Inside The Playbook
January 8th 2003
By Bryan Hersh of 49ers Paradise
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This week in the inside the playbook article, Iíll take a look at not a single play, but rather an offensive scheme - the hurry up offense, that the 49ers used for nearly the entire second half of their playoff victory over the Giants. The hurry up offense is one area where quarterback Jeff Garcia has excelled all season, but until being down 24 points the 49ers reserved the scheme for the final minutes of each half of football.
The hurry up offense involves calling the plays at the line of scrimmage, avoiding the huddle. Itís purpose is three fold. The first reason is to conserve time on the clock. This also usually involves lots of sideline passes. The second reason is to tire out a defense. Because the defense can not shift its players, as it does not have time to - and the offense can, they especially the defensive lineman get worn down fairly quickly. Finally the offense is used as a change of pace to try and very simply keep the defense off balance.
As mentioned above the 49ers used the hurry up offense for much of the second half of the game. Jeff Garcia was masterful engineering the comeback and spreading the ball around from this type of offense. Given the success the team had with it, the 49ers may use more of it throughout the playoffs.