In an otherwise horrific season, Eagles fans finally had something to be encouraged by in last Monday’s game against the Panthers. That would of course be Bryce Brown, who ran for 178 yards and two TDs on 19 carries.
Brown has exceptional speed, particularly for a running back that goes 6’0, roughly 225 pounds. He runs hard, and makes defenders pay when they try to tackle him. If the Eagles bring in a coaching staff next season that values the running game, LeSean McCoy’s shiftiness, combined with Brown’s pure speed and power, might very well make for a very scary, very dynamic 1-2 punch in the run game.
Let’s first look at his long TD run. The Eagles are running a simple off tackle play, and the key to it was Panthers defensive coordinator Sean McDermott’s play call. Remember when McDermott was the defensive coordinator for the Eagles, and he used to have the defensive ends routinely drop into coverage? Yeah, me too. Well, that’s what the Panthers were doing here. Greg Hardy (#76, circled in blue) will drop into coverage at the snap, which will open up a huge lane to the outside:
Hardy’s drop easily allows right tackle Dennis Kelly to get to the second level, where he’s able to not only wall off LB James Anderson (#50), but also Hardy. Brown is left with a gaping alley: