Instead of Flacco taking 5 and 7 step drops and the O-line not being able to hold off the rush long enough for the receivers to work themselves open downfield, he was taking 3 and 5 step drops with shorter patterns early. That let him and the O get into rhythm, and it helped the O-line because they didn't have to poss-pro so long.
This was more of what the Coryell is supposed to look like than Cameron was trying to do. They ran the ball, and threw for first downs when they had to. They didn't try to force the big play. The big plays will come: sooner or later the defense is going to try and cheat up and take away the shorter stuff.
On that touchdown to Rice, it was a thing of beauty. They were 2nd and 5. Rice AND Pitta were right at the first down line. Pitta a yard behind it, Rice on it. Joe actually had his pick of who he could throw to and likely either of them would have had the 1st down. Actually Pitta was wide open with no one covering him. But it just so happens Rice is a little shiftier than Pitta, as San Diego also found out (no offense "Hands"), and took it for the TD.
Pitta was wide open a lot today too. Two plays come to mind. It's 2nd and 5 and they send Pitta on a simple flair out to the right. Not downfield, just a nice little short corner out. Flacco hits him and it's 7 yards and a first down. Later in the 4th quarter it's 3rd and 1. Again Cameron would launch the ball downfield. Instead, while still in the shotgun, Pitta goes short left and Flacco hits him for 6 yards and........another first down. Extending the drive.
Oh and one other thing. The Ravens got themselves in a couple ugly spots like 3rd and 19 and that whole bizarre 8 minute sequence in the 3rd quarter. Cameron at the point of 3rd and 19 would have gone with the good old predictable shotgun draw to Rice for nothing and punted. Instead THIS is the time Caldwell draws up the right deep call and Flacco hits Pitta for 36 yards. Oh yeah, and in the process Flacco takes off toward the line scrimmage to escape pressure and throws a laser-accurate pass to get it into Pitta's hands.
Same thing earlier in the game. 2nd quarter 3rd and 19. Again, Cameron would have pissed his pants and ran the ball and punted. Caldwell says hell no, and the result is Flacco throwing a 36 yard air-dart to Boldin.
Those are the kind of plays that make an offense successful, and confident. It was as much fun to watch as week 1 was.
Now, the 60 million dollar question. Does Caldwell have the balls to call these plays in Cincy next week. And does Harbaugh have the balls to let him?
1) Yanda: he really solidifies both our run and pass blocking
2) Caldwell: another week to tweak this scheme. Really it's not a bad scheme--it's more like it's incomplete. What Caldwell did was add more elements to it, while continuing to use the whole field and mixing up our play: short passes/deep passes, runs inside/runs outside etc.
3) Receivers not dropping passes, even making tough catches.
And all 3 of these led to...
4) Joe played with confidence. He stepped into his throws instead of throwing off his back foot, he moved around in the pocket instead of being `a 6' 7" statue--even throwing on the run. When Joe's mechanics don't fall apart and he doesn't feel shackled, he's capable of playing this dynamically. We've seen him do it too often for it to be a fluke.
1. The O-line gave Joe plenty of time in the pocket. The famed Giants' pass rush was nearly non-existent, whereas the Broncos' was dominant. The return of Yanda was a big help here.
2. There was a clear emphasis on getting Joe in rhythm and rolling early.
3. We worked to establish the run before taking the deep play-action shots.
4. The coaching staff had clearly identifed the weakest link in the Giants' secondary (Webster) and kept attacking him relentlessly. Staying with what has been working hasn't always been our strong suit in the past.
5. Similarly they had obviously identified the Giants' backs as a weakness in pass protection and again Pees kept attacking with some nice blitz calls.
Good gameplan on both sides of the ball + great execution = confidence = points = wins
To me, the key to this game was the first drive in the no huddle... it got Joe in a rythym, and that is a big key to his play. I told my wife after that first drive that they might roll the Giants, and for once I was right!
All the above.
Plus, Execution by the players - mainly on converting 3rd Downs.
Defense was rested throughout the game.
Young guy, Chykie Brown? He was everyehere.
How about the obvious.
The Giants are pretty bad, they lost to Atlanta 34-0. They are not in Denvers League and are not as good as Washington, and probably on the same level as the Steelers.
We killed a bad team at home, good win but doesn't mean the Ravens are all of a sudden Super Bowl contenders. The Ravens are a 4 seed, should beat the Colts at home and then will lose to whomever they play in the second round.
The simple answer:
The biggest difference in this game came on 3rd down. The ravens converted on 11 of 18 third downs while holding the giants to 2/10.
My answer: Playcalling, simple as that.
This is the first game in a long long while where I haven't been able to call a lot of the plays pre-snap.... I had gotten good at it under Cam (as had probably most of us).
What was with the motion man going into 3 point stance on the other side? They usually rounded the cut upfield at ball snap.
I saw Rice hit in stride in the middle, not standing there late waiting as a check-down.
Now as time goes on, we may be able to again impress the casual fan with our play reading, but I stunk at it this last game, and looks like the Giants did also.
Boldin had a very good game, made some tough catches. I had almost forgotten how good he can be. (Okay, I guess I did forget).
don't care how awful the Jints were, they were the team on our sched. too bad we couldn't have played the Iggles later in the year.
I'm real happy with how the new guys produced. Bernard Pierce--breakout game. Arthur Jones contributed, Chykie Brown came up big, and Omar Brown sure proved he was worth the draft pick.
Oh, wait, he was undrafted :thumbup: adding to the Ozzie legend (Bart Scott, Will Demps, Jameel McClain).
I really like that we hung on to Omar Brown.
He may never be a starter at safety, but he is nice depth with upside.
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