"Great OL's over the years and the RB position"

Vrill

Cheesehead
Joined
Nov 1, 2011
Messages
1,803
Reaction score
137
What do you say to someone that says "Any RB would have looked good running behind that Dallas OL of the early/mid 90s" ? And in the same breath say "And put up the same statistics that Emmett Smith did" ?

Are great RB's sometimes the product of the OL talent or the system?

Or does it really take great talent to do what RB's like Emmett did?
 

ivo610

Cheesehead
Joined
Feb 13, 2010
Messages
16,588
Reaction score
2,250
Location
Madison
well Jerry Jones once thought he could throw in anybody behind that dallas line and they would flourish. Didnt happen. In a contract dispute in 93 Emmitt sat out 2 games. Both losses. Emmitt got his contract and the team started rolling.

A better example is Denver as they have had success with multiple RBs behind their line.
 
OP
OP
Vrill

Vrill

Cheesehead
Joined
Nov 1, 2011
Messages
1,803
Reaction score
137
Does the OL make the RB or does the RB make the OL? Or is it a 50/50 synergy type of thing?
 

PackerDNA

Cheesehead
Joined
Jun 8, 2014
Messages
6,450
Reaction score
1,507
Helps to have both, but I remember reading a story some time ago in which Emmett basically told his linemen (and Barry Sanders was the same) "Look, you take your guy anywhere he wants to go- I'll find the hole".
 

Ogsponge

Cheesehead
Joined
Sep 29, 2013
Messages
1,501
Reaction score
291
Location
Wisconsin
It is both, people that make idiotic statements like the one you mentioned, are simply fooling themselves. It does work both ways. A good OL can make a good RB great, however a bade oline will make a good running back look average. I don't know about anyone else but I can name only 3 RB's that i have watched that were great regardless of the OL and that is Walter Payton, Barry Sanders and Bo Jackson.

Also, we as Packer fans have watched quite a few RB's in Green Bay that past 10 years that could not hit the hole created by the OL.

Anyway, I could ramble on about this for days but the bottom line in takes good talent in both areas.
 

sschind

Cheesehead
Joined
Oct 5, 2014
Messages
5,053
Reaction score
1,307
Isn't that what people say about Wisconsin running backs all the time. Running is easy behind those lines but when they get to the pros they fail. I realize the college game is a step or two slower than the pros but it is all relative. Still, it takes a good back to take advantage of those lines as well. I think in the case of college vs pros its as much as the defenses are so much better as much as it is the big college lines. A great line may be able to make any RB look a bit better but for the RBs to really shine they had better have some special talents of their own.

I think most of the "Emmitt was a product of his line" crap comes from people simply hating the cowboys. People hate the cowboys so it makes them feel better to denigrate one of the best RBs in the history of the game. They can't admit that the team they hate really had a great player so they downplay it. However, I'm guessing most fans of most teams, including those who say he wasn't that great, would have killed to have him on their team at the time. I know I would have loved to have him as a Packer. Its OK to say they had a great line because the line doesn't grab the glory and its not just one player. I bet if people were picking any of the cowboys linemen of that time as the best lineman ever a lot of those people would say they weren't that great and the entire line as a unit made each player better than they really were. The same goes for Aikman and Irvin as well.

I do agree that if Barry Sanders had that line no one would have caught up with his numbers.
 

GreenBaySlacker

Cheesehead
Joined
Feb 5, 2014
Messages
3,092
Reaction score
209
I think there is a balance. Not only in relation of the RB/O-line talent ratio. But in the offense as a whole. Does it balance the pass attack? Weak pass attack wears on even a great O-line/RB when facing 8 in the box every down. Opposite is Greenbay 2011 when our O-line was pretty good in pass blocking, but with no threat of a run, Rodgers was stomped repeatedly.

Right now we have the perfect storm. MVP QB, protected with a Line that can run and pass block. and a beast like Lacy behind him... Starks coming in fresh and hitting those holes fast. Is a great change of pace. catches defenses off guard...

Replace Lacy with Brandon Jackson, and I dont think we are who we think we are, anymore.
 

Half Empty

Cheesehead
Joined
Oct 29, 2014
Messages
4,487
Reaction score
611
I think most of the "Emmitt was a product of his line" crap comes from people simply hating the cowboys. People hate the cowboys so it makes them feel better to denigrate one of the best RBs in the history of the game. They can't admit that the team they hate really had a great player so they downplay it.

How does downplaying a RB by saying he played behind one of the greatest OLines put a knock on the Cowboys? Weren't his blockers part of the same team?
 
OP
OP
Vrill

Vrill

Cheesehead
Joined
Nov 1, 2011
Messages
1,803
Reaction score
137
How does downplaying a RB by saying he played behind one of the greatest OLines put a knock on the Cowboys? Weren't his blockers part of the same team?

Emmett Smith was extremely talented. Saying otherwise is foolish. Emmett would have had a great career with a lot of teams back then.

He had some truly epic runs that were all him. I still remember that game against the Giants where he played almost the whole game with a broken collarbone and ran for over 150 yards or so. He had to be carried off the field after that game......

That run against Atlanta he had on MNF is still one of he best runs Ive ever seen. He broke 8 tackles.....
 

fritothedog

Cheesehead
Joined
Jan 2, 2014
Messages
37
Reaction score
3
I feel like having a QB that can throw deep, dump short, or run when needed helps, too. The D can't overcommit on any one thing or they may get burned. I would think that those options with a QB would contribute more than a talented RB. Good to have all the tools though. :tup:
 

lambeaulambo

Cheesehead
Joined
Jan 30, 2010
Messages
2,565
Reaction score
703
Location
Rest Home
Hmmm....Emmitt Smith behind that line. Tuinei 2 time pro bowl, Newton 6 time, Stepnoski 5 time, Allen 11 time, Williams 4 time.

Give it a rest. It WAS the line.
 
OP
OP
Vrill

Vrill

Cheesehead
Joined
Nov 1, 2011
Messages
1,803
Reaction score
137
Hmmm....Emmitt Smith behind that line. Tuinei 2 time pro bowl, Newton 6 time, Stepnoski 5 time, Allen 11 time, Williams 4 time.

Give it a rest. It WAS the line.

So Emmett had absolutely nothing to do with his 18k+ rushing yards huh? He was just a talentless player? The OL did all the work for him? Walk in the park huh? Think Brandon Jackson would have gotten 18k+ rushing yards behind that Dallas OL?
 

El Guapo

Cheesehead
Joined
Dec 7, 2011
Messages
6,226
Reaction score
1,651
Location
Land 'O Lakes
What's with all of the disrespect to Brandon Jackson? At least he was a starting RB, and I would not say that he had even "good" lines to run behind. If you're look for the GB antithesis of Emmitt, let's use Demond Parker or Chris Darkins or Kenneth Davis or Walter Dean or DeShawn Wynn....

The greatest offensive players USUALLY have great teammates helping them achieve record success. Rice had Montana and vice versa. Aikman had Irvin. Hornung and Taylor had Kramer and Thurston. So Emmitt had a really good line too and he made more of it than anybody else in history. That's what separates him. The Cowboys line was very good, but there have been lots of very good offensive lines that haven't churned out great RBs....because it usually takes a combination of the two to achieve greatness.

I bow to Osponge with his spot-on observation that the outliers are guys like Payton, Sanders, and Jackson. Those are the exceptions and not the rule.
 

TJV

Lifelong Packers Fanatic
Joined
Feb 22, 2011
Messages
5,389
Reaction score
954
Whenever I think of Emmitt Smith the first thing I think of is Jimmy Johnson “stealing” him from the Packers. The Cowboys had the 17th pick and the Packers had #18 and #19. The Packers picked RB Darrell Thompson instead. Some stories after that draft said the Packers were very interested in Smith. That, and Lindy Infante losing the “Aikman Bowl” (by winning a late season game) to the Cowboys ... The Packers would have been a different team if those two things went the other way. (But it may have led to no Ron Wolf, etc.)

Anyway, of course Emmitt was a great back. IMO the only place it’s appropriate to bring up his surrounding cast is in the discussion of the greatest RBs in NFL history. Emmitt was great but I don't think he's top 5 all time.
 

lambeaulambo

Cheesehead
Joined
Jan 30, 2010
Messages
2,565
Reaction score
703
Location
Rest Home
So Emmett had absolutely nothing to do with his 18k+ rushing yards huh? He was just a talentless player? The OL did all the work for him? Walk in the park huh? Think Brandon Jackson would have gotten 18k+ rushing yards behind that Dallas OL?
You can't even spell his name correctly...It is rarely the horse before the carriage, except in the cases of Payton, Sanders, and Bo. Maybe Rick ****, but that is about it.
 

Mondio

Cheesehead
Joined
Dec 20, 2014
Messages
15,893
Reaction score
3,797
anybody that tries to take away from what Emmitt Smith was as a RB doesn't appreciate or understand football. and this argument is like the brain and ******** debate. The brain thought it was so smart, controlling everything till the ******** puckered up and before the day was over the brain was full of ****. They both matter
 

sschind

Cheesehead
Joined
Oct 5, 2014
Messages
5,053
Reaction score
1,307
How does downplaying a RB by saying he played behind one of the greatest OLines put a knock on the Cowboys? Weren't his blockers part of the same team?


Its OK to say they had a great line because the line doesn't grab the glory and its not just one player.

This is what I meant. Upon reading it I could have made it clearer. Haters of teams are likely to have less of an issue claiming that the O-line was great because, first of all, who the heck cares about the O-line. An example would be Packers fans giving the Bears line credit for Matt Forte's success because they don't want to admit that Forte is a pretty damn good running back. Second, they don't mind saying its the line because the line is 5 people so they don't have to pick out 1 Bear player to praise by name. They just credit the line in general and ignore individual players. We see a dozen "top RB" lists a year but hardly ever so we see a top line list so the haters think its OK to have the cowboys line on 1 list every couple of years as opposed to having a cowboys RB on a dozen lists a year.

A lot of people are touting the cowboys line now and saying they were the reason behind Murray's big season and he will not have as much luck in Philadelphia. Well, at least 1 site has the cowboys line not ranked #1 in rushing. The top team? The Eagles. Still, as cowboys haters they would rather give credit to their relatively anonymous offensive line than their star RB.

For the record I don't think Murray will come close to his numbers from last year but I don't think it will have anything to do with his line. People will claim it does though just to downplay what he accomplished last year.
 
Last edited:

sschind

Cheesehead
Joined
Oct 5, 2014
Messages
5,053
Reaction score
1,307
What's with all of the disrespect to Brandon Jackson? At least he was a starting RB, and I would not say that he had even "good" lines to run behind. If you're look for the GB antithesis of Emmitt, let's use Demond Parker or Chris Darkins or Kenneth Davis or Walter Dean or DeShawn Wynn....

The greatest offensive players USUALLY have great teammates helping them achieve record success. Rice had Montana and vice versa. Aikman had Irvin. Hornung and Taylor had Kramer and Thurston. So Emmitt had a really good line too and he made more of it than anybody else in history. That's what separates him. The Cowboys line was very good, but there have been lots of very good offensive lines that haven't churned out great RBs....because it usually takes a combination of the two to achieve greatness.

I bow to Osponge with his spot-on observation that the outliers are guys like Payton, Sanders, and Jackson. Those are the exceptions and not the rule.


I don't think its so much disrespect for Jackson as it is a vote against the "the line makes the RB argument." If you put Jackson on this team, with the same line we have, we are not the same team. Lacy is a huge part of how good our offense is because he is Eddie Lacy and not because of the line. If it were the line we should be just as good, or almost as good no matter who you put back there as long as they had some talent to begin with. That's why the argument works with Jackson and not any of the guys you mentioned. They would have still sucked behind Emmitt's line.
 

GreenBaySlacker

Cheesehead
Joined
Feb 5, 2014
Messages
3,092
Reaction score
209
What's with all of the disrespect to Brandon Jackson? At least he was a starting RB, and I would not say that he had even "good" lines to run behind. If you're look for the GB antithesis of Emmitt, let's use Demond Parker or Chris Darkins or Kenneth Davis or Walter Dean or DeShawn Wynn....

The greatest offensive players USUALLY have great teammates helping them achieve record success. Rice had Montana and vice versa. Aikman had Irvin. Hornung and Taylor had Kramer and Thurston. So Emmitt had a really good line too and he made more of it than anybody else in history. That's what separates him. The Cowboys line was very good, but there have been lots of very good offensive lines that haven't churned out great RBs....because it usually takes a combination of the two to achieve greatness.

I bow to Osponge with his spot-on observation that the outliers are guys like Payton, Sanders, and Jackson. Those are the exceptions and not the rule.
I didnt mean to belittle Brandon Jackson in my post. He was a good RB who battled some injuries. His water mark in my mind is "average". My point above, is that with an average RB who doesnt give me the air of confidence as far as injury history goes. I think this offense quickly becomes beatable again... Lacy and our physical WRs flat out beat the legion of boom at their own game in the NFC championship. I cant wait for the season to start...
 
D

Deleted member 6794

Guest
Lacy and our physical WRs flat out beat the legion of boom at their own game in the NFC championship. I cant wait for the season to start...

The offense scored a single touchdown in the NFCCG, produced only six points out of five turnovers and on two drives couldn't get the ball into the endzone from the 1. Hardly what I would call flat out beating a defense.
 

Members online

Top