Closer Look At The Secondary Part IV

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Disclaimer – I know that most of you will be shocked to hear the following.

Jason Allen and Chris Clemons both had great games yesterday afternoon.  Let me repeat that – Jason Allen, and Chris Clemons both had great games.

For all the times in which I questioned the Trifecta for not bringing and /or signing a Free Safety, yesterday, Chris Clemons played like a high price addition.
Clemons was around the ball more, that Bell – which is great. He was solid in run support, which we saw on the screen to Spiller that merited minus yards, he almost had the games only INT, but the ball hit the ground before he could contain, and no blown assignments.

Clemons finished the game with 4 tackles, and 1 assist.   If we were able to cradle the ball before it hit the ground; we would be blowing this kid up right now!  
Make no mistake, this was against a very weak Buffalo team, and there were still some errors that I saw in which Clemons needs to fix, such as tackling high.  Even though he was able to contain Spiller on the screen pass, Clemons still went for the shoulder pads, rather than the hips.  This same technique will not work next week against Adrian Peterson.  Nonetheless, we finally saw what the Trifecta talked about during training camp, and Clemons finished third in team tackles.

Who finished second? Jason Allen (5 solo tackles, 1 assist).  This former first round player was shadowing Buffalo’s top receiver, Lee Evans all game.  That’s right – it was Allen not V. Davis that was given responsibility to cover Evans all game.  How did he do, well Evans finished the game with 4 catches for 34yrds, and 0TDs.
Jason had the best chance to not only solidify himself as the number two CB on the team, but score the first defensive points in the 4th Qtr when he jumped an quick up and out pattern.  Allen read the play perfectly, however, dropped the pass in the end-zone.  If Allen would have made that catch, it would erase all the “first round bust” talks for at least one more week.

I don’t know what to say about Yerimiah Bell, except I wish I could play with him.  He was killing people on the field.  Bell was lowering his shoulder, imposing his will, when any Buffalo WR was running across the middle of the field.  He brought his “A” game – finishing with a team high 6 tackles and 2 assists.  Bell is going to love our new type of defence in which Nolan is implementing.  It will only strengthen his game to the next level, as we saw today.  Watch for Bell to not only, put WR/TE on notice, but to become a house hold name this year.

Then there was this other kid, at the other end of the field that….Davis, or something like that. I can’t remember his name, because it wasn’t called once all game.  Davis put the blanket on the Buffalo’s WR, so much that he not only tucked them in, he put them all to sleep.  Call this baby sitting 101.  Davis had an outstanding game, and the fact that we didn’t hear his jersey called all game, is great news to us.  This former first round pick, will end up being our shutdown corner for years to come.  I know this is only game 1, but Davis played great all pre-season and now is bringing it into the regular season. 

Our secondary did give up a TD late in the 4th qtr which brought back life to a team in which we should have blown out.  Let’s break down what happened.
Edwards calls a 5 WR spread and going out of the no huddle offence.  Nolan calls a 3-3-5 Nickel.  Which is like our base 3-4 but instead, we have an extra CB rather than a LB.

The defensive call was 3-3 Nickel Drop 3 Zone.

This means that we had 3 players in the backfield, playing zone coverage.  Clemons to the left, Bell in the middle and Culver to the right.
Edwards call his set plays and barks this calls to the players, we see pre set movement.  Edwards notices the Culver, is moving down from his 3 Deep coverage.  This is where it went wrong.

In Edwards mind, Culver is moving in a 3 deep cover, which means he is thinking blitz or man, which now makes his “Go WR” (-the WR that is running a go pattern) his hot WR, since that WR no longer has over the top help.

Ball is hicked, and what happens, Culver continues to creep up to the line rather than playing his 3 deep coverage.  Edwards see this, and Parrish is all alone with no over the top help.  TD Buffalo.

Make no mistake; the only reason why the Bills scored was due to a blown coverage assignment within our secondary.

This was the only outlier in a solid day from our secondary.  We can’t jump to conclusions since this is game 1 against a very weak team.  Our upcoming opponents; Vikings and Jets –will allow us to see how our secondary stands against two teams that made it the Championship games within their allocated divisions.

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