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How the Jaguars beat the Jets twice with the same play

New York Jets v Jacksonville Jaguars Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

In the first quarter of Sunday’s game, the Jaguars found a play that worked against the coverage the Jets were running. The Jets’ coverage wasn’t straight zone or man. There are some indicators that show this, but I won’t bore you with that talk. There are a few possibilities as to what coverage the Jets were running, but I won’t bore you with them either.

I just want to take you through the key parts of the play.

In the middle of the field, a Jacksonville tight end runs a route up the field, which Jamal Adams carries.

Adams is shown carrying that route in the red circle. Underneath, Avery Williamson is occupied by a shallow crossing route run by Austin Seferian-Jenkins (pink). What he doesn’t recognize until it’s too late is Donte Moncrief is running another shallow crossing route into his area.

Williamson is slow to pass off Seferian-Jenkins to Lee and pick up Moncrief. Adams is too far up the field to help.

This turns into a nice gain for Jacksonville.

Flash forward to an important third down play in the second quarter. Take a guess at to what happens.

Again the Jaguars have a route in the middle of the field that carries a Jets cover guy up the field. Instead of a safety in Jamal Adams, this time it is a slot corner in Buster Skrine.

Once again, there is a shallow cross occupying a defender (pink). Donte Moncrief is the receiver. Darron Lee is the defender. Once again there is another cross into the occupied defender’s area (yellow). T.J. Yeldon is running the route.

Lee notices it too late, and by the time he passes off Moncrief to Avery Williamson, Yeldon is wide open. Skrine is also in no position to make a play.

The Jaguars got a touchdown out of this one.

There’s blame to go around here. This is not very good execution by the Jets. The linebackers didn’t recognize or communicate well. The team also blew opportunities to make tackles after the catch to limit the damage either because defenders whiffed or got themselves out of position.

The Jaguars coaching staff also deserves a tip of the cap. They found something that worked against a coverage and went back to it in a key spot.

There is an equal but opposite reaction here as well. It is one thing to be beaten once. When the defense runs a coverage a second time and gets beaten by the exact same concept, the playcalling becomes fair game for criticism.

It also is worth noting that this appears to be a complex coverage. Different players over two plays showed an inability to execute it. If your players aren’t able to run a play successfully, should it really be in the game plan?