West Coryell: Blocking Versus Receiving

As stated the other day, we’ll be looking at what very well might be the new offense for the Jets in 2008, something we are terming the “West Coryell” an amalgamation of vertical downfield offense combined with the ball control passing game of the West Coast.

So aren’t these offenses mutually exclusive?  Not necessarily so, there was once a time when a passing based ball control offense was considered oxymoronic, we now know that as Bill Walsh’s West Coast.  As we explore over the next few days, certain aspects will play big parts if this is what we think Schottenheimer might be doing.

One of the biggest single differences between the Coryell and the West Coast is the use of the extra skill players on the field at any given time. In the Coryell, blockers are needed to both establish the run and protect for the pass. In the West Coast, maximizing the amount of available receivers to find an open man in a short pace is paramount.

So how do you bridge the two, to even attempt at combining the offenses?

In any offense, there are six players that are static between the offensive line and quarterback, beyond that, an offense spreads around the other players as necessary (2 WRs, 2RBs, 1 TE), so basically you need players who can both catch the ball and players who can give the QB a few more fractions of a second with good blocking skills.

The most likely players to be used in a dual capacity are the backs and the Tight Ends. This offseason, the Jets acquired four players specifically in this area. Bubba Franks, Tony Richardson, Jesse Chatman and Dustin Keller. As it now stands, all are likely to make the team.

Let’s look at the Jets current roster and guys likely to make the team and assess.

Running Backs
Thomas Jones — Power runner, good blocker, fair receiver
Leon Washington — Shifty runner, fair blocker, excellent receiver
Jesse Chatman — Power runner, good blocker, fair receiver

Tight Ends
Chris Baker — Good blocker, good receiver
Bubba Franks — Fair blocker, good receiver
Dustin Keller — Poor blocker, excellent receiver

Tony Richardson — Power runner, excellent blocker, good receiver

As you can see, now more than any time in this current regime, the team has the personnel to mix and match units, as well as mix and match formations while on the field. I know that I might be going out on a limb with this stuff, but we’ll see …