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So far I've re-watched the first half of Eagles v. Pats, watching the defense in general and the offensive line in particular. It was a close, interesting game that spawned a lot of talk on this forum, making it worthy of analysis.
I'll start with the performance of the offensive line in the first half, since its the easiest topic to write up.
Simply, I watched every passing play (and we almost exclusively ran passing plays) and evaluated pressures, knockdowns, and sacks of Tom Brady, noting where the pressure came from and who was responsible.
There were two plays that require a little bit of explanation; the first was the 2nd and 3 play on the 2nd drive (8:35 in the 2nd quarter) that resulted in Donté Stallworth motoring for 31 yards down the far sideline. Here is what the Eagles pressure looked like:
As you can see, that's 8 in the box with 6 pressuring. Stallworth is wide left, Moss wide right. Eagles #1-2 end up getting pressure right in Brady's face when he throws left to Stallworth; Faulk picks up #4 up the middle, while Koppen shift right to help Neal with #5.
What should have happened was Koppen should have picked up #4, leaving Faulk to shift left and pick up #2, who comes unblocked between Light and Mankins. Light also gives up the edge to Cole (#1) on this play; Brady is unable to step up due to #2 and #4, as mentioned.
It's hard to know who is responsible for the scheme mistake, Koppen or Brady, or even if it was even a "mistake" and not simply the cost of doing business on the line. I scored it as a pressure each for Light and Koppen. Faulk did a really good job stopping the rusher on this one, btw.
This one is another 2nd and 3 (obviously), this time on the 3rd drive (1:08 2nd quarter), and was a incomplete pass deep right to Moss. The tackles are singled up, while Mankins, Koppen, and Neal block the nose. That leaves Faulk (blue 1) to block the overload blitz on the right from the Will (orange 1) and safety (orange 2). Faulk gets the Will, but the safety ends up pressuring Brady.
My guess is that Koppen called protection to account for Gaither, who ended up dropping into coverage, replaced as a blitzer by the safety. That left Mankins free to help on the nose, who Koppen and Neal were assigned to, leaving Faulk on the Will.
Be that as it may, I scored this a pressure on Neal solely. He should have gotten off the nose faster and picked up (at least) the safety.
Here are the passing plays and their results:
Time Down Happenings
06:31 1 and 10
06:06 1 and 10
05:31 1 and 10 Kaczur: sack
05:03 2 and 17 Koppen: pressure
04:22 3 and 10
03:35 1 and 10 Koppen: pressure
03:31 2 and 10 (Brady runs, good protection)
02:48 1 and 10
02:11 2 and 1 Light: pressure, Kaczur: pressure
01:38 1 and G
11:18 1 and 10 Koppen: pressure
11:14 2 and 10
10:48 3 and 3
10:10 1 and 10
09:36 2 and 4 Faulk: pressure
08:56 1 and 10
08:35 2 and 3 Light: pressure, Koppen: pressure (*see above)
08:00 1 and G Kaczur: coverage sack
07:23 2 and G
07:20 3 and G
02:53 1 and 10 (Clear pocket, Brady double pumps a fade)
02:47 2 and 10 Koppen: pressure, Light: pressure, (plus late blitzer)
02:00 3 and 6
01:32 1 and 10 Light: pressure (on a late zone blitz)
01:08 2 and 3 Neal: pressure (*see above)
01:03 1 and 10 (Pressure on overload blitz)
00:36 2 and 2 Kaczur: pressure (missed blitz stunt)
00:32 3 and 2
00:32 1 and 10
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I'd like to note here that, while this board likes to get on Light and Kaczur, I've often felt that Koppen doesn't play as strong as his reputation says he should in the middle.
Like Light, obviously Scar likes him, so he's probably very adept at making the line calls.
Also keep in mind this is a very amateur analysis of a single half of play, etc.
For this next section I'm going to contrast Asante Samuel and Randall Gay's zone technique. Randall Gay, I believe, is on record in saying that he noticed deficiencies in his coverage technique on tape in this game.
In this image, at the snap, both the safeties are deep in a cover 2 shell, with Samuel and Hobbs rolled up in the flats and playing outside tech, standard stuff. As the play develops, they both move up the field, protecting the out route at the sticks.
I also provide this pic to demonstrate one of Rosey Colvin's outstanding qualities; his ability to jam and cover out in space. I believe that is Reggie Brown he's disrupting there. Thomas is marked because he is going to blitz over Tapeh, the fullback, to pressure Feeley.
And here's the pick six at the sticks. You'll note how Samuel has rolled up inside the out, which he does so very well. Here is his tech from an endzone view:
Last edited by unoriginal; 12-02-2007 at 12:08 AM..
This play is very similar to the play that produced Samuel's pick. It's a cover 4, a deeper version of the cover 2, with corners squatting on the sticks, and Randall Gay in the place of Samuel. It is 2nd and 12 instead of 3rd and 3, and Kevin Curtis runs the out instead of Brian Westbrook, who is the unmarked receiver standing up like a pole in the slot. Also, there is no pressure on Feeley.
Westbrook ends up running a quick out again, just like before, only its Bruschi covering him. Harrison plays the deep out aggressively because both the receivers on his side are running outs. That's kind of dangerous in case a far side receiver runs a deep drag, dig, or post, but Harrison's the veteran, not me. In any case his instincts here are correct.
The take-away from that explanation is that Harrison does in fact have deep zone on this play, despite his positioning here. Gay has the flats... and therefore the sticks.
Gay, as you can see, starts out too far inside and then gets turned by Curtis's closing speed (despite having a bigger initial cushion than Samuel), and can't make as sharp a cut. His cut angles outside, keeping him from getting into the throwing lane.
Gay, like Samuel, gets there when the ball does, only he has to play it through Curtis's body. Curtis makes the catch. Harrison is just off-frame to the right.
If Gay had started out outside of Curtis on the cut, and stayed back in his pedal, he could have come downhill inside Curtis much faster.
Pay no attention to Madden's doodles.
Exhibit #2 is the touchdown pass to Greg Lewis at the end of the half (3:08). On this play the corners (Hobbs, Gay, and Samuel) are all in man coverage on wide receivers. Harrison is down in the box preparing to blitz, so there is no safety help.
As you can see, Samuel maintains inside technique on his man, while Gay loses his position to Lewis. All receivers are running skinny posts, and Lewis beats Gay to the post for the touchdown. Feeley delivers a perfect ball because the pressure doesn't get there.
Samuel's coverage isn't perfect either here, as he has to execute a baseball turn to keep up with Avant, who is, unlike Lewis, more a possession type. Hobbs, who isn't pictured, probably had the best coverage on the play.
Last edited by unoriginal; 12-02-2007 at 01:43 AM..
This play came at 7:07 in the 1st quarter, and got Philadelphia down to the 1 yard line. It also got one, or both, of these two Patriots chewed out in the filmroom.
Gay and Baker have Brown and Avant in man, respectively. Brown motioned in behind Avant, bringing Gay alongside Baker. I would imagine, the way they are positioned, they are looking to switch their assignments based on the receivers' first cut, in case they run a pick play. If that were the case, Gay would have the outside man, Baker the inside (Avant).
Unfortunately, they both try to cover Brown, running an out, leaving Avant completely uncovered on his corner route. Luckily Feeley throws it to Brown, delaying the eventual touchdown by one play.
This one I also think is mostly on Baker. Its a man coverage situation with Rashad Baker playing the free safety, meaning he's supposed to be the deepest person on the field. As you can see, Greg Lewis and Eddie Jackson both end the play a few yards deeper in the end zone. Jackson's coverage isn't that bad, and it takes a perfect throw to beat him; however, it is just a simple seam route.
Feeley does a good job of looking Baker off Lewis here.
Many of the Eagles deep throws, especially early in the game, came against the Cover 3. It seems the Pats were serious when they talked up the downfield abilities of Greg Lewis and company, so they put an extra man in the deep zones. However, with another person assigned chiefly to Westbrook, the Cover 3 was vulnerable to intermediate curls and in cuts on the hashes.
The above is an illustration of that, with the numbers meaning deep zone players, and the letters short zone players. Route #4 draws zones C and 3 away from the seam, allowing #3 to break open. Feeley does a good job anticipating the coverage and route.
On the Eagles' third offensive series, Adalius Thomas spelled Colvin at OLB for a couple plays. The results were mixed. Frankly it kind of reminded me of TBC, though of course the caveat is Thomas hasn't played out there near as much as TBC had by his 4th season.
Here we see a 2nd and 10 run in the 2nd quarter (14:55) that Westbrook broke for 14 yards. As you can see, Adalius Thomas and William Thomas hug, and Westbrook runs right around Adalius' soft corner.
In replay it looks like Thomas tries to 2-gap the play and plays head up on the left tackle, instead of playing through the outside shoulder, which is what I believe his contain responsibilities mandate.
Last edited by unoriginal; 12-02-2007 at 02:33 AM..
The 2nd half was much the same as the first half for the O-line, 5 people on the line with Faulk the blocking back. Watson was sometimes used to block, but not often.
The first play I believe needs some explanation came on the first drive of the half, a 3rd and 14 with 13:43 to play in the 3rd. A delayed blitzer overloaded Mankins, causing him to lose his block. You can see how the play developed below:
As you can see, that's 7 Pats blocking 7 Eagles, so the bodies are there to protect Brady. Chris Gocong, marked (4), is the delayed blitzer, aiming for the backside A gap between Mankins and Koppen. Koppen chips in on the nose (5) and Mankins gets Darren Howard (3) blocked initially, but Koppen doesn't get over in time on Gocong before he disrupts Mankins block, freeing Howard. Howard pressures through the B gap, knocking Light off his block of Brian Dawkins (2).
To the uneducated eye, this looked like a Light screwup, as he's stumbling, but this sack I credited to Koppen, who both as a blocker and scheme-caller was superfluous on this play.
Faulk does a great job blocking in space.
This is the last meaningful play of the game, the 3rd and 6 slant to Gaffney with 2:27 left in the 4th.
The Eagles, as they had been doing all game, got creative and unsound with their pressure, overloading one side and asking coverage personnel to run across the field to cover zones.
Takeo Spikes, marked M for Mike backer, is asked to run across the field to replace Joselio Hanson, marked (3), who ultimately pressures Brady.
Darren Howard (1) and Trent Cole (2) pull a stunt on that side, effectively dragging Mankins into the middle and forcing Light to pick up Howard and let the outside man go. Faulk is responsible for the linebacker in the middle who ends up 2nd-closest to Brady in the last frame. Koppen and Neal, as so often happens, end up double-teaming a player, but its hard to see how the scheme could have accounted for this blitz without cheating.
So while Brady is pressured on this play, this is one of several blitzes where I did not assign fault to any blocker. This is one where Brady has to recognize a protection problem and throw the hot read, as he does here.
Another play at 13:40 in the 4th, a 4th and 4 that ended in an incomplete pass, was another overload blitz that ended in a pressure, this time between Neal and Kaczur. This time the blitz was a full-on overload, as the Pats had 6 people blocking 7 Eagles. Again, no blocker was credited.
so ur saying that koppen and kaczur did the worst job last game, do u remember at all on which side it was that philly blitzed most against?
and another note...in the previous 10 games, it was so that i saw NO pressure agaisnt Brady from the middle, the center and guards kept it completely sealed off, and the only way to get pressure was to get by the tackles with ur best ends...
that was not the case this game, it was the first time i saw the middle be so lost....i think koppen eitehr had a very bad game, or johnson is a complete DC genius...
however, im not quite as down on Koppen as u are, overall throughout the season, his numbers i would expect to be the best....
i think Kaczur needs to elevate his game, the rest of the O-line is doing well, in pass protections at least
Last time I lived in New England the Pats became a Dynasty