I really like the concept Patterson has with regards to splitting the formation and divorcing the 5-man secondary from the 6 man front.
He makes a great point about the numbers deal;
1, 2, or 3.....to a side and there isn't much you can do outside of that without being a completely bastard set
He can roam around all he wants and create indecision on an actual 2 deep look or 3 deep look depending on his alignment depth.one of the coolest things we've been able to get away with was running a 3 deep 3 under coverage with everyone else, and man up with the Bandit on sensational players......
My only hesitation is the guys I've typically seen in the secondary have enough things to worry about and while they are FAAAAST, they aren't exceptionally gifted with numbers or football smarts. But I'm sure there is a way to make this idiot-proof. And when looking at this, I have to ask/question how applicable it can be to from the Frosh - Varsity kids. We'll only be as good as the dimmest bulb in the drawer.
I know I've had guys I could easily line up and have them full a variety of roles, but most of them I don't think I could TRUST them to do it consistently.With the HS level (and sub varsity), this is why I've been stuck doing what I do (using role players over a bunch of guys that can do everything).....because I haven't found anything to teach EVERYTHING (deep safety, in-the-box, over-hang-force, man-to-man, 9 tech, etc) to EVERYONE, so we have stuck to teaching certain guys certain things to cut down their orientation (strong / weak looks) to their role/job.
...and it ultimately breaks down to the single common denominator.
Some kids will get "it" and it will be lights-out, while others will get frustrated and confused and get in the way. How complicated do we NEED to be? That is the burden of leadership, juggling the economics of cognitive development with the entire defense.
You can have some kids who can run with a 5-spoke, interchangeable secondary.....but then you have their replacements (or 2 of your starters) that retard the rest of the group. And when (I) add it all up, when all we see is maybe wing-t, pro-i powers, air raid.....is there really a NEED to be that multiple when we won't be facing a whole lot of different pass concepts?"Coach, why don't I see any playing time?"
[because we can't run the package with YOU in there]Kid may be able to run the base package, but short-circuits dealing with motions or shifts.....Kid gets frustrated, never gets to play, and when you boil it all down, is it really worth it?
Running a bunch of different coverages is one thing (not difficult), giving them multiple jobs is another. Getting them to be self-sufficient in that environment (numbers will dictate their 1/2 coverage) is quite another. Don't get me wrong, I'm not against it, I just want to be able to comfortably justify the expense. It sure would be hell on the offense.
They are only going to see nub, split, twins, or some version of trips so what they do is dependent on what they are faced with.
That is why we are in C3 (the garbage defense) a lot.
Point being, we all can draw up stuff and get our rocks off coming up with new formulas (we ALL do it) for inciting diarrhea in the opposing coordinators.....the bottom line comes down to this 'defense' may have 9000+ hit points against Pro formation, it turns into spoiled milk against an empty set. It boils down to the amount of risk/liability we are all comfortable with. If you can bang away in C0 or 9 man fronts or 3 man fronts or whatever, and you certainly SHOULD if you don't believe the opponent will find your Achille's Heel, because if he does, you have defeated the very purpose your kids are on the field.
The TCU playbook;
TCU Horned Frog Defense - 57 Pages 1