Beatdown Watch, Week 10
Sometimes games are won when a player mans up and beats the other guy on the other side of the line. Khaled Elsayed gives some lopsided matchups for this week.
Beatdown Watch, Week 10
The Beatdown Watch is back for Week 10 and it’s got a lot to warn you about.
You know the drill: I pick out some offensive tackles who history tells us could be in for a rough day and assess their chances of getting out without excessively damaging their quarterback.
So where to start? How about Miami…
Derrick Morgan vs. Jonathan Martin
While Martin is our fifth-lowest ranked right tackle on the year, which primarily comes as a result of his poor work in the run game. In pass protection he’s given up just two sacks, two hits, and 19 hurries. While not an ideal amount, it is better than a number of offensive tackles. Indeed, he’s only given up four hurries or more on two occasions this year.
So why are we highlighting this matchup? Well it comes down more to the kind of form that Morgan is in. Since Week 7 he has picked up a sack, eight hits, and 11 hurries, earning a +12.8 grade for his pass rushing in the process. Gabe Carimi, Erik Pears and Winston Justice have all fallen victim to Morgan who has started to look like the first round player he was drafted to be. If he continues the form he’s in, how can he be stopped? It’s not just a case of defending his outside move, with seven of his quarterback disruptions coming on bull rushes and another 10 working the inside shoulder of an offensive linemen. Martin will do well to pay special attention to the spin move of Morgan that has brought a sack, three hits, and two hurries.
Beatdown Probability — Watch Out! Martin is going to need some help from his quarterback getting rid of the ball.
Bruce Irvin vs. Austin Howard
How this contest unfolds could depend on what kind of offensive packages the New York Jets use. For instance, the San Francisco 49ers didn’t want Irvin on the field and only ran three wide receiver sets on 13.3% of offensive plays. The end result? Irvin was only on the field for 12 snaps, picking up one sack and nothing else.
The Seahawk has had an indifferent rookie year but has done a solid job of generating consistent pressure, leading to him having the third-highest Pass Rushing Productivity score of all 4-3 defensive ends. With that in mind, the Jets may want to use less than the 46.4% of three wide receiver sets they’ve used in their last three games. Otherwise, Austin Howard — owner of our fourth-lowest pass blocking grade of all right tackles (and third lowest in Pass Blocking Efficiency) — might be in for a long day.
Beatdown Probability — The game situation will dictate. If the Jets fall behind it’s going to be near impossible to stop Irvin from getting at Howard.
DeMarcus Ware vs. King Dunlap and Demetress Bell
The Cowboys’ Ware has rushed predominantly from the right this year (74.6% of plays) but Dallas isn’t afraid to exploit a matchup they think they can reap some rewards. With the Eagles down two starting offensive tackles, Ware will be licking his chops at the prospect of getting to work over Dunlap or Bell and is likely to get plenty of opportunity to do so.
Bell is likely to take the openside left tackle spot with Dunlap manning Michael Vick’s blindside. Dunlap had been playing well but struggled against the Saints. There he gave up a sack, two hits, and three hurries on his way to his lowest pass blocking grade of the year, but the bigger problem is likely to be Bell. In Buffalo, he was protected by Ryan Fitzpatrick getting rid of the ball so quickly. With Vick (second highest Time To Throw in the league at 3.12) not affording him that luxury, he’s likely to handle the brunt of Ware’s force. Even if he doesn’t, it’s likely that the Cowboy pass rusher is going to get reacquainted with a Vick he got six sacks, two hits, and five hurries on last year.
Beatdown Probability — More Punishment for Vick! It would be a shock if DeMarcus Ware doesn’t have himself a good day.
J.J. Watt vs. Gabe Carimi
Nobody encapsulates the Bears’ offensive line like Carimi. A mauling run blocker, he’s way out of his depth when it comes to pass blocking at the NFL level. So he’s probably not looking forward to J.J. Watt rolling into town.
Watt doesn’t just work on one man. The Texans are happy with him taking on tackles, guards, and centers, safe in the knowledge he’s near unstoppable. That’s why he’s picked up 34 combined sacks, hits, and hurries on 272 pass rushes, good for the best Pass Rushing Productivity of all 3-4 defensive ends. 11 of those pressures have come against tackles, and it may be a case of Carimi spending more time dealing with Connor Barwin and Brooks Reed.
However, if the Bears don’t manufacture a matchup of Watt against their interior (which will come with its own downside) or get a couple of bodies on Watt, he could very well take over this matchup.
Beatdown Probability — It’s coming! It may not come from Watt if the Bears go heavy on the three wide receivers, but the odds point to pressure coming from the right side of the Chicago offensive line.
Terrell Suggs vs. Willie Smith
It’s a bit of a gamble including this because if Khalif Barnes is good to go then the Raiders will jettison Smith quicker than he himself allows pressure. The former Redskin has the fourth-lowest Pass Blocking Efficiency score of all right tackles and is currently the second-lowest right tackle thanks to some truly woeful pass blocking. It literally started from the first snap he stepped in against Miami and has shown no signs of slowing down.
I’ve chosen Suggs as the guy I think the Ravens will use to get at him. In truth, though, they move things around so much in their base and sub-package defenses that it’s hard not to believe that Suggs, Paul Kruger, and Courtney Upshaw all won’t have some success against Smith.
That is if he plays. If not? Well then a Khalif Barnes working himself back to full game shape may not do much better.
Beatdown Probability — SUPER HIGH! So long as Smith is on the field.
Follow Khaled on Twitter: @PFF_Khaled