This season, each and every week, I will bring you a film review article, exclusively for Mile High Huddle. Every touchdown that the Broncos score will be broken down for you. Here. On Mile High Huddle.
First, an explanation of my film schematics. The red arrows indicate routes or movement, coverage (as best I see it) will be indicated in squares. Blitzers will have green lines. The scorer’s name is underlined in yellow. Personnel are on the side in white. Once the play begins, I’ll circle things in yellow to bring your attention to them and players’ lines of sight will be in pink. The explanation of routes can be found here:
All this terminology and diagramming will be fairly clear when you see a play broken down. I list the TD# in game (with season-long numbers in parentheses).
TD 1 (8): 3 yard Julius Thomas pass
This play is a concept that the Broncos have used to score before. Effectively, they will pull the RG on a quarterback rollout, while having the TE come across the formation expecting to possibly receive a shovel pass. Note Montee Ball matched up outside against CB Richard Sherman.
Although Manning rolls towards Demaryius Thomas and Wes Welker in single coverage running a rub route, his eyes are on Julius Thomas the whole time. He shovels it to him and RG Louis Vasquez leads him to paydirt.
TD 2 (9): 26 pass to Jacob Tamme
The Seahawks show their simple signature Cover 3 here and that’s exactly what they do. The outside CBs bail into deep zones and the weakside DT even drops into a middle zone. So it’s a 3-man rush for Manning. Note that, for the second scoring time this game, the Broncos have matched an RB against Richard Sherman – this time, Ronnie Hillman. They are using non-integral offensive pieces to remove Sherman from having an effect on the play.
At the snap, CB Byron Maxwell (top of the screen) flips his hips and runs deep. LB K.J. Wright shimmies out to his right, but ultimately doesn’t get deep enough and plays too far to the sideline. Tamme runs behind him. As Demaryius Thomas sucks Maxwell deep and stems his route to the center of the field, Tamme has the deep sideline wide open. That is how you defeat Cover 3.
2PT Conversion: 2 pass to Demaryius Thomas
As a bonus, here is the two point conversion that the Broncos scored.
Sanders resets to trips right. Demaryius Thomas will run a looping route to the back of the end zone against Richard Sherman. He simply out-hustles him on this ball.
Of note is SS Kam Chancellor and Wes Welker. Chancellor could easily have been flagged for defensive holding here, and Welker in fact bulls through the hold and knocks him over.
That’s all for this week. Check back each and every week as I break down the film of every Broncos touchdown!