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  1. #1
    RamsInfiniti's Avatar
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    The product of a system?

    You know, some fans are just blind. Others are blitzed by the concept that if a player doesn't play for their team, they are just not as good as they would have been if they would have played for that team ....

    I recently came across an article on ESPN where a fan claimed Torry Holt was a "product of the Ram's system" ....

    What does this mean exactly?

    You mean Torry Holt was the product of a great offense and good QB's throwing him the ball?

    You mean Jerry Rice was lucky to play in a revolutionary WCO that revolved around him having the ball thrown to him time and time again?

    You mean Emmitt Smith was lucky enough to play behind the biggest, meanest of all O-lines for a decade while becoming the league's leader in career yards?

    I mean, come on, everybody is the product of a system. Every team has a system they have put in place, and usually they get the best players they can for said system. They pick and choose the pieces they need to be successful, and they grow from there ...

    Say what you want about Holt. I am not particularly happy about the way he acted his final year in StL. I thought he was a little selfish. However, when I look back at Torry over the years, I remember one of the greatest wide receivers I've ever seen play. He made incredible play after play after play. In his prime, he seemingly could not be covered. To see him labeled as a player that could not have succeeded elsewhere makes me sick ...

    The notion of system players makes me sick, and if I hear it again, it would be one million times too many ...


  2. #2
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    Re: The product of a system?

    While I agree for the most part, there are absolutely system players out there, even "great" ones.

    Tom "I'm so wonderful" Brady for example. Most of his throws are directly in front of him and most of the time he misses when he's throwing outside the numbers unless it's one of those short hitch patterns which is just glorified pitch and catch. To prove that he's a product of the system, the Pats hardly lost a step when Cassel came in last year despite having hardly played football since high school, really.

    Now, as for skill players? Much harder to be system guy as you actually have to have some skills to break tackles, or avoid them or to be in the right place at the right time, so I'm less likely to believe that they're products of the system.

  3. #3
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    Re: The product of a system?

    I agree with this. As an example, there's far less concern with skill players coming out of college as opposed to quarterbacks coming out, in regards to "system failure". A perfect example is Michael Crabtree and Graham Harrell.




    Quote Originally Posted by TekeRam View Post
    While I agree for the most part, there are absolutely system players out there, even "great" ones.

    Tom "I'm so wonderful" Brady for example. Most of his throws are directly in front of him and most of the time he misses when he's throwing outside the numbers unless it's one of those short hitch patterns which is just glorified pitch and catch. To prove that he's a product of the system, the Pats hardly lost a step when Cassel came in last year despite having hardly played football since high school, really.

    Now, as for skill players? Much harder to be system guy as you actually have to have some skills to break tackles, or avoid them or to be in the right place at the right time, so I'm less likely to believe that they're products of the system.

  4. #4
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    Re: The product of a system?

    To be considered a good or great player one has to have many circumstances go his way:
    1) They have to play with a right coach who will play to their skill set and abilities
    2) Have to be lucky enough to play with great players like them.

    If you do not play with great calibur type of players like you then your skill set does not get looked at nearly as much. It goes both ways.

  5. #5
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    Re: The product of a system?

    In my book, if a team has a "system" that works, an a player is then plugged and finds success (particularly if he has not had similar success elsewhere), then you can call him a "product of the system."

    An example of this would be some of Denver's RBs over the years. They have had a number of 1,000+ rushers who probably would not have been as successful elsewhere.

    Holt was one of the players who built the GSOT system. It did not exist before he was drafted. So, I'd say that the Rams' system was a product of Warner, Faulk, Bruce, Holt, Hakim, Proehl and Pace, rather than the other way around.

  6. #6
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    Re: The product of a system?

    Good systems require good players to execute the system. Maybe a "product of the system" is just another way of saying square pegs fit best into square holes. I like Av's take on the GSOT .. Without all those special players thrust together at that moment in time, I doubt there'd have been a GSOT. I guess this begs the question: Which came first? The chicken or the egg?

  7. #7
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    Re: The product of a system?

    I don't really agree with this sytem makes the player thing.. In some cases yes and in some cases I think like GSOT the system and the group of players just formed into somthing special. but if it has to be a certin system or coach how do explain the Barry Sanders, or Dan Marino's??

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    Re: The product of a system?

    To further support Av, look at what has happened to the Martz offense since 2001. He's had teams who could run the offense, but none of them have been the earth shattering offenses that came during the GSOT, which was the perfect melding of players and system, or maybe even just players.

    As for Tiger's comment, Sanders and Marino were both great players themselves and would make any offense they were a part of better. They transcend the system. Not all great players were a product of the system. The question presented is whether Holt was a product of the Martz offense and I'm unsure, as he has been on the decline since Martz left, but he's also had chronic injuries since then as well.

  9. #9
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    Re: The product of a system?

    Most players are system players and that's one of the things fans rarely understand. RBs rarely are better than the quality of their offensive line and most are best in a particular system. For example Steve Slaton would probably be horrible running behind the Rams offensive line but behind the zone blocking Texans, he's very very good. Many CBs are either zone or man type corners. Offensive linemen can be below average in one system and excel at zone blocking or trap blocking. Andre Johnson is a stud WR but he's in a system that doesn't show it like he might in another. Zach Thomas was elite at tackling but didn't plug gaps well or pursue. In Miami that wasn't required so he excelled in the system. Michael Vick was a pretty horrible QB by most measures but in the right system, he was pro-bowl worthy.

    Some players are studs regardless of their system. I think Holt falls into that category.

    Derrick Thomas was all-pro in Kansas City. If you put him in a structured defense where he was given very explicit assignments, he would have failed. The Chiefs allowed him to freelance by reading the offense and reacting - letting his talent shine. Later when the Chiefs limited him to specific duties, he didn't play anywhere near an all-pro level. That's playing within the system.

    Klingler and Ware were absolutely studs within their college systems and in the pros they were equally as horrible. That's a perfect example of a system player.

    Edit: did Barry Sanders have a system? Basically the defense would run through the offensive line and he would scramble to prevent a loss and if he did - it was off to the races. Imagine what he could have done on a good team with a good offensive line! Mind boggling. It really isn't the Detroit system limited Sanders but the players around him limited his production. Imagine if he were in Dallas those years and E. Smith were in Detroit.
    Last edited by RebelYell; -07-14-2009 at 02:12 PM.

  10. #10
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    Re: The product of a system?

    I saw the same thing i was like wtf was marvin harrison a system receiver to. torry put up great numbers with 2 quarterbacks(maybe more because of injuries to Bulger) 3(4 if you count Haslet) coaches. every player has a system that works for them holt always made great catches at the right time. i hope crabtree sucks, now he was a system receiver.

  11. #11
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    Re: The product of a system?

    Quote Originally Posted by RebelYell View Post
    Most players are system players and that's one of the things fans rarely understand.
    I think that's a bit of an exaggeration. Anybody will be more successful in a system that plays to their strengths, but if so many players could only succeed in specific systems, we wouldn't see guys changing teams all the time. I'd go more with the definition Avenger put out there. A system player is a guy who puts up impressive numbers because any player who fits the system would put up impressive numbers in the same situation.

    In Holt's case, I'd probably say the system was part of his success, but the acrobatic catches and precision route-running would have served him well wherever he had played. Likewise, Bruce was already making a name for himself before the GSoT days.

  12. #12
    RebelYell's Avatar
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    Re: The product of a system?

    Quote Originally Posted by Goldenfleece View Post
    A system player is a guy who puts up impressive numbers because any player who fits the system would put up impressive numbers in the same situation.
    By this definition you agree that players fit particular systems. Thus they are system players. Or did you write this poorly? And why wouldn't players succeed after changing teams if they move to a team running the same system? LBers in the 3-4 routinely underperform when moving to the 4-3. They still excel within the 3-4.

    Gholston is another perfect example. He's playing in a system that doesn't fit his style of play and is playing horribly. Some people recognize that if he shifted systems, that would increase his production. Most people don't seem to recognize that fact.

    S. Rolle was a great CB for a long time because he was a zone coverage CB. When he was asked to be a man-to-man CB he was extremely average. Bartell on the other hand is a man-to-man style of player that doesn't excel in the zone nearly as much.

    I don't think WRs are to the same degree system players. Great route running, great hands, speed and work ethic will succeed in any system.

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    Re: The product of a system?

    Quote Originally Posted by TekeRam View Post
    While I agree for the most part, there are absolutely system players out there, even "great" ones.

    Tom "I'm so wonderful" Brady for example. Most of his throws are directly in front of him and most of the time he misses when he's throwing outside the numbers unless it's one of those short hitch patterns which is just glorified pitch and catch. To prove that he's a product of the system, the Pats hardly lost a step when Cassel came in last year despite having hardly played football since high school, really.

    Now, as for skill players? Much harder to be system guy as you actually have to have some skills to break tackles, or avoid them or to be in the right place at the right time, so I'm less likely to believe that they're products of the system.
    I would say going from an undefeated regular season where the Patriots set all kinds of scoring records to an 11-5 team that didn't make the playoffs is losing a pretty big step.

  14. #14
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    Re: The product of a system?

    The best example of system players are those that come out of USC. Take them out of that system and they flop like fish on the deck of boat.

    I don't agree that Holt is a system player. The Ram's system had one really great year and a really good year primarily due to the players in it. I don't believe the GSOT would have had the success it had with Green as the QB. It really benefited from Warner's experience from Arena ball to make quick reads and quick releases, and our receivers were lightening fast at the time, and Faulk provided a breakaway threat from the backfield that kept the DB's and Safeties honest. It was the perfect storm.
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