GAMEDAY: Virtual Playbook breakdown of LSU

This week we dissect several of LSU's plays on both offense and defense via our popular and exclusive virtual playbook so you can get a visual idea of how things unfold on the field.

The LSU Offense

The passing game

LSU does an extraordinary amount of boot-legging and play action. Although the two headed monster at quarterback for LSU does not have the awareness of a Matt Jones, they have the skills. Despite that, they only have 30 yards rushing combined all season. They stay in the pocket and try to complete passes. When they do boot or play action is when they do throw down field and they run a lot of short routes. The route selection depends on how the pressure was coming. Georgia really forced them to throw short and quick.

Here we see a bootleg play action pass. The second tight end goes in motion before the play and after the snap, he cuts into the flat. The outside receiver runs an 8 yard out route and the inside receiver runs a Go.

Continuing on the movement theme, here we have a sprint out pass. The quarterback flows to the left. In this route package we have a five yard hitch, a 5 yard drag, a ten yard drag, and a 12 to 15 yard corner route. The movement of the quarterback helps the protection. The "slide" protection is usually one of the easiest for the offensive line.

The running game

LSU runs a lot of straight zone blocking. The thing they do different is the back usually cuts back across the flow of the blocking. Whereas the Gators follow their zone blocks and wait for a hole to open, the Tigers don't get as many chances but may find bigger holes. It is key that the Gator linebackers and linemen are working in unison to shut down these gaps.

The "Power-O" is something a lot of offenses are incorporating, including the Gators. In this example, the left tackle pulls behind the center and right guards block and into the opposite gap between the right guard and right tackle. By the time he gets there the right tackle should have helped the right guard engage and handle the defensive tackle and then slip to a second level defender, in this case the Mike linebacker (M). Once the left guard pulls he is only looking for a second level defender to block and in this case it is the Will linebacker.

The LSU Defense

The Tigers blitz or bring 5 rushers over 50% of the time. They play a lot of man coverage and make big plays out of it. They are also very susceptible to big plays as seen by last year's game. Here we see their most common defense or Cover 1, The free safety has the middle of the field deep and 5 players have man coverage designated by the dotted lines. The red areas indicate where passes should be thrown if a mis-match is obtained.

They also play a cover 0 (zero) and have no deep safety help at times. This is where the Gators really burned them last year. They saw that our backs stayed in to protect in certain situations and decided to not cover them in those situations. Once the Gator staff picked up on it, the back free released and was completely uncovered. Above is an example of their all out blitz and Cover 0. In this instance, the tailback is totally blackened and the only one without a coverage assignment. The rewards are high for which ever side of the ball wins on this play.

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