Welcome back to another exciting episode of ‘Coaches Corner: Make The Call’ – our deep dive into the art of play calling like never before! Having wrapped up our journey through the NFC divisions, it’s time for the AFC East coaches to take the spotlight in this conference. As usual, we’ve tossed a unique football situation their way to test their minds. So, grab a seat, check out the play snapshot and scenario, and prepare to plunge into their thought processes. They’re dissecting every move, sharing insights on their tactics, and demonstrating how the game is played at the top level. Whether you’re an avid football fan, a lover of strategy, or just in it for some fun, you’ve landed in the perfect spot. This series is all about immersing ourselves in the game, facing those challenging decisions, and enjoying every moment of it. So, get your Crumbl Cookies ready, make yourself comfortable, and let’s kick off this episode – it’s time to Make. The. Call!
So here’s the situation. It’s 3rd and 6 in the 4th quarter and you’re down 35-38. There’s 12 seconds left on the clock and you have no more timeouts. Your kicker is playing with a hamstring injury and he’s only able to attempt kicks under 40 yards (purple line is the target area). What’s the call?
“We know we have to get to the sideline to get out of bounds or pick up the first down so we can spike. We would assume zone because they will not want to give up the touchdown, but will need a man beater just in case. I would call a flood concept to the left because it gives us a great chance to get out of bounds. On the right side of the formation we would have a stack set up for our wide receivers to set up a switch release to hopefully beat man coverage. This leaves us vulnerable to a blitz so we 100% need the quarterback to get the ball out of his hands and we will make that clear before the play. If there is an incompletion, we roll the kicker out there and hope for the best.”
“Down and Distance… brings my mind immediately to a throw toward the sideline pass the target line or we have 2 shots at the endzone. I’m going with a flood concept to wide side of the field… flip RB to other side of QB, pick up weak side pressure that looks to be coming. Motion slot WR(#11) to the wide side of field and he’ll go into flats… #83 will give me a corner #80 is giving my a fly to clear out. Back side WR is giving me a post… QB first read is flats, then the corner. If I like the one on one with no safety help then we getting a jump ball to #80. Lastly, very last option, the backside post gets the Td pass if the safety over commits to helping to wide side of field. Sounds like a lot so lemme break it down again. Flip RB to help block…. Motion #11 to left and send him to flat… with running start… #83 gives me a smart route corner #80 gives me a fly and if I like the matchup, we throwing it. Very last option the backside post from #9. Getting ball to flats and up sidelines then out of bounds versus this look. Looks like 3 or Man 1. If I wanted to go for the gusto… I’d wheel the RB to short side of field and have him out run LB. That is all. “
“With the hamstring injury known. The goal should be to get the ball in the endzone. If he’s that hurt I’m not sure I want to trust his leg at all even from under 40. First play we would slide protection right and im going to motion my rb out left. This will help tell man vs zone and then we Streak him to grab attention of the safety. Outside wr on the left is on a deep out, middle wr on a zig as a check down. On the right side inside wr will run a streak and be the hot read, outside wr will be on a comeback. With the safety shading towards the left and the rb on a streak we should have a window on the right side to hit the wr for the glory. If it’s man or zone we would hope the wr gets the separation needed. If that’s not open we have the zig on the left and comeback on the right to get into fg range.”
“I’m calling 4 verts with a rb choice route here. Either taking the shot at the end zone or hoping my hb makes the right choice to find one of those sidelines. Play for the win first then bailout by the rb if all else fails”