It is designed for each of the 10 quick-hitters, each to be read in 10 seconds or less. Here are the 10 from Saturday's 28-10 win against Eastern Michigan.
1. Playing it safe
After Gary Nova was injured, Rutgers' offensive play calls were conservative, with many of backup Chas Dodd's nine attempts being "safe," via controlled rollouts, quick passes to the outside and down the field. It took away the dangerous throws over the middle.
2. Pressure from the nickel
Rutgers used its blitz packages to get to the Eastern Michigan quarterback on several occasions, and twice it was nickel back Gareef Glashen delaying his blitz for a moment before heading into the backfield to make a play.
3. More to the run
Running back Paul James had a pair of long touchdown runs, and both times there were two key aspects. One was James' ability to accelerate and beat the defender to the sideline so he could turn up the field, and the other was key blocks. On the first, receiver Leonte Carroo had a big block at the 5-yard line, and the second run was possible because the tight end forced his defender inside at the line of scrimmage to give James an open field to the right.
4. Thompson down the field
Yes, that was Rutgers defensive end Marcus Thompson about 20 yards down the field in coverage along the EMU sideline. It is part of one of Rutgers' schemes in which the defensive end drops into coverage to confuse the offensive line blocking schemes and quarterback. If it works, it looks great. If not, folks wonder why a defensive end is covering down the field.
5. Dallas' day
Rutgers backup center Dallas Hendrikson made his first start and he held his own. He did not demonstrate great explosion, but he did a nice job with his technique and not getting beat at the line of scrimmage. He also did a nice job with making calls at the line of scrimmage.
6. Cover issues
With strong side linebacker Jamal Merrell not available (undisclosed injury), EMU took advantage by finding small gaps in the defense for short routes. Without Merrell's length and athleticism, the EMU coaching staff did a nice job of attacking the Rutgers defense time and again.
7. Johnson's speed
One of the reasons EMU's offense didn't challenge Rutgers down the field is the speed at the back of the defense, especially free safety Tejay Johnson, who played in place of injured Jeremy Deering. Johnson should very good instincts and an ability to react and break on the ball quickly.
8. Prince of a call
Offensive coordinator Ron Prince went ultra-conservative after starting quarterback Gary Nova went. He tired to give backup Chas Dodd a few easy throws to start the second half, but after an easy rollout to the right and a completion, Dodd was late in finding the open receiver and then threw behind receiver a few plays later on a roll out to the left.
9. Reversing field
EMU could have had a big play on a reverse in the second quarter, but linebacker Kevin Snyder made a very good but underrated play. It was blocked to the outside, but Snyder was able to get there and force the play back inside. And with it, a big gain turned into a minimal gain.
10. Bracketing deep
Several times EMU sent receivers down the field and Rutgers' defense was ready for it. The ball was thrown (incomplete) to a receiver with very little change of a completion because there was a corner in front of the receiver and a safety over the top.
ScarletReport.com's breakdown of the game