Author Topic: Understanding the 2 Gap Technique  (Read 2750 times)

rlb002

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Understanding the 2 Gap Technique
« on: December 10, 2015, 11:51:50 am »
You probably have heard the phrase "2 Gap" technique a lot of late.  It really is where Saban's defenses succeed or fail each year.  In the Kick 6 debacle, they couldn't contain the 2 Gap and Mason bled them to death.  Saturday, Fournette couldn't breathe because they controlled the gaps. 

 Caption 1 is a general diagram to reference gaps and alignment


 
For general terms, the 3 down linemen line up as:

Nose- 0-2
Ends 3-5

In a 1 gap defense, they would shoot

Nose- 1A
Ends- B

In a 2 gap world

Nose- both As
Ends- B-D depending on alignment and Jack alignment



At the 24:48 minute mark, you can see what they really want to do here.  Bama has LSU deep at the 10 yard line.  They are in a base 3-4, single high safety because LSU starts out stack I right.  WR motions left, this shifts from single high to a cover 2 look.  In 2 seconds, Bama's ILBs go from a blitz to a contain look.  The ball snaps and you can see the DL use discipline to not jump through the gap as the play is an attempt to go off tackle with a lead blocker.  The DL role/responsibility is to control both the inside and outside gaps and allow the LBs to make the play or stop the runner when they get to their gap. 

In this play if they were 1 gap, they'd go straight and they'd be beaten off the ball.  Two gap allows each of the 3 to play and react to both shoulders of the lineman so to speak.  So, Lake is over center and plays both sides of A gap.  Robinson has B and C gaps and slides to the play as he is able to see the motion.  Reed sees it too and moves outside to force the ball back in as he's on the short end of the field.  He and Duvall have now contained the edge.  They and Hamilton are able to shut it down before it started. 

2nd down, they stay in base formation.  Only change is Duvall is hand down.  They think the run is to Lee's side of the field.  Both Lake and Ashawn are positioning to go inside on the snap and contain their side.  Smith creeps up from 2 deep safety to be the home run monitor if they misread this.  They have read the play right and on the snap Lake and Robinson drive their man back 2 yards instantly.  This makes Fournette bounce it out where Lee has drove the TE back 2 yards as well.  Fournette reverses but the gaps have covered him in and he now has to bounce back again.  This gives the safeties time to close in.  Jackson pursuits and tackles, and on a side note, Ragland had him at the 10 or so if Jackson misses. 

This is about every run of the night for Fournette.  The down three have controlled the front gaps  and allowed the linebackers and safeties to pursuit freely.

EDIT: Edited to include the new YouTube tag so the video is embedded. You should now see the YouTube option at the top (above the emojis) when posting.
« Last Edit: December 10, 2015, 05:52:01 pm by phlux »

phlux

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Re: Understanding the 2 Gap Technique
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2015, 12:35:16 pm »
You're back!  :)
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BigAl15

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Re: Understanding the 2 Gap Technique
« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2015, 11:46:20 am »
So what would be the best way to beat something like this offensively? Surely there is a weak point that doesn't rely on undisciplined players...

hvacigar

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Re: Understanding the 2 Gap Technique
« Reply #3 on: December 11, 2015, 05:31:03 pm »
So what would be the best way to beat something like this offensively? Surely there is a weak point that doesn't rely on undisciplined players...

One way is to scheme misdirection so the LB gets out of position and then double team the DL at the point of attack, unless you have an elite OLineman that can disrupt his technique one-on-one.  A pulling guard is another good option instead of misdirection for the LB.  Again, if the defense plays with players like Bama has, you still have to hit hat on hat perfectly to counter as our defensive front is just that good.

Or you could pass.

The system has a drawback too.  If you don't have beasts that can play the technique well, you can be exposed.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2015, 05:49:44 pm by hvacigar »

rlb002

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Re: Understanding the 2 Gap Technique
« Reply #4 on: December 12, 2015, 09:47:32 am »
So what would be the best way to beat something like this offensively? Surely there is a weak point that doesn't rely on undisciplined players...

One way is to scheme misdirection so the LB gets out of position and then double team the DL at the point of attack, unless you have an elite OLineman that can disrupt his technique one-on-one.  A pulling guard is another good option instead of misdirection for the LB.  Again, if the defense plays with players like Bama has, you still have to hit hat on hat perfectly to counter as our defensive front is just that good.

Or you could pass.

The system has a drawback too.  If you don't have beasts that can play the technique well, you can be exposed.

The main weakness is lack of discipline in the down 3.  If they choose the wrong gap or try to be overly aggressive in their technique instead of gap maintaining, the overpursuit is going to allow the offense to get free or reverse field. 

jliggins2002

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Re: Understanding the 2 Gap Technique
« Reply #5 on: December 13, 2015, 05:03:18 am »
This technique is very effective but I totally agree with the other user in that you must have beasts across the line. This just plays on the obvious that if you have one elite player that can take away two gaps or one side of the line, it frees up players to do other things. I do feel sometimes this does take away from tackle for loss performance. I have seen that elite players that only have one gap responsibilities seem to spend more time on the other side of the  line of scrimmage. It all depends on who is considered the "strong squad", the linebackers or the dline. One gap schemes depend heavily on linebackers making the plays and filling the gaps. Two gap schemes again are for the STUD d-lineman. Just my thoughts.

phlux

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Re: Understanding the 2 Gap Technique
« Reply #6 on: December 13, 2015, 12:39:49 pm »
This technique is very effective but I totally agree with the other user in that you must have beasts across the line. This just plays on the obvious that if you have one elite player that can take away two gaps or one side of the line, it frees up players to do other things. I do feel sometimes this does take away from tackle for loss performance. I have seen that elite players that only have one gap responsibilities seem to spend more time on the other side of the  line of scrimmage. It all depends on who is considered the "strong squad", the linebackers or the dline. One gap schemes depend heavily on linebackers making the plays and filling the gaps. Two gap schemes again are for the STUD d-lineman. Just my thoughts.

I like this guy.
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DavDET

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« Reply #7 on: January 06, 2020, 01:36:47 am »