Re: Jermaine Wiggins on Seattle's final TD
posted at 10/18/2012 1:53 PM EDT
In response to prolate0spheroid's comment:
In response to ccnsd's comment:
Who blamed McCourty on the tape? Wiggins clearly lays the blame on Wilson. McCourty is barely mentioned. Is there some vast anti McCourty conspiricay that I am unaware of and Wiggins is in on it.
ccnsd . . . it was me who thought McCourty should have done more to come back inside and get trailing coverage on Rice. Eng and patsfan have made good arguments that he was basically responsible for the possible outside route (or a dump off to an outlet receiver in the flat below him) and so his position was good. I'm not a DB coach and have never played DB, so I'm by no means an expert, but the one thing that strikes me as just a tad weak in McCourty's coverage is that he continued moving toward the sideline after Rice had made his double move and clearly was headed to the middle post. While McCourty needs to keep his outside position, I would have expected him in that situation to also try to stay in reasonable contact with the likely receiver so he could help the safety. Maybe I'm wrong about his duties, but that's where I was slightly critical about his play. He seems to keep drifting toward the sideline when everything is headed inside. At the time the ball is released he's about 12 yards away from Rice and (while it's hard to see exactly when the ball is released) it appears that the separation only increases after the throw. If you watch the film, you can see Ebner reacts to the throw a fraction of a second earlier than McCourty does.
I think we're all in agreement that the primary breakdown was Wilson's, and Ebner deserves no blame on this play at all.
Lets look at it if McCourty did as you suggested. No McCourty took the outside and gave up the inside by the time Rice cut inside.This means Rice already knowing where he would be going had at minimum 2 steps on McCourty (one because of knowing where he was going before hand and one for having the inside track) so unless the pass was thrown behind Rice McCourty would have no chance at preventing the pass, if hit in stride McCourty couldn't catch up to Rice, if Rice dove then you should have 2 S's to touch him down. Any way you look at it McCourty would not be involved in the play if he continued with Rice instead of being in the position he was suppose to be in from the beginning.
Now we cover the inside so lets say Rice did an S pattern like Loyd likes to do. McCourty having the outside route not back pedaling at this point would have to turn his hips awkardedly to move inside with Rice. at which point Rice cuts back outside and know McCourty having previously had the outside lane is caught turning which costs him speed, is now chasing (how a majority of his PI's came from), and is a couple of steps behind while Rice has 5 yards on the sideline to work with and with the S's cheating in no one in front of him. This gives Wilson his choice of which shoulder to go over for an easy pitch and catch and Rice has a clean path to track the ball over either shoulder with the extra run McCourty gave up moving inside to cover Rice
Now that we covered Rice lets look at a release in the flat. McCourty is chasing Rice and behind by 2 steps trails him inside. At this point the flat is directly behind McCourty's left shoulder making impossible for him to see a player coming out of the flat. As McCourty trails Rice the receiver in the flat gets the ball with no one within 5 yards of the number. McCourty is inside with Rice and can't see a receiver in the flat and Wilson is cheating in and deep (like he should have been). The flat receiver has at least 20yards of open green in front of them with no one to contests and they have the sideline. They could easily go from the 40 to FG range with that much space and have the ability to step out before McCourty turns around and Wilson cuts in. Additonally if it's a bigger receiver they only have McCourty and Wilson to beat and a couple of moves in open field can easily defeat a couple of DB's. At that point they had over a min left to play so no need to step out and stop the clock at that point if they could gain the extra yards.
If McCourty had trailed in not only would it have opened up other oppurtunities other then Rice but would have given up and easy play. In the end because of Wilsons mistake they gave it up anyways but how McCourty positioned himself he eliminated those 3 possibilities which left only 1 chance at a possible completion for a long gain, Rice had to beat Wilson otherwise that part of the field was locked down properly