Blaine Gabbert Preseason Game 2 In-Depth Breakdown

Written by Eric Stoner on August 28, 2011

Fifth Drive





– 12 Personnel, (3×1), Trips Bunch. Both TEs in Trips.


– Falcons two deep safeties pre-snap. Rotate to Single High as play clock winds down. CBs off and turned to QB. Cover 3.


– Inside TE runs flat, outside TE runs a stop in between zones, Z runs a dig.


– 3 step drop. Hits outside TE running a stop. TE drops ball.





– 21 Personnel, TE flexed into Slot


– Falcons in Cover 3 pre-snap


– TE and Z both run deep posts. X runs deep out.


– Good drop, setup and delivery. Safety is in “no-mans land” (two receivers in his area, but he’s just covering grass) leaving both TE and Z open on post. Throws a strike to Z receiver for a sizable gain.




– 11 Personnel, (2×2), Shotgun


– Eagles with 2 deep safeties at staggered depth. Nickel playing slot WR in press-man. Outside CBs playing off. Possible Cover 3, Cover 1, or Cover 3 w/nickel playing man.


– PA slip screen. LDE doesn’t crash on run fake and jumps into throwing lane, forcing a high throw. Completed for loss of one.




– 3rd and 12


– 11 Personnel, (2×2), Shotgun


– Note Falcons’ alignment pre-snap. Overloaded to right side with linebackers and SS. Nickel CB is lined up in man-press, but note the alignment of the safety behind him. Nickel is disguising his blitz, FS will take his man.


– Gabbert has good drop and set up. Throws it to slot WR running deep out right at first down marker. Ball is outside and where only WR can catch it, but a little low. WR drops it.


– This is the kind of throw (deep out from the far hash to the wide side of the field) that really allows the offensive coordinator a ton of flexibility. It challenges the defense to guard all four quadrants of the field, no matter which hash the ball is on.



Sixth Drive





– Redzone (13 yard line)


– 11 Personnel, (3×1) pre-snap, inside slot motions to create (2×2) receiver distribution


– HB screen pass. RT doesn’t sell dropback pass and releases too early. LDE recognizes screen and bats the pass down.




– Redzone (13 yard line)


– 3rd and 11


– 11 Personnel, (3×1), inside slot motions to create (2×2) receiver distribution, shotgun


– Falcons in Cover Two pre-snap. CBs five yards off, turned to face QB. Safeties splitting field in half. Nickel lines up splitting difference between slot WRs, doesn’t go with motioning slot WR. LCB lined up as alley player against TE and widens when slot WR motions across formation (becoming Z receiver).


– Z runs quick drag. TE runs corner. Can’t tell what backside receivers run.


– 5 step drop. Releases immediately at the top of his drop to Z receiver running quick drag.


– Against Cover 2, the LCB will allow the Z to run the quick drag and will sink and gain depth, waiting for the flats to be threatened before reacting up. The TE must maintain underneath leverage vs. the safety to his side. Once the CB reacts up to the RB in the flats, you need to throw the TE corner route. Gabbert must be more patient and let his TE’s route develop instead of immediately going for the quick dumpoff. It’s third down in the redzone.


Eric Stoner

Eric has been writing for Draft Breakdown for two years now, contributing by writing scouting reports, cutting video, and blogging about college football and the NFL. He was raised by a football coach and, as such, was forced to cut tape and chart personnel at an age that violates California labor law. A legal assistant by day, Eric also writes for Rotoworld NFL Draft and the SB Nation Jaguars Blog, Big Cat Country.

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