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July 24, 2012

Good Explanation of Grantham's Defensive Philosophy

Georgia Defensive Coordinator Todd Grantham
(Image: Hipple)
While the schemes discussed are a bit different, this article at Brophy Football is as good an explanation of the philosophy of Grantham's defense as I have seen. Note that the schemes are different in that I don't think we are as flexible on backside passing plays (think that TE drag and the zone clear plays Boise State and Michigan State ran on us). Also, Grantham likes to bring the other linebackers to the line to give run support, with any one of the backers picking up the WR/TE/Hback if the read is a pass play unless we have a blitz on.

Overall, the concepts discussed seem quite similar to what we've seen out of Grantham's defenses. The communication between the backs are very important, which leads me to the reason we have Malcolm Mitchell playing DB in the spring/summer and moonlighting as a WR, as opposed to the other way around:
It requires much more player indoctrination and processing up front, but once you’ve laid the framework, it can be anything you want it to be and essentially “run by itself”.  The simplicity is tied to the communication between the safety, corner and overhang player. 
It also explains the difference in philosophy, and the learning curve, after the change in Dcoordinators. Martinez's pass defense was predicated on figuring out where the ball is, or is going, and getting there first. In a perfect world, a successful Martinez passing defense is a high number of passes defended and interceptions. Grantham's is predicated on taking the receiving options away and giving your guys upfront the opportunity to make the QB mess up. Grantham's perfect passing defense results in a high number of sacks and QB hurry related incompletions.

That difference is one of the reasons Jarvis Jones is getting so much love pre-season. Grantham's pass defense is tailor made to allow him to use his talents to create havoc in backfields or drop back and pick off bad decision passes from the QB. We finished 10th in the nation is passing defense last year. If we can manage to have any consistent play from the DBs, especially early on, that isn't too lofty a goal this season.



Anonymous said...

You mean Willie actually had a defensive scheme?!

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