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#27 Running The Ball


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Hello Coaches!


Welcome to another Dev Diary for NewSim on SimFBA!


This Dev Diary continues to explain the transition to the new game engine. Last week, we talked about how throwing occurs and what can affect how good a QB is. This week, we are moving on to running the ball and what makes a player good at that skill. Remember, this is for ALL players, so if you wanted to have a player designated as a DT run the football, you could! It might be a bad idea, though, as I'll explain in a minute.


So what skills make a good RB? The following do:

  • Strength
  • Agility
  • Speed
  • Football IQ

Ok, so how do each of these things affect how well a runner will play?


Strength: This skill is used to determine how well the runner can run between the tackles. High strength is necessary in order gain a decent amount of yards and avoid losses. Now, I can already see it: y'all will start putting your super-strong Nose Tackles at RB and run Dive every play. As much as I love a big guy running with the football, that just simply isn't realistic. As I explain later, there is a minimum speed threshold that probably won't be met by the big NTs.


If the runner breaks into the second level, this is referenced again to see if the runner trucks another defender and actually breaks free into the open field for an even longer run. The higher the value, the more chance there is for this to occur.


Agility: This skill is what is applied when evaluating outside run plays. Once again, there is a minimum speed threshold, but the vast majority of skill players will meet this. This means that strong, powerful RBs will likely be better running plays up the middle, while shiftier, agile backs will be better on tosses and sweeps that get them into open space.


Just like strength, this is referenced to see if the runner jukes another defender and breaks into the open for a long run. Once again, the higher this skill, the more likely it is that this player breaks off the long run.


Speed: Like with Throw Power for QBs, Speed is easily the most important attribute for a RB. If a player isn't above a certain base speed, they will only have access to the worst available running chart. Now, don't worry, only the absolute worst RBs don't meet this threshold. This is designed mainly to keep slow players like Nose Tackle DTs out of the tailback position (as fun as that might be). Of course, there is nothing stopping you from doing this, but I would advise against it!


There is another half to the speed factor. While not used on every play, it matters anytime your runner has a run that breaks into the second level. These happen on about 8% of runs, and the higher the speed of the player, the more yards they will gain in this situation. So while most plays they will be using Agility and Strength for the normal runs, having high speed is important if you want your runner to rip off long gains when the opportunity presents itself.


Football IQ: Smarts is important for an RB, but not the most. This provides a slight boost to the chances that the RB makes a better decision. The higher this value, the more likely it is that the RB might get a bump up to the random number that determines how many yards they gain. This can be anything from just a yard or two to potentially breaking into the secondary instead of not.


To be clear there are three "levels" to running:

  • Normal Runs (Affected by Agility OR Strength based on outside vs. inside)
  • Second-Level (About 8% chance, although Football IQ can increase this slightly. High Speed makes gains here larger)
  • Breakaway Runs (Higher Strength OR Agility ratings gives a higher the chance of a breakaway run after the second level. with even bigger gains. If a breakaway run occurs, speed determines how far it goes).

Now we addressed briefly that you can have ANY position be put at RB to run, but what about other skill positions that you want to get the football? Looking at you Scrambling QBs. The bad news, not "option" specifically just yet, but you can specify that you want some other positions like QB and Slot WR to run the ball. To do this, we will have specific plays set aside to accomplish this. So now all of you with Scrambling QBs can actually use them! And remember, all of these rules apply to ANYONE carrying the football.


That is it for this dev diary. Comment with any questions you have and I'll be sure to answer them as best as I can!


Until next time,



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I don't want to get too far ahead, because this is likely going to be the topic of a future dev diary. However, I can say that things like strength will eventually be taken into account for defenders as well, but their most important traits will be things like Run Defense for reducing the number of yards gained and Tackling for causing fumbles (like blowing up a ball carrier with a crushing hit).
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  • 2 months later...
Great question. It gets taken into account for how often they will fumble. A higher carrying ability means that a player will likely not fumble as much as one with lower carrying.
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