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Film Room: Doug Dials Up G-Lead on 4th and Goal

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If Power is football as God intended, dialing up G-Lead should at the very least provide some additional celestial insurance.

Down 3-0 in the early 2nd quarter to the Atlanta Falcons and facing fourth down and goal from the half-yard line, Philadelphia Eagles head coach Doug Pederson had a big-time decision to make. Having been aggressive all year, Pederson decided to dance with the one that brought him by letting ‘em hang one more time.

From an execution standpoint, Pederson has to be pleased with the result of this 1-yard go-ahead touchdown by LeGarrette Blount. But what’s the difference between Power and G-Lead? They’re nearly twin running concepts, but instead of the backside guard pulling, G-Lead pulls the play-side guard, which in this case is Brandon Brooks (#79).

This allows you to get your most athletic guard pulling and still run to his side of the formation. It also hits quicker than Power because your key block is coming from a short distance.

The G-Lead can also be called G-Kick, as the intention is to kick out the end man on the line of scrimmage. It doesn’t always work this way, depending on the angle of the force defender, it’s not a kick out, it’s a log block.

On a “kick” you would see the play-side guard engage the end man on the line of scrimmage from inside-out, with the aim of creating a lane inside of his butt. That’s where Blount initially presses his aiming point, but seeing the adjustment from Brooks, he bounces to the outside.

Watch it again from the end zone angle.

Like Power, the LT Lane Johnson (#65) and the TE Brent Celek (#87) down block. Brooks pulls to the play-side, which we’ll break down in detail in a moment.

Center Jason Kelce (#62) has a reach block, but in the confined spaces of the goal-line, can’t quite get to the outside of his man to seal him. Still, he gets a piece of DT Grady Jarrett (#97), which proves pivotal as Jarrett was nearly able to chase down Blount to the corner.

Let’s take a more detailed look at Brooks footwork with some slo-mo action:

Brooks shows off the athleticism and technique that got him to the Pro Bowl this year. His first step drives hard off his left, inside foot while his right foot pulls straight back in a “bucket step”. This turns his shoulders perpendicular to the line as he shoots his left foot in front of his bucket step.

He is now at the proper depth of 2 yards behind the line and needs to locate his target with his eyes. By his fifth step, he’s decided the blocking technique required. The end man on the line of scrimmage OLB De’Vondre Campbell (#59), left intentionally unblocked, has pressed inside off the butts of the down blocks. This means Brooks needs to log, not kick.

On a log block, the intention is to turn the defender from facing towards the backfield into facing the sideline, walling him off. It’s called a log block because Brooks rolls his man’s shoulders from facing one way to another, like you would roll a log. Brooks pulls this off masterfully, engaging Campbell with length while his hands/hips/feet all work in unison.

With the play sealed off, TE Trey Burton (#88), acting as a fullback, gets a key block on LB LaRoy Reynolds (#53) to win the corner. Blount outruns Jarrett and SAF Kemal Ishmael to the end zone for a touchdown on a ballsy call from head coach Doug Pederson.

In key situations, Pederson was able to dial up the goods against the Falcons. Conversely, the Falcons lined up a fullback at wide receiver with their final offensive play. With coaching as good as the Eagles have been getting all year, it should be no surprise that they find themselves in the NFC Championship Game.

Did you enjoy this article? Check out our other pieces in the Film Room!

Michael is an NFL Draft enthusiast, aspiring scout, and grandson of longtime East Stroudsburg (Pa.) HS football coach John P. Kist. He hosts Locked On Eagles and writes for Inside the Pylon & Breaking Football.

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