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Philosophy of Football

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by alleyallen, Jan 23, 2007.

  1. alleyallen

    alleyallen Guest

    Not sure if this thread belongs here or on the other board, but I wanted to address a bit of the philosophy of football. I've been playing a lot of NFL Head Coach lately, and on the side, reading about the thoughts and emotions that go into the preparation, the play, the down time, the off-season. I'm taking a bit of a philosophical stance on this because it's a topic which really interests me.

    That being said, I have a theory (maybe it seems obvious, or stupid, to some of you) regarding really good college players as they come to the pros.

    Think about a star player and his time in high school. Very likely, he would have had an extremely incredible high school career, and as a result, probably 85 or 90 percent of his games at that level. If he moves on to a big-time school -- USC or Texas or OSU or wherever -- he'll likely end up winning 75 to 85 percent of his games there, too.

    If he's a big-time player, it's likely he'll go higher in the draft, which means he goes to a team which isn't as successful. How do these players deal with going from winning 80 percent of their games to maybe only winning 20 to 30 percent of their games in the pros?

    I don't have close contact with any pro ballers, so some feedback on this would be appreciated.

    And if I'm totally off base here...hey, it's not like I cover the NFL.
  2. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    Besides playing NFL Head Coach, you might also find it insightful if you stay at a Holiday Inn Express.
  3. fmrsped

    fmrsped Active Member

    I've heard guys that fit that description saying how tough it is, i.e. Peyton Manning and many others.
  4. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    QB's have it toughest to adjust. Pass protection may not be as good and they are not used to various covers and closing speed of DB's.

    Some good ones have not made it because of that .
  5. leo1

    leo1 Active Member

    how do they adjust? they're being well compensated. even the 75 percent who won't be around in four years know their lives are far better than their buddies' lives. they are getting paid well. the ones with half a brain know they'll be set for life if they just don't do anything stupid given that the nfl pension system kicks in after four full seasons.

    also, they're professionals. it's their job to play football and do the best possible job.
  6. alleyallen

    alleyallen Guest

    Not quite what I meant, but I appreciate your response just the same. Think about it more from, say, the Reggie Bush perspective. Assume, for a moment, that the Saints finished with a 4-12 record instead of the one they had. Bush, who has been a winner most of his life, suddenly is on a team that simply cannot win, despite his efforts. Those are the people I wonder about.
  7. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    Some can't adjust to the autumn winds - which can come on like a pirate.
  8. alleyallen

    alleyallen Guest

    Wow...sounds like someone is channeling Caine from Kung Fu.

    To steal lines from a movie...

    "What's with you today?"
    "What's with today, today?"
  9. The Big Ragu

    The Big Ragu Moderator Staff Member

    Agree that QBs have the toughest adjustment, but in most cases it isn't going from winning to losing. That's the least of their worries, actually. The NFL game is so different than anything they have done. It's also gotten way more complicated over the last 10 years, making it even harder to make the adjustment. It isn't as simple as hand off 30 times and take a five or three step drop and throw the rest of the time. The speed of the game is beyond what they've experienced. The decisions have to be made way more quickly and there is twice as much to know.

    If you are reasonably intelligent, and you have experience playing the game, you can stand at the line in a D-I college football game and recognize what the defense is doing the majority of the time, particularly as the game has gone along. There are in-game adjustments, but most defenses can only do so much.

    I am not minimizing the college game--it's tough--but in the NFL it changes drastically. They disguise everything, and they do it well. They come at you with things you never anticipated. And everything happens way more quickly. That's the thing I've heard most: "The speed of the game is unreal." The best comparison would be if you unexpectedly found yourself standing on some train tracks with a train barreling toward you that's going to make impact in 3 seconds. How would you react? The good QBs are the ones who have the natural instincts to react the right way.

    This is a great topic. One of my best friends, who is my age, played QB in the NFL and I've had this discussion with him. I have also initiated it with a lot of current players because I'm fascinated by what it takes to mentally play a game that is that fast, that brutal and relatively complicated compared to other sports. I can't experience it, so I try to get others talking about it.

    Obviously, everyone has the physical skills at the highest level. In most sports--but in football more than others--a major trait that separates good from mediocre players can only be described as "instincts."
  10. alleyallen

    alleyallen Guest

    Thanks Rags...that's exactly what I was looking for.
  11. Armchair_QB

    Armchair_QB Well-Known Member

    Going from HS to college the speed of the game increases, as does the size of the players, but there is still a big discrepancy from the best player to the worst player.

    Going from college to the NFL, the slowest guy on the field is at least as fast as the fastest guy you saw in college, and everybody's bigger than they were in college.

    That seems like it would be the toughest adjustment. Everything happens much faster and the collisions are much more violent.
  12. Boom_70

    Boom_70 Well-Known Member

    The QB's who make it in the NFL all learn the ability to slow the game down in their mind. They need to make 3 seconds feel like one minute.

    In Blink Malcolm Gladwell describes the experience of trained cops -- when they are in danger become completely focused on the danger and things almost slow down. They are able to make snap judgments whether to pull the trigger of not. It takes a lot of training to reach this point. Special Forces spends a lot of time on this type of training.

    Not life and death but I believe the same decision making process is needed for an NFL QB to make it.

    If he cannot slow the game down he becomes one dimensional and cannot see the whole field.

    The best I've seen was Joe Montana.
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