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BDL 2020 Week 6 - Lancaster Werewolves @ Cuba Smugglers

Who wins?  

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  1. 1. Who wins?

    • Lancaster Werewolves
    • Cuba Smugglers

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  • Poll closed on 10/22/2020 at 04:00 AM

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BDL 2020 Week 6

Match: Lancaster Werewolves @ Cuba Smugglers 

Away Owner: @rackcs

Home Owner: @MD4L

Vote for who you think would win the game.

Rules:
One vote per person, duplicate accounts will be banned and action taken against those attempting to rig the results.

One vote per team involved in the match. Co-owners may vote in every match up except their own.

For members, who have been following along, and wish to vote.  Please join the conversation and maybe give a reason you voted as you did. This will alleviate any suspicions of unusual voting and will promote discussion.

Note: Players that have a (D) next to their name indicate that they are doubtful or unlikely to play. Players with (Q) are game-time decisions.

Good luck to you both.

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Lancaster Werewolves

QB: Matthew Stafford
RB1: Alvin Kamara
WR1: Mike Evans
WR2: Emmanuel Sanders
TE: George Kittle
TE: Jonnu Smith
LT: Taylor Lewan
LG: Quenton Nelson
C.: Frank Ragnow (Q)
RG: Gabe Jackson
RT: Riley Reiff

RB2: Miles Sanders
RB3: Ronald Jones II
WR3: Breshard Perriman (Q)
WR4: Willie Snead V
WR5: A.J. Green
TE3: Logan Thomas
OL: Robert Hunt
OL: Connor McGovern

DE: Joey Bosa
DT: Javon Kinlaw
DT: Kenny Clark
DE: T.J. Watt
LB: Bobby Wagner
LB: Fred Warner
CB: Jalen Ramsey
CB: Kevin King (Q)
CB: Jaire Alexander
FS: Eddie Jackson
SS: Jonathan Abram

INT: Jarran Reed
INT: Linval Joseph
EDGE: Clelin Ferrell
LB: Willie Gay Jr.
CB: Brian Poole
CB: Malcolm Butler
S: Vonn Bell
S: Taylor Rapp

 

Lancaster Offensive Strategy: We’re banged up on offense this week so we feel lucky that we’re going up against a similarly banged up defense in Cuba. As with last week the key to our offensive success is going to run through two players: Alvin Kamara and George Kittle. We want to get them into mismatch situations throughout the game against a hurting and thin Cuba defense. We’re also utilizing a 2 TE offense partially out of necessity but also because we believe we can get favorable matchups with those players. We want to go a little bit more pass heavy this week just because we think that’s where we’ll get more favorable matchups.

The Passing Strategy: One of the main things we want to do this week is use a lot of pre snap motion. This will allow Stafford to make reads early on about the defensive coverage he’s going to see as well as hopefully cause the defense to make some mistakes. In particular we’re going to have Kittle moving a lot so Stafford can see who is covering him as that’s where we think we can do the most damage. There is no player on the Cuba defense who can cover him 1 on 1 so we want to get a lot of quick strikes to Kittle so the secondary defender doesn’t have time to get to him. We want to motion Kittle from one side of the line to the other or into the slot to see who follows and then take advantage of favorable matchups. 

We’ll be using Alvin Kamara much like we have the past few weeks by getting him heavily involved in the screen game where he can get the ball in space with blockers in front of him. We’ll also be motioning him outside and doing similar things as we are with Kittle where we look for quick strikes against favorable matchups. Kamara has the ability to break these kinds of quick strikes wide open. 

Jonnu Smith and Mike Evans are going to be the secondary targets this week. We like the matchup here of Jonnu Smith as none of the Cuba defenders are particularly good TE coverers other than Kendricks. We anticipate he’ll be tied up with either Kamara or Kittle though, giving Jonnu some good looks. Evans will likely be covered by the returning Richard Sherman, so we anticipate a balanced matchup there. With us looking for quick short to intermediate things with our other receiving options, Evans will be a guy we look to for some bigger plays. We want to have him test Sherman deep a couple of times and hope we can get some big plays out of him. He and Sanders will be running a variety of short to intermediate routes otherwise.

The Running Strategy: We’re wanting to again keep using Kamara how we’ve been using Kamara. We’re going to have our guards pull a lot to give Kamara extra blockers whether we’re running inside or outside. We want to put these extra blockers in front so that Kamara only has to make on guy miss (something he’s very good at) and he can get big gains. With out passing game being predicated on quick, short strikes, we want to run Kamara a decent amount on early downs to give us favorable yardage to gain on our later downs.

Lancaster Defensive Strategy: While my banged-up offense is going against Cuba’s banged up defense, this matchup is a different story. My team is getting healthier on this side of the ball, notably with the addition of Kenny Clark again. His offense is getting some key players back as well like Julio Jones (although they do also lose Dalvin Cook). With Cuba’s best RB being Jamaal Williams this week, we expect to see a lot of passing this week so that’s where our focus will be.

The Pass Defense Strategy: The return of Julio Jones is huge for Cuba this week but we think our secondary is right up there as one of the best in BDL and can more than rise to the challenge. Jalen Ramsey will cover Julio, Kevin King will cover Chark, and Alexander will cover Jefferson. If King is out then Alexander will take Chark and Poole will start and cover Jefferson. With Alie-Cox out, we’re not sure what scheme Cuba will run. If they go with 4 WRs then Poole or Butler (depending on King) will go out and cover presumably Demarcus Robinson. If not and they start Ian Thomas, then Wagner will cover him. Eddie Jackson will be playing a deep zone. Abrams will alternate between a shallow zone over the middle and playing a deep zone in cover 2 with Jackson, leaning more towards playing deep. Warner will be covering the RB if he comes out of the backfield and playing a shallow zone if they stay in to block.

As for how we want to handle the coverage itself, we want to play physical. These WRs are banged up with both Chark and Jones having missed time this year so we want to make them work for every yard and try to tire them out. Our corners know that they’ve got a lot of additional help this week on the back end from the safeties as well as help over the middle so they can feel comfortable playing press and trying to disrupt the timing of the receivers’ routes. 

Anthony Castonzo is back this week but Becton is doubtful. DeCastro is back out. Meanwhile we get Kenny Clark back this week. We feel that this is going to be the most significant advantage for us this week. Our DL should have a lot of success against the Cuba OL both on the edges and the interior. With us playing press on their WRs, it’s going to take them a little longer to get their route started and get open and gives our DL time to get to Watson.

The Run Defense Strategy: We feel fortunate that Cook is out this week, as is Bell. Jamaal Williams and his 29 attempts on the season are their biggest RB threat. To be perfectly frank we’re willing to concede a little bit against the run to help stop the pass this game which is why we’ve not got as many guys in the box as usual. We’re more worried about Williams coming out of the backfield than running the ball. We also think our DL alone against Cuba’s banged up OL should be able to do a good enough job against the run with minimal help.

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Cuba Smugglers

QB: DeShaun Watson
RB: Jamaal Williams
WR: Julio Jones 
WR: Marvin Jones
WR: Justin Jefferson
TE: Ian Thomas
LT: Anthony Castonzo
LG: Elgton Jenkins
C - Ryan Jensen
RG: Daryl Williams
RT: Trent Brown

RB: Darwin Thompson
RB: Jaylen Samuels
WR: DeMarcus Robinson
WR: Miles Boykin
OL: Matt Hennessy 
OL: Dennis Daley
 

Edge: Arik Armstead
DT: Fletcher Cox
NT: DaQuan Jones
Edge: Cameron Jordan
WLB: Cory Littleton 
MLB: Eric Kendricks 
RCB: Kenny Moore 
FS: Tyrann Mathieu 
SS: Khari Willis
NCB: Jimmie Ward
LCB: Daryl Worley

Edge: Jerry Hughes 
NT: Derrick Nnadi 
DT: Denico Autry
Edge: Matt Judon
LB: Vince Williams
RCB: Fabian Moreau
SS: Kenny Vacarro 
NCB: Ugo Amadi 

 

Intro

This has been a week of noise regarding uncertainties but when intact this team is capable of special things. Lancaster comes with an excellent roster and arguably the leagues most formidable defense. We look forward to putting forth our best performance of the year and building upon this for the stretch run.

Offense

Julio Jones will play so immediately we are improved as an offense. Ramsey will likely shadow him for the game with on and off safety help and that should help our offense substantially as we’re effectively making Julio a decoy unless he shows his usual pop, meaning we’d start feeding him a traditional target share in the second half. Otherwise his biggest asset is taking away the best individual cover guy for Lancaster. Jaire Alexander isn’t of Ramsey’s caliber but remains one of the leagues premier CBs. As there’s a likelihood he covers Justin Jefferson or DJ Chark we’re planning on bunching him up excessively to create possible pick opportunities where we can target Kevin King and Malcom Butler relentlessly with Marvin Jones or Justin Jefferson on drags, wheel, option outs at 5 yards, & deep in-cuts with go routes to compliment his vertical ability with go routes. Bunching guys and running crossing patterns is the best way we can rationally get them the ball against Jaire Alexander. Jefferson & Jones will occasionally spell Julio or Chark on two WR sets.

To counteract the dynamic Lancaster edge rush, we possess one of the few pass tandems that have high level pass protectors on both sides with Castonzo and Brown holding up the edge. Brown’s return coinciding with the Raiders offensive explosion is legitimate as he helps provides a capable pocket that should allow Watson an opportunity to find winnable matchups against Malcolm Butler and or Kevin King.

After properly accounting for a dynamic pass rush and managing the opportunities for our receivers to get open we can take advantage of the areas Lancaster does not have elite players on defense. Starting with their interior defensive line, our interior offensive line has an advantage with well rounded players across the board. With an opportunity against 6 man fronts we want Jamal Williams to be decisive with constant RPOs that keep Watson involved in the running game. Watson’s running ability will be helpful to give us plus matchups in the running game as we will always have one man more than they can account for unless they bring their safeties down. As we begin to establish the RPO, we can start to take shots with Julio in the second half as we’ve planned in the previous paragraph. Darwin Thompson is the spell back and Samuels is the obvious passing down pass catcher. The goal to combat Wagner + Warner is having one of our interior guys continually reach the second level and putting our guys in one on one opportunities to win against the LBs on a consistent basis. 

Lastly, we do have tricks up our sleeve involving Jaylen Samuels running the same option DeAndre Hopkins ran with Watson last season near the endzone. Samuels will also be QB on our own Philly Special on 4th and less than 5 between the Lancaster 35-45 yard line. We’re missing talent and need some extra stuff in this matchup so we’re fans of these little wrinkles because Lancaster won’t anticipate them after we traded Taysom Hill.

Defense

The immediate benefit with going against Matthew Stafford is he’s a classic pocket passer so our focus on stopping the run game is focused on stopping Kamara. He’s a solid runner but an excellent receiver so while our objective to stopping the pass we are committed to making that the only way Lancaster can keep their offense on schedule. By bringing Khari Willis down on a regular basis, we can have seven men in the box and also account for the ability of Kittle in the run defense aspect. The starting edges are both bigger ends and can allow us to close down on some the outside zone plays that get Kamara easily to the second level. This team also uses their offensive line as a weapon so by stopping the running game we can give our back seven more opportunities to defend passing situations. 

Our primary coverage for this game will be mixing cover 1 & cover 3 schemes with Tyrann Mathieu serving as the last line of defense. Eric Kendricks is going to have a major responsibility in the middle of the field as we think he’s one of the few players capable of covering Kendricks and Kittle with another guy helping in that area. Khari Willis will also have responsibilities switched between Kittle and Kamara but we’re comfortable for understanding in this writing that Kittle will mostly be covered by Kendricks and Kamara by Willis. Cory Littleton will switch the responsibility to helping either guy based on the situation which will be defending short patterns like flats out the backfield or drag routes from the TE to wheel routes from the RB and post patterns from TE on passing downs where Stafford is trying to take deep targets to those weapons.

If we can occupy the run game and cover Kittle/Kamara reasonably well we would have accomplished a great deal of what will be necessary to earn a victory. The final goal is defending Mike Evans which is important because we have simplified Mathieu’s responsibility. On base formations and early downs, Jimmie Ward will play the nickle spot and should be an asset in space considering the matchup and moves to the deep safety on passing downs allow Tyrann to be his versatile self and cover Kamara on 3rd downs as the 4th CB. In these situations, Worley covers Evans with Ward over top, Moreau on the boundary and Moore in the slot. Sanders and Johnson are both interchangeable so we consider having shadow responsibility on them unnecessary due to their skill sets.

Special Teams

We know this does get mentioned but we have every intent to run a fake punt w Samuels as the back at some point in the game on our own territory on a 4th and less than 3. 

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I mentioned DJ Chark in the writeup and he was in my starting line up but there’s a minor error w formatting.

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22 minutes ago, MD4L said:

I mentioned DJ Chark in the writeup and he was in my starting line up but there’s a minor error w formatting.

How is having Marvin Jones in the starting line up instead of Chark a formatting thing? Isn't that just a slip up?

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2 minutes ago, Jlash said:

How is having Marvin Jones in the starting line up instead of Chark a formatting thing? Isn't that just a slip up?

Copy and paste mistake, but I definitely planned on having one more guy listed in my lineup that isn’t there currently.

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I think Lancaster made a mistake not attacking Cuba's secondary more heavily. Cuba's defensive strength is in the front seven, but Lancaster is underrating the linebackers in my opinion.

On the other hand, Cuba is struggling a little bit at the skill positions outside of quarterback. Jamaal Williams is a fine complementary piece but I don't think he's up to the task of being the primary ball carrier in a BDL offense. I think it would have been a good idea to really emphasize Watson's rushing ability this week to keep the defense honest (although I see that RPO stuff in there).

Ultimately I like to reward creativity and Cuba's special packages in the wake of trading Taysom Hill tickle my fancy. Hard to overlook Watson's passing this week, too. Cuba in a very close game.

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I'm not lie here. Where Cuba lost me was the usage of Jaylen Samuels. I don't think it matters how you try to use him, he just isn't good at the football thing. On the flip side, I personally felt Cuba did get the RPO game going wirh Watson, I still don't think using Samuels there is a good idea. 

I think both teams are underrating the opposing LBs frankly. I do like Lancaster's decision here to use Kittle and Kamara, but tough to matchup against typically.  I feel if Lancaster would've been more aggressive through the air though and taken advantage of a secondary that while good, imo, lacks that elite presence they'd have made this decision easier. 

As I sift through it all, this is a really close matchup for me but I gotta give the rushing attack and overall offensive success through the thick of things to Lancaster in an absolute dog fight.

24-23 Lancaster 

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22 hours ago, Blue said:

I think Lancaster made a mistake not attacking Cuba's secondary more heavily

Yea, might have been a good week to ditch the two TE base and spread Cuba out. I know AJ Green has slowed, but he can be a problem against these CB's, hell, even flex Miles Sanders out into the slot, he's a good receiver (minus that monster drop Sunday).

On the reverse, as good of an athlete as Kendricks is, I don't think he can cover Kittle all game and that will be a problem. I have to come back to this one.

Edited by Jlash

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28 minutes ago, Jlash said:

Yea, might have been a good week to ditch the two TE base and spread Cuba out. I know AJ Green has slowed, but he can be a problem against these CB's, hell, even flex Miles Sanders out into the slot, he's a good receiver (minus that monster drop Sunday).

On the reverse, as good of an athlete as Kendricks is, I don't think he can cover Kittle all game and that will be a problem. I have to come back to this one.

I do talk about motioning Kamara out to the slot because he's also very good in that type of role

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54 minutes ago, Jlash said:

On the reverse, as good of an athlete as Kendricks is, I don't think he can cover Kittle all game and that will be a problem. I have to come back to this one.

The last time they were on the field against each other, Kendricks was the primary defender and Kittle finished with 3 catches on 5 targets for 16 yards w a Kendricks INT.

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This was another really tough matchup. I picked Lancaster last night as I think their Edge rushers and Kamara make the difference here. Cuba has some good tackles in but I think Watt and Bosa get enough wins to change this game. Julio, Watson and Jefferson keep this game very close. 

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3 hours ago, rackcs said:

I do talk about motioning Kamara out to the slot because he's also very good in that type of role

Right and that makes sense, but he's already accounting for Kamara, so it's not adding anything different for his D to look at.  Smith is a good player, Littleton has a better chance at running with Smith than he does with AJ Green or Sanders one on one. 

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