Only six of the 32 NFL quarterbacks in week one threw a completed pass for more than 55 yards. Only one did it twice.
The five with a single pass over 55 yards in week one are Jimmy Garoppolo, Patrick Mahomes, Russell Wilson, Sam Darnold, and Jameis Winston.
The only quarterback to throw two completed passes beyond 55 yards in week one was the Los Angeles’ Rams Matthew Stafford.
Against the Chicago Bears, Stafford threw his first deep pass to Van Jefferson for a 67 yard touchdown. For his second act, he followed with a 56 yard score to Cooper Kupp.
On each of the plays, both scoring receivers lined up in the slot. Kupp runs a ‘go’ or ‘seam’ route, Jefferson a ‘post’, both go up the middle in between safeties. Jefferson gets a good release on his first defender and then gets the safety to turn his hips toward the sideline before a perfect break. Kupp didn’t have to break as his first defender let him go with no safety help over the top.
In both cases, an intermediate route from the inside would hold or draw the safety to open the deep area. The man drawing the defense on both plays was Robert Woods. Not only does Woods pose enough of a threat and run precise enough routes to draw the defense, but both receivers are split and in sync so much that both are open. When Stafford looked upfield on both plays, Woods is open underneath, but so is the deep option and it appears Stafford and McVay are looking deep. And after striking from long distance more than any other squad so far, looks like it’s working.
And now for today’s links:
What the LA Rams didn’t show in the season opener (RamblinFan)