After some film review, I am going to post a couple of breakdowns of the major game changing plays from Saturday.
Here is the setup:
Texas A&M started the drive out at their own 6 yard line after a goal line stand resulted in a turnover on downs for the Hogs. The game was still tied up at 17-17 at this point.
On 1st Down the Aggies ran inside zone for 2 yds out to the 8.
2nd and 8:
Texas A&M lined up in the same 3 WR set with a TE wing to the strongside and the back weak. The pace A&M ran this play was not all that fast as they snapped it at 15-16 left on the play clock, but without a huddle they kept Arkansas from making any major adjustments presnap.
Arkansas Defense: Lined up in an under front with both tackles over the guards. The ends were shifted into an under front with a 5 technique to the strongside and a 7 technique to the weakside.
In the back five Arkansas has two high safety look with the Field Side Corner Jared Collins playing off quarters Read and the boundary corner DJ Dean playing press read. The nickel is 5 yds off the slot positioned with inside leverage.
Dean is in the game on the possession to give Ryan Pulley a break who had been targeted on multiple pass attempts on the previous drive.
Numbers advantage: to the strong side A&M has 4 on 3. If they run Zone read or qb draw it is 6 on 7 up front.
So to counter this disadvantage Robb Smith has a call on where the SS creeps up into the box to check run and fill where a third LB would normally be in the backside B gap.
Endzone view of Front 7
Here you can see the numbers game that is going on:
This call is what leads to the 1 on 1 coverage to the short side of the field with DJ Dean on Josh Reynolds.
At the snap you can see Ramirez staying firm and coming down hill reading his key. the third receiver in from the right sideline which is the TE Wing.
He stays in which alerts Ramirez to run where he would need to fill the backside B gap which A&M had been chewing up yards on the zone read play on the previous two drives.
Knight gets this ball out within 2 seconds of the snap, not allowing much chance for the defensive line to pressure. Somehow Deatrich Wise is still able to get in his face from his 7 technique isolated on the RT, but it is not enough to alter the throw.
Burn’t Toast: Ramirez, in the shot above is able to turn his hips when he recognizes pass, but is almost 10 yards away on the hash mark and only a couple yards deeper than the WR. There is not a safety in College Football that could recover from this kind of situation.
The CB Dean himself is not in terrible position and is able to run with Reynolds, but falls down attempting to make a play on the ball. The speed by Reynolds combined with a blown assignment by the safety doomed this play.
This play was an example of the set up on the previous play with the exact same formation and action up front, along with the bigger picture set up of the QB draw and zone read earlier in the game.
The most effective way to prevent monstrosity’s like this play would be to put the corner in off coverage giving him a cushion. This may give up an underneath route but takes away the deep fade. Also placing the nickel in the role of run gap defender as opposed to the strong safety who has a deep 1⁄2 or 1⁄4 of the field to cover.
I have a feeling that this will be corrected come Alabama week, as they also capitalized on one of these deep shots last year that impacted that game tremendously.
Watch the entire play here.