Film review: The Eagles OL, with an assist from the game plan, turned Jason Pierre-Paul into a near non-factor

In the first quarter, Jason Pierre-Paul beat Demetress Bell soundly around the edge and got a piece of Michael Vick’s shoulder pad.  Vick was able to duck out of JPP’s grip, and he raced around the edge with DTs Linval Joseph and Rocky Bernard in pursuit for a gain of 3.  That was the only legitimate pressure JPP got on Michael Vick the entire night.

During the telecast, NBC’s Cris Collinsworth said that he asked Michael Vick what his reads are against the Giants when he walks up to the line of scrimmage.  Vick answered, “Jason Pierre-Paul, and Jason Pierre-Paul.”

I was curious how much added attention the Eagles paid JPP Sunday night, so I took a look at all his snaps when the Eagles dropped back to pass.  By my count, the Eagles dropped back to pass 35 times.  On five of them, JPP was not in the game.  On one, JPP dropped into coverage.  That left JPP with 29 opportunities to rush the QB.  On the graphic to the right, here’s what JPP faced.

Some notes on how the Eagles were able to slow JPP and the Giants pass rush:

  • Of the 29 pass rush opportunities, JPP had 1-on-1 matchups with Todd Herremans or Demetress Bell on 16 of them (55.2%).  Giving one pass rusher extra attention on 45% of his rushes is a significant amount of attention to give one player, but it was far less than I had anticipated.  As noted above, Bell was beaten once, but that was it for the entire night.  I thought the Eagles offensive tackles did a stellar job handling JPP 1-on-1.
  • To my surprise, the Giants didn’t try to get very creative at all with Pierre-Paul.  They moved him to the left side on some obvious passing downs to make room for Osi Umenyiora at RDE.  They also only tried running just one stunt with JPP all night.  That was about as creative as it got.  I thought for sure the Giants would try him on the interior, trying to get matchups on Dallas Reynolds or Danny Watkins, but that never happened.
  • The Eagles threw more quick passes than they normally do, which helped neutralized the pass rush to some degree, but there were certainly times where the Eagles took shots down the field, and the Giants pass rush was blocked up nicely by the Eagles’ OL.
  • The Eagles ran the ball.  That probably can’t be stated enough.  Take away Vick’s 6 rushes, and the Eagles ran the ball 30 times.  That’s the best counter to a great pass rush, especially if the running game is working.  Play action passes did not work against the Cardinals Week 3 because Arizona didn’t buy that the Eagles were going to run.  On Sunday, JPP was was slowed on a number of occasions by play action passes.

For at least one matchup this season, the Eagles shut down one of the best players in the game.

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22 Comments

  1. ct17 says:

    Good article, and something I have been thinking about all week. Great job by Eagles coaching staff watching the tape of the TB game and inserting the same help system.

    But if there is one thing the Giants will not do, it is be creative. I’m sure we will see the double/chip system again, and I would be the Giants do nothing about it until it gets really bad.

    1. ct17 says:

      If I was Fewell, I’d have the DEs attack the chippers, then drop into coverage. Blitz the chippers’ coverage guys (mostly LBs) up the middle.

      1. mjoedgaard says:

        That is were Spags did a great job, he moved Tuck all over the place. I also think the Giants should use the amboye(?) package where the DE are standup blitzers. The Eagles do it quite often and offenses still cant seem to stop it

  2. Peter Gorsky says:

    JPP is slightly overrated

    He is the best run defending DE in football, arguably. As a pass rusher he doesn’t hold Demarcus ware’s jock, hes a good not great pass rusher. Look at that TD to desean jackson, he rushed from the inside on that play and was stonewalled. In the superbowl he was always the last player off the line. He is still very raw as a pass rusher and is very overrated in that category. What’s funny is that despite his flaw, he still had 16.5 sacks in the regular season, but only 2 sacks this year and half a sack in the 2012 playoffs

    1. joed says:

      I think JPP is the best d-lineman in the game, period. He blcoks passes, plays the run and rushes the passer. He’s a stud

    2. tst29 says:

      Sorry, but unfortunately I disagree. Without JPP, NYG doesn’t win a Super Bowl

  3. mjoedgaard says:

    Jimmy you either forgot one or had it mixed up, there was once where he was 1vs1 with havili:

    1. Jimmy Kempski says:

      What minute mark in the video are you referring to?

      1. mjoedgaard says:

        bah apperently the copy by timestamp didnt work. I think its 44 sec into the video.

        1. Jimmy Kempski says:

          That’s Harbor.

          1. mjoedgaard says:

            hmm you are right. Can see the 2 now that I look closely

            1. He was lined up as a FB. Easy mistake to make. Blame Eagles Jake.

            2. On a side note, Havili had a great game.

              1. Taylor Gates says:

                So did Harbor on that block! I would think JPP could just throw him to the side like I saw some of our LB do to Harbor during training camp. Glad to see Harbor fulling that #2 TE spot well.

    2. Peter Gorsky says:

      That’s a very cool channel for eagles player breakdown videos

      there used to be one like that for giants videos but youtube took them all down

      1. mjoedgaard says:

        yea Eagles Jake is awesome.

  4. I know in 3rd/4th quarters, JPP looked gassed. Was amazed at how few impact plays he made.

    1. mjoedgaard says:

      That could be because he play almost every snap. He play 65 snaps against the Eagles and have already played 229 snaps, he is on his way to play over 900 snaps and I think he played well over 1000 last season. If they aint careful, he will either be injured or ineffective by week 8.

  5. Dez Bryant's Probation Officer says:

    I don’t understand why JPP didn’t backflip over the line to get to Vick.

  6. RogerPodacter says:

    i’m also surprised the Giants didnt try to send him inside more often. does JPP traditionally rush from the inside (lined up at a DT position) or is it just stunts and things of that nature?

    1. They lined him up inside quite a bit last year. Don’t think they’ve done a lot of it this year. Thought the Eagles were a team that made some sense to go back to it.

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