What ever happened to the chip block?
A good chip block goes a long way to holding off a pass rush. So why aren’t more teams using them?
I played football at a time when offensive coordinators believed in chipping the piss out of defensive ends to help nullify the pass rush. Sometimes it didn’t even matter if you were any good either, which is why I saw my share of chip blocks. I can’t begin to tell you how effective a well-timed, well-placed chip block is in effecting a pass rusher’s game for the rest of the day.
One guy who was notorious for sneaky, painful chip blocks back in the day was fullback Larry Centers. He would catch you with his elbow right on your hip bone or in your ribs just as you were trying to turn the corner, and the worst part was that half the time you never even saw it coming. After a few plays of that shit you spent practically the rest of the game looking for his sneaky ass rather than trying beat the offensive tackle in front of you. Want to slow a good speed rusher down? That’ll cool his ass off.
Nowadays, I hardly ever see good consistent chip blocks when I watch teams on offense, even when they are going against teams sporting some of the top pass rushers in the league. This makes no sense to me, especially when it’s getting a bunch of quarterbacks killed every week. I know a lot of people were complaining about the Broncos not chipping on Bengals defensive end Carlos Dunlap during Monday Night Football because he was killing Peyton Manning, damn near a felony in some parts of the country. Manning wasn’t the only guy that could have benefited from a chip block or two last weekend.
I’m sure Teddy Bridgewater would have appreciated somebody chipping on Dolphins all world defensive end Cameron Wake on the Vikings‘ last third down of the game Sunday. Wake beat right tackle Michael Harris like a red headed step child and sacked Bridgewater so fast he barely had time to secure the shotgun snap before he found himself on his back.
I bet Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco would’ve loved to have had somebody chipping J.J. Watt, particularly when he was going against rookie free agent offensive tackle James Hurst. You might remember me mentioning Hurst awhile back in an earlier Notebook, dubbing him “Burger King” because you can have it your way as a pass rusher when you go against him. Well, ain’t much changed with the guy, and the Ravens had to have known shit would get real when Watt lined up across from him. But did they help him with a chip block on a regular basis?
I bet Bucs quarterback Josh McCown wishes he could order all the chip blocks you can give him without getting in trouble, as bad as his offensive line is. A chip block should have just followed Buccaneers right tackle O’Neil Cousins wherever he went, even to the bathroom, he sucked so bad last Sunday.
But, nope. Evidently it’s more important these days to get five eligibles out on a route than it is to worry about your quarterback’s health. That is going to catch up to some of these teams big time in the playoffs, just you wait and see.