Chavis Talks Auburn

LSU defensive coordinator John Chavis breaks down the game against Auburn.

On how to get the best of Cam Newton…

“We will tweak some things a little bit, because it’s like playing a tailback in the game. He can throw it and has a great arm, but you look what they do and last week 40-something times they ran it, and he ran it 25 times. They throw it about 15 or 14. You have to tweak things a little bit.”

“But our guys are used to playing in our scheme. That’s what we are going to do. We are not going to go out and reinvent the wheel this week. If you do that then you are looking for things, and it wouldn’t send our football team a good signal. We know we have to play spread offenses, and our defense is set up to do that. It’s just a matter of executing.”

Auburn’s use of the center-guard trap…

“It’s tough going when you have a 245-pounder coming up in there, but hey that’s the game we have got this week. Some people look at it as a big challenge, but we look at it as a big opportunity. That’s the way we are going to approach it. We are going to prepare as hard as we can and give it our best.”

On Newton’s ability to create on the fly…

“I don’t think he is freelancing. They know what they are doing and plays are designed to happen that way. All he is doing when he is waiting is waiting on that backside guard to get pulled, then he’s going to follow him or find the soft spot in the defense. You can’t have a soft spot; everybody has to anchor up and find their point and play. The linebackers have to do a great job attacking the line of scrimmage. Then you start up with a little play action, and there’s a lot of dimensions. But it starts with slowing down the run. Nobody has stopped. That’s what we want to be able to do; to go out and see if we can slow him down somewhat.”

On what he likes about Auburn offensive coordinator Gus Malzahn…

“We see a lot of people doing a lot of the same things, but he’s doing a great job and I have always had tremendous respect for him, even when he was at Arkansas several years ago. He knows what he is doing. They play hard and they are physical. A lot of it is run-gun stuff, but it’s still physical. It is power football. They don’t run as much option as some teams run in the spread. They run more power football, where you get a down-and-around blocking scheme, and that’s physical. You are going to get a dose of that and then a dose of those fast (running) backs coming across and running the speed sweep. It’s power football. The thing it forces you to do is play a little more man coverage than you normally would. Obviously we are not going to change our philosophy. We are just going to put more in the box than they can block. That’s what we are trying to do. Hopefully we can dare them to throw it. Maybe we can get them to throw it 50 times.”

An explanation of down-and-around…

“It’s a double-team at the point of attack and it is a backside guard coming around to pull and kick somebody out. They have a fullback – they don’t call him a fullback – but they have a fullback involved that is running the kick out block. The guard is going to wrap and block the backside.”

On the struggles in the redzone and with sudden-change defense…

“I will use last year as an example. It’s something we take a lot of pride in. None of us are very happy. You have turnovers that are going to happen, and we have practiced sudden-change defense all year and in the fall. Last year we didn’t give up a single point off sudden-change until the Arkansas game. We have not been very good in that situation. You ask me why, and it is hard to say. You have to go out and get stops and make them kick field goals. We have given up touchdowns already this year off sudden-change, and we played almost 12 games last year and gave up only one. It’s something where we need to be better than we are. We know it’s there, and we know we need to be better in those situations because they are going to happen. What we need to do is get the short field for our offense, because that’s what good defenses do; they take the ball away. We have been okay at that, but certainly there is room for improvement.”

 

 

 

 

 


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