LOOKING BACK (Slightly)By John Turney
Sam Bradford injured his knee Sunday versus the Carolina Panthers and is likely out of the season. The injury seems typical for the kind of luck Bradford has had in St. Louis since being the first overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft.
When he has protection and receivers who can bring the ball in he's had success. Unfortunately, his pass protection and skills sets for his receivers have been lacking.
However, in the following nine stills (All credits go to NFL Replay) we can see what Bradford is capable of.
One a first down (a likely running down) in the third quarter the Rams line up with two tight ends right and the Z-receiver (off the line) outside the X-receiver who is in a tight split (inside the numbers). The Z-receiver motions to the two tight end side and the cornerback who was covering him stays with the X-and the corner who was lined up over the X-receiver follows the motion of the Z- receiver across the formation, giving the impression of man-to-man coverage underneath.
Brian Quick on a deep skinny post) and the Y (tight end) Lance Kendricks runs an 'under' route and the Z-receiver (Chris Givens) runs an 'over' route at a depth of 12-15 yards.
Thomas Davis and the running back, Zac Stacy, to pick up Luke Kuechly.
In zone coverage, your "man" is the guy who crosses your zone in a classic case of how zone coverage becomes man.
In all the play gained 73-yards.
For the season, Bradford upped his passer rating to over 90 and in 6½ games he completed 159 of 262 passes for a completion percentage of 60.7 and totaled 1687 yards, 14 touchdown passes and for interceptions.
Those numbers put Bradford on pace for numbers like 363/599 on completions and attempt, 3856 yards for 32 TDs and 9 INTs. But in 2013 those will not happen. "The kn-ee, the kn-ee, always the kn-ee"—Howard Cosell