I think the key to any of the Strong I sets whether it be Close, Normal, Twins etc...is the availability of 2 plays, first would be that solid off tackle play or IZ, or maybe it is OZ (Stretch) and pairing up that base run with a must have COUNTER WEAK. You got to have the Counter Weak with any of the STRONG I sets to avoid your opponents from shifting and crashing their DLINE towards the TE side. If you do not have a counter out of the Strong I sets then you must show your intentions to run backside, or the direction away from the TE, and by this I mean you have to flip the entire formation, or you have to motion the FB over, and when doing all of this you not only have given your intentions away but now you have to include all these movements with other plays in this formation to try to create any type of effective scheming if any at all. Thats how important that counter weak play is with Strong sets. It is the very first thing I look for when putting together my run scheme from a specific playbook. I have always felt that a STRONG I Formation that does not include a means of attacking backside without any player movement is a pretty useless formation, especially when you are playing against an opponent who knows what book you are using, and they know if a counter is present with your Strong I scheme.
Now with the Weak sets, and you have many different versions that include PRO, TWINS, FLEXED TWINS to name a few.
Last year I used the Buffalo Playbook for Madden 11, and a great playbook it was. Right up there IMO with the Saints Playbook of Madden 10. This playbook had one of the best WEAK I sets in the game, at least thats the way I looked at it. I could have lived in this formation because I could still be very balanced as far as running and throwing the football. This set from this book allowed me to do what I always talk about in the Madden community, and that is to have the ability to throw the ball from run sets, and run the ball from pass sets. This was no doubt a strong running formation but my pass game from this set included some of the very well known concepts as well as those pass plays that not many talked about because so seldom seen in other playbooks, which by the way was another reason I loved this playbook.
Here are the passing plays I used from this very strong run formation, and guys this is coming from the top of my head, thats how much I used this set as well as passed from this set.
FLOOD TE OPT- I loved this play but they took it out
MESH-- I think my buddy sgibs and myself are the biggest MESH lovers in the Video football world!
VERTICAL CROSS- ANOTHER HELL OF A PLAY!
So as you can see, I had both man beaters and zone beaters from this formation.
The Run Game, and from what I have seen and have practiced, is dependent on 2 key run plays. WEAK TOSS and HB ZONE. You have heard of Mr Inside and Mr Outside? Well here they are! The Toss is used to start, and with this strategy you want to put stress on the defense and make them widen. Once they widen then you start hitting them with the HB ZONE or BILLS HB ZONE as it was called in madden 11 from the Buffalo Book. I cant tell you how many 22, 34, 17 yard TD runs I scored on this one play when the defense started overplaying the Weak Toss. Whats great about it guys is the fact you dont move anybody, NO intentions, NO way for the defense to know if I am going inside of them or outside of them (damn I am sounding like Knute Rockne lol) Thats what I look for with the Weak Sets, those 2 plays, and they are present in some of the books with madden 12. Go to the PDF Playbooks and open up the SEATTLE Playbook and look for WEAK I TWINS. In that formation you will find one of the better 1-2 run combos in the game when schemed correctly with
1. Toss Weak
2. Inside Zone
Same 2 plays I just talked about from last years game that were featured from the Buffalo Book, and like I said when schemed correctly you have a great 1-2 run combo.
I really feel that the above are the key ingredients to both STRONG I, and WEAK I sets. And as my buddy GAV stated, they are very much different. Especially when talking scheming, and methods of attack.
I hope this sheds a little light and helps you in the future when looking to put together a scheme from one of these 2 formations and all the variations of such formation that goes along with them.
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Good post Irish.
It also has a really good Ace Big PA play. It has the primary WR run a C route. The defense always bites on the PA, like it's Madden 08 again. The second WR runs a hybrid streak-fade that is perfect for back-shoulder user catching.
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