Tag Archives: Defense

Skins DEFENSE vs the 49ers

Formations

We used a 3-3-5 (3DL, 3LBs, 5DBs) on 3rd and longs in an attempt to confuse and deceive:

The above formation had Jonathan Allen (R.I.P.) at linebacker depth.  He’s going to vacate his zone and rush the QB:

The RB runs to where Allen left and gets an easy catch.  Meanwhile, we tasked Kerrigan to play zone coverage; he takes off to cover a spot on the field without even checking to see where the RB is going.

So that’s a pass rusher playing zone coverage and a defensive lineman lined up as a linebacker, and for what?  If anything we just helped a rookie QB make an easy throw on 3rd and 8.

We have done this 3-3-5 look almost every week going back to the Joe Barry days.  Preston Smith is usually the deceiver–lined up at middle linebacker instead of being at defensive end–and it usually fails.  Please shelve this.

In exotic formations that did work:

That’s Ioaniddis and Jonathan Allen lined up over the Right Guard.  Ion bull rushes the guard, while Allen gets a push on him with his free hand: that’s 1 and 1/2 men vs 1 and it sends the guard backpedaling into the QB’s lap:

It’s a formation that confuses the blocking scheme and doesn’t ask guys to play out of position.  We ran that same concept again, this time with Allen (circled) slanting into the right guard, freeing up Ioannidis to get another sack:

(Brown sees the same route that Garcon got an offensive Pass Interference on late in the game–the one he posted to his Instagram–notice how Brown avoids Garcon on this play.)

The Allen-Ioannidis combo will be missed.

Substitution Notes:  Moreau and Dunbar split snaps opposite Breeland, with Dunbar getting the clear majority.  After Breeland went out, it was Moreau and Dunbar on the outside.  After Moreau went out, Holsey took over at slot and Fuller bumped outside.  Good grief.

At safety, DJ is the only safety asked to play in the box against the run AND in man-coverage.  Nicholson is strictly at deep safety.  Usually we ask both safeties to play all styles (in the box, man-to-man, and deep) but it appears other than DJ, no safety is coached up on the linebacker and corner reads needed to play every style.

What Happened

The Niners tried to make due with the fact they had no passing game by playing formations with multiple tight ends, hoping to gain angles and leverage in the run game.  Our front 8 responded with stunts and linebackers knifed through the zone blocks.

We ended up ceding 3 points which turned into 7 after a penalty by Swearinger (who swung at Garcon for celebrating a hit that did this to Nicholson.)

Pressure was sacrificed for coverage as we asked our defensive ends to jam receivers at the line before they rushed the quarterback.  Starting quarterback Brian Hoyer was forced to hold onto the ball and make throws into tight coverage.  After two missed throws to ‘out’ routes run to the far hash, Shannahan yanked him and put in the rookie CJ Beathard.

After fixing the QB issue, the next issue was how to replace their injured fullback.  First they tried with a TE:

But that didn’t work so they went with 2 running backs in the backfield yielding mixed results.

In the second half they successfully targeted their runs at Breeland, but were not able to score a touchdown until Vernon Davis fumbled and gave them the ball at the one yard line.

Working against the clock, San Francisco had to ditch the run and start throwing.  After Breeland went out with an injury they marched down the field by targeting Moreau and Nicholson.

The last drive saw Moreau leave the game with an injury and our secondary was barely recognizable with rookies at two spots and slot CB Kendall Fuller playing outside.  Zach Brown bailed us out by drawing an offensive pass interference call that put the 49ers in a hole they couldn’t dig out of.

CHART

The Show

Defensive Line
Player + Total
McGee 6 3 3
Hood 2.5 4 -1.5
Ioannidis 5 0 5: pay the man?
Allen 2.5 0.5 2
McClain 0 2 -2: over-paid
Total     6.5

Allen and Ioannidis’ pass rush combo were discussed above.

Stacy McGee turned in his best performance yet.  He usually lines up against tackles and tight ends, kept away from shorter guards and centers that are more apt to win the low-man leverage battles.

He was able to reset the backside edge when Kerrigan went too far up field and left a gaping hole behind him.  On this counter-run, he was able to stand up the center, shed and hold the RB until #91 could recover:

When they ran away from him, he was able to slant and get under the tackle:

Level of competition was low but these are difficult tasks–set the edge and chase down runs away from you–when you’re a 341 pound big man, regardless of opponent.

[After the JUMP: Linebackers, DBs, the 45 Yard TD and predictions]

Continue reading Skins DEFENSE vs the 49ers

Skins DEFENSE vs Kansas City

Formations

They spread out our 3-4 defense a few times to where our OLB would line up over a slot WR with a safety behind him.  This left 3 big guys to rush the quarterback, affording Alex Smith plenty of time.  The only reason I can think of for this is we were trying to avoid crack blocks and also jam guys at the line so they couldn’t run their staple of “mesh” routes. Otherwise it was our regular 3-4 and Nickel the whole way except for one 3-3-5 we broke out on a 3rd down.

The Story:  The first 3 drives ended in punts before the mismatches came into play.  Fuller got stuck defending the run against tight ends and our 3-4 got spread out, shown above, which negated the pass rush.

Inside backer play was up and down.  Brown and Spaight played like Pro Bowlers in the box, but they struggled in space with Brown having two left feet in coverage and Spaight missing open field tackles.

With a bye week approaching guys were hitting hard and selling out their bodies; big hits were followed by injuries to the back seven.  Then the penalties came which cost us 7 points to open the second half.  The snap count hit 76 (20 snaps more than previous weeks) and mental errors crept in as fatigue set over the last two drives.  Uncharacteristic gaffes like Brown’s over-pursuit on outside zone and McClain tipping a stunt cost us two field goals.

Finally on the last drive Kerrigan blew contain which lead to a 37 yard play and Spaight voided underneath coverage for another 10 yard gimmie and that was enough to set up the field goal that put KC ahead 23-20.

CHART

The Show

Defensive Line
Player + Total
Kerrigan 3 6.5 -3.5
Smith 8 7.5 0.5
Allen 5.5 2 3.5
Hood 5 7.5 -2.5
McClain 2.5 7 -4.5
Ioannidis 6 1.5 4.5
McGee 7.5 5.5 2
Total     0

Kerrigan’s first negative finish is due in large part to a failed pass rush that did not keep contain.  He chose the right rush: Bull rush, but couldn’t disengage the RT before Alex Smith broke the pocket.  That’s giving valuable extra time with a back seven reeling from injuries and fatigue.

Preston Smith would have graded out in the positive if not for penalties.  The one at the goal line turned 3 points into 7 and earned him a -4.  So both star ends would have had decent to good days if not for the bonehead plays.

Ziggy Hood’s negative total was a product of him get worked by their center.  It’s one thing for a double team to get you, but when your nose can’t handle the center one on one that’s trouble since doubles can be doled out to guys on either side of him.

Matt Ioannidis diagnosed plays early and often.  Against Philly he was the lone lineman to diagnose the trap blocking and last week he was the quickest to read the Shovel pass option play that KC loves to run:

Continue reading Skins DEFENSE vs Kansas City

Skins DEFENSE vs the Raiders

Formations

We broke out the 3-4 for just four plays, otherwise it was Nickel the whole way, even when they lined up with no backs and 5 receivers:

That is Zach Brown lined up across from 2 WRs.  Oakland ran a route combination that got Amari Cooper one on one with Brown and open for the first–which he dropped.  Complaints from me in this game were few, but this would be one.  Perhaps a Dime defense would suffice in the future?

Substitution notes:  Mason Foster was replaced by two guys, in the 3-4 it was Compton and in the Nickel it was Spaight.  Defensive line snaps were fluid with Allen, McClain and Ioannidis getting the lion share inside.  Kerrigan and Smith took the most snaps at DE.

On the whole, the defense got off easy for the 2nd straight week with just over 50 snaps for the game.

The first 11 and 1/2 drives are charted (link at the bottom) with the last drive and a half left off because the Raiders had given up at that point.

The Show

Defensive Line
Player + Total
Allen 6 1.5 4.5
Kerrigan 9.5 2.5 7
Smith 10 0 10(!)
Ioannidis 3.5 1 2.5
McGee 0 1 -1
McClain 0 0.5 -0.5
Hood 0 2 -2
Total     20.5

Preston Smith had himself his best game of the season.  On a 3rd and 2 the Raiders dialed up a ‘Duo’ run.  Basically there is a linebacker they leave unblocked, in this case Spaight (circled.)  The running back will run to the hole the linebacker doesn’t.  Spaight chose the inside gap, so Lynch bounced it outside, right into Smith, who shed his blocker like a rag doll:

They didn’t (couldn’t) go back to that play since they realized a TE wouldn’t be enough to contain Smith.

[After the jump:  Grades for Linebackers and DBs, video breakdowns, Predictions]

Continue reading Skins DEFENSE vs the Raiders

Skins DEFENSE vs Rams

Play by Play Chart

Formations

Nickel:

Our Nickel line: Kerrigan-Ioannidis-Allen-Smith.  Ioannidis and Allen lined up directly over the guards to take away any Outside Zone and Power runs.

Last week McVay dialed up about a dozen Outside Zone runs, but against this formation he didn’t try it once.  When they did run outside it was away from Jonathan Allen who showed last week against Philly he could run that stuff down.

To the top of the screen you see the WRs in a stack formation, they rolled that out a ton.  We played it with Fuller underneath, since he’s the screen destroyer our DB coach Torrian Gray built.

3-4:

The 3-4 had a starting line of McGee-Hood-McClain flanked by Anderson and Galette.  McGee lines up over Tackles and tight ends, McClain over the guard and Hood is at nose.

We rotated the defensive ends and OLBs somewhat, but for the most part Kerrigan and Smith had their hand in the dirt in our Nickel front, while Anderson and Galette were stand up OLBs in our 3-4.

Positions that seem set:

  • 3-4 Line: Anderson-McGee-Hood-McClain-Galette
  • Nickel Line: Kerrigan-Ioannidis-Allen-Smith
  • Inside Backers: Brown and Foster
  • Corners: Norman and Breeland backed up by Dunbar
  • Slot Corner: Fuller
  • Free Safety: DJ Swearinger

Strong Safety is the lone question mark.  It looks to be a two-way battle between Everett and Nicholson with rookie Fabian Moreau working his way in for a couple of snaps.  In week 1 it was Everett’s job to lose, as it stands now the winner of that battle might be whoever makes the fewest mistakes.

The Show

Defensive Line
Player + Total
Ioanndis 4.5 0.5 4
McGee 1.5 4.5 -3
Hood 0.5 1.5 -1
Allen 2 2 0
Smith 6 1.5 4.5
Kerrigan 6.5 0 6.5
McClain 1 3 -2
Totals     9

If it weren’t for Smith and Kerrigan getting pressure the line would’ve finished on the wrong side of zero.  The interior doesn’t have a QB terror like Jason Hatcher or Chris Baker just yet, the closest guy is Ioannidis who charted a couple of pressures.  He’s been holding up to doubles against zone runs and the QB pressures are a pleasant surprise, the only knock on his game is speed to the outside:

The guard doesn’t even check him on his way to sealing out Foster.  The center had the impossible task of cutting him which tells me the plan was to beat him with speed.  I contrasted that with a clip from last week where Allen was sliding down the line, fighting off blocks and making plays at the sideline.  That right there is why they didn’t poke at the beast.

[After the jump:  Coverages, linebackers, predictions]

Continue reading Skins DEFENSE vs Rams

Skins DEFENSE vs Eagles (I)

Click here for the play by play chart

 

Formations

Nothing too fancy except for on a couple passing downs:

that’s a 2-4-5.  We also slid the line around and grouped defensive ends to the same side, in an effort to confuse blocking schemes and generate pressure.  Outside of that we stayed in our base 3-4 and Nickel the whole way.

Foster usually lined up to the wider side of the field, while Brown took to the boundary.  We kept 2 linebackers in the whole game, Dime packages were scrapped for this one.

Eagles kept anywhere from 1 to 3 tight ends.  Before their left tackle (Peters) went out the game they used their 6th offensive lineman as a blocking tight end.  On a few plays we treated Ertz as a WR and kept an extra CB in the game even when they had 2+ tight ends.  That might have had something to do with Everett struggling with Ertz early.

The Show

Defensive Line
Player + Total
McGee 3 1 2: Just A Guy, won’t hurt but isn’t going to disrupt either.
Ionnandis 5 2.5 2.5: Able to hold up to doubles and recognize all blocks.
Allen 5.5 8.5 -3: Discussion below
Hood 3 0 3: Way stronger at the POA, especially at nose.  Thanks Tomsula.
McClain 4 2 2: Just A Guy #2, except not really.  Can get under blocks and disrupt occasionally.
Total     6.5: Just need to fine tune a rookie and we have a unit that can go.  Thanks Tomsula.

Jonathan Allen checks in for his first NFL game and it was up and down as one could expect from a rookie.  Eagles tend to base their runs with outside zone stuff and will occasionally change it up with a wham block.  You would like to see your DL stop the OL from reaching the linebacker behind him: the whole intent of a wham block.  Ionnandis did this, Allen (circled) not so much:

They ran it a few times when Allen was in the game to the tune of 6.0 ypc; this would-be change up became a fastball.

On the good news front, Allen seemed more than able to handle zone blocking, both outside and inside:

He can let his 1st round athleticism take over on the basic stuff, he just needs to get comfortable handling blocks coming at him from his blind spot.

Ionanndis and Hood were the most improved guys on this roster.  Technique and strength at the point of attack were night and day from last year.  Last year, Hood was struggling inside and mutterings out of Redskin park hinted he was miscast as a Nose and would be at defensive end if not for depth issues.  All that seems to be resolved now as he took the majority of his snaps at nose and held up just fine.

McGee is probably slated for 5 technique.  He struggled with doubles inside and let guys get under his pads.  Against tackles and tight ends however, his 341 pound frame was more forgiving of that issue.

Linebackers
Player + Total
P. Smith 6 3 3
Kerrigan 7.5 3.5 4: lined up to the open side more often.  Less TE crushing, but better paths to the QB.
Foster 7 3.5 3.5: Picked up where he left off last year
Z. Brown 14 3.5 10.5: Biggest upgrade of the offseason.  Run defense is A level. Coverage…check back later
Galette 0.5 0.5 0
Anderson 0 1.5 -1.5: Struggled a bit holding the edge on outside runs
Totals     19.5:  Zach Brown baby.

A couple new faces entered into this corps with Zach Brown being the most welcome sight for sore eyes.  This here blog has officially placed Compton along with Pot Roast in the Please Never Again HOF.  Brown occasionally struggled with finding his zones in coverage, hence the minuses, but that is the stuff that can be coached up.  What can’t be coached up is this SPEED:

Also worth noting: both Brown and Foster understand the importance of depth with their zone drops.  I can’t count how many 3rd downs we gave up last year because Compton didn’t realize he had a receiver behind him that needed to be covered.  Zach Brown is the FA pickup off the off-season and is a big reason we could have a competent defense this year.

Galette and Anderson seem to be on a pitch count.  The only thing that popped up was Anderson’s inability to set the edge, something I’m not too worried about.  Manusky’s coaching cloth is cut from his days as an OLB coach and Tomsula is right behind him to teach leverage to any rookie who needs to know.

Kerrigan and Smith were asked to do more zone drops compared to last year.  Getting after the QB is still goal #1 for them, but we are going to mix up who drops into the hook zones a lot more this year, it won’t just be our inside linebackers.

The pick 6:  This one was set up early in the game on the 2nd drive.  Sproles and the WR to his side ran a corner/flat route combo that Hi-Low’d the OLB.  In this case it was Smith who was put in conflict:

Two drives later they brought out the same formation and we spread out our 5 man line to shorten the distance Kerrigan needed to cover in his zone drop.  They ran the same corner/flat route combo and that was all she wrote:

Coaching +1.

Defensive Backs
Player + Total
Norman 3.5 1 2.5
DJ 3 7 -4: Got picked on early
Fuller 7.5 0 7.5: Blew up screens all day.  Thanks Torrian Gray?
Everett 2 8.5 -6.5: Drew the shortest straw.  Manned up Ertz often
Breeland 2 1 1
Total     0.5: exotic blitzes caused a few busted coverages

Kendal Fuller was a terror on outside screens.  Someone somewhere coached this DB corps on how to handle WR blocks and a quick check of the coaching roster shows DB coach Torrian Gray spent the last 10 years in the fertile spread offense land of Blacksburg and Gainesville dealing with outside screens on the regular.  I don’t even know why Philly kept trying to test us outside, I mean fine…go right ahead please and thank you:

When tested deep, Fuller was in the receiver’s hip pocket and got the pass breakup:

What didn’t work as well were the guys behind our corners.  In the last clip you can see Fuller take outside leverage and funnel to the deep safety, in this case Swearinger.  But DJ got baited by an underneath route and was left hoping Fuller could save him from a public Monday scolding.  Everett’s shaky day was easier to tolerate since he got manned up on Ertz whose got route running chops I don’t see any DB not named Josh Norman able to shut down.

What does it mean for the future?

  • Allen will probably be tested with trap and wham blocks until he proves he can handle them.
  • Ionnandis and Hood version 2.0: Thanks Tomsula
  • Underneath crossers and wheel routes are the scariest to watch right now as the back 7 adjust to the new zone drops.
  • We aren’t giving up any easy yards on WR screens
  • We don’t play a Zach Ertz in week 2, that gives Everett a break.
  • Holy crap Zach Brown, where have you been all my life.
  • CHART

Redskins DEFENSE vs The Lions

Formations & Depth Chart

We were in a 3-4 defense for about a quarter of the snaps throughout the game, otherwise we were mostly in Nickel with the line shifted toward the tight end:

nickelover

In passing situations we lifted Foster for Cravens or Garvin.  Cravens is seen here in our “Okie” front.  Okie means all the lineman and linebackers are standing at the line pre-snap:

nickelokie

A few times, we replaced a safety for a 4th cornerback (line is ‘split’ for a better pass rush):

nickelsplit4cb

Depth Chart – Nickel (out of 53 snaps):

  • DE:  Kerrigan (40) and Smith (38), backed up by Murphy (31)
  • DT:  Hood (44) and Baker (43), backed up by Francois (16), Jenkins (10) and Ioannidis (4)
  • ILB:  Compton (53), Foster (40)
  • Cravensbacker:  Cravens (11), Garvin (3)
  • Strong Safety:  Whitner (44) backed up by Nacho (9)
  • Free Safety:  Blackmon (39) backed up by Whitner (9)
  • CB:  Breeland (49) and Norman (28), backed up by Dunbar (27) and Toler (5)
  • Slot/Nickel CB:  Fuller (40)

‘Cravensbacker’ is the hybrid Linebacker/Safety position we play in place of Foster in passing situations.  With the 3-4 defense, Fuller gets lifted for an extra defensive lineman which was usually Francois.  Compton and Whitner were the only guys to play all 53 snaps.

The Show

Against the Giants we faced guards pulling from side to side which created moving gaps that our second level backers struggled to defend.  This time around the Lions tested us not with pulling guards but with pulling H-Backs (red path).  The tight end lined up in front of Murphy (red X) is running a route, just pretend he’s not even in the picture:

splitzoneWe responded to the pulling H-Back by bumping down a Safety and the front 8 gap coverage went like so:

  • Whitner replaces Compton’s gap, so
  • Compton can replace Foster’s gap, so
  • Foster can replace Murphy’s gap, so
  • Murphy can play contain on the extra gap added to his side by the pulling H-Back.

All gaps are accounted for.  Ioannidis comes off his block to make initial contact with the back and Whitner is in position for the fill:

[AFTER THE JUMP:  The Last Play, A Link to the Chart, Grades, Safeties, Safeties WTF!]

Continue reading Redskins DEFENSE vs The Lions

Redskins Defense Vs The Eagles (I)

Formations:

The Eagles opened up with 13 (1RB, 3 TE) personnel:

nickelvs13

and, for the first time I think ever, we responded with a Nickel defense.  Normally we come out in a 3-4 if there is more than 1 tight end or a fullback is in the game.  This matchup got us a sack as Kerrigan matched up one on one with the tight end closest to the center.

Otherwise it was mainly our Nickel vs their 11 and our 3-4 vs their 12 and 13.  On 3rd and longs we gave a few exotic looks.  A couple of times we went 3(DL)-3(LB)-5(DB):

335

and a couple of times we showed a 3-2-6, the 3 lineman in this play–which resulted in a sack–were Kerrigan, Murphy and Smith:

326

On 3rd and 5 we pulled Compton off the field and went into a Dime package (4-1-6) with Terence Garvin at linebacker:

dimegarvin

We also had a few plays where we lifted the slot corner off the field in favor of a 3rd safety.

Depth Chart for our Nickel:

  • DE:  Kerrigan and Smith with Murphy off the bench.
  • DT (Nose and 3Tech):  Baker, Hood, with Francois and Ioannidis off the bench
  • ILB:  Foster, Compton with Garvin on some 3rd downs
  • CB:  Norman the whole way.  Breeland shared time with Dunbar on the first drive.  Dunbar had a hard time getting lined up with Whitner on one play and I don’t think we saw much of him after that.
  • Slot CB:  Fuller, sometimes replaced by a 3rd safety.
  • Strong Safety:  Nacho with Whitner off the bench
  • Free Safety:  Blackmon with Whitner off the bench.

In the 3-4, where we replace the slot corner with a 5th defensive lineman, Francois got the start.  I’m going off of memory so if I missed a guy let me know in the comments.  Also you can like, comment in the comments.

The Show:

Where the disembodied head of EA Sports’ Kirk Herbstreit revolves around me and repeatedly chants “He just simply used POWER”:

The Power play reared it’s ugly head again.  In the preview I talked about how the Eagles like to fake like they are going to run Power and throw a bubble screen to the outside.  This time they switched it up and actually ran the Power play, because it’s us, so obviously you have to try.  Instead of passively reading blocks and getting run over, we attacked it with our play side linebacker (Foster in this case) and Safety.  Both guys will aim for the pulling guard and stop this play for a short gain:

power

Video:

Philly ran Power 3 times for 11 yards.  It’s become a non-factor which is something that seemed light years away from happening after the Giants’ game.  Having a safety willing to fill against the run has been the most important addition to this defense for the season.  On a Power play in the 4th quarter, Foster and Whitner did the same thing to the pulling guard, forcing Sproles to bounce outside into Smith and Breeland.

[After the jump:  All-22 video, Counter, Link to the Chart, Grades…and more words!!]

Continue reading Redskins Defense Vs The Eagles (I)

Redskins Defense Vs The Ravens

Formations

(Note:  Cliff Notes are at the end, along with the Chart)

We stayed in a 3-4 for the majority of the game.  Blackmon and Nacho were the safeties with Blackmon lining up to the side with more wide receivers:

3-4

and Nacho lining up to the side with more tight ends:

3-4b

We occasionally lined up with new lines on passing downs, this line consisted of Smith-Murphy-Garvin(linebacker, standing up) and Kerrigan:

nascar

Norman and Dunbar were the starters at corner with Toler backing both of them up.  Fuller was our Nickel/Slot cornerback.  Whitner was our “Dime” defensive back, he came in on passing downs to cover tight ends.  Garvin (52) played the role of Su’a Cravens as the linebacker who replaced Foster on passing downs.

The Show

Baltimore spent most of the first drive running it away from our Safety in the box (Blackmon/Nacho) and towards Dunbar’s gap.  Our defensive end had contain while Dunbar had to cover gaps inside:

dunbar1

Dunbar gets to handle an Iso block from the fullback and is out of his element:

They tried to attack Dunbar’s gap again in the 3rd quarter, again the defensive end has contain while Dunbar is playing the gap denoted by the yellow line:

dunbar2

But we adjusted by slanting the line towards the gap:

Continue reading Redskins Defense Vs The Ravens

Redskins DEFENSE vs The Browns

Formations:

Note:  A brief overview of our ‘Nickel’ and ‘3-4’ formations can be found here

Cleveland started the game in 11 (1RB, 1TE) personnel and we responded with our Nickel package which had Compton lined up to the passing strength (2 WR side):

formationstart

When the Browns brought in a fullback or extra tight end we responded with our 3-4:

3-4a

Notice Compton is away from the passing strength and is lined up over the guard and tackle.  The thicker and stouter Foster (aka Rumble) is lined up over the ‘A’ gap in between the center and guard.

We got a little whacky with our 3-4 alignment on this play as we slid Baker over to defensive end.  We stood up Preston Smith, moved him around and then sent him blitzin’:

Continue reading Redskins DEFENSE vs The Browns

Breakdown: Defense vs Giants (I)

Lining Up:

Giants stayed in 11 (1 RB, 1TE) personnel the whole way and we responded with our Nickel defense:

comptonalignment1

Compton stayed aligned to the side that had more wide receivers.  Fancy people call it the ‘field’ or ‘passing strength’.  It tends to be the side of the field with more space when the ball is lined up on the hash:

comptonalignment2

He’s lighter and can cover more ground than Foster and has a better grasp of zone drops than Cravens, so it looks like no matter which linebacker he’s on the field with the coaches will ask him to stay lined up to the passing strength.

I might have missed it, but I didn’t see a 3-4 defense one time in this game.

On With The Show:

power

The Giants ran a play some people call “Power” which allows for a double team to the side the running back runs toward and has an offensive lineman pull and lead the back through a hole.  The Giants usually doubled our 3 technique (lined up in between the guard and tackle) and pulled the backside guard as shown above.  They ran it versus Dallas in Week 1:

dallasdpower

and Dallas chose to keep 2 safeties back and defend the Power play with 6 in the box:

The Giants running backs profited as Vereen finished that game with 6.3 yards per carry and Jennings with 4.2 yards per carry.  The following week the Giants played New Orleans and the Saints tweaked things around a bit:

saintsdpower

They consistently brought down a safety and played with 7 in the box, blitzed linebackers and changed up their fronts to match up with and confuse the Giants’ Power blocks:

Vereen finished that game with 3.0 ypc and Jennings with 2.1 ypc.  Guess which game plan we picked!

Continue reading Breakdown: Defense vs Giants (I)