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Film Room: Chaz Green’s Struggles Sabotage Run Game

Kevin Brady

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Byron Bell's Contract Incentives Increase Competition for Chaz Green at RT
Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Often refereed to as the best unit in football, the Dallas Cowboys offensive line is expected to clear running lanes and lead Ezekiel Elliott to 1,000 yards or more every season. To be honest, most fans are disappointed if Zeke falls shy of 100 yards per game.

So far this season the Dallas Cowboys have struggled on the ground relative to their performance since 2014. One of the biggest reasons for this decline is the departure of left guard Ronald Leary.

Initially it was expected the Cowboys wouldn't have much trouble replacing Leary, considering the talent which Chaz Green and Jonathan Cooper were thought to have. After week one, these expectations were thought to be fulfilled.

Green played very well against an impressive New York Giants front, and showed signs of athleticism in space and the ability to get movement off the line of scrimmage.

Since that game, however, Green's play has hit a steep decline. After struggling mightily with the Denver Broncos' defensive tackles Green had a rather rough game on Monday night in Arizona.

dalvsaz chaz - Streamable

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On the very first play of the game the tone was set for Chaz Green's day. Green steps out to the backside three technique, attempting to seal the cutback lane for Ezekiel Elliott. As soon as he makes contact with the defender, Green stands straight up and stops his feet. He doesn't bring his hips through contact either, and just shuffles his feet under himself.

Because of this poor technique, the defensive tackle is able to shed the block and get into the backfield with ease. As he did on multiple occasions Monday night, Green ends up on the ground staring back at the man he was supposed to block.

Chaz Green cannot end up on the ground as much as he did last week. In a zone blocking scheme, where the offensive line must work in unison and in the same direction, one man falling can kill the entire play.

dalvsaz chaz 2 - Streamable

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An area I was impressed with Green after the season opener was with his reach blocking. On outside, or wide, zone Green is often asked to reach and overtake the one technique to seal the first backside defender.

On Monday night, however, Green failed to make these blocks far too often. When firing off the ball to reach the one-tech, Green must make his aiming point the playside armpit of that defender. This will allow for Green to get his head across, and at the very least, he will be able to stay in front, rip his backside arm through, and not allow the defender the cross his face.

Instead, Chaz can't get this done, and the defensive tackle is able to once again shed him and beat him on the play. And, due to what appears to be a serious contact balance issue, Green ends up on the ground.

dalvsaz chaz 3 - Streamable

Check out this video on Streamable using your phone, tablet or desktop.

Chaz Green looked incredibly athletic and smooth in his pulls against the New York Giants a couple of weeks ago. Monday night, however, he looked lost.

Asked to pull and kick the end man on the line of scrimmage, Green is responsible for opening this hole for Ezekiel Elliott. Instead, he puts his head down and gets his shoulders way out in front of his feet, making it easy for the defender to win this rep.

Of course, center Travis Frederick also gets beat here, but if Green had made his block I'd be willing to bet that Zeke could beat the nose to his landmark.

I don't want it to seem like I'm just killing Chaz Green here, but the tape doesn't lie. He simply wasn't good enough Monday night, and combined with poor efforts from the tight ends, made Zeke's night much harder than it had to be.

Green has shown before that he can play better than he has the last two weeks, but if he doesn't reach that form soon, it may be time to ask if he can really get it done this season.



Die-hard Cowboys fan from the Northeast, so you know I am here to defend the 'boys whenever necessary. Began writing for a WordPress Cowboys Blog, and am currently a college student. Lets get going.

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5 Comments
  • Russ_Te

    Good job Kevin.

    2nd vid, got good initial contact and other defenders stopped the run play. 3rd vid, I can pull that well… ;^)

    I don’t know here if this is just development curve, or if Green is always going to be eratic. That former #1 Cooper could not win the job, isn’t very positive either. Green has had injury problems in the past and that might force the job on Cooper for a while. Whenever you have new players on the OL it takes numerous games to get cohesion back, and Collins is also probably not as good now at RT as he will be.

    Since I’m advocating this week to start Butler and shop Terrance Williams, now I’m looking to trade him for a quality LG… ;^)

    • https://kevinrobertbrady.wordpress.com Kevin Brady

      Thanks, Russ! And yes, as much as I had hoped Green could plug-and-play this year he just hasn’t gotten it done thus far. Might have to look for another guard this offseason if things don’t change.

  • Brian Thompson

    Go look at Zeke’s TD run. Green goes the complete opposite direction. This is just inexcusable. Can’t happen with a solid NFL line.

    • https://kevinrobertbrady.wordpress.com Kevin Brady

      He went the wrong direction a couple of times on Monday. Hopefully he turns things around this week. Thanks for reading, Brian!

  • dallas1966

    The coaching staff needs to put Green and Cooper on notice, that their inconsistent play will no longer be tolerated. Both are killing the running and passing game, in clutch situations, causing Dak, to run for HIS life, or force to throw inaccurate , which put the playcaller, behind the 8 ball, on down and distance.

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Cowboys en Español: ¿Dónde Tiene Que Mejorar Dallas?

Mauricio Rodriguez

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The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly for Cowboys Against Jaguars

El mejor juego de los Dallas Cowboys en 2018 vino la semana pasada, cuando recibieron a los Jacksonville Jaguars y los vencieron 40-7. Un resultado que tomó a todos por sorpresa demostró la mejor cara en el año de este equipo que apenas tiene un récord de 3-3.

Por más dominantes que se vieron en el emparrillado el domingo pasado, esa actuación no termina de reflejar lo que realmente son los Cowboys. Son un equipo con potencial en la ofensiva y con una defensiva bastante fuerte, pero ¿pueden ganar constantemente como lo hicieron contra Jaguars?

De entrada, la respuesta a esta pregunta parece ser no. Aún en esa victoria, se vieron problemas evidentes en la ofensiva. Para empezar, la falta de ejecución en la segunda mitad en series ofensivas que incluso llegaron a iniciar en territorio enemigo. De gol de campo en gol de campo se juntan puntos, sin duda, pero en partidos cerrados eso termina costando victorias. Hace falta que Dak Prescott y compañía puedan mover el balón una vez en rango de gol de campo y convertir esas oportunidades a touchdowns.

Otra preocupación que no podemos subestimar es que el juego aéreo sigue sin funcionar apropiadamente. Cole Beasley dominó con nueve atrapadas para 101 yardas y dos touchdowns, pero el resto de los receptores se fueron sin  más de una recepción por cabeza. El único jugador que logró más de una fue el TE Geoff Swaim, quien se llevo dos en todo el juego.

Si bien Beasley tuvo uno de los mejores juegos en su carrera, más receptores tienen que involucrarse para llevar la ofensiva al siguiente nivel. La buena noticia es que en esta ocasión se enfrentaron contra una de las mejores secundarias en la NFL. Los números son malos, pero tienen la oportunidad de demostrar mucho más contra otras defensivas.

Los Dallas Cowboys tienen que repartir más la bola y seguir buscando maneras creativas de utilizar a su RB Ezekiel Elliott. Pases pantallas en tercera y largo no es ser creativo. Lo vemos funcionar dos o tres veces al año pero mandan esta jugada semanalmente. En cuanto a Dak Prescott, hay mucho donde mejorar. Deberíamos estar viendo pases más arriesgados, al centro del campo y mucho mejor posicionados.

Sean's Scout: Measuring Randy Gregory's Potential Impact on Cowboys Defense

Para la defensiva, las cosas se ven muy bien. Puede que veamos la mejor versión de esta unidad esta semana, cuando viajen a Washington. Maliek Collins, Sean Lee, David Irving, y Randy Gregory estarán jugando mucho más sanos y preparados. Este es un frente defensivo lleno de talento que intimidará constantemente a Alex Smith este domingo.

A pesar de que los Redskins no tienen una ofensiva muy explosiva, el área de oportunidad principal para la defensiva de Cowboys está en la profundidad defensiva. Tanto Jeff Heath como Xavier Woods han hecho un trabajo decente, pero tienen sus momentos en los que no logran asegurar una tackleada y permiten jugadas largas.

Hace unos meses no esperábamos que fuera la defensiva y no la ofensiva la que cargaría a este equipo a muchas victorias, pero ese ha sido el caso en las tres victorias de esta temporada. Y en las tres derrotas, la defensiva fue la que mantuvo a los Cowboys en el juego.

Sin duda alguna, lo que tiene que mejorar es la ofensiva. Los receptores tienen que desmarcarse, Prescott debe ser más preciso y tener una mejor conciencia en la bolsa de protección.

Pero sobre todo, es la inconsistencia del equipo. Esto se comienza a sentir como la temporada del año pasado, cuando los Cowboys se fueron 9-7 y nunca terminaron de establecerse como contendientes a los playoffs. Aún en una NFC East donde todos los equipos tienen récords similares y débiles, no pueden continuar perdiendo una semana y  ganando a la otra.

Ganarle a los Redskins sería la primera victoria de Dallas jugando de visita. También sería la primera vez en el año en la que tendrían victorias consecutivas. Por esto y muchas otras razones, incluyendo el potencial liderato de la división, este juego es de suma importancia.

Si ganan, podría ser el momento en el que los Cowboys terminen de darle la vuelta a la página y si pierden, podría ser un indicador de que esta temporada será igual que la del 2017.

Tell me what you think about "Cowboys en Español: ¿Dónde Tiene Que Mejorar Dallas?" in the comments below, or tweet me @MauNFL and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!



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Time to get FB Jamize Olawale More Involved Offensively?

Brian Martin

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Time to get FB Jamize Olawale More Involved Offensively?

The Dallas Cowboys are coming off arguably their best and most complete offensive performance of the season after playing the Jacksonville Jaguars last week, but there is still quite a bit of improvement that can be made. The need to get more playmakers involved is apparent, which is why I think it's time to utilize Fullback Jamize Olawale's unique skill set.

I know many of you will argue that getting Allen Hurns and Michael Gallup going is a higher priority, and you wouldn't be wrong, but Jamize Olawale's playmaking ability could be a huge asset for Quarterback Dak Prescott and the offense. I know it sounds a little strange, but hang in there with me for little bit.

As things stand right now, Olawale has only played 38 offensive snaps (10%) in 2018. That's the exact amount of offensive plays Wide Receiver Terrance Williams has played this year and he's missed the majority of the season. It's not exactly the kind of production I was expecting when the Cowboys decided to bring him aboard via trade with the Oakland Raiders earlier this offseason.

I don't know about you, but I was expecting Olawale to be more involved in the offensive game plan. He is an excellent receiver out of the backfield and isn't too shabby as a runner either. But, we haven't seen him utilized in either fashion this season and I think that's an injustice that needs to be corrected.

Now, I fully understand there are other offensive weapons ahead of him in the pecking order who need to see more targets, but I also really think he can make a difference maker, especially in the passing game. That is where his strengths lie, not as a lead blocking fullback.

Jamize Olawale

Dallas Cowboys FB Jamize Olawale

Olawale was a bit of a Swiss Army knife during his time with the Oakland Raiders. He played a little running back, fullback, tight end, and even a little slot receiver. I really thought the Cowboys would take advantage of his versatility in the passing game, but as of yet they have failed to do so.

I'd like to see the Dallas Cowboys and Offensive Coordinator Scott Linehan utilize Jamize Olawale's unique playmaking ability a little bit more on offense. I think they should try to utilize him like the San Francisco 49ers use their fullback, Kyle Juszczyk. He's much more involved and has played a total of 263 offensive snaps (63.68%) this year.

Juszczyk is a better lead blocking FB then Olawale, but that's not where he makes the most difference in the 49ers offense. He does it as a receiver and has already caught 17 passes for 227 yards and one touchdown. That's some pretty solid production from a position that is being phased out in the NFL.

Now, just imagine the Cowboys offense getting similar production from Olawale and how that would help open up things for everybody else. It's not out of the realm of possibility because the 49ers offense and the Cowboys isn't all that dissimilar.

Unfortunately, I think Jamize Olawale is pretty much an afterthought in the Cowboys offense right now. It's truly unfortunate because I think he can be a difference maker if given the opportunity. And with a division foe like the Washington Redskins next on the schedule, what better time to unleash a new and unseen element of the offense?

Do you think Jamize Olawale needs to be more involved offensively?



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Cole Beasley Key to Cowboys Passing Game Productivity?

Brian Martin

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The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly for Cowboys Against Jaguars 1

What most of us already knew was confirmed last Sunday afternoon against the Jacksonville Jaguars. Wide Receiver Cole Beasley is the Dallas Cowboys best receiver and is the key to the passing game productivity. He is not only the most productive, but the most consistent.

Cole Beasley isn't the tallest or the fastest and definitely doesn't look like a prototypical NFL receiver, but he showed last week against the Jaguars why opposing defenses have to account for him on every single play. He torched Jacksonville's top-ranked passing defense for 101 yards on nine catches and added two touchdowns, and it's that production that could help open up the entire passing game for the Cowboys.

It's painfully obvious Cole Beasley has been Dak Prescott's favorite target in the passing game since he took over the starting duties in 2016. Once opposing defenses figured that out they started to make things extremely difficult by bracketing Beasley in coverage and the passing game hasn't been the same since. But, that could be changing if the Jaguars game was an indication of what we might see moving forward.

Offensive Coordinator Scott Linehan did a much better job of moving Beasley around to create favorable matchups against the Jaguars. I think we will see much more of that moving forward, but that likely means opposing defenses will once again try to take away Prescott's favorite target. That actually could end up helping the Cowboys passing game though.

Dak Prescott, Michael Gallup

Dallas Cowboys WR Michael Gallup

If opposing defenses indeed try to contain Cole Beasley like they've done in the past, it should help provide more opportunities for Dallas' other pass catchers. Spreading the ball around to several different receivers would not only help Prescott and the passing game, but also open up the entire offense.

We haven't really seen much of Allen Hurns or Michael Gallup this season, but both are more than capable of being more productive if they are seeing single coverage more often. That's what's likely to happen if defenses bracket Beasley in coverage once again. Both WRs need to be more involved anyway and Beasley's recent spike in production could help do just that.

Now, if defenses decide to try and cover Beasley one-on-one like the Jaguars did quite a bit of last Sunday, the Cowboys would be wise to take advantage of that mismatch. He simply can't be covered by a single defensive back because of his precise route running ability. He is that good.

Regardless of how opposing defenses try to handle/contain Cole Beasley, he is without a doubt key to the Dallas Cowboys passing game productivity. Just the threat of him on the field changes a defenses approach, which is why he is Dallas' #1  WR in my book. He absolutely has to be more involved moving forward, even if it is as a decoy.

Do you think Cole Beasley is the key to the Cowboys passing game productivity?



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