Despite dominating most of the game, the Washington Redskins needed late game heroics in order to defeat the Philadelphia Eagles 23-20. That can largely be attributed to the two explosive plays that the Eagles hit on; one to Riley Cooper and one to Miles Austin. Those two players and the word "explosive" are not typically used in the same sentence unless the word "isn't" separates them. Let's take a look at what happened.
The Redskins are in a Cover 3. Chris Culliver is at the bottom of the screen against Riley Cooper's skinny post. Trenton Robinson is deep as the single high safety.
Eagles run that shotgun sweep action left and Bradford immediately looks right. That draws Trenton Robinson over. Culliver staying over the top of Cooper at the bottom.
Sam Bradford doesn't like what he sees and quickly looks left. Trenton Robinson follows his eyes left. There is a deep crosser in the middle of the field and while that doesn't distract Robinson, Robinson takes far too many extra steps while back-pedaling and opening his hips. Meanwhile at the bottom, Cooper breaks inside while Culliver stays outside but has no inside help.
As Sam Bradford throws, Trenton Robinson is just too flat-footed from those extra steps to get over the top from the middle of the field. Chris Culliver, who may or may not be gutting through pain, isn't able to keep up with Cooper.
Bradford drops it into the bucket and Cooper is able to run it in for the touchdown.
On the Miles Austin touchdown, the Redskins play Cover 1 (man coverage). Chris Culliver is at the top on Miles Austin playing with off technique. Is this by design or is this to negate some of the pressure on Culliver's knee playing press coverage? Austin is running that same skinny post.
When Miles Austin gives away that he's going inside, Culliver tries to cut him off by taking away the inside (a lesson learned because it beat him on the first touchdown). Unfortunately, Miles Austin is a veteran and when Culliver goes to take the inside away, Austin gladly straightens his route back up and takes the outside.
Austin passes Culliver then stacks him (stack = lining up over top a defender after you pass him so his only angle to a well thrown ball is through the receivers back. Basically, a box out.) Austin is outside the numbers so it makes it nearly impossible for Dashon Goldson to close the gap between them.
Bradford drops a dime in the back of the end zone. Touchdown.
This is just another example of a team needing to play for 60 minutes. These plays nearly won the game because the Redskins started the game settling for field goals over touchdowns. Even though the Redskins kept the Eagles mostly contained, it almost wasn't enough. Was Chris Culliverplaying hurt? It appears so but I don't know if he'll admit it. One thing is for sure, opposing offensive coodinators are going to see this tape and use it against Culliver until he proves he is healthy; starting this Sunday with Kyle Shanahan.
Paul Conner is the film analyst for Breaking Burgundy. You can follow Paul on Twitter @P_ConnerJr.
To get instant Redskins notifications, download the NEW Scout mobile app for iOS HERE!
Be sure to check out the ever-growing benefit package of being a Breaking Burgundy Insider! Check it out HERE.