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Playbook: This is how you 'finish' a run in the NFL

Taking a look at Marshawn Lynch's TD run vs. the Eagles. Matt Bowen

Print This July 08, 2012, 04:00 PM EST

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You know what you are going to get from Marshawn Lynch: downhill power in the off-tackle run game (Power O, Counter OF, Lead, etc), a burst to the second level of the defense and vision in the open field. Today, let’s look back at one his TD runs during the 2011 season. The base Lead Closed (or Strong) vs. the Eagles 8-Man front. A great example of how you "finish" a play at the pro level.

Eagles vs. Seahawks
Personnel: Regular (2WR-1TE-2RB)
Formation: Pro I
Scheme: Lead Strong
Defensive coverage: Cover 1 (man-free)

A couple of notes from the replay…

-Base action with the FB leading up through the hole. The TE (Y) will turn out on the DE (in a wide 9 alignment) with the OT working up the second level of the defense vs. an 8-Man front (SS aligned in the run front).

-Love the contact with the FB and the Eagles’ LB in the hole (can here the pop on the replay). This is what you see at the pro level vs. the downhill run game. Violent collisions.

-The FS enters too soon into the run front. A rule to live by at the FS position vs. any inside run scheme: keep your depth. You are a “secondary” run support player. Don’t pick a side and don’t get caught up in the wash vs. a run that breaks.  Stay square and give yourself enough room to take an angle (allows you to make an open field tackle).

-Lazy play at the CB position. Check out the replay. Both CBs take the play off (not uncommon to see this). Once the ball has been handed off (and the RB declares to the line of scrimmage), get rid off the WR and put yourself in a position to play from “outside-in” vs. the run game. Never assume the play is over.

-No question the Eagles need to wrap up and play with better run support in the secondary. I get that. However, as much as I talk defensive technique here, let’s not forget about the play from Lynch. This is the type of run you show to young backs in the NFL. Strength, power and speed once he gets vertical. And effort still sells in the NFL.

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