Let's ignore the deep bomb Cordarrelle Patterson should have had for a touchdown because of a busted coverage. Let's ignore the home run shot that the Vikings called on the first play of the game that every offensive coordinator seems to have after watching the Redskins defense that exploits a mismatch (Keenan Robinson on Greg Jennings). Let's ignore continually flexing out our OLB over the slot receiver essentially giving up contain on that side as the outside most D-Lineman was now inside the OT so all the OT had to do was turn to seal the edge letting the RB pick up chunk runs. Yes....let's ignore all that. Football really is an easy game. Well, it's as easy as you let it be. After watching film this week, it's safe to say Norv Turner's game plan was easy. Was it easy because he has a rookie quarterback and he's simplifying things? Or was it easy because Jim Haslett makes it easy?
The only word you need to know for this film breakdown? Scissors. Scissors is a two man route concept. The outside receiver runs a Post route while the inside receiver runs a corner route. It's a Cover 3 beater (can also beat man depending on who is running the routes). Why is this so significant? Well, it started last week.
The Redskins are in a Cover 3 here. The Cowboys are running Scissors (should be easy to identify, since the route combo actually looks like a pair of scissors).
At this point, Bashaud Breeland is suppose to peel off the receiver on the post and cover the corner route because he is responsible for that deep bottom third of the field. The safety should pick up the post route.
Breeland doesn't peel off and the safety takes the post too. That leaves two guys on the post while Jason Witten catches the ball here and strolls into the end zone.
Now we are no stranger to letting us beat something and then having the next team that faces us do the same thing. Earlier this year, you may recall the Philadelphia Eagles roasting us in the seams and then the New York Giants did the exact same thing. So Norv Turner took a page from the Cowboys book......and put it on every page....
1. Redskins are disguising their coverage but they are in Cover 1 man. Vikings running Scissors at the top of the screen.
Brandon Meriweather has the slot receiver in coverage and is turned the wrong way to cover this corner route.
Meriweather actually turns his back to the ball to make up separation and knocks the ball away. Good play by Meriweather but if Teddy Bridgewater had thrown on time and a little more arm on it, this would have been a catch.
2. Here's a play-action pass with a Scissor combo at the top of the screen. Redskins still running Cover 1 man.
Redskins actually cover the receivers well but Trent Murphy gets too deep on his rush and the RB and FB pick up Keenan Robinson and Perry Riley in protection and Bridgewater is able to run for a big gain. Reminder, he's not a running quarterback.
3. Here's another Scissor combo with the receiver and the tight end. Redskins actually go with a Cover 0 here.
The receiver turns David Amerson all around on the outside before breaking to the post route while Meriweather had good coverage on the TE.
The rush doesn't get there and Bridgewater has plenty of room to throw. Luckily, he doesn't see the receiver running away from Amerson in the end zone. Instead, he focuses on the TE who is pretty well covered.
The TE dives but the ball is overthrown while the receiver is stomping his feet in the end zone mad he didn't get the ball.
4. Here is the Scissor combo back at the top of the screen. This time the Redskins go with Cover 2 man.
Biggers does a good job jamming the receiver (past 5 yards?) which is where Bridgewater is looking.
Trent Murphy gets the sack after Matt Khalil, who isn't having a great year, gives up the inside.
5. Vikings running the scissor combo at the bottom of the screen. Redskins give the one safety high look but its Cover 1 man and not Cover 3 like Vikings are hoping.
When the TE on the corner route realizes it's man coverage he makes his route skinny and deeper so Meriweather can't undercut it. He has a step on Meriweather.
But the TE trips and the ball drops harmlessly to the outside.
6. Heeeerrrrrrreeeeee is where it killed us. The 2 min drill. This is the first play after the Robert Griffin III interception. I want to apologize to E.J. Biggers. When watching live, it looked like everyone was in man coverage and he thought is was zone. That's why you wait for the All-22. Redskins are actually in Cover 4 here.
You want to know how I know it's indeed Cover 4? Biggers passes his guy off and heads to the flat area. On the opposite side, Keenan Robinson also flies out to the flat area. David Amerson pulls a Bashaud Breeland from the Dallas game and rides the post route inside to the safety leaving his deep 4th responsibility.
Greg Jennings makes the catch with no one around him for 22 yards.
7. Still during the 2 min drill. Scissor combo run at the top.
Jennings is about to make his move on the Corner route (again, where Bridgewater is looking) but Jason Hatcher comes free up the middle so Bridgewater is forced to roll out left and throw the ball away.
8. STILL in the 2 min drill. This one is the most annoying because the ROOKIE Teddy Bridgewater walks up to the line of scrimmage, sees the single high safety and audibles both sides into scissor combos like a VETERAN.
Once again, David Amerson carries the post route inside. Ryan Clark goes out to the flat (where he is suppose to be) but looks back and notices Amerson isn't where he is suppose to be.
Clark can't get there before Chase Ford is on the receiving end of a touchdown.
In all my film viewing, I don't think I've EVER seen a team run one specific route combo so often. If there was any need for a decent amount of yardage, they went with this combo. For the most part, the Redskins did a good job defending it. Except in that 2 min drill when they ran the Cover 3 and I believe that's what Norv Turner was banking on.