Analyzing 3rd down conversions versus the Jets.
The New York Jets defense is currently ranked 6th overall in the league. They are the top run defense in the league giving up an average of 81.5 yards/game. This game will be an interesting match-up between the top run offense versus the top run defense. The Jets defense has given up some yardage through the air, allowing about 239 yards a game, which is ranked 16th overall.
When you can stop the run that well, you force offenses into 3rd and long situations. 3rd down defense is a strength of theirs. They are the 2nd best team on 3rd down percentage this year. Offenses have only converted 3rd downs at a 32% rate against. In fact they held the Patriots last week to 1/10 on third downs. Those situations have allowed the Jets to pin their ears back and get at the quarterback. They are currently ranked 12th in sacks with 37 and they have the 4th most interceptions in the league.
In the prior match-up between these two teams the Bills were 5 for 16 on third downs. Which is a 32 % rate, right on par with the Jets average. Here is the breakdown on how the Bills executed on third downs:
With all of the injuries on the Bills they will have to be better in this department. Here is the current injury report according to BuffaloBills.com:
So as you can see the Bills offense will have an uphill battle all day. In my opinion Roman and the offense need to limit their 3rd and long situations. The Jets are going to stack the box against the Bills to make Tyrod beat them. The Jets have the personnel and mentality to do it. In that first game Mccoy basically won the game for the Bills. He made the disciplined Jets defense miss on several occasions. But when you watch some of the film, the Bills could have been better. They put themselves in some terrible third and long positions and that is what killed drives. Lets take a look at the film and how the Bills attacked the Jets on 3rd down.
Play 1 Not converted- 3rd and 12, Blitz, Cover 0 Man Spy, Thrown away
– Deep safety is actually a spy on Taylor. -Bills do a decent job of picking up the blitz assignments, but the routes are so deep that Taylor doesn’t have enough time.
Play 2 Not converted-3rd and 10, Blitz Cover 1, Taylor scramble
-Jets bring another blit. -Taylor probably could’ve pulled the trigger on the crossing route, but the safety deters him from doing so.
Play 3 Converted-3rd and 4, Rush four, Cover 3, 4 yard out pattern to Sammy
-Sammy’s feet were just too quick for Revis on this play. -The trips bunch WRs run a spacing concept, each finding holes in the Cover 3 defense.
Play 4 Not converted-3rd and 17, Designed Run, Taylor 4 yard gain
-The Bills decide to run and play field position on this play. -Taylor fakes the run to Mccoy then gets up field for a gain of 4 yards.
Play 5 Not converted-3rd and 2, Roll out pass vs. Man Cover 1 Sacked
-The play design did not fool the contain pass rusher Muhammad Wilkerson -He did not bite on the Jet sweep to Sammy -So he has a free rush at Tyrod, only WR that came “open” was Hogan on the out route
Play 6 Not converted- 3rd and 5, blitz cover 1, Sammy drops the pass
-Bills stack the WRs. -Jets blitz and play man cover 1. -Sammy drops the potential first down.
Play 7 Converted- 3rd and 2, Pitch to Shady, 4 yard gain.
-Heck of a play by Shady, makes several guys miss. -RT Henderson and TE Clay pull wide and lead the play.
Play 8 Converted- 3rd and 9, Cover 0, blitz, Completion to Woods for 10 yards
-Jets blitz, it’s picked up pretty well. -WRs run deep comeback routes versus Cover 0. Good throw by TT.
Play 9 Converted- 3rd and 1, Dive run by Karlos for 13 yards
-Bills motion Sammy into the backfield and hand it off to Karlos and he plows through a DB for a 13 yard gain.
Play 10 Not converted- 3rd and 11, Rush four, Cover 4 variation, WR falls down incomplete pass
-This was a big play that the Bills would’ve probably scored on. -Jets are in a version of Cover 4. The safeties are reading the #2 Wrs to their side. If they run in/out breaking routes they let them go. If they run vertical routes they run with them. Safety on bottom of screen sees #2 run an out route so he picks up the slant by the #1 WR. -Sammy is the primary in the slot. The safety is reading the #2 WR. He runs a crossing route and Sammy runs a vertical stem so he and the slot DB (1/4 field) have Sammy bracketed. Sammy runs an in route but he and Woods trip over each other.
Play 11 Not converted- 3rd and 2, Roll out pass, Rush four, Rolled coverage, Pass complete short of first
-Bills are in a trips bunch alignment. -The defense shows single high man coverage pre-snap. -Post snap they drop into zone coverage with their secondary rolled to the trips side. The DB over Sammy has half the field. The single high safety has 1/4 of the field, the rolled corner has the other deep 1/4. -Taylor gets the ball to the arrow route in the flat. -The slot DB has the flats and recognizes the route combination and stops the WR short of the first.
Play 12 Not converted- 3rd and 16, trap run play to Shady Mccoy, Gain of 14 yards
-The play is blocked really well. -Wood kicks out the defenders to the left and Richie traps the NT Wilkerson. Gain of 14 yards just short of the 1st.
Play 13 Not converted- 3rd and 12, Rush three, Cover 3 Spy, Complete to Clay but short of the first
-Defense looks to be rushing four defenders. -Bills run a three man route. Sammy on the square in route. Hogan the deep out and Clay up top runs a slow developing deep comeback route. -The deep third defender and flats defender have the play defended well. It is a small window but Taylor makes the throw. Clay has to get that first down!
Play 14 Not converted- 3rd and 1, Power run play right, Defense with 10 in the box, Missed assignment leads to loss on the play.
-Bills run a power play to the right. -Jets have 10 near the LOS. -Henderson and Miller work the double team. Clay blocks down on the ILB. Richie or Felton blow their assignment. One of those guys were suppose to pick up the DE. Based on my experience I believe this is on Felton. He should’ve kicked out the DE and Richie would’ve led up through the hole. But it is very difficult to know for sure.
Play 15 Converted- 3rd and 2, Pass to Sammy, Defense rushes 4, Cover 3, Complete to Sammy for 4 yards
-The Bills are in a 3×1 set. Three WRs to the top and Sammy alone vs. Revis down low. -The defensive line contain rushes to keep TT in the pocket. They play cover 3 on the back end. Sammy wins the route.
Play 16 Not converted- 3rd and 1, Pin and Pull sweep left, 3-4 defense, ILB run blitz blows the play up, Shady unable to pick up the first down
-The Bills run the pin and pull sweep left. Richie pulls and kicks out the force defender Richardson. Richardson did a great job of setting the edge and forces Shady to stay inside. -The Jets’ ILB Harris, run blitzes through the back-side A gap. That makes Miller and Henderson have to execute tough reach blocks on their defenders. Miller doesn’t get across the defenders face. -That squeezes down the running lanes for Shady. -Shady doesn’t have many options and he loses a yard.
The Bills want to win this game for many reasons. They want to end this horrible season on a high note, they want to win for their coach but most of all they want to keep a division rival out of the playoffs. In order for them to accomplish that feat they will need to play better football on 3rd down. They converted on 3rd down and short situations really well last meeting but they failed on just about anything over four yards or more. The Jets will again try to keep the Bills in those situations. It is time for Taylor and his WRs to show that they are able to carry this team when it is needed.