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Old 09-17-2009, 11:03 PM   #1
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Default Roethlisberger produces with pump fake

Roethlisberger produces with pump fake
http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pitt...s_643722.html#
By Mark Kaboly
TRIBUNE-REVIEW
Friday, September 18, 2009

Ben Roethlisberger has become a fake.

Already proficient at winning Super Bowls and guiding fourth-quarter comebacks, Roethlisberger is quickly adding another entry to his resume - master of deception.

In the time of shotguns and no-huddles, Roethlisberger is bringing back the lost art of the pump fake.

Prevalent three decade ago in the NFL, the notion of deceiving a defender by faking a pass then throwing it in another direction has become a favorite of Roethlisberger.

"I have been trying to use it more this year (just) to use it," Roethlisberger said. "In the past, sometimes I was really going to throw it, and then at the last minute, decide not to. It would look pretty realistic, if you ask me."

All you have to do is ask the Tennessee defenders how realistic Roethlisberger's pump fakes have become.

Last week, Roethlisberger attempted 43 passes in the Steelers' 13-10 overtime win over the Titans. He used the pump fake an inordinate 17 times, completing 12 of them for 195 yards and the team's only touchdown.

The other 26 attempts that a pump fake was not used, Roethlisberger threw for 168 yards, no touchdowns and was intercepted twice.

"Last week, I really tried to use it a lot, because when teams do zone drops, that is the best way to move guys," Roethlisberger said.

Tennessee's zone scheme dictated how much Roethlisberger was able to use the pump fake. He threw for 363 yards and a touchdown against the Titans.

"We are playing against teams that play the Tampa Two," Offensive coordinator Bruce Arians said. A "Tampa Two'' is where two safeties play deep, and each cover half of the field. "They are spot-droppers who read the quarterback's eyes so you can move them around where you want them."

Roethlisberger has been able to hold defenders in place with his pumps like he did to Titans safety Chris Hope on Santonio Holmes' touchdown reception at the end of the first half last week.

Roethlisberger pumped to the right then connected with Holmes on a post pattern in the back left of the end zone.

"With Santonio's touchdown, we always try to move the safety with the pump," backup quarterback Charlie Batch said. "But (the pump fake) is really nothing in particular we work on."

It is said that one time is a fluke, but two times is a trend. So you can at least refer to Roethlisberger's penchant for the pump as a trend for now.

Roethlisberger first enjoyed success with the pump fake during the Super Bowl XLIII-winning drive a year ago.

He was 3 of 5 for 59 yards and a touchdown to Holmes when he pumped first. The key one was a 40-yard reception to Holmes down to the Arizona 6-yard line.

"Some of those were unintentional," Roethlisberger admitted. "I was going to throw the ball then decided not to at the last second."

Still, the pump fake, whether intentional or unintentional, puts a lot of pressure on a secondary.

"When you see his hand come up with the ball, you expect him to throw it," safety Ryan Clark said. "So, it is really tough for you as a safety if a guy is allowed to have enough time to pump fake a lot."

That's how Chicago coach Lovie Smith sees it. His Bears also play a lot of zone defense, which will make his defenders ripe for the pump fake, that is if they afford Roethlisberger the time to do it.

"That is a big part of his game to be able to do that," Smith said. "It will be the same case with us this week if we allow him to do that. You have to make him get rid of the ball fairly quick."

But Roethlisberger's ability to escape pressure and then pump on the run makes it a difficult task for the opposition.

"That is all just a part of his package as a football player," Clark said. "I guess when you have big enough hands to do it, it is a good move."

Mark Kaboly can be reached at mkaboly@dailynewsemail.com or 412-664-9161.
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Old 09-17-2009, 11:16 PM   #2
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Default Re: Roethlisberger produces with pump fake

Sounds like there's potential for another big game in Chi Town
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Old 09-18-2009, 02:08 AM   #3
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Default Re: Roethlisberger produces with pump fake

if it works use it, hes good at it, so why not?
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Old 09-18-2009, 03:57 AM   #4
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Default Re: Roethlisberger produces with pump fake

I really love watching him do that last week. Those defenders were really biting on it. If he can produce those kind of numbers with the pump fake then I say use it.
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Old 09-18-2009, 06:51 AM   #5
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Default Re: Roethlisberger produces with pump fake

Ben has always used the pump fake to try and move defenders. It's great as long as he holds on to the ball. When the weather starts getting bad, and he tries "the glove", I don't think he gets the grip he needs to bring it back. That's when you see him throwing the body fake with the shoulder more than moving the arm.
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Old 09-18-2009, 06:54 AM   #6
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Default Re: Roethlisberger produces with pump fake

Hey - whatever works and hopefully the OL will give Ben the time he needs to utilize it on Sunday against da Bears. My only concern with this is what Go Slash stated above - if our OL doesn't give Ben much time to drop back, set and get his arm up, there is the possibility that Ben could cough up the football if he is blindsided. They were good in pass coverage last week against the Titans and I'm hoping that trend continues so that Ben can use his secret weapon successfully.
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Old 09-18-2009, 07:05 AM   #7
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Default Re: Roethlisberger produces with pump fake

Quote:
Originally Posted by HometownGal View Post
Hey - whatever works and hopefully the OL will give Ben the time he needs to utilize it on Sunday against da Bears. My only concern with this is what Go Slash stated above - if our OL doesn't give Ben much time to drop back, set and get his arm up, there is the possibility that Ben could cough up the football if he is blindsided. They were good in pass coverage last week against the Titans and I'm hoping that trend continues so that Ben can use his secret weapon successfully.
I agree and the pump fake is effective as long as he doesn't do it to often. Unfortunately after our SB last year and first game this year Ben's pump fake is no longer a secret. I do remember it the pump fake being used a lot 30 years ago but I don't remember how defenses countered it. However I'm Dick LeBeau does and if Ben can fool our defense with it then we should be in good shape.
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Old 09-18-2009, 06:27 PM   #8
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Default Re: Roethlisberger produces with pump fake

Pump fake works on everyone, your natural instinct tells you he's throwing. Lets just say other teams think oh well its a pump fake dont bite, but what if Ben were to actually throw it the first time instead. Its a hard play to defend.
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Old 09-19-2009, 02:50 PM   #9
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Default Re: Roethlisberger produces with pump fake

Until it's broken keep using what works! I think Ben does an amazing job at the pump fakes. Now it's time to fake pump some Bears!
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Old 09-19-2009, 04:49 PM   #10
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Default Re: Roethlisberger produces with pump fake

That was a key I saw from the OL. When Ben pump fakes that shows the OL did give him enough time to look at his options, pump and find the open receiver down the field, and the OL looked pretty good on passing situations!
Ben pumps on almost every pass play and hey whatever works for him. He is pretty effective too on these plays because he freezes the D just enough to find an open guy. Keep it up if it works Ben!
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