#3: Vikings game, the game where the offense was great and we dominated wire to wire and everything is awesome and "why can't we play like this every week," right? Yeah, actually, the Vikings played awful defense; not as awful as the Jets, but awful nonetheless. I don't mean to take credit away from the offense, but they were disjointed at times, missed chances, etc. Of course, they did a lot to protect the rookie RT in his first start, but there are still flaws in their concepts. This is early in the game. first drive, so it's possible they were still trying to feel out the Vikings defense, but I hate this play.
Third and 10. Bottom of the screen, two receivers, one in the slot, one out wide. Both DBs are playing off, but there's a nickel lined up at the edge. They also have 7 defenders on the line of scrimmage, showing a blitz look. You don't run a smoke route because it's third and long, and there's depth to the defense. The DB at the top is slightly shaded to the inside, so you probably won't get a clean release on a slant. Here's what Tom Moore would call, more or less:
This is the old Indy concept, Levels. Double ins, with a vertical route on the other side. Moore would probably have the TE on the left side of the formation running a skinny post, but the primary read are the in breaking routes. The idea is the corner would release to the inside defenders and drop back, the nickel would drop back to the middle over the short in, but you're reading the safety to see if he also breaks on the short route. If so, the deep in from the slot receiver is open. If not, you have a dumpoff to the back.
Here's what Chud called:
He ran the two receiver right into the deep coverage, they never broke across the middle before they crossed the marker, so why is Luck looking that way at the snap??? Is that the first read, really? No hot? The nickel actually blitzed and the ILB dropped, which is a good scheme, but it plays into the Levels concept because the ILB is more likely to play a short in, and with him being further to the inside the safety is more likely to crash down to cover it, leaving the deep in open. Instead, we ran "Get Open" with a 7 man protection.
This the result. Where are the receivers??? Oh, there's Hilton up at the top corner, just barely visible, with hardly any room after his break to fit in a throw before he gets to the sideline. No one else across the middle?
Luck winds up scrambling for an 8 yard gain, but understand that he's actually 18 yards away from the marker by the time the pressure forces him to leave the pocket, and he's not beating that linebacker. He slides 2 yards short, and we kick a FG.
This is a scheme issue. There's no reason to run your receivers directly into off coverage on 3rd and long. There's no reason to have double deep reads on the same side of the field, especially when there's a blitz look on. There's no hot receiver, and even with a 7 man protection against a 5 man rush, Luck leaves the pocket because no one is going to come open on this play.