Question - The Tempo in the Briles Offense

We really seem to have backed off forcing the tempo over the last couple of weeks, and our offense seems to have done better because of it.

Was this strictly a decision by Briles? Has Pittman instructed him to slow the pace? Does anyone know? (If this has been discussed, I just haven’t seen it.)

Again, it seems like slowing it down a bit has helped us, but I’m just curious.

Yes, I’ve also noticed that. I think maybe Briles’ fast tempo system is best when he has a QB with at least a full year’s starting experience in it. Remember, KJ only has 6 games that he’s started and I’m not sure you can count last season’s 2 games.

Maybe we will see more as the season progresses and KJ gets more and more comfortable with all the reads. He’s been improving pretty rapidly in every game.

Most tempo teams don’t really rev it up until they make a first down. But we’ve had so many quick strikes that limits that. At least that’s what comes to my mind.

I’ve heard Pittman talk about this a couple of times before. He doesn’t want break-neck speed until the team makes a first down. Once that happens, the tempo kicks in.

If you go fast and get a three-and-out, the defense doesn’t get much time to rest on the sideline. By slowing the tempo, you guarantee another minute or two of rest between defensive series.

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I’m fascinated by the chess game between Briles and the defensive co-ordinator of our opponents. A good number of plays appear to be changed at the LOS.

I have to admit I wish we would go up tempo a lot more bc I believe we have the depth on defense to handle some 3 and outs. I think we have the depth to do it on Offense as well…I have noticed we seem to do well on the uptempo plays and would like to see more of it bc it puts the defense in a position to where they may make a mistake, but if we haven’t seen it yet I doubt we see it change any.

I put this in the “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it” category.


I’m wondering if it will change a little in road games. Tempo can also be a way of quieting the fans on the road.

Pittman has also talked about the importance of being able to slow it down when we have the ball, the lead, and the clock is our friend. We have done that well. Line up, wait for the clock to go down, then run it successfully even though they know we’re going to run it.

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Yes now wholeheartedly agree with being able to run the ball and control the clock with the lead in the 4th quarter…

Exactly… I can’t see us changing anything…

JM has it right. With the lead, they are going to slow it down. And, they also seem to be substituting personnel. If you sub, you can’t go up tempo. The other team gets to sub, too.

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By my observation, the ultra fast tempo has hurt us more often that it has helped us.

I believe the same is true with trick plays – how many times have we brought Burks in motion intending to give him the ball (or fake a handoff) only to have the snap from center go awry?

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I think Briles is using the threat of trick plays to set up other plays. Initially this season, any time Burks did ANYTHING unusual you could tell the defense went into hyper trick play alert and I don’t remember any “Burks gets the ball” trick plays that have worked this year or last.

I bet you there are trick play fakes type trick plays way deep in Briles basket of plays. My favorite play still this year is Burks lining up at tailback, KJ and Burks heading right like they are running the option, and KJ handed off to Johnson on the inside trap play going left. Johnson walked into the endzone almost untouched. The Texas defense had flown like their hair was on fire to our right thinking that something wide was coming with Burks and KJ. One lone guy was easily blocked to let DJ waltz in for a score. Can’t you see Smith taking a toss sweep wide right, Burks coming back, they fake the reverse hand off to Burks, and Smith flies down the sidelines.

Briles should use that “four wideouts on one sideline and Burks alone split wide to the other side” formation over and over (future def coordinators will have Burks 85 yard TD against A&M branded into their brains) with KJ throwing it whichever way the safety does not go. That would be a great QB draw formation as well.

Really looking forward to Briles play calling the rest of the year.


If the O-line stays healthy and KJ and Burks stay healthy, Briles will do great.

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Agree. It seems everytime I hear Chuck say “Hogs quickly to the lone of scrimmage” something goes haywire.

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I like the phrase: KJ surveys the defense and looks to the sideline.

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Seems to be a great blend of Sam and Briles’ offensive philosophies. Open up the offense, (with timely running and passing plays), get the lead in the first 3 quarters and smash mouth them with the running game in the 4th quarter.

Coincidentally, that was also Petrino’s philosophy. I’ll never forget how that worked so well with Knile Davis and our O-line in the big win against LSU.

It helps to have a good offensive line.


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