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Cosell Coaching Tape: Week 10

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Cosell Coaching Tape: Week 10

At Fantasy Points this season, we’re going to be posting the Raw Film Notes from NFL Films legend Greg Cosell each and every week. These are quite literally Greg’s scribblings and observations he throws on his notepad as he watches all-22 tape.

As Greg is just one man, he can’t get to everything each week, but we’ll be bringing you everything he sees in raw — and unedited — form. This is something all-22 nerds will love, and certainly something fans who want to learn more about their teams should read.

TUA TAGOVAILOA VERSUS RAVENS DEFENSE

  • Dolphins continued to feature 12 personnel as their foundational personnel grouping, They did not play quite as much of it as they did in previous 2 games but the percentage of 12 was still in the 70% range

  • First 3rd and long (3rd + 9) on first possession of 3rd quarter Dolphins were in 12 personnel with Gesicki the boundary x on back side of trips, Ravens matched up in dime with safety Stone the dime and they played cover 1 with LB Board from LOS alignment dropping to bracket Gesicki

  • With Tagovailoa in the game the Ravens consistently matched up to 12 personnel with nickel, Young and Averett predominantly played outside with Humphrey in the slot

  • Ravens aggressive with blitz pressure versus Tagovailoa, They blitzed 7 times on 14 Tagovailoa drop backs with the focus being man pressures; Queen was featured as a blitzer

  • Waddle 35 yards on 1st + 20 late in 3rd quarter came out of 12 personnel with Wilson motion across the formation from the field to the boundary, Waddle was the reduced split boundary x, Ravens were in cover 8 out of nickel playing cover 2 to the field and cover 4 to the boundary; Waddle deep sail route getting matched on quarters safety Stephens, Well-designed concept presenting the mismatch throw for Tagovailoa – Tagovailoa was a beat late and the ball lost energy on the back end

  • Wilson 64 yards on 2nd + 10 on 4th quarter TD drive was the result of a bust by the Ravens defense, Wilson motion across the formation from the field to the boundary to run the wheel route; No Ravens defender reacted to Wilson

  • Tagovailoa had 9 drop backs out of 12 personnel, He was 4-8 for 131 yards and he was sacked once on a well-disguised and well-timed Queen blitz off the edge

RAVENS OFFENSE VERSUS DOLPHINS DEFENSE

  • Dolphins game plan approach from a personnel standpoint was to play base (24 snaps) and dime (42 snaps), They only played 4 snaps of nickel

  • Dolphins base defense was a 5-2 front (at times reduced) with Baker and Van Ginkel the edge players, Roberts and Riley were the stacked LB

  • Holland is quickly developing into one of the NFL’s most multi-dimensional safeties, He predominantly plays on the back end in the Dolphins high percentage single high safety coverages but he is also used as a blitzer at times

  • Holland has length and speed and range to play effectively as a post safety and we saw that versus the Ravens

  • First 3rd and long (3rd + 9) Dolphins out of dime aligned with 8 defenders on the LOS versus Ravens 21 personnel with Freeman offset and Ricard in wing alignment, They went off coverage zero and dropped out 2 DL into underneath with a third DL Ogbah spying on Jackson; Holland clean off the back side edge hurrying Jackson who made a great throw to Watkins on the go route, Watkins did not make a play on the ball

  • Ravens continued to feature 21 and 22 personnel as a foundation, Ricard for the fourth consecutive game played more than 50% of the offensive snaps

  • Dolphins game plan clearly featured 7 and 8 man pressure fronts out of dime depending on Ravens personnel and formation with off coverage zero on the back end, Part of that approach was dropping out DL into underneath coverage and spying on Jackson with different defenders

  • If the Ravens went empty versus the pressure front it would be a 6 man front so the Dolphins could match the 5 split receivers

  • Dolphins featured this aggressive tactic more as the game progressed, It became a staple they used on all downs; They did it predominantly out of dime but some snaps of nickel

  • Safeties Holland and Brandon Jones were featured blitzers in the Dolphins pressure fronts and zero coverage looks, Holland at times was matched man-to-man on the back and would green dog if the back stayed in to protect

  • Safety Jones was always part of the pressure when the Dolphins lined up in their pressure front looks, He did not have a man-to-man coverage responsibility

  • Van Ginkel-Phillips sack on 3rd + 5 late in 1st quarter came out of nickel 7 man pressure front with match off coverage, Again 2 DL dropped out; Jackson had time but no defined throw and was sacked

  • Ravens in the 1st half countered the Dolphins pressure fronts and off coverage match zero with quick throws by Jackson featuring now screens to immediately get to the perimeter with run-after-catch space

  • Cover 3 was the foundational coverage for the Dolphins when they lined up in base defense, At times they rushed 5 and went 3 under-3 deep

  • Second 3rd down in the 3rd quarter (3rd + 5) Jackson hit Bateman on a quick slant 9 yards versus Dolphins pressure front and off coverage zero

  • Holland sack on 3rd + 9 late in 3rd quarter came out of 8 man pressure front versus Ravens 7 man protection with Ricard in the game, Holland clean off the front side edge; DL Phillips and Butler dropped out; All 8 Dolphins rushed and there was no one to block Holland off the front side edge

  • Dolphins dropped out to cover 3 from 7 man pressure front on 1st + 10 in the 4th quarter, Holland raced back as the post safety; Jackson had Andrews on the seam opposite Holland but did not process it - Same disguise and late movement to cover 3 that Lawrence beat throwing the seam week 6

  • Ravens never had an answer for the Dolphins defensive approach, In the 2nd half the Dolphins played that approach on a high percentage of the snaps; Ravens could not get the pressure blocked to have any kind of consistent passing game and they could not run the ball

  • On the Ravens final possession when they were trailing 22-10 they hit their first big play versus the Dolphins pressure/zero defense: Bateman 30 yards on a vertical route over the top of Jones

  • Coleman end zone interception to seal the win came out of pressure front/zero match, DE Ogbah clean off the front side edge to pressure Jackson who threw to Bateman one-on-one versus Coleman

  • I don’t know if I have ever seen a committed game plan approach like the one the Dolphins deployed versus the Ravens with the defined 7 and 8 man pressure fronts, multiple pressure concepts with DL dropping out underneath and zero match coverage behind it

EAGLES OFFENSE VERSUS BRONCOS DEFENSE

  • Eagles started the game with zone read concept off split flow inside zone run action: Hurts 10 yards; Second play was inside zone out of shotgun: Scott 17 yards

  • Scott 16 yard screen on fourth play came out of 11 2x2 spread versus Broncos cover 1 blitz, With Browning the fifth rusher only LB Young (the man matchup on Scott) had to be blocked

  • Broncos aggressive with blitz on Eagles first possession, both LB and slot corner Fuller

  • Eagles featured 11 personnel on first possession, both 2x2 sets and 1x3 nub sets; Hurts was in the shotgun on every snap of the first possession

  • 3rd + 6 in high red zone on first possession Eagles went empty out of 11 personnel with Gainwell the back, Broncos out of nickel went zero with Young clean through the B gap forcing Hurts to move to his right and throw an incompletion

  • Goedert 24 yards on 3rd + 12 on second possession came out of 11 3x1 versus Broncos dime cover 1 behind 5 man pressure with Browning the fifth rusher, Goedert beat Sterns on the crosser with comfortable pocket movement by Hurts sliding left keeping his eyes downfield to avoid the inside pressure from the stunt

  • Smith 36 yard TD on 1st + 10 to end second possession was great execution by Hurts and Smith, Designed boot out of shotgun to the field off outside run action to the boundary; Smith ran an out-and-go and Surtain could not have had better coverage, Outstanding ball placement throw by Hurts and an outstanding contested catch by Smith

  • This was a shotgun game for Hurts and the Eagles, After putting him under center for significant snaps the last 2 games Hurts was back in the shotgun almost exclusively versus the Broncos with the zone read game a foundation of the Eagles offense

  • Hurts 31 yards on 1st + 10 on third possession came out of 11 2x2 versus Broncos nickel cover 1 with LB Robinson the underneath lurk defender, Hurts did not feel he had a clean throw and broke the pocket vertically

  • With Goedert out of the game on the second possession Eagles featured more snaps of 11 personnel, It became an 11 personnel game

  • This was a Hurts game: Put him in the shotgun, work the run game off him with both zone read and designed run elements and throw just enough on 1st down to be proactive and aggressive: Hurts 6-8 for 80 yards and TD on 1st down – This game could well be the template going forward, with some more under center mixed in

  • Eagles first snap with Hurts under center came with 5:34 in the 2nd quarter, It was their fourth possession and 29th offensive play – It was the only snap in the 1st half with Hurts under center

  • Eagles showed speed option in the tight red zone, Again playing to Hurts strength

  • Smith 5 yard TD in 3rd and goal in the 2nd quarter came out of 11 1x3 bunch versus Broncos nickel zero with Young spy on Hurts, Smith the point man in the bunch beat Fuller on the crosser; Timing of the throw beat unblocked second level rusher LB Robinson

  • Hurts threw a great ball to Watkins on go route on 3rd + 10 late in the 1st half, Watkins got on top of Darby and dropped the perfect throw – Gainwell was the back on the 2 minute possession at the end of the 1st half

  • Simmons interception on 2nd + 12 late in the 3rd quarter came on Hurts second snap under center, It was play action out of 12 personnel with 7 man protection and Gainwell helping with any leakage; 2 man route concept to the boundary with Watkins running the wheel, Eagles got the matchup they wanted with LB Reed running with Watkins but Simmons read it and was over the top, Harris pressure forced a hurried undefined throw by Hurts

  • Eagles first 4th quarter possession started with Howard 15 yards on gap scheme concept with 2 pulling OL, One play later Howard 25 yards on split flow inside zone with the Hurts factor expanding Fuller and presenting cutback lane

  • Hurts under center on Eagles final possession, Until then he had 2 snaps under in the game

  • Howard 12 carries in the game, only 1 coming as an I back; 11-80 out of the shotgun; Scott 8-50 out of the shogun

  • The Eagles offensive profile versus Broncos was in many ways like the Ravens profile with Jackson – Will this continue, or was it specific to the Broncos?

  • Hurts continues to be one of the most blitzed QB in the NFL, He has been blitzed on 101 drop backs and the most important thing is he has not turned it over (only 1 interception) and he has only been sacked 5 times so there have been few negative plays

BRONCOS OFFENSE VERSUS EAGLES DEFENSE

  • First 3rd and long (3rd + 9) Eagles out of nickel played 2 buster with 2 man to the boundary and cover 2 to the field, Avery and Singleton were the nickel LB with Avery matching Fant man-to-man to the boundary and Singleton dropping as the middle hole defender; Barnett and Sweat squeezed the pocket from the outside

  • Eagles played man coverage on 3rd + 2 on Broncos second possession, Sutton was the boundary x on the back side of trips with Slay tailgating him and McLeod playing dedicated over the top, It was zero man to the field versus the bunch set matching releases – Patrick 7 yards on shallow crosser was only Broncos 3rd down conversion of the game

  • What was evident was Eagles DC Gannon played multiple and combination coverage concepts on 3rd down, often featuring man coverage to one side and zone coverage to the other side; Eagles played a snap of 2 man on 3rd down early in the 4th quarter

  • Barnett sack on 3rd + 11 late in 2nd quarter came with the Eagles out of nickel playing man to the boundary and cover 4 to the field, Singleton was the matchup on the offset back to the boundary and Edwards was the underneath zone defender to the field; T/T stunt inside with Hargrave the penetrator forcing Bridgewater to break down

  • Eagles on 3rd down showed cover 2 out of nickel in the high red zone with Edwards the middle hole defender

  • Eagles on 3rd down continued to play different combinations at nickel LB, Edwards for the second consecutive week was the number 1 LB playing all but 3 snaps

  • Eagles played 3 snaps of dime – 3rd + 19 from the +20 yard line Eagles disguise late movement to cover 3 concept with Epps retreating at the snap to post safety and Harris and McLeod playing deep as underneath defenders

  • 3rd + 8 late in 3rd quarter Eagles out of nickel first 3rd down blitz: Mike-star pressure from the field with Edwards and Singleton the blitzers

  • Eagles second 3rd down pressure came out of nickel on 3rd + 10 in the 4th quarter out of 5 man diamond front with Singleton on the edge: Long stunt with Singleton looping into the A gap, Williams and Barnett from opposite the stunt drove back OG and OT into the pocket

  • Edwards and Taylor were the predominant nickel LB as they have been the last number of weeks – Singleton for the consecutive game only played 10 snaps

  • Rookie DL Williams continued to flash both as a run defender and inside pass rusher, He has been getting significant snaps in the DL rotation

  • Eagles continued to feature base defense fronts of 5-2 and nickel fronts of 5-1, They played those fronts with Avery as the SAM; At times pout of the nickel front they would rush 5 with Avery coming off the edge

  • Edwards continued to show an instinctive feel for working through traffic in the box in the run game, He has strong key and diagnose/recognition and reaction traits

  • Sutton 26 yards on 1st + 10 on first 3rd quarter possession came out of 13 personnel with Fant motion across the formation making it twins to the field opposite closed boundary, Cross country dagger concept with Sutton running the dig versus Nelson

  • Eagles continued to play more man coverage with cover 1 becoming more of a foundation, They are not a high percentage cover 1 defense relative to the rest of the NFL but they have played more of it in recent games

  • Overall the Eagles continuing to evolve into much more of single high safety defense, That is becoming their foundation after beginning the season as a predominant split safety defense

  • Eagles went zero out of nickel in the red zone on Broncos first possession of 3rd quarter, Maddox and Taylor were the blitzers – Maddox used as a blitzer at times throughout the game

  • Eagles played almost 80% of their defensive snaps out of nickel, Slot corner Maddox flashed throughout the game

  • Eagles held the Broncos to 96 yards rushing and the Broncos were 1-11 on 3rd down conversions, Eagles allowed only 308 total yards

SAINTS OFFENSE VERSUS TITANS DEFENSE

  • Long inactive for the Titans, Rookie Rice played stacked LB with Brown in the base 5-2 defense and the nickel; Fulton was back at right corner opposite Jenkins with Molden again the slot corner

  • There were run game snaps in which Rice looked like he did at Georgia working through traffic to make tackles, Strong key and diagnose traits

  • Simmons sack on first possession result of Siemian getting stuck in the pocket, Siemian had a throw but it didn’t register and Simmons who beat RG Ruiz to the inside was able to get the sack late in the down

  • It was evident on the first possession that Ruiz was struggling to pass protect one-on-one versus Simmons, Ruiz also beaten by Jones for a sack on 2nd + 14 on Saints second possession

  • First 3rd and long (3rd + 12) Titans went 1 robber out of dime with corner Jackson the dime, They matched Molden on TE Johnson; Byard always the robber in 1 robber with his understanding of routes and his feel for reading the QB

  • Titans also went 1 robber out of dime on 3rd + 21 on Saints second possession, Again they featured a loaded front and Molden the TE matchup

  • Titans continued to show loaded fronts at times out of dime, They almost always featured a stunt concept to the load side

  • Saints did not feature as many snaps of 6 OL personnel versus the Titans as they had in previous games, They played only 4 snaps versus Tennessee

  • Hill QB power out of the shotgun on second possession for 10 yards, Saints were in 21 personnel versus Titans base defense; Hill 8 yards on QB power on third possession, Same play out of same personnel

  • Titans first 4 man zone exchange pressure came on 1st + 20 from +37 yard line, It came out of nickel with slot corner Molden the fourth rusher and Landry from the boundary dropping out into underneath coverage in cover 3

  • Cover 1 was the Titans game planned coverage on 3rd down behind loaded fronts, When it was 1 robber Molden was the TE matchup and when it was straight cover 1 Byard was the TE matchup – Harris 46 yards on 3rd + 6 on third possession came versus cover 1 with Jackson matched on Harris vertical route

  • Smith 11 yard TD on 1st + 10 came out of 11 2x2 versus Titans nickel and was a well-schemed play action concept to put corner Jenkins in conflict: Power run action out of shotgun with Smith from a reduced split to the boundary showing run blocking at the snap, That got Jenkins eyes in the backfield playing run and late to react to Smith’s delayed out route

  • First five 3rd downs Titans played man coverage out of dime: 1 robber, 1 robber, cover 1, 2 man, 1 robber; All five featured loaded fronts with Brown initially on the LOS opposite the load in position to play the back man-to-man – What was interesting was the Saints often had the back offset to the field not the boundary

  • Dupree only played 1 snap before he left the game with an injury, Adeniji predominantly played opposite Landry in the pass rush fronts

  • Siemian big-time throw to Harris 21 yards late in 1st half: Corner route in the outside void in cover 4, Touch and precise ball placement

  • Titans first 5 man pressure came with 1:00 remaining in the 1st half with Molden and Hooker part of the pressure and a quarters look with 2 underneath defenders behind it, Result was Siemian had no defined throw and Simmons sack

  • Landry sack late in 1st half came out of 1 robber, Siemian again no throw within structure and timing and left the pocket

  • First 3rd and long (3rd + 8) of the 3rd quarter Titans did not feature a loaded front and they went cover 3, Every 3rd down in the 1st half they aligned in a loaded front and played man coverage

  • Smith 21 yards on 3rd + 4 on second possession of 3rd quarter came out of 11 personnel versus Titans first and only snap of 3-2-6 dime with Cole and Brown the LB, Cole was the fourth rusher and the Titans played cover 1 with Hooker matched on the TE and Byard the post safety; Saints ran mesh and Smith caught the shallow crosser versus Jackson

  • Hill was predominantly used as a receiver in 11 personnel sets, He lined 3 times at QB in the shotgun and each time he ran QB power

  • Ingram 13 yard TD on 3rd + 4 in 3rd quarter came out of 11 personnel versus Titans dime, Well-schemed play call knowing the Titans would be in man coverage; Pin-pull scheme to the boundary off Harris jet motion to the field

  • In the 2nd half the Titans were more multiple on 3rd down with both their pressures and coverages, Multiple front alignments and pass rush and more zone coverage

  • Ingram 34 yard reception to start 4th quarter FG drive came out of 21 3x1 versus Titans base cover 4, Ingram from offset boundary alignment wheel route beat LB Brown; Precise ball location throw by Siemian, Excellent play call versus anticipated coverage based on personnel

  • Johnson 26 yards on 4th quarter FG drive came out of 11 personnel with shift to empty versus Titans nickel cover 3, Empty spread the coverage and Siemian hit Johnson in the seam to the field

  • Other than 3rd down the Titans did not play man coverage (maybe a snap or two), They played a lot of cover 4 and some cover 3 with Siemian making some good throws against both coverages including Calloway 22 yards in outside void in cover 4 on final TD drive

  • Dime corner Jackson had some struggles in man coverage versus Saints – Overall Siemian was outstanding on 3rd down versus Titans cover 1: 4-5 for 99 yards and TD

  • Calloway 15 yard TD on 3rd + 13 with 1:20 remaining in 4th quarter came out of 11 2x2 versus Titans 1 robber, Well-designed natural rub concept with Hill from #1 to the boundary stemming inside and Calloway running the wheel from the slot off of Hill, Again the Saints went after Jackson

  • A second consecutive solid game for Siemian doing what he does as a ball distributor and executor

TITANS OFFENSE VERSUS SAINTS DEFENSE

  • Saints did not match Lattimore on Brown as a defined matchup, There were snaps in which he did but it wasn’t specifically game planned

  • Saints played significant snaps of base defense to match up to the Titans use of 12 and 13 personnel, Werner and Elliss were the LB with Davis in the Saints base defense

  • Roby played snaps in the base defense opposite Lattimore and he also played outside in the nickel with P. Williams in the slot

  • Alexander continued to be the nickel LB with Davis, P. Williams was the nickel slot corner; Roby and Adebo both played outside corner in nickel

  • With Gardner-Johnson on IR Saints did not play as much dime as they had through the first 8 games, About 25% of Saints defensive snaps had been in dime prior to the Titans matchup

  • When the Saints did go dime (which they do on 3rd down) the inside slots were Roby and Williams, Both are used at times as blitzers; Saints dime continued to be 3-2-6 with LB Davis and Alexander

  • Peterson looked quick re: change of direction and downhill burst, He is a volume runner and through 2 games he is not getting the kind of volume that maximizes his traits

  • Saints showed loaded fronts out of dime with Alexander aligned as the wide 9 pass rusher to the 3 man rush, They featured multiple stunt concepts from that front

  • Saints showed 5 across diamond fronts out of nickel to dictate one-on-one pass protection, Alexander lined up on the edge in that front

  • Alexander and Davis are wild card Jokers in the Saints dime defense, They both line up in multiple position both on and off the ball and they rush and play zone and man coverage

  • Johnson 50 yards on 2nd + 6 in 1st quarter came out of 02 empty versus Saints base cover 1 with Davis the fifth rusher, Titans 2 man concept to the boundary with Pruitt natural rub element on Johnson quick slant versus Lattimore; Johnson caught the ball on the move with run after catch

  • Davenport sack on 3rd + 6 in 3rd quarter came out of dime with an initial 7 man front look and M. Williams the post safety in what looked like man coverage, It became a 3 man rush with late movement to cover 2 with invert to the field and an extra underneath zone defender; Davenport one-on-one versus LT Lamm (his only snap of the game) and he drove back Lamm right into Tannehill for the sack

  • Saints very multiple with front looks, disguise, late movement and coverage out of dime; They are a tough defense to play against on 3rd down

  • One pressure concept you’ll see from the Saints out of base is the fire x cross dog blitz, They ran it on 1st + 10 in the 2nd quarter and ending up playing zero behind it because back Peterson free released; Johnson 16 yards on shallow cross with multiple rub/pick elements

  • Johnson with his big body and straight-line speed is the kind of receiver you want to get the ball to on the move and that’s what the Titans did versus the Saints

  • Foreman 39 yard reception on 2nd + 7 early in 4th quarter came on a well-designed misdirection screen off jet and orbit motion by Brown with the screen to Foreman opposite the fake screen to Brown, Saints cover 1 with Davis blitz and that gave the Titans blocking numbers to the boundary

  • In the last 2 games without Henry Tannehill and the Titans offense has struggled on 3rd down: Tannehill 12-19 for 76 yards with only 5 of those completions resulting in 1st downs and Tannehill has been blitzed on only 3 of 20 3rd down drop backs

PATRICK MAHOMES VERSUS RAIDERS DEFENSE

  • Raiders played almost all nickel and dime versus Chiefs, 47 snaps of nickel and 22 snaps of dime; Safety Leavitt was the dime

  • Hayward continued to be the field corner and Facyson the boundary corner; Raiders corners played boundary and field, They did not match up to receivers

  • You could see pretty quickly that Mahomes was much better playing within the structure and the order and purpose of the progressions, The ball was coming out of his hand with timing and a sense of rhythm, He took the throws that were there

  • Second 3rd down (3rd + 5) was a good example of Mahomes being decisive: Raiders cover 4 out of nickel with Kelce in the slot and Hill off motion #1 to the boundary, Hill would run by Trufant on the deep post but Kelce showed open on the out cut within the timing of Mahomes drop; Mahomes turned it loose for 11 yards and the 1st down

  • Chiefs featured a lot of shifting and motion and the Raiders had some issues with it early in the game, Pre-snap movement clearly a foundation of Chiefs game plan; Hill featured as the movement receiver

  • Chiefs coaching staff helped Mahomes with quick game concepts and screens to allow him to get into a rhythm and better play within the structure of the pass game

  • Hill 8 yard TD to end second possession came out of 11 3x1 with Hill the boundary x matched one-on-one on Trufant, Hill out cut off initial slant stem easily beat Trufant; Pitch and catch for the TD

  • Safety Moehrig matched up man-to-man on #3 to trips just outside the red zone in Raiders dime 2 man with Abram and Leavitt the deep safeties, Moehrig has not been a man-to-man defender much at all this season almost always playing on the back end

  • On 3rd + 11 just outside the red zone Moehrig was the matchup on Kelce #2 to trips as part of a dedicated double with split safety Leavitt, Hill from boundary x on back side of trips also was doubled by the other back end safety Abram; Raiders rushed 3 and used LB Wright as a spy on Mahomes, This was an example where Mahomes broke the pocket too early with a throw there to be made (Pringle on the over route from #3 to trips)

  • Raiders 2 main coverages versus Chiefs were cover 3 which is their foundation staple (highest percentage of cover 3 in the NFL through 10 weeks) and cover 1, Raiders more snaps of cover 1 than I would have thought

  • Raiders just like we have seen teams do over the last month got physical with Kelce when he was aligned at boundary x on the back side of trips

  • The other tactic defenses are using versus Chiefs and Kelce is that when the Chiefs line up in their staple 1x3 sets with Kelce the boundary x defenses are keeping a corner matched on Kelce and playing press man

  • Raiders featured some zone match concepts (much like we see from the Broncos) as part of man coverage schemes to try to get Mahomes to be indecisive after the snap

  • Raiders used LB Perryman to pass on receivers and then be in position to defend in-breaking routes, Perryman did not have great success: Hardman 27 yards from #2 to trips an example where slot corner Hobbes knew he had Perryman in the middle to defend the shallow cross but Perryman carried Pringle #3 to trips too far and was not in position to react to Hardman

  • Doubles and brackets on Kelce and Hill were part of Raiders DC Bradley’s game plan approach, It was situational and a function of the Chiefs receiver distribution and location

  • Hill 32 yards on 3rd + 2 late in 3rd quarter came out of 11 2x2 after motion by Hill across the formation to the boundary, Raiders matched up man-to-man with Moehrig the post safety; Hill deep corner route versus Facyson with a great ball by Mahomes: Firm touch and precise ball placement

  • Kelce was used to chip a good number of snaps versus the Raiders, Part of Chiefs game plan; On 3rd + 2 in 4th quarter Kelce chipped then released on designed inside pop pass, Run after catch for 30 yards

  • Pringle 22 yard TD to end Chiefs scoring was a schemed play with outside toss run action to McKinnon and Pringle initially showing run blocking before running his corner route, Both safety Abram and corner Facyson had eyes in the backfield and were late to react to Pringle

  • What stood out was that Mahomes cut out almost all the unnecessary movement both inside and outside the pocket that had defined his game far too much over the last month

  • This was Mahomes best game in quite some time: Efficient playing within structure, Strong sense of timing and rhythm, Took the throws that the offense gave him versus the defense

  • Mahomes on 3rd down: 9-12 for 164 yards and TD, 8 of those 9 completions resulted in 1st downs

FALCONS OFFENSE VERSUS COWBOYS DEFENSE

  • Cowboys did not play any snaps of base defense versus the Falcons, They played nickel and dime with heavy emphasis on nickel

  • Nickel has been the Cowboys base defense this season with more than 80% of their defensive snaps coming out of nickel, They have only played 10 snaps of base defense all season

  • Pitts crossers on the Falcons first possession: 17 yards and 18 yards; You want to get the ball to Pitts on the move with his size/stride length/speed profile

  • Cowboys went big nickel with 3 safeties when fullback Smith was on the field for the Falcons, Hooker was the third safety with Wilson and Kearse; They also went big nickel versus 13 personnel

  • Cowboys at times lined up in 5 man reduced fronts with Parsons/Vander Esch on the edge and Neal the stacked LB

  • Rookie Golston continued to line up both at DE and DT with the tendency to play inside in the conventional 3 corner nickel and 4 corner dime

  • Cowboys game plan featured a good amount of split safety with cover 4 the foundational split safety coverage, They played more cover 4 than cover 1 through the first two Falcons possessions

  • Safety Wilson has become a strong box safety who can play the run effectively and is also used as a blitzer at times

  • When the Cowboys went dime on 3rd + 7 on Falcons second possession they played cover 1 and matched slot corner Lewis on Pitts at boundary x on back side of trips, Lewis great coverage on Pitts out route at the sticks for the incompletion

  • On 4th + 7 (next play) Pitts again lined up at boundary on back side of trips and the Cowboys this time went 2 man out of dime with rookie corner Joseph matched on trips; Ryan did not look to Pitts breaking the pocket and throwing an incompletion

  • Cowboys showed double mug look out of dime with Parsons and Kearse in the A gaps, We have seen this before this season from Dallas

  • Cowboys predominantly went dime on 3rd down featuring 4 corners and 2 safeties, They played cover 1 and 2 man and 1 robber; They predominantly played man coverage out of 4 corner dime

  • When the Cowboys went 3 corner/3 safety dime their tendency was to play more split safety zone coverage

  • Parsons first snap at pass rushing DE resulted in a sack-forced fumble, Parsons beat RT McGary to the inside and then closing explosiveness to Ryan – Parsons lined up at DE in the 2 minute at the end of the 1st half

  • As the 1st half progressed Cowboys defensive front started dominating the Falcons OL, It became a mismatch; LT Matthews and LG Mayfield struggled throughout the game

  • Cowboys multiple with stunt concepts on 3rd down from dime 4 DL fronts, That caused some problems for the Falcons OL

  • Diggs interception in 3rd quarter was the result of inside pressure by Golston who was aligned at 3-technique in 5 man reduced front, Ryan had to hurry his delivery and he threw an inaccurate ball to Pitts who was open on the out cut; Golston pressure also prevented Ryan from seeing wide open Sharpe on the wheel route off jet motion in which the Cowboys busted the coverage

  • Cowboys high percentage 2 coverages versus Falcons: cover 1 with some 1 robber and 2 man, and cover 4 – Cowboys have played the highest percentage of cover 1 of any team in the NFL through the first 10 weeks of the season

BILLS OFFENSE VERSUS JETS DEFENSE

  • Rookie Brown was back at RT with Williams inside at RG, Boettger was the LG in the revamped OL

  • Bills featured fullback Gilliam as a change in their offensive personnel approach, Different formation looks with Allen under center much more than he has been all season

  • Gilliam gives the Bills formation versatility in 21 personnel with his ability to line up in multiple positions

  • Bills would finish the game with 15 snaps of 21 personnel with Gilliam, They would also play 10 snaps of 12 personnel – Almost 60% of Bills offensive snaps came out of base personnel

  • Allen under center versus Jets: 11-14 for 192 yards, He did throw the late interception when he was under center; Prior to the Bills game Allen had only 32 pass attempts under center, That was in 8 games

  • Allen play action from under center versus Jets: 9-12 for 179 yards – Allen under center was one of the defining tactics of the game, as was the use of more base personnel with fullback Gilliam and 6 OL

  • Knox 17 yards on first possession came out of 21 offset I strong to the field off Knox motion, Misdirection concept off outside zone strong with Knox running the shallow cross away from the run action – Schemed concept out of 21 personnel using the run game as the foundation

  • Bills went 6 OL personnel on first possession and ran the ball: Singletary 15 yards

  • Breida 22 yard TD reception to end first possession was a second reaction play by Allen, The design was to the boundary Diggs on the pivot route inside but that was taken away; Allen climbed the pocket and hit Breida who initially ran the flat route into the boundary then took it up the sideline when he saw the structure of the play had broken down

  • Bills started second possession with 6 OL personnel, Screen to Breida – Overall they would play 6 snaps with 6 OL personnel

  • It was evident with the personnel, formations and play calling that the Bills wanted to focus more on running the ball and becoming a more physical offense

  • Diggs 57 yards on late 2nd quarter TD drive came on stutter-go versus Echols, Great counter by the Bills with the shotgun run action (a staple) and the initial look by Diggs of a hitch (also a staple), Echols in cover 3 had his eyes in the backfield and anticipate the quick hitch throw; Diggs went over the top of Echols on the fade

  • Right corner Echols hurt late in the 2nd quarter, Guidry replaced him and the Bills went after him in the high red zone with consecutive fades to Diggs, the second for a 12 yard TD versus Jets zero blitz and coverage

  • Bills started the 3rd quarter out of 21 straight I with play action, Allen hit Diggs on the back shoulder throw versus Guidry 23 yards

  • Second play was outside zone weak out of 12 personnel with Singletary 7 yards, Third play was also outside zone out of 12 personnel with Singletary 13 yards; Both runs to the left side of the OL

  • Bills started 3rd quarter with 5 play TD the first 4 plays coming out of base personnel groupings, McKenzie 8 yard TD came on a jet sweep out of 11 personnel

  • Bills started second possession of 3rd quarter with power run action out of 12 personnel, Davis from reduced split z ran the deep post versus Jets cover 4, Davis split gave him leverage versus corner Hall and quarters safety Wilson was to late to get eyes on Davis and react to the vertical route; 7 man protection with Allen climbing the pocket and taking Davis across the field away from coverage

  • Brieda 15 yard TD to end 2 play TD drive came out of 21 straight I, Pin-pull scheme to the field with reduced split WR sealing the edge and RT Brown pulling to lead along with fullback Gilliam; Brown great block on the move and filling safety Davis

  • Davis 20 yards on 1st + 10 from -1 yard line came out of 6 OL personnel, Allen conventional play action and he stuck Davis on the dig versus Hall with a laser shot – Big-time throw by Allen out of his own end zone

  • Diggs 43 yards on final TD drive in the 4th quarter came out of 12 1x3 nub with Allen in the shotgun, Outside zone run action to the boundary with Diggs from #2 to trips running the deep over on cover 3 post safety Neasman; Another seed by Allen

  • This game reflected a different philosophical approach by the Bills to create explosive plays in the passing game, They put Allen under center in base personnel packages and ran play action and it was very effective against a bad Jets defense – Will the Bills continue to take this approach

  • Bills only had 7 3rd down plays in the game, That will not happen every week; They averaged more than 9 yards per offensive play

COLTS OFFENSE VERSUS JAGUARS DEFENSE

  • Colts started the game in the Pony package with Taylor and Hines and the Jaguars matched up in nickel with Ford again the slot corner

  • First play of the game Taylor from I back alignment ran mid-zone versus Jaguars 4-2 front away from the safety dropping down into the box; Taylor great vision and change of direction and short area burst

  • Griffin continued to be the Jaguars boundary corner with rookie Campbell the field corner, Ford the slot corner with Wilson and Jack the nickel LB

  • Griffin continued at times to be used as a matchup corner, There were man-to-man snaps in which he matched up to Pittman

  • Jaguars continued to play 5-2 as their base front with Jack and Wilson the stacked LB, Allen and Chaisson were predominantly the standup edge defenders

  • Jaguars also featured some 5-1 fronts out of nickel with Jack on the ball on the edge and Wilson the stacked LB, That’s been something they have done all season

  • Wentz one of the most blitzed QB in the NFL through 10 weeks, He has been effective versus pressure: 61-101 for 725 yards with 6 TD and no interceptions, He has been sacked only 6 times versus blitz

  • Lawson was again the dime corner, Jaguars predominantly play dime on 3rd down; Jaguars also continued to feature loaded fronts out of dime with Jack the wild card LB

  • Jaguars out of nickel continued at times to show double mug looks with LB Jack and Wilson in the A gaps

  • Taylor 20 yards on 2nd + 5 on second possession came out of 11 personnel with Pascal jet motion from the field to the boundary, Jaguars out of nickel cover bumped gaps in response to the jet motion; Taylor mid-zone from I back alignment with a smooth cutback, LT Fisher excellent job slowing down DE Allen and then climbing to the second level to slot corner Ford

  • Jaguars at times out of dime showed disguise and late movement to get to cover 2, They first did that just outside the red zone on 3rd + 5: Wentz out of empty hit Hines on quick out for 7 yards

  • Foundation of Colts run game with Taylor versus Jaguars was zone, Did not see much gap scheme

  • Jaguars defensive front had some dominant snaps in both the run game and pass rush, This is a defense that is getting better as the season has progressed

  • Pittman 18 yards on 1st + 10 to start a 2nd quarter possession came out of Pony versus Jaguars nickel cover 4, Colts worked the field with a 4 man route concept that featured post-wheel and drive with Pittman running the crosser from the boundary to the field forcing the boundary quarters safety Jenkins to match him; Pittman open in the void and Wentz

  • Rookie Granson gives the Colts an added dimension at TE, He has shown the ability to detach from the formation and he is a strong run after catch player

  • Ford matched up to the TE versus 11 personnel when the Jaguars went cover 1 out of dime, Dime corner Lawson matched up to the slot WR

  • Jaguars aggressive with blitz versus Colts especially on 3rd down, They featured both man and zone pressures and in their man pressures we saw green dogs

  • In the 4th quarter the Jaguars were very aggressive with blitz, They caused problems for the Colts protection

  • In the 2nd half the Jaguars defensive front was the more dominant unit versus the Colts OL especially in the run game

  • Jaguars played predominantly single high safety coverages throughout the game featuring cover 3 but they also played significant snaps of cover 1 in which they matched Griffin on Pittman, On 3rd down they played more split safety coverages but they still featured cover 1 and cover 3

  • Wentz big-time second reaction throw to Pittman 28 yards on 3rd + 7 with less than 3 minutes remaining, Jaguars blitz out of nickel double mug look with Taylor picking up Jack but Ford got in clean from the field slot forcing Wentz out of the pocket to the right

  • 14 of Taylor’s 21 runs versus Jaguars came out of 11 personnel with 3 runs coming out of Pony package; Jaguars were in nickel on all 17 of those runs

RAMS OFFENSE VERSUS 49ERS DEFENSE

  • This game was a matchup of Rams 11 personnel versus 49ers nickel; Rams play the highest percentage of 11 personnel of any team in the NFL: 87% of offensive snaps – 49ers only played 2 snaps of dime with Jefferson the dime safety

  • Moseley was the left corner and Norman the right corner with Williams the slot corner, Moseley and Norman played sides

  • The two main inside pass rushers for the 49ers in long yardage and 3rd down situations were Armstead and Key

  • Ward interception to end first possession came on Rams only snap of 12 personnel in the game: Shot play with Beckham running the vertical and Kupp from the slot running the deep out route, 49ers cover 3 with a wrinkle: DE Ebukam became the flat defender off outside zone run action right at him and that allowed slot corner Williams (normally the flat defender in cover 3) to get more depth and get underneath Kupp, warner also great depth as the hook-to-curl defender to take away Kupp if he settled into the void; Stafford had no vertical throw and no check down

  • Ward back at safety allowed Hufanga to play more to his strengths of being a box player and blitzer, Hufanga at his best closer to the LOS playing forward

  • 49ers defensive game plan featured cover 4 with a DL dropping out as an extra underneath defender

  • The value of Ward is he can match up in man coverage to WR like Kupp when they are aligned at #3 to trips which allows the 49ers to play cover 1 and 2 man, That’s what happened on Ward interception return TD in which the 49ers were in 2 man out of dime

  • When the 49ers went single high safety zone Hufanga was almost always a box defender to the boundary, In cover 1 Ward was the TE matchup with Hufanga the post safety

  • Kupp 29 yards on first play of 2nd quarter came on schemed concept: Beckham offset in the backfield to the boundary crossed the formation behind Stafford, Stafford pumped the swing route to Beckham which allowed Kupp from the slot to initially show blocking and then run the wheel behind Jefferson’s vertical route; Play design beat 49ers cover 3

  • Higbee 10 yard TD on 3rd + 9 in 2nd quarter came out of 11 3x1 set versus 49ers red zone cover 2/4, Higbee ran inside sit route versus Warner and boxed him out; Excellent throw by Stafford with needed velocity and precise ball placement

  • Jefferson 33 yards on 1st + 10 in 2nd quarter came off play action boot left with flood concept to the field, Jefferson from the boundary ran the crosser to the field as the intermediate route in the 3 level concept; Jefferson ran away from Moseley and Stafford made a big-time throw

  • Al-Shaair continued to flash, He plays with good recognition and reaction in both the run game and zone coverage in the pass game and he showed plus play speed and range

  • 49ers second snap of dime came on 3rd + 5 on Rams first possession of 3rd quarter, They went cover 1 versus Rams empty set with Jefferson the post safety and Hufanga matched in off coverage on Henderson #1 to trips; Play concept was Henderson on the slant with Kupp natural rub on his angled vertical stem, Hufanga outstanding job reading the concept and driving to the slant immediately breaking up the throw

  • Both Warner and Al-Shaair did a good job as underneath defenders in zone coverage, They read routes and matched routes and got depth when required

  • 49ers featured a diamond front on 3rd + 4 in the 3rd quarter in which Bosa aligned over the OC and Warner and Al-Shaair were the edge defenders

  • This was a coverage game for the 49ers defense, They rarely rushed 5 relying almost exclusively on their front 4 to generate pressure on Stafford; Stafford made some excellent throws that were dropped

  • 49ers played predominantly split safety coverage versus the Rams but there were still significant snaps of cover 1 and cover 3, In the 4th quarter with a 21 point lead the 49ers played almost all zone coverage with split safety the foundation

  • Stafford 8 snaps of empty versus the 49ers and it was the worst empty production in any game this season: Stafford 1-8 for -2 yards on 9 empty sets with a sack – For consecutive weeks empty sets have not been as productive as they were through the first 8 games

49ERS OFFENSE VERSUS RAMS DEFENSE

  • Rams started the game in 5-1 nickel front versus 49ers 11 personnel with Floyd and Miller the edge players, Rams base 5-2 front had Reeder and rookie Jones the stacked LB

  • 49ers started rookie Moore at RT, He had some struggles on the opening possession and was replaced by veteran Compton the rest of the game

  • Second play of the game 49ers shifted Samuel into the backfield as the I formation halfback and ran outside zone toss to the boundary for 7 yards, They ran the same play/concept on the game’s first play with Mitchell

  • 49ers first 3 snaps were runs out of 11 personnel and all featured jet motion across the formation – No team uses motion more than the 49ers

  • First 3rd down (3rd + 6) 49ers were in 11 personnel with Juszczyk the back versus Rams 4-2 nickel with Rochell and Williams the outside corners and Ramsey the slot corner, Rams rushed 4 and played man to the boundary and zone match to the field; 49ers bunch to the field with Kittle #1 running the out cut underneath 2 vertical routes: Kittle 18 yards

  • 49ers initial game plan approach was attacking the left side of the Rams defense with outside zone toss, They featured it out of 11 personnel with jet motion to play side and out of 21 personnel with Juszczyk the lead blocker

  • 49ers foundational run game principle is to attack the edges until the defense takes it away, You saw that principle at work versus the Rams

  • Samuel used as a runner 3 times on 49ers opening 18 play TD drive both as an I back and offset in the shotgun, 2 of the runs were outside zone concepts with jet motion to play side and the third was an inside downhill run

  • Jet motion was a foundation of 49ers offense and run game on opening possession – 49ers multiple personnel (11, 21 and 12) and formation looks with multiple run game/blocking concepts on first possession which was 18 plays and 93 yards for a TD and took more than 11 minutes off the clock

  • Kittle 8 yard TD on 3rd + 6 ended first possession and came out of 11 empty with Juszczyk again the single back, Rams tight red zone cover 3 out of nickel; Garoppolo looked to Aiyuk on the slant from the twins slot (he probably had it) then came to Kittle on the corner route from #3 to trips, Corner Williams was late to react on a throw that was his play to make but Garoppolo put the ball up high so only Kittle could catch it

  • 49ers run game is tough to prepare for with its personnel groupings, its different formations and shifts and motions, and its multiple concepts and blocking schemes

  • Critical to playing the way the 49ers want to play and need to play is to convert 3rd downs with schemed throws for Garoppolo, Samuel 20 yards on 3rd + 7 on second a great example: Natural run element versus man coverage giving Garoppolo an easy slant throw with run after catch

  • Aiyuk 21 yards on 2nd + 8 on second possession was pitch and catch: Quick slant form plus split to the field versus off coverage corner Rochell; Aiyuk like Samuel has excellent run after catch traits

  • Samuel 8 yard rushing TD to end second possession (11 plays and 91 yards) came out of 11 personnel with Samuel shift into offset backfield alignment, Split flow inside zone with Samuel bouncing outside and out-flanking corner Rochell

  • 49ers started 3rd quarter with outside zone toss to Mitchell 17 yards even though the blocking timing was off with Juszczyk on the jet motion but the blocking cleared the edge so effectively that Mitchell was untouched until he was tackled

  • Rams were consistently handled physically in the run game and that prevented them from getting into any of their attacking pressure concepts that predominantly come out of dime, They did not play many snaps of dime and dime has been a significant part of their defense this season

  • In the 2nd half the Rams put the 49ers in more 3rd and longer yardage situations and they were able to play more snaps of dime and generate some pressure on Garoppolo

  • 49ers passing game works the middle of the field as much or more than any team in the NFL, That is where Garoppolo is most comfortable throwing the ball with his snap delivery

  • What was interesting was that when the Rams played man coverage Ramsey was not necessarily the matchup on Samuel, Ramsey is not a matchup corner in the Rams system

  • You got a preview in the 2nd half of what the Rams will do with Miller, He will at times be used as a Joker along with Floyd to attack protections from different positions

  • Samuel 40 yard TD on 4th + 6 in 4th quarter came out of 11 shift to empty with Juszczyk again the back, Rams went 5-6 personnel and played man-to-man to the boundary and zone match/box call to the 3 man bunch to the field; Samuel from the point in the bunch ran the in-breaker and there was no one to match him

  • What was fascinating about this game was that even though the 49ers ran the ball with volume and production they did not feature the conventional play action pass game with Garoppolo under center

  • Garoppolo had 19 attempts versus the Rams with 18 coming out of the shotgun, He was 14-18 for 176 yards and 2 TD

  • Garoppolo on 3rd down versus Rams: 6-8 for 83 yards and TD, That does not include the Samuel 40 yard TD on 4th + 6 – Overall this season Garoppolo has the second highest yards per attempt on 3rd down: 9.66, He has only been sacked 3 times on 3rd down all season

PATRIOTS OFFENSE VERSUS BROWNS DEFENSE

  • First 3rd and long (3rd + 8) Browns went dime with Delpit the dime safety and Owusu-Koromoah the dime LB, They showed a double mug front with an undefined but possible man coverage look; At the snap Browns late movement to split safety zone, Jones read it immediately and hit Henry in the void at the numbers 12 yards – Recognition and processing by Jones within timing of the play design

  • Walker and Smith were the predominant nickel LB for the Browns, Walker with some snaps for Owusu-Koromaoh was the dime LB

  • Ward was the boundary corner and Newsome the field corner, They did not match up to any specific receivers

  • Stevenson is a decisive competitive strong downhill runner with light active feet for his size, He hxas shown the ability to get skinny with short area burst through small creases at the POA

  • Patriots will get Stevenson on the perimeter with pin-pull concepts and he is a build up speed and velocity runner who can be effective outside

  • Stevenson ran both out of 21 and 11 personnel, Patriots featured multiple run game concepts including trap and wham

  • Bourne was used as part of the run game, He had 3 rushes which were all reverse carries and provided a misdirection element

  • Garrett sack on 2nd + 6 on first possession came on Jones shotgun 3 step drop timing, Jones looked to his right to Agholor on the speed out and LaCosse on the stick route but didn’t feel he had either throw; LT Wynn blocked for 3 step drop timing and Jones held the ball

  • Patriots first possession they had three 3rd down conversions the last one on 3rd + 13 from just outside the red zone: Bolden screen 20 yards versus Browns dime cover 4

  • Henry 3 yard TD to end first possession showed Jones traits profile: Pre-snap recognition, timing, anticipation, touch, precise ball placement; Henry beat Harrison on corner route

  • Browns played snaps of man coverage on 3rd down, both cover 1 behind 5 man pressure and 2 man with robber element behind 4 man DL pressure; They featured loaded fronts out of dime

  • Meyers 26 yards on 3rd + 9 on third possession came out of 11 personnel versus Browns dime, Meyers was the single receiver to the field; Browns showed double mug pressure front with no over the top help for press man corner Newsome on Meyers, Jones went right to Meyers on the fade with precise ball placement

  • Browns showed some multiple front/pressure and coverage looks on 3rd down out of dime, They featured some disguise and late movement but they did not have success

  • Bourne 23 yard TD on 2nd + 5 to end third possession came out of 11 3x1 set with Bourne #2 to trips versus Browns cover 1 with slot corner Hill matched on Bourne, Bourne worked through the physical press of Hill on his seam route and Jones made an outstanding ball placement throw high away from coverage so only Bourne could make a play on the ball – Outstanding by both Jones and Bourne but post safety Johnson should have been there to make a play, He was slow to react given that Jones looked that way right from the snap

  • Henry 19 yards on 2nd + 5 on 3rd quarter TD drive was an outstanding throw by Jones: Touch and precise ball placement on Henry out route from #3 to trips, Tough throw from the opposite hash

  • Patriots effective with screen game getting to conventional running back screens in multiple ways, Patriots OL did an excellent job getting out in front on those screens

  • Henry 3 yard TD on 3rd and goal early in 4th quarter was a great example of motion defining the coverage and the read for Jones: Bolden motion to #1 to the boundary defined the Henry/Johnson matchup, Jones knew he had to move the MIKE LB Smith; Jones looked left to move Smith and then came back within timing and rhythm to Henry on the condensed skinny

  • Jones did most of his work out of 11 personnel, He was 15-16 for 154 yards and all 3 TD out of 11 personnel

  • Jones outstanding on 3rd down versus Browns: 6-7 for 80 yards and TD with all 6 completions resulting in 1st downs

  • Jones has been outstanding in the red zone this season, He has throw 9 TD without an interception

One of the preeminent NFL analysts in the country, Cosell has worked for NFL Films for over 40 years. Due to his vast knowledge of personnel and matchups based on tape study, Cosell regularly supplies us with valuable and actionable insight and intelligence that cannot be found anywhere else.