They can call the offense whatever name they like, but the 2013 Indianapolis Colts sure sound like they are implementing the same "West Coast" offensive system that coordinator Pep Hamilton and quarterback Andrew Luck ran together at Stanford.
Hamilton and Luck are now reunited in Indianapolis, and, according to Luck himself, one of the advantages of bringing Hamilton in to replace former offensive coordinator Bruce Arians was the mutual familiarity with a West Coast system:
For me, I feel fortunate that I don't have to learn a completely new offense. Obviously, there's things he did in the past year that I wasn't familiar with when I was with him in college. There's a lot of words. There's a lot of carryover.
When Luck was asked how similar the Stanford scheme was to the offense the Colts are installing now, he answered:
Percentage-wise, I think about 75% of the stuff I knew.
So, for those of you out there who are confused as to what the hell a "No Coast Offense" is, it's a term I like to call "coach speak." Basically, it's a load of B.S., but not in a bad way.
The Colts will run the Stanford offense in 2013. However, Indianapolis' roster is significantly different than the kids Hamilton worked with at Stanford. Certain players on this roster were drafted specifically to thrive in Bruce Arians' system, and, as we all know, Arians hates the West Coast Offense. Since it would be utterly insane for the Colts to trade away or cut players like T.Y. Hilton (who is not ideally suited to run routes in a traditional West Coast system), Hamilton must alter his offense to suit his personnel.
I know that reads almost elementary, but you'd be surprised how a coach's ego factors into the decision on which system to run.
Hamilton is not known to have such an ego. When Luck left Stanford after the 2011 season to come to Indianapolis, Hamilton altered the Cardinals' offensive attack, focusing more on running the ball. The results were very successful. Stanford won the PAC-12 and defeated their nemesis, Oregon.
However, at the end of the day, Indianapolis' 2013 offense sounds like a West Coast scheme. Right, Andrew?
It is a No Coast Offense, and that's how Pep presented it to us. It's going to try to give us the best advantage, wherever it may lie.
OK, whatever the hell it's called, I'm very interested to see it in action in 2013.