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Old 11-13-2012, 10:34 AM   #19
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Default Re: Leftwich Concerns

I think that if we want Leftwich to play "Haleyball", then we're going to have problems (Batch would be better for that).
But if Haley can design something to complement Leftwich's greatest asset (his arm) then I think we'll be OK.

The obvious knock on BL is his mobility -- he doesn't have any. He tends to look more like a refrigerator in the pocket than a QB (although Ben tends to fall more like one) so he's going to need pocket help to stay upright. But BL's greatest asset is his arm and he's one of the few people on the planet who can actually overthrow Mike Wallace at full sprint and I think that would be a good place to start.

I think we need to design some plays that feature either Sanders or Wallace (or both) running deep sideline or post routes and let BL reach them with long balls. The only drawback there is that BL tends to throw a shallow ball and for that to work deep there needs to be separation. Ben throws a very high, arcing deep ball which is one reason why he really doesn't throw all that far (but he's gotten a bit better at that over the years) that sort of drops into the receiver's hands but Leftwich throws a rope that's faster and harder which is OK as long as the coverage isn't too tight.

BL is also not a "dink and dunk" passer (again Charlie would be better for that) but over the middle on mid-range routes I think he's fine. Although his biggest flaw is his long delivery (which telegraphs his passes), that doesn't mean much on medium-range slants and posts because he makes up for it in ball speed.

I think it breaks down like this:

If we want to keep running Haley's offense "as is", then Charlie might be the better choice for the short, touch-style passes and he also brings a bit more mobility to the table but doesn't really have a powerful deep ball. If we're going with Leftwich, then Haley needs to back away from the finesse game and think more in terms of a "Terry Bradshaw" type gameplan featuring deep balls and mid-range routes while keeping Miller or someone else in the backfield for extra protection to allow BL to wind up and throw.

I'm wondering if maybe it's time to think in terms of "Quarterback by committee" as we've been doing with the running game. Charlie has one skill set and Leftwich has another and maybe using both of them can allow Haley to run nearly a full version of his offense?

Something to think about....
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