AUBURN DRIVE 1:
Starting at the 14:55 mark in the 1st quarter.
1st and 10 - RETURN MOTION, RPO: INSIDE SPLIT ZONE RIGHT w/ QUICK OUT
Return motion here means Schwartz came from the slot, into the formation, and then back to the slot.
Split Zone here means the H-Back (Shenker) crosses the formation to kick the backside end.
I thought the movement in the middle was enough to try and hit it there, but Shivers was not comfortable with it and decided to go backside behind the H-Back. Not much room where he hits it.
2nd and 8 - RPO: COUNTER LEFT w/ DRIVE & OUT
Major shift as Schwartz started as the back in the back field.
This was Counter with the back side guard and H-Back as the lead.
Both Shenker and Jones got caught in the mess because the LT Troxell gets popped backward by the DL, Eboigbe.
Shivers was still able to find some room and get a few. Good job by him that time.
3rd and 4 - DROP BACK: SWITCH ROUTE CONCEPT
AU goes empty on 3rd and short.
They go with the switch routes on both sides of the formation.
Switch routes are like small rub routes and work well against man coverage. These were deeper routes.
Pass protection broke down this time because neither Troxell nor Hamm ever set their post foot. Without this, they both lose their balance as the ends do a great job of getting into their chests. This results in a sack.
AUBURN DRIVE 2:
Starting at the 11:23 mark in the 1st quarter.
1st and 10 - RETURN JET MOTION, GT COUNTER LEFT
This time the counter is run with a guard and tackle pull “GT”.
When Schwartz came in motion, bama rolled the safety down into the box to have 7.
Again, bama’s front does a good job of taking the attack to AU’s OL. Very difficult to get movement so far.
2nd and 7 - ORBIT MOTION, SWING PASS TO WILLIAMS
Orbit motion here means a motion from one side of the formation and behind the QB to the other side.
This is a play right out of bama’s playbook.. with a variation.
The two receivers who would usually block for the screen ran a corner and spot route.
The plan, I believe, was for the DB’s to run with them in man coverage.. however they were not in man coverage.
The result: Williams is hit in the mouth as he catches the ball for a loss.
3rd and 11 - ACROSS MOTION, DROP BACK: DEEP VERTICAL, POST, & OPTION ROUTE
Across motion here means Schwartz went from one side to the other and stayed—this time to make it Trips bunch left.
I believe Shenker had an option route here. I love an option route. It was very unpredictable to give it to Shenker here.
The two deep routes ran off the corner and safety and Shenker broke his off to be by himself and then knew what to do with it after the catch. Great call. Gain of 11.
1st and 10 - RETURN JET MOTION, GT COUNTER RIGHT
Hamm looks good on the down block on the edge and the pullers get there timely.
Bigsby tries to stretch it out here when he should have hit it right behind Hamm. I don’t agree with where he hits this one.
2nd and 9 - QUICK PITCH REVERSE
We all knew the tricks would come back this week. As long as they’re timed well, that’s ok.
This one caught bama flat-footed.
It gave the appearance up front of Split zone. Just one step in the wrong direction by the defense was all this play needed.
Excellent job by Shenker to get out in front and block, and by Stove to follow him and then find the extra yards—as he always does. Gain of 10
1st and 10 - PLAY ACTION: VERTICALS
Looks like AU was taking a deep shot here.
Hamm and Jones let Eboigbe split them. I believe this was supposed to be Jones’ responsibility, but Hamm is supposed to help.
Hamm sees a late blitzer and let’s the initial threat go. That’s not supposed to happen.
Again Nix goes down.
2nd and 12 - RETURN MOTION, RPO: INSIDE SPLIT ZONE RIGHT w/ QUICK OUT TO STOVE
Just a quick and easy toss out to an open Stove who gets stood up quickly after the catch.
You’ll probably notice at this point that bama is playing close to the LOS... and why wouldn’t they? They’re going to do that until Auburn proved it will actually throw it downfield.
AU tried a deep shot, but Nix didn’t have time to throw it so bama won’t change at thing at this point.
3rd and 6 - ACROSS MOTION, FADE TO WILLIAMS
This time Schwartz motions across to make Empty Quads left with a 3 man bunch and a single receiver wide.
bama matches with 4 over 4 and leaves single coverage on Seth Williams on the other side with one high safety.
Jones falls in love with the DL and leaves a wide open hole for the delayed blitzer. Nix has to let it go before he wanted to.
AUBURN DRIVE 3:
Starting at the 5:04 mark in the 1st quarter.
1st and 10 - ACROSS MOTION, DROP BACK: DELAYED SEAM
Schwartz motions over to make the bunch.
There was a little bit of space around Schwartz as he went up the seam, but it was a very tight window that closed quickly.
I like the thought. Have to attack down the field.
2nd and 10 - JET MOTION, FREE PLAY
Brahms caught the nose offside and got them a free play.
Shed Jackson has a bad drop. Either way you’ve got the penalty.
2nd and 5 - JET MOTION, INSIDE ZONE RIGHT LASSO
Lasso here means the H-Back, Pegues, arch releases the read man and blocks the first initial threat inside.
Having the lasso block should have given Nix the green light to pull it. He was scared to do that when they had an extra guy there besides the read man.
He should’ve pulled this one as the read man crashes down hard.
3rd and 6 - DROP BACK: SLANT RUB CONCEPT
Empty set again.
This time the slant comes from Seth Williams who is the widest receiver. There was a bit of a natural rub to get it open.
The Lb in the middle of the field stopped it from happening.
bama ran a stunt and it came free but a great peel back by Manning allowed Nix to escape.
9 yard scramble.
1st and 10 - JET MOTION, RPO: INSIDE ZONE LEFT w/ SWING TO STOVE
Bama still playing very close. Again, until Auburn can make something happen down the field, they have no reason to back off.
2nd and 8 - QB DRAW
This was an excellent call and caught bama napping.
A questionable holding call on Jones brought it back.
2nd and 18 - INSIDE ZONE RIGHT LOCK
Interesting call here.
The thought is maybe Tank will find a crease and bust it with bama playing back.
3rd and 15 - FLARE SCREEN TO SHIVERS
If you’ve read my breakdowns, you know this is my biggest pet peeve.
I can’t stand the screen on 3rd and long. There’s a time for it, but it’s far too predictable.
AUBURN DRIVE 4:
Starting at the 14:01 mark in the 2nd quarter
1st and 10 - RPO: INSIDE ZONE RIGHT w/ FLARE TO SCHWARTZ
Nix gives it off to Bigsby and he finds a nice lane off of Brahms and Manning.
This is the best rep so far by the OL in the run game—and Bigsby put it on the ground. That’s about how things were going.
2nd and 5 - INSIDE ZONE LEFT LASSO
Nix makes the correct read and probably could’ve out run the read man to the edge but cuts up instead.
He does well to get as much as he does.
3rd and 1 - RPO: INSIDE SPLIT ZONE RIGHT w/ FLAT PASS TO PEGUES
Good call here to bring the alley defenders in as they think it’s split zone.
Just an easy flip over to Pegues in the flats after bama’s defense squeezes in on the run. Pegues makes Battle feel his presence.
Gain of 10
1st and 10 - FAKE INSIDE ZONE, END AROUND TO SCHWARTZ
Not a terrible idea as it worked earlier. This was a different look.
Great play by Moore for bama. Even if he’d missed bama was going to stop this play.
2nd and 13 - JET MOTION, COUNTER LEFT
As it was the whole time, the box was loaded and bama was playing up tight.
Tank has nowhere to go and the OL is muddied up in the middle.
3rd and 10 - DRIVE & QUICK SLANT
This is a rub concept. Drive the corner off and slant underneath.
Got away with an offensive pass interference by Jackson who put his hands on the DB.
Schwartz always scares me with the ball in traffic because he does not carry the ball correctly. That’s why he fumbles so often when he lowers his head. Gain of 12
1st and 10 - RPO: INSIDE ZONE LEFT w/ SWING TO SCHWARTZ
The RPO’s are so much more effective when AU goes with tempo.. but this time, after a long review, the swing pass had so room to work.
Great job blocking and great job of Schwartz to get as many yards as possible.
2nd and 1 - INSIDE ZONE LEFT
Great movement again in the middle. Brahms, Jones, and Manning.
Another really good rep for the OL in IZ.
Bigsby didn’t look normal but this was a tough run.
Gain of 3.
1st and 10 - RPO: INSIDE SPLIT ZONE LEFT w/ FLAT PASS TO PEGUES
The flat pass got the end to get confused because it was successful before. That’s what you want.
That allowed a lane to open up play side for Bigsby. Nice gain and a good wash by the right side of the OL.
I’d say to this point AU’s OL in the run game has had some really good reps, and some decent ones. Nothing stood out to me as getting beat badly.
2nd and 5 - INSIDE ZONE RIGHT
Great job to get hats on aiming points and stay with them by all 5 OL.
Tank breaks it outside with lots of room.
Wright for bama comes down and makes one of the best form tackles I’ve seen in a while. This is why they’re so good... little things like this.
3rd and 3 - SPRINT OUT: LEVELS CONCEPT
Here the two receivers will run a corner and an out, giving two levels to throw to—high and low.
The throw was way too late. An earlier throw could’ve been completed.
I like the sprint out game but with the running success on this drive I might would’ve stayed with it.
AUBURN DRIVE 5:
Starting at the 6:17 mark in the 2nd quarter.
1st and 10 - INSIDE ZONE RIGHT
This looks like a missed assignment.
The end on the play side is left unblocked. He’s left 1 on 1 with Bigsby and that is not supposed to happen.
Bigsby makes him miss anyway, but this could’ve been a much bigger play.
2nd and 4 - RPO: INSIDE ZONE RIGHT w/ SWING SCREEN TO STOVE
Nix pulls and decides to wait last minute to swing it out and side arms it.
Stove makes a play out of it as usual.
Gain of 6
Auburn is putting some drives together right now.
1st and 10 - DROP BACK: SEAM ROUTE TO WILLIAMS
Great protection this time. Troxell is by himself on an island and handles Anderson really well.
Nix placed the ball really in the only place he could have. Tough play.
At least it was an attempt to push it down the field.
2nd and 10 - GT COUNTER LEFT
If Shivers follows Hamm, who is the second puller, he will have a lot of green grass.
I don’t agree with where he decided to hit it. This is where patience is important.
AU has good backs, but they sometimes miss the little things. Little things can be the difference in a 2 yard gain and and 20 yard gain.
3rd and 10 - ACROSS MOTION, OPTION ROUTE AND 50/50 TO WILLIAMS
Quads left again
Single coverage on Williams but perfect coverage and too high on the throw. I’d rather just give Williams a shot at it.
Another drive stalled.
AUBURN DRIVE 6:
Starting at the 1:23 mark in the 2nd quarter.
1st and 10 - DROP BACK: QUICK OUT
Was curious to see how AU would go about this drive as they usually like to play it safe before half.
This play was a good start. Nothing special. Just a quick flip out to the sideline.
2nd and 6 - OUTSIDE ZONE
Shivers gets the call on Outside Zone as he usually does.
Hamm and Jones work a combo on the end to perfection and Shivers cuts behind it for a nice gain.
3rd and 2 - DROP BACK: DRIVE AND OUT
Williams was supposed to push the corner off and open up the out at the sticks.
Pressure caused Nix to scramble out of the pocket and the Out was covered up so he went to Williams as a back shoulder throw.
Gain of 16
1st and 10 - DROP BACK: SLANT & GO
The first double move I’ve seen in a while.
This is what bama does very often and it often works.
The head fake freezes the safety and then all that is needed is a perfect throw.
Nix delivered the best throw he’s made all year and Williams can’t grab it. Painful play to watch. One of the better calls I’ve seen as well.
Can’t win a game like this if you can’t execute. Very simple.
2nd and 10 - PLAY ACTION: CORNER w/ OUT
Similar to the level concept. Kobe Hudson comes in and makes a big play.
Nix had time and threw a strike in the small window.
These routes should be available in every situation. Not just in desperation mode.
20 yard gain
1st and 10 - DROP BACK: DRIVE & OUT
The out was a long throw and the timing was off. Coverage too tight to drop it in.
2nd and 10 - DROP BACK: SLANT & GO
Same play as the Seth drop.
They were determined to get this one back but this time no one was fooled and Nix has to try to make something happen.
3rd and 10 - DROP BACK: DRIVE & OUT
Back to the same out route. Again it’s a long throw, this time the well-trained bama corner was on top of it and picked it.
Another chance for points before half squandered.
AUBURN DRIVE 7:
Starting at the 13:36 mark in the 3rd quarter.
1st and 10 - GT COUNTER RIGHT
This play was interesting. Guard and Tackle pull with the H-Back Shenker out as a lead blocker on the edge.
Bigsby turns it to the perimeter and gets a few after running gingerly.
And that was it. The camera caught him shaking his head that he couldn’t go.
2nd and 4 - INSIDE ZONE LEFT
It looked to me that there were a couple of small lanes in the middle as bama had only 5 in the box.
Shivers again takes it outside. Not sure I agree with that.
3rd and 2 - PLAY ACTION: SEAM & WHEEL
This was a nice risk on 3rd and short. Definitely not predictable.
Bama was crept up as they had been the entire game.
The play action made them squeeze down and Shed Jackson pops open right up the seam. I love that way of thinking.
Pegues was behind him on a wheel and that caught the attention of the guy who was supposed to be manned up on Jackson.
Best call of the game here.
If Jackson doesn’t stumble he may get close to scoring. Gain of 37
1st and 10 - DROP BACK: FAKE SCREEN & GO
This play here is on Bo Nix. I don’t normally say that because I’m usually in agreement with Bo’s decision.
This was not a wrong decision, but a bad throw—or a miss.
Schwartz steps back as if he’s setting up a screen and Jackson is in front.. when the corner steps up to play it, Schwartz takes off.
Nix had a clean pocket and got a good blitz pickup by Shivers... then never gets set to throw.
The throw is not accurate as Schwartz has the corner beat for 6. A perfect throw and this one is going to the house. Another missed opportunity.
2nd and 10 - RPO: GT COUNTER RIGHT w/ SWING PASS TO STOVE
I would’ve liked Nix to hand it off here as they had numbers to the right side.
Instead he flips it out to Stove and it goes nowhere.
Sometimes football is as simple as having more guys on one side than the defense does. Doesn’t have to be rocket science.
3rd and 11 - DROP BACK: RUB & QUICK SLANT
This is the same play that Schwartz got a first down and then fumbled.
The problem this time is numbers again..
bama is playing with 3 over 3 and the safety was with this the entire way.
AUBURN DRIVE 8:
Starting at the 9:01 mark in the 3rd quarter
1st and 10 - DROP BACK: RB WHEEL
Shivers runs the wheel out of the backfield.
Nix gets it over there quickly but a little high and Shivers is unable to get anything extra. Still a good start to the drive.
2nd and 4 - JET MOTION, RPO: INSIDE ZONE RIGHT w/ SWING PASS TO SCHWARTZ
There’s that speed on display. We all want to see the deep ball to him, but space is just as important.
18 yard gain in a flash.
1st and 10 - PLAY ACTION: VERTICAL & HITCH
Nix rolls left and throws it quickly to Schwartz in the hitch.
Shivers picks up the edge blitz beautifully.
Gain of 16
1st and 10 - RPO: INSIDE ZONE LEFT w/ QUICK SCREEN TO SCHWARTZ
Just an easy throw out to Flash with 2 blockers in front and he gets a nice gain again. AU tolling now.
2nd and 3 - DROP BACK: FAKE SCREEN, WHEEL TO PEGUES
Nix kept backing up and didn’t help Shivers or Troxell with their edge rushers.
He steps up but way too late and gets taken down for a big loss.
3rd and 15 - DROP BACK: POST TO WILLIAMS
This was not a bad call.
Nix started drifting to his right in the pocket while he should have been climbing straight forward.
This caused the throw to be way behind Williams instead of out in front on the post and its almost intercepted.
Again, all the momentum went away when he was sacked.
What started as a great drive for Nix ended very badly.
AUBURN DRIVE 9:
Starting at the 4:28 mark in the 3rd quarter.
1st and 10 - DROP BACK: UNDERNEATH SLANT
This time a nice quick precise throw to an easy slant.
Bama now backed up as they know AU is in desperation.
Again, the game is not brain surgery.
Bama not doing anything astronomical on defense. They understand how to play the odds.
2nd and 6 - DROP BACK: OPTION ROUTE FOR SCHWARTZ
I’ve been critical of Nix in the pocket in this game after a few really good games for him in that regard.
The OL has not been bad in pass protection—not perfect—but not bad.
This time, they were bad.
Jones got run through like water on this one. Very bad rep.
3rd and 6 - DROP BACK: DOUBLE SLANTS
I’m not understanding why Nix didn’t step up this time.
This is usually where he likes to step up and run with it.
Instead he keeps retreating and can’t deliver a good ball to move the chains.
AUBURN DRIVE 10:
Starting at the 13:27 mark in the 4th quarter.
1st and 10 - JET MOTION, INSIDE ZONE LEFT
MAR joins the fun.
Nothing doing as he tried to find a lane somewhere in the middle.
2nd and 10 - RETURN MOTION, DROP BACK: OPTION ROUTE TO STOVE
I really like these option routes.
On the option routes, the receiver has the choice of where they want to break into their route. They can break a couple of different ways based on the coverage.
This time Stove basically made it a hitch and gets the ball quickly then gets the 1st down. 10 yard gain.
1st and 10 - RETURN MOTION, INSIDE SPLIT ZONE RIGHT
Great movement in the middle of the line and MAR punches it right inside for a nice chunk of yardage.
2nd and 5 - INSIDE ZONE LEFT
Coffey this time gets great initial contact with hat and hands and then just let’s it go.
He never locked on the end and that ruined the play quickly.
3rd and 8 - TUNNEL SCREEN
Just a complete breakdown as bama’s secondary was salivating for a screen.
They knew what was coming and they got it. Interception
AUBURN DRIVE 11:
Starting at the 10:38 mark in the 4th quarter.
1st and 10 - JET MOTION, INSIDE SPLIT ZONE LEFT
MAR takes it backside to the perimeter for a couple.
I don’t agree with that as the backside of the OL was getting a great push. That’s where this one needed to hit.
2nd and 8 - POWER G READ
Nix reads and rides and then keeps up behind the guard for a short gain.
I want to see this and outside zone more often during the game. I’m sure y’all have never heard me say that...
3rd and 3 - THROWBACK SCREEN
A bama DL picks up on the screen and Nix is left in deep trouble.
He then gives us his best Johnny Manziel impression and gets away from two bama defenders in the endzone on his way for a first down. Wow. Fighter
1st and 10 - INSIDE ZONE LEFT LOCK
Huge lane opens up behind Brahms and Manning.
MAR hits it quickly and runs through a few defenders while he’s at it.
13 yard gain.
1st and 10 - POWER G TOSS
This play is a read for Nix.. he can toss it or hold it and turn up.
Great block on the edge by Shenker.
MAR gets another nice pickup.
2nd and 5 - ACROSS MOTION, GT COUNTER LEFT
MAR follows behind the pullers, Jones and Coffey, and gets the first down after a nice burst.
He looks like he’s started to understand the goal better. Find the lane and hit it wide open.
1st and 10 - INSIDE SPLIT ZONE LEFT
Shivers comes back in and gets a huge burst through the big hole created play side.
Tough game for him at times, glad to see him get a nice run after a good decision.
2nd and 3 - PLAY ACTION, JET MOTION, BACK SHOULDER TO HUDSON
Hudson didn’t get a chance as Nix was rushed and threw it over his head.
However, they called Pass interference. Good job fighting through it, Kobe.
1st and 10 - INSIDE SPLIT ZONE RIGHT
MAR hits it inside for a short gain. Not much room there.
2nd and 9 - PLAY ACTION: UNBALANCED LINE, TE SLIP
Shenker is actually the LT here but he is eligible. He slips out after blocking for 2 Mississippi and is wide open.
We’ve seen this one before. It always works. 33 yard gain. Shenker got some definite targets.
1st and goal from the 8 - INSIDE SPLIT ZONE LEFT
Without anywhere to hit it, Richards bounces way outside and makes 2 guys miss all the way down to the 1.
Very nifty running there.
2nd and goal from the 1 - INSIDE ZONE LEFT
MAR tries to hammer it in but can’t find a good place to hit.
3rd and goal from the 1 - INSIDE ZONE RIGHT TD!
Nix pulls and barrels ahead for 6.
Shut out is no more.
Good job by Troxell to keep working his man and not getting off of the block.