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"One Level Removed"

this is a discussion within the Saints Community Forum; The key to good coaching is knowing what’s fundamental to success and what’s not . Teams with effective players and good plans usually do well. That might seem like a blinding flash of the obvious, but look around the NFL ...

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Old 06-26-2004, 09:09 AM   #1
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"One Level Removed"

The key to good coaching is knowing what’s fundamental to success and what’s not.

Teams with effective players and good plans usually do well.

That might seem like a blinding flash of the obvious, but look around the NFL and see how many teams are at least "one level removed" from something that improves either the effectiveness of the players or the quality of their plan. When I refer to plan, I mean the entire plan. Whether that be dealing with injuries, or having the scheme that best fits the personnel, or motivating the players, etc. etc..

It’s hard to define what I mean by being "one level removed" but you know it when you see it. Examples help:

1. When you're teaching a new scheme that puts your players in the best position to make a tackle -- that's fundamental to improving your team, but when you are teaching players how to make a tackle, that's -- "one level removed."

2. When a coach is trying to motivate his players during a pregame speech -- that's fundamental to having success on game day. When a coach is trying to motivate his players to lose 35 pounds or show up on time for team meetings, that's -- "one level removed."

3. When a coach is trying to implement a new passing route to give a receiver the best chance to catch the football -- that's fundamental to improving the offense -- when a coach is teaching a receiver to catch a football, that's -- "one level removed."

In other words, a coach does not spend enough time on truly implementing a plan that's fundamental to improving his team because he's too busy working on the "one level removed" stuff.

To be fair -- every coach has distractions that interfere from working on the important stuff. I mean, todays players come with their on set of unique problems.

But, what happens when you have too much of this stuff is "inconsistency."

Then what happens is the coach is always searching for ways to "tinker" with something in hopes of finding "consistency."

Haslett needs to resist the urge to tinker so much. It’s always tempting to "improve " the organization structure, or to rewrite the team policy to address a new situation, or to create committees to find where the inconsistencies are.

Individually, all those things seem to make sense. But experience shows that you generally end up with something that is no more effective than what you started with.

Or, in other words, the coach is always so busy changing his policy that no one is really ever on the same page. Or to put it plainly.............The coach is inconsistent and that leads to the players being inconsistent. Show me a consistent coach, and I'll show you a consistent team. Show me an inconsistent coach and I'll show you an inconsistent team.

A culture of efficiency starts with the everyday things that you can directly control: team meetings, practices, punishing players (but be consistent and send the right message), and praising players when it's called for. The way you approach these everyday activities establishes the culture that will drive your fundamental success. When a coach is "consistent" in his every day activities, players respect him. When a coach is inconsistent, players start to doubt him.

Haslett seems obsessed with the big picture. I think the big picture is hidden in the details. I’m all for working for the big picture, if you know where to find it.

Finally- we’re all idiots and we’re going to make mistakes. That’s not necessarily bad. Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Compounding mistakes with different mistakes is "one level removed."





[Edited on 26/6/2004 by GumboBC]
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Old 06-26-2004, 01:17 PM   #2
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"One Level Removed"

Interesting post Billy.

This sounds like WhoDat\'s position on Haz (which I find fairly compelling).

Here is something to chew on: is Haz\'s coaching \"one level removed\" this year?

I\'ll just spell out what I think the answer is, rather than be enigmatic: how could we know right now? The problem with \"one level removed\" is you don\'t know you are until you have to start addressing the \"new\" needs (eg. tackling instead of schemes). That is, it can appear as though you are \"one level removed\" when you are not (at the beginning of the season anyway). I also agree with your idea of consistency - however, consistency must begin at some time (some coaches, perhaps Parcells, come in with consistency - but I PROMISE YOU that this wasn\'t always the case). Thus, we are left wondering if Haz will be consistent from here on out? I\'m not saying he will be (in fact, WhoDat has provided good reason to believe that he won\'t be), but I am saying that saying he won\'t be may be a mistake given a recent change in his attitude. IF the new tough guy thing suits him, I\'m not sure why we would think he wouldn\'t stick with it.

Also, you seem to suggest that all teams are \"one level removed\" in at least one area (probably more). Thus, it is hard to be too critical of our team given their being \"one level removed\", since everyone is. Perhaps it is a matter of how many areas in which you are \"one level removed\" that matters for assessment?

"... I was beating them with my eyes the whole game..." - Aaron Brooks :cool:
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Old 06-26-2004, 01:31 PM   #3
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I don\'t know about this \"one level removed\" thing... I mean if you go to a practice you\'ll see every coach out there including the head coach and they are all involved in teaching a player how to break up a pass or blocking or rushing technique. When the coaches go off the field they spend hours and hours looking at game films and studying what other players are doing and judging talent. I have been on the field and off the field with coaches including even Jim Mora and when we left the field and went to his office for an interview he was studying film. I think they all spend there fair amount of time on field coaching and the \"other intangibles\" coaching, its just a matter of game plan, players, football gods and who wants it more.

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Old 06-26-2004, 01:48 PM   #4
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Look guys. I\'m not suggesting that Haslett can\'t or won\'t get the job done in the FUTURE.

Nor am I suggesting everything has been Hasletts fault.

What I am suggesting is our coach has NOT been consistent in his approach to coaching.

He was tough his first year and lax the next couple of seasons.

He\'s gone after questionable character guys some years and now he\'s putting an emphasis on bringing in high character guys.

He\'s let bad deeds go unpunished with some players and been tougher on others.

He\'s put an emphasis on bringing in the huge DT and then he wants smaller faster DT.

Individually none of these are that big of a concern. But, it all adds up to inconsistency from Jim Haslett.

And as far as \"one level removed\"? Teams that are spending MORE time on teaching players how tackle and the other BS that\'s gone on in New Orleans spend way too much energy on that and it takes the focus away from the important stuff.

I have and continue to support Haslett. I like his new approach. We\'ll see how he does.



[Edited on 26/6/2004 by GumboBC]
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Old 06-26-2004, 02:36 PM   #5
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He was tough his first year and lax the next couple of seasons.
I think his 1st big philosophy mistake. Great point

He\'s gone after questionable character guys some years and now he\'s putting an emphasis on bringing in high character guys.
Ditka left him with virtually nothing talent wise. They needed talent 1st and foremost, dammed the character issue. Now we\'re stockpiling a lot of talent and we aren\'t sdesparate anymore. We can now filter out the bad apples. I\'m not so sure that he\'s emphasizing it as much as being more selective now.

He\'s let bad deeds go unpunished with some players and been tougher on others.
I\'ve heard rrumor of this but thats all.

He\'s put an emphasis on bringing in the huge DT and then he wants smaller faster DT.
I think it was more of an emphasis on stopping the run, which wasn\'t really Glovers forte, it just so happened the new guys were much bigger. I think he\'d love to have Glover back to team with Howard, Grant, and Sullivan.

Individually none of these are that big of a concern. But, it all adds up to inconsistency from Jim Haslett.
Its kinda like Belichick his 1st few years. He made a lot of little mistakes that lead to him being fired. I believe coaches can learn and improve as well as players. Will Haslett? I have my doubts but wouldn\'t bet against him.

And as far as \"one level removed\"? Teams that are spending MORE time on teaching players how tackle and the other BS that\'s gone on in New Orleans spend way too much energy on that and it takes the focus away from the important stuff.
I think this is an excellent argument for some low-turnover continuity. The current players know the system, now its just fine-tuning what we have. Will it work? Logic says it has its upside. Its like returning 17 starters on a decent college team. That usually bodes well (unless your an Auburn fan)

I have and continue to support Haslett. I like his new approach. We\'ll see how he does.
I have my doubts, but I\'d rather see him succeed than fail and be replaced.

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Old 06-26-2004, 02:44 PM   #6
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Good take, Danno. I\'m not saying that I\'m right about every issue I brought up with Haslett (actually, I just threw up those issues real quick) I\'m saying Haslett has made mistakes and he needs to overcome and learn from those mistakes.

I think he\'ll do it. I think Haslett is a smart guy and just the fact that he\'s recognizing his mistakes is a sign that he\'ll get things straightened out.

Of course, I could say that there\'s no reason to believe he will be a good coach. But, I can\'t go there and I don\'t believe that.....

[Edited on 26/6/2004 by GumboBC]
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Old 06-26-2004, 09:15 PM   #7
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What I am suggesting is our coach has NOT been consistent in his approach to coaching.

He was tough his first year and lax the next couple of seasons.

He\'s gone after questionable character guys some years and now he\'s putting an emphasis on bringing in high character guys.

He\'s let bad deeds go unpunished with some players and been tougher on others.

He\'s put an emphasis on bringing in the huge DT and then he wants smaller faster DT.

Individually none of these are that big of a concern. But, it all adds up to inconsistency from Jim Haslett.
Not buying it Haslett-lover. Isn\'t that what you and Saintfan tell me when I talk about Brooks? You love Haslett and always have. One comment in a sea of thousands doesn\'t cut it.

This also completely contradicts things you\'ve said in the past about Haslett and like Jkool said - is EXACTLY the stance I\'ve had on the guy for two seasons. Are you suggesting that maybe your position on the guy evolved? In any case, that sure was a negative post Billy.
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Old 06-26-2004, 09:20 PM   #8
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Posted by WhoDat:Not buying it Haslett-lover. Isn\'t that what you and Saintfan tell me when I talk about Brooks? You love Haslett and always have. One comment in a sea of thousands doesn\'t cut it.

I hear ya chump. I was WRONG about Haslett. WRONG. I was WRONG WRONG WRONG.

Now, kiss my ***. LOL :P



[Edited on 27/6/2004 by GumboBC]
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Old 06-26-2004, 11:28 PM   #9
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Ricky Williams, Willie Roaf, Kyle Turley, Ashley Ambrose, Jake Delhomme, La\'Roi Glover, Sammy Knight, Wayne Martin- not much compared to today, but there was a little talent there.
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Old 06-27-2004, 03:36 AM   #10
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Posted by JKool:
Thus, we are left wondering if Haz will be consistent from here on out? I\'m not saying he will be (in fact, WhoDat has provided good reason to believe that he won\'t be), but I am saying that saying he won\'t be may be a mistake given a recent change in his attitude. IF the new tough guy thing suits him, I\'m not sure why we would think he wouldn\'t stick with it.
There\'s no doubt that Haslett is capable of correcting every one of his past mistakes. The question is: How much is it going to help this year and is it too little too late? If the Saints don\'t make the playoffs this year, that will be 4 years in a row and there\'s a good chance he might get fired.



Posted by JKool:
Also, you seem to suggest that all teams are \"one level removed\" in at least one area (probably more). Thus, it is hard to be too critical of our team given their being \"one level removed\", since everyone is. Perhaps it is a matter of how many areas in which you are \"one level removed\" that matters for assessment?
Yes. All teams are \"one level removed\" in some areas. But the succesful teams are \"one level removed\" in LESS areas than the unsuccessful teams. That\'s really the whole point of my original post in this thread.

You have to ask yourself WHY we are \"one level removed\" in so many areas Example:

1. Tebucky Jones: Haslett gambled with this guy. Last year the gamble did not pay off. Now, I\'m not talking about the future for Tebucky. I would like to think Tebucky was brought in to help us get to the playoffs LAST YEAR. It\'s not like he was a rookie.

2. Orlando Ruff: What can you say about Ruff. I don\'t want to dog the guy. But, he didn\'t help out too much last year either. And he wasn\'t a rookie . In the future who knows?

3. Ashley Ambrose: Yeah!! He could have a role on a lot of teams. Just not starting.

That\'s a lot of gambling, JKool. Now, I\'m all for rolling the dice from time to time, but at some point I need a little better odds.

Now, I\'ve only addressed the guys Haslett has chosen to bring in at KEY positions. Positions that have been a problem since Haslett\'s arrival.

Then you get into other areas like coach/player relationships. I\'m not going to go over them, but there\'s been problems there.

Then you get into his ever changing approach to what\'s going to make his team successuful. Tough guy, nice guy. Work \'em hard, take it easy on them. Starting to get the picture?

It\'s not that other teams haven\'t had EVERYONE of these types of problems. It\'s how they\'ve fixed them and how long it took them.

Part of this is Hasletts inexperience as a head coach. I feel he should have corrected some his short-comings sooner than what he has, though.

That said, I STILL give him the benefit of the doubt. I STILL believe he can and will fix the problems. I don\'t expect him to be perfect. I\'m not going to join the \"moon shiners\". But, if Haslett doesn\'t get the job done this year, then I\'m through.

And you know what? I still will think Haslett can become a successful head coach some where. I would just rather get someone else in here just in case he can\'t because I feel like he has had enough time here.





[Edited on 27/6/2004 by GumboBC]
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