Bryce Petty made his debut for the Jets, and they scored a paltry six points. Along the way, there were a few plays where the receivers helped out the young QB. Let’s examine these plays.
This of course is the TD play, and the only scoring play for the Jets on this day. The Rams are playing man coverage, with a another defender shading over to the side of Brandon Marshall lined up the left of the formation. This is a great play design by the Jets, because there are really two options on this play. The key to this play is Quincy Enunwa, because his main job is to run and block the defender on Brandon Marshall. The defenders to the inside would assume Marshall is going to move towards the middle of the field, therefore they would try to cut underneath Enunwa to try and tackle the ball carrier. Bilal Powell runs right by Marshall, who flips him the ball for the lateral pass and a TD. The second defender shading towards Brandon Marshall put this play in danger, but this is a great job by Enunwa to block the far right defender. It’s not that he just ran up to him and blocked him, notice the approach angle from Enunwa, because he’s trying to round off his block so he can get to the inside. On a normal block, if Marshall was going to run the ball himself, he would have tried to grab the inside position and seal him off. Brandon Marshall makes a nice throw, and Bilal Powell runs in for the TD. On the other side of the play, notice the pick route set up with Robby Anderson as a possible receiver. The set up is actually very similar to the famous interception in the Superbowl by the Patriots against the Seahawks. The slot receiver blocks the outside corner, which forces the inside defender to switch at the last second, which usually leads to confusion. This one is executed well, but becomes moot because of the great set up on the other side of the field. Bryce Petty gets credited for a TD, but this is one of his easiest passes in the game, as the majority of the work is done by his receivers.
The Rams come out in a two safety look on this play, and they end up playing this perfectly. On the pre-snap read, Bryce Petty sees the linebacker playing off the line, and figures that Bilal Powell should get open to the right of the formation. The linebacker ends up realizing the play, and chases after Powell, which throws off this play. Petty makes a good throw to Powell, somewhat behind him, but Powell makes a great catch and turn up field to gain more yardage towards the first down. The move to the right side of the field gives the Jets four options, but all of them had risks. The first option is Bilal Powell, but there is a linebacker covering him. The outside receiver is also well covered, so that option is taken out because there is a defender on the inside, with a safety over the top. The third option is a streaking Enunwa running across the field, but he’s also well covered. The fourth option is Petty running towards the first down. The easiest play here is Petty running towards the middle of the field, and forcing the LB covering Powell to make a decision. Petty makes a mistake here by refusing to run vertical, instead staying horizontal. If Petty had moved towards the first down, the LB playing Powell would have had to make a decision, as well as the defender playing the outside defender. This is a good pre-snap read, but a bad read by Petty during the play because he’s too focused on going through his progressions that he forgets to push the defense with vertical leverage. He makes a decent throw to Powell, who does most of the work on this play for the first down.
This is just a simple screen pass, and these types of plays usually show up here since most of the work is done after the pass. The Jets are trying to drive down the field for a game winning drive, and the screen pass is a great call here. Powell sets us as if he’s helping with the blocking and then running out for the screen pass, making the large gain. Petty makes a good screen pass here and reaps the rewards.
All three of these plays involve Bilal Powell, who seemed to be the only one that excelled against the Rams in this game. Petty benefits on these plays, but most of the work is done by the receivers. Powell really shows off his ability in the game, and is strongly making a case for being the lead back of the future.
A) How much value does Bilal Powell have right now?
B) Why do you think he has improved in the last year or so?