can you throw bubble screens to TEs?
Colts hope to use two, and even three, tight ends
Posted by Mike Florio on May 5, 2012
The NFL is the ultimate copycat league. And for a team that went 2-14 last season, it’s important to find a successful franchise to emulate.
Colts coach Chuck Pagano, who while coordinating the defense in Baltimore witnessed first hand the challenges of dealing with the two top-end tight ends on the Patriots roster, hopes to put together a similar attack in Indianapolis.
“It is a match-up nightmare,” Pagano said Saturday, via comments circulated by the team. “Coming off of the AFC Championship game, nobody knew better than the Ravens going into that game with the two guys [Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez] that [the Patriots] have. It is across the league. You can see it more and more every year.
“You can choose to put a defensive back on them, and they will be undersized, they will get outmuscled and they will get ‘big-boyed’ for the ball. Then you can put a safety or a linebacker on them and they can’t run with them. So we feel like the two guys that we added, and Dominique [Jones] is a physical presence, that guy is 260 pounds and moving around really well. It is a match-up nightmare for any defense.”
The two guys the Colts added are Coby Fleener and Dwayne Allen, taken in the second-round and third-round, respectively, of last weekend’s draft.
Quarterback Andrew Luck took it an extra step. “With three tight ends, do you put an extra safety in [the box] and try to stop the run or do you leave your regular defense in?” Luck said. “How do you do it? How do you match-up with those guys? Do you put a linebacker on them to cover them when they split out wide? So I think it creates mismatches.”
That would be a nice change for the Colts, given that they typically were on the wrong side of the mismatches in 2011.