BGA Extra: Jets at Dolphins

Disclaimer: All analysis was taken from the TV coverage, so at times it may have been hard to identify players or what was happening, because I was limited by their footage. However, I have tried to be as accurate as possible and apologize for any inaccuracies or omissions (which I am happy to correct).

Before we move on to look ahead to the Bills game, it’s time to take a final look back at the win over Miami on Sunday night. After the jump, I respond to your questions from the comments in the original BGA post, which you can access here if you missed it. I will also discuss some of the analysis from the guys at ProFootballFocus.com.

My question is something that I have noticed throughout the year thus far. The Jets have had trouble running between the tackles this year being unable to get to the second level. LT’s bigger runs have come from sweeps/tosses (except one zone stretch I remember) -even Greene’s longer carries have been to the outside. Have you noticed the same thing and what can you attribute this to? – NYJ in Boston

I have definitely noticed the same thing and the stats bear this out:

Runs outside to the left: 8.4 ypc
Over left tackle: 5.8 ypc
Over left guard: 5.6 ypc
Up the middle: 4.6 ypc
Over right guard: 1.9 ypc
Over right tackle: 3.1 ypc
Outside to the right: 10.8 ypc.

These numbers are pretty interesting, but there have been some long runs to the outside the skew the averages a bit. However, it is interesting that they are having more success running to the left. This doesn’t necessarily mean that Slauson and Ferguson are doing a better job than Moore and Woody, because it’s often a pulling guard or a fullback that makes a key block between the tackles. According to PFF’s ratings, the fullbacks have been poor so far this season and Slauson’s run blocking has graded out higher than Moore, but the Jets do run to the right almost twice as much as to the left.

One other reason that the runs up the middle have been less effective is that Nick Mangold has underperformed compared to last year. His shoulder injury may be a factor in that, of course – and the line as a whole clearly isn’t fully in synch yet.

Keller was targeted a lot in the first half, but he really wasn’t in the second half. What adjustments did the Dolphins make to take him away? – Andrew

It was mostly the fact that they brought over more safety support, although the fact that Miami had the ball for most of the third quarter (Sanchez only dropped back to pass five times) was also a factor. In the second half, Keller was only lined up in the slot or out wide four times, as opposed to seven times in the first half. In such situations, he invariably ended up with a DB covering him.

1. Could you please check if there was a difference in up front personnel between NE and Phins game on defence.
2. And how we lined up against 2RB formations.
3. Would like to know what was the general gameplan to control the front in running situation while still giving enough leverage to the secondary.
– I Am Watching You.

1. The main difference was that there were at least five DBs on all but five plays in the Patriots game, but only four on almost half of the plays against Miami, so there were more front seven reps to go around. Howard Green got 31 snaps and Vernon Gholston doubled his workload to 20 snaps. Mike DeVito’s workload increased from 24 to 40 snaps. Ellis and Pouha’s workload was increased slightly. In terms of formations, the Jets ran more conventional 3-4 alignments here, especially early in the game.

2. Miami had two backs in the game approximately 60% of the time. The Jets main approach to countering this was to be in a conventional alignment. When they went three-wide, the Jets would bring in an extra DB.

3. They certainly sent less pressure in the second half, obviously dropping linebackers into zone coverage to try and slow down the Miami passing attack. In terms of stopping the run, the Jets nearly always had at least one safety within 8 yards of the line of scrimmage at the snap, unless it was a third and long or something.

James Ihedigbo— seemed to almost single-handedly throttle the wildcat — I will be interested to see from Bent if he was on the field every time they went to that formation – Spindoctor

Ihedigbo saw action on 11 plays, six of which (including the last five) were with Miami in the Wildcat. In total, Miami went to the Wildcat eight times. Ihedigbo was not in the game on the first two occasions, but then they made the adjustment.

PFF Analysis

The analysis from PFF was posted to their site this afternoon and their game recap article for ProFootballFocus.com (which also gives you a sneak preview of some of their player ratings) was once again contributed to by yours truly. Here’s a sample quote:

In a game eerily reminiscent of last year’s Monday night meeting in Week 5, this time Miami’s last-ditch drive fell short and the Jets were able to hang on for the win.

With star cornerback Darrelle Revis resting a pulled hamstring, the Jets’ pass defense was tested early and often, but the team was able to make enough plays on either side of the ball to outscore its division rival.

I was both pleased and surprised to see that their analysis pretty much agreed with what I wrote in the original BGA. Some key points of interest:

- Matt Slauson did have a negative rating, but only just, and graded out considerably better than Mangold, Moore and Woody. Without the penalties, he would have easily achieved his best grade so far this season. He and Mangold did not allow a pressure and Ferguson allowed just one. Moore allowed two and Woody allowed four, plus a QB hit. Seven pressures, one hit and no sacks is a solid performance by the pass protection unit though.

- Dustin Keller’s run blocking grade was the third best of his career and the best since his rookie season.

- Tony Richardson had an average grade at fullback, but John Conner had the worst offensive grade of the day, despite only being on the field for six plays.

- Shaun Ellis had a monster game with the highest rating of the day by some margin. He ended up with five pressures, a sack, a QB hit and a batted ball, plus two tackles.

- Jason Taylor had an average grade, but did register four pressures and a sack, as the Jets racked up 13 pressures and four hits to go along with two sacks. By way of a comparison, the Chargers allowed 4 sacks, 4 hits and 35 pressures against the Seahawks this week!

- DeVito, Pouha and Pool graded out well, but the starting secondary all had poor ratings.

- Tellingly, the worst run defense grade by some margin belonged to Howard Green.

TJB readers can obtain full access to PFF’s premium stats for $63 this season. The discount available has been increased to 30%. E-mail me (bentdouble@gmail.com ) to obtain a code to enable you to get the discount.