Hazard's Huddle: Jay Gruden on 1st and 10 (vs. Baltimore Ravens)

Rob Carr

An All-22 film look at Jay Gruden's play-calling categorized by down and distance.

Jay Gruden was hired for his offensive mind. With the large investment in Robert Griffin III, it will be his job to get the most out of this offense as early as possible. What will Jay Gruden do to prevent a repeat of 2013? I took a look at an entire game of play-calling for Gruden to get a feel for his tendencies and what he likes to do in certain game situations. I chose the Bengals vs. Ravens game from Week 10 for two reasons: 1. Jermaine Gresham was inactive so that gave the Bengals only one true pass-catching threat at TE in Tyler Eifert which is more comparable to Redskins at this point. 2. So I can look at the game vs the Ravens in Week 17 to see what kind of adjustments were made in the play-calling.

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Location: Bengals 31

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 21

Play Type: Run

Both TEs Tyler Eifert and Alex Smith are lined up in a stack formation to the right with AJ Green in the screen as well. Eifert will be cutting across formation to block the backside OLB. BenJarvis Green-Ellis takes a 22 dive with AJ Green carrying out a fake reverse.

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The play results in a gain of 6.

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Location: Bengals 44

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 11

Play Type: Run

Tyler Eifert plays as an in-line TE this time with 3 WRs on the field. Green-Ellis is going to take the shotgun hand-off.

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The play results in a gain of 3.

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Location: Bengals 20

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 11

Play Type: Pass

Tyler Eifert is lined up in the backfield on this play. The slant/release route combo at the top of the screen can beat man coverage and cover 2 zone. The stick/out route combo at the bottom of the screen is designed to beat zone coverage. This helps Andy Dalton determine which side of the field to go to right after the snap.

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The Ravens were in Cover 1 man so Dalton went to the slant route. Ladarius Webb gets there at the same time as the ball and knocks it away from AJ Green. The play results in an incomplete pass.

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Location: Bengals 37

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 11

Play Type: Run

It's almost like watching Shanahan's offense!!! Simple zone stretch left.

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The play results in a gain of 4.

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Location: Bengals 48

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 12

Play Type: Run

I'll use the term "12" personnel very loosely because if you watched Bengals Hard Knocks, you'd know that Orson Charles made the Bengals roster over a more traditional FB in John Conner because Charles can also play TE. With that being said, Gruden used Charles as his FB so technically it is 12 personnel. Hopefully here, Darrel Young keeps this role. This play is 21 Give.

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The play results in a gain of 4.

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Location: Bengals 20

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 12

Play Type: Run

The same formation as the previous play except flipped. Andy Dalton pulls back from center and fakes the quick WR screen then gives it to Gio Bernard on the Draw.

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The play results in a gain of 2.

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Location: Bengals 36

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 21

Play Type: Run

Alex Smith is the TE lined up in-line on the right of the formation. Eifert is lined up as a wing or H-Back. The Bengals are running 28 Counter. Backside guard pulls and Eifert comes across to lead around the end.

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Bernard tries to take a cut-back lane back to the left but Haloti Ngata is there. The play results in a gain of 1.

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Location: Bengals 46

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 21

Play Type: Run

Same formation as the Counter play I just illustrated. This time it's a weak run as Eifert goes the opposite way of the play.

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Gio Bernard breaks this one open. The play results in a gain of 18.

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Location: Ravens 36

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 21

Play Type: Run

This is the same formation as the previous two except this time the WR (A.J. Green) is brought in tight to the formation. This is a 21 Counter Trap. The O-line blocks right like they're running Zone stretch right but when the RB gets the handoff he breaks counters back inside following Eifert who is now blocking the "trap."

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The play results in a gain of 7.

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Location: Ravens 26

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 21

Play Type: Pass

This is Gun Left Twins Left. 2 WRs to the left side with one in-line TE (Alex Smith) and one "Joker" TE (Eifert). The two WRs and Smith are all designed to beat man coverage. Dalton is suppose to read single-high safety and find his one on one match-up. At worst, he as a speed out to dump if off to if he can't find anyone else.

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Dalton looks for Mohammed Sanu but sails the ball out of bounds. The play results in an incomplete pass.

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Location: Bengals 35

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 21

Play Type: Run

Here's a little game of chess. Earlier, Bengals used the fake-reverse as just a motion. This time they give the ball to Andrew Hawkins on the reverse.

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Hawkins fumbles the exchange though and is forced to fall on the fumble. The play results in a loss of 3.

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Location: Bengals 35

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 11

Play Type: Run

This is Gun Left 21 Give. Tyler Eifert is lined up to the right of the formation.

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This play results in a loss of 1.

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Location: Bengals 20

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 21

Play Type: Pass

Bengals run two fly routes from the outside. If the Ravens have man coverage, Dalton can read which WR the single-high safety shadows and can take the one-on-one match-up to the other side of the field. With that being said, Gio Bernard is the one at the bottom of the screen running a fly route. Don't know how many of those he would win. If it's a zone coverage, the in-route from the top of the screen, should open up the slant route right behind it. Finally, there's a drag route coming to the left if all else fails.

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The ball comes out too hot for the WR and it sails by AJ Green. The play results in an incomplete pass.

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Location: Bengals 7

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 11

Play Type: Pass

The slant/out route combo at the bottom can beat both man and zone coverages. If it's man, it sets a natural pick for the defenders to have to go around. If it's zone, you try to catch the pass catcher in the small holes between transitions. On the backside you have the appearance of double slants but  Eifert is running a slant and go to see if they can get a big play.

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Dalton ends up going to AJ Green on the backside slant but Green can't pull it in. The play results in an incomplete pass.

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Location: Bengals 25

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 21

Play Type: Pass

At the bottom of the screen, you have the fly route to either run off coverage or take your one-on-one shot. The stick (outside hitch) route is designed to beat zone coverage. The double out routes to the other side of the field can beat man coverage and Cover 3.

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The Ravens are in a Cover 3 and Dalton hits Eifert on the out route. He breaks a tackle and takes it into Ravens territory. The play results in a gain of 40.

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Location: Ravens 35

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 21

Play Type: Pass

Here is one of your more basic but effective plays in the passing game. Aces Doubles Tight is the formation. Two hitch routes and two speed outs. The speed outs give natural separation in man coverage. The stick routes are designed to find space in a zone to give your QB room to fit the ball in.

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Dalton gets the ball out to Eifert but he can't pull in the catch. The play results in an incomplete pass.

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Location: Ravens 24

Down and Distance: 1st and 10

Personnel: 21

Play Type: Pass

This is an obvious cover 2 zone breaker. You want the CB to jump the out route and open up the corner route which would be a larger gain. The out/corner routes are also designed to beat man coverage (of course, that's relative to who is running the route).

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The Ravens run a cover 2 man and Dalton overthrows his intended target. The play results in an incomplete pass.

I didn't want to break any of these into two posts but the Bengals had 34 of their 87 offensive plays on this game on 1st and 10 so I had to break it up. Check back later this week as we'll finish the 1st and 10 breakdowns. Also coming up are 2nd and short, 2nd and medium, 2nd and long, 3rd and short, 3rd and medium, 3rd and long, 4th and short and 4th and long.
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