Week 4- Rams Vs. Bengals Film Breakdown

Welcome to the film room, where the game gets up close and personal! We’re diving headfirst into the Rams vs. Bengals recent showdown, a matchup that kept us on the edge of our seats. Sure, it didn’t end the way we wanted, but every game is a lesson, and that’s what makes football so exciting. Let’s unravel the secret sauce behind the Rams’ plays and defensive moves. I’ll be breaking down some highlights from both sides of the ball and showing you what worked and why.

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Rams Vs. Bengals Film Breakdown

Tutu Atwell “Touchdown”

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On Tutu’s big run for a near touchdown, McVay sends him on a jet sweep, using his speed to his advantage. He first motions Ben Skowronek out of the backfield to show the defense was in man coverage with only one safety on the back end. The formation has all the tells of a run to Kyren Williams and the first play fake opportunity goes to him.

The Bengals blitz Daxton Hill and both of the linebackers bite on the play fake which allows Atwell to get to the edge for a big gain.

One of the biggest reasons this play works is the rest of the offense’s blocking ability. Higbee sells the run block and quickly cuts to the outside to be one of the lead blockers for Tutu. Puka and Skowronek also do a great job of climbing to the second level of blockers and making sure that the defensive player that was matched up against them got blocked.

So far this season, there have been many big plays due to the use of motion in the offense, and receivers getting a sort of running start on their routes, this is no different.

Aaron Donald Sack

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On Aaron Donald’s sack the defense was running a hybrid cover 1 scheme with, for some reason, Michael Hoecht matched up in man coverage on their tight end. I think this play, in particular, highlights the Rams need for an edge rusher, as the offensive line double teams Aaron Donald and Jonah Williams while Byron Young and Christian Rozeboom work on the other linemen.

Young gets some good push on the lineman, but Mixon stifles Rozeboom on the linebacker blitz. If Donald and another defensive lineman keep getting those double teams on the interior, having someone who can consistently win on the edge should be a top priority. Donald barrells through the lineman swimming through like a shark for the sack.

Akhello Witherspoon Pick

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For the final breakdown, the diagram comes to us via next-gen stats. The Bengals are running a very vertical pass play, somewhat of a sail concept with Tee Higgins and Ja’marr Chase going deep. Witherspoon is in man-to-man with Tyler Boyd. Derion Kendrick is in off coverage on Tee Higgins and Decobie Durant on Chase with safety help from Jordan Fuller.

The highlight of this play is definitely the secondary play in which the whole secondary does a great job covering the receivers so the pass rush gets close to getting home, leading Joe Burrow to try to fit in the pass to Boyd on a tight window, resulting in the pick.

On this play in particular Aaron Donald is triple-teamed by the entirety of the interior line resulting in a one-on-one for Byron Young, Hoecht, and Jonah Williams, again showing why an edge upgrade is a priority. Young has done a great job so far pass rushing but there’s always room for improvement on the defensive line.