba running game pounds the light D-line early and that cascades into a win. 

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Tbh I think it's a blowout. Berlin single strength on defense is pass rushing, but with Houston double teamed I think Cuba OL does a decent job, and Berlin secondary can't stop Cuba receivers (despite the weird Marshall start). Dalvin Cook has a huge day also. I think on the other side, Jameis has some success with his TEs, but not enough.

42-24 Cuba

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Cuba is too well rounded at the moment and would take advantage of an injury hit Berlin team. In particular thr offense keeps the ball rolling while the two TE offense sees some success for Berlin, its not dynamic enough to keep them in it. 27-21 Cuba.

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