Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin doesn’t have much faith in the read-zone option being anything more than another passing fad.
Tomlin called the offensive scheme the “flavor of the month” in the league and feels its success could very much go the way of the Wildcat once defenses have a chance to adjust and figure it out.
“We look forward to stopping it,” Tomlin said. “We look forward to eliminating it.”
Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson is one of a handful of quarterbacks to have been able to incorporate the read-zone concepts and see success. San Francisco’s Colin Kaepernick, Washington’s Robert Griffin III and Carolina’s Cam Newton have also benefited from adding the elements to their offenses.
But Wilson has no intention of just being the “flavor of the month.” He believes that he, Kaepernick and other quarterbacks that can run are getting unfairly put into a box as “running quarterbacks” just because they have the ability to run and not being given the credit for their ability to throw the ball or run an offense.
“It doesn’t matter what style of offense, I’m ready to play any time, anywhere, anyplace. I just want to play football. Some people try to take away from our ability to throw the football because we can run. But I think it just adds another dimension to what we do,” Wilson said, via Eric Williams of the Tacoma News Tribune.
“To be honest with you, people try to take away from the ability that guys have in terms of what Colin Kaepernick and other guys like him can do, for whatever reason, because they’re young, or they’re different,” Wilson added. “But I think it brings excitement to the game. It brings a challenge to the defense.”
Seattle doesn’t solely rely on the read-zone instead using it only as a complement to their normal offense. Wilson matched Peyton Manning’s record for most touchdown passes by a rookie with 26 last year and had a 20-0 touchdown to interception ratio in the opponent’s red zone. That level of success can’t solely be written off as a byproduct of one offensive scheme alone.
Wilson, Kaepernick and Griffin all proved last season they have the ability to successfully work a passing game in addition to their ability to run when called upon. The thought they will be rendered ineffective by adjustments defenses make to solve the read-zone elements of their offenses seem to be far-fetched.