Why you can’t take a poor angle vs. Bills’ Jackson

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This morning we took a look at Devin Hester’s 48-yard TD vs. the Vikings’ Cover 1 scheme, but let’s flip over to the run game and check out Fred Jackson. In the loss to the Giants on Sunday, the Bills’ RB broke an 80-yard run for a score vs. New York’s defensive sub package (playing Cover 1 or man-free).

Why did the defense break down? Check out the replay and then we will key in some poor technique from the Giants’ defense—because this run should haven't broke for an explosive gain.

– A quick point on personnel. Buffalo is in their “Houston” personnel (3 WR, 2 RB) in a “Pistol” alignment. A personnel grouping named after the Oilers’ old “Run and Shoot” offense. Why don’t we see it more in today’s NFL? The emergence of the TE position.

– The run action isn’t much different than looking at the “Counter OF” (guard pull, FB counter block) from the two-back look in Regular personnel (2 WR, 1 TE, 1 RB). Here, we see the down blocks from the open (weak) side OT and the counter action from the FB. Plays out like a “Wham” or a trap scheme on the DE.

– First mistake from the Giants is on the weak side fill. Check out safety Kenny Phillips. Working vs. the down block (and the counter action from the FB), Phillips has to “shoot” the gap and make a tackle. Instead, we see some hesitation—and that is all it takes for Jackson to get vertical up the field.

– The second issue for the Giants is the play of free safety Deon Grant. No question it is tough as a safety to square up a RB in the open field. However, you are coached to take a good angle to the ball (inside-out) and pick a side. Get the helmet across, put him on the ground and live to see the next play.

Give the credit to the Giants for winning this game and taking over first place in the NFC East, but this play is the perfect example of why you have to attack the line of scrimmage and take good angles to the ball vs. a game breaker like Jackson.

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