Posted in General News

Morris Taking A Page From Joe Lee Dunn’s Defensive Playbook

by Staff Report on July 30, 2010

Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Raheem Morris, who became the teams de facto defensive coordinator after the Bucs jettisoned Jim Bates. Tinkered with a multitude of different schemes from the more traditional Tampa 2, that many fans had become accustomed to,  to the 3-4, 5-3 and even some 3-3-5 which is more commonly referred to as the Amoeba Radar Defense pioneered by Joe Lee Dunn.

Dunn implemented the now famous 3-3-5 scheme for the first time while he was the defensive coordinator at the University of Memphis upsetting the USC Trojans 24-10 in Pasadena, California on Sept. 2, 1991 due in large part to the gamesmanship of Dunn’s defensive prowess.

This leads us to why any of this makes any sense. For starters seeing as Morris toyed with the 3-3-5 scheme last year and the fact that one of Morris’ boyhood friends Barris Grant will be attending training camp this week under the Bill Walsh Minority Coaching Fellowship. The connection becomes even clearer as Grant was coached at Mississippi State by  Dunn and later served as a student assistant and graduate assistant for the Bulldogs. However the connections don’t stop there. Both Dunn and Grant are currently coaching at McMurry State, where Dunn is the defensive coordinator and Grant serves as the defensive line coach.

Dunn who regularly admits “you can usually find linebackers’ and defensive backs’, it’s rare to find defensive lineman that are good enough to win.”

Seeing as the main reason Dunn conjured up the 3-3-5 was due to the fact he couldn’t find enough defensive linemen and knowing the Bucs lack quality defensive lineman. It seems that Morris who is a self admitted thief when it comes to devising his defensive schemes is seriously considering using a page from Dunn’s Amoeba Radar Defensive playbook.

The premise of the 3-3-5 is to confuse opposing offensive lineman pre-snap by moving defenders around and constantly showing blitz from different players and angles to confuse offenses. With one of the staple blitz packages being the “Go” where you have two linebackers blitz to the tight end side and play man free coverage behind it. One has to wonder if this is why Morris has been so giddy this off-season when he talks about strong side linebacker Quincy Black and his expected impact on defense this coming season.

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