Week 7 Colts Game: 5 Impactful Plays and Players Film Review

October 25, 2023

Tony Camino

5 Notable plays from Browns victory over the Colts

Another week, another nerve-wracking finish that led to the Browns scoring the go-ahead touchdown with under 30 seconds left. Myles Garrett was historically dominant, but the offense had its worst showing of the year, getting beaten in the run game and blowing coverages versus a tough Shane Steichen-led offense. The offense wasn’t great, but they made enough plays and relied on the clutch leg of Dustin Hopkins to sneak out another win and go to 4-2. Here are five impactful plays from Browns vs. Colts in Week 7.

Myles Garrett Strip Sack for Touchdown

Just another game where the entire film review could be a Myles Garrett highlight reel. The dominant edge rusher had a DPOY-caliber performance, turning in nine tackles, two sacks, two forced fumbles, a pass breakup, and a blocked field goal. One of those forced fumbles went for a touchdown, highlighted here.

Garrett is lined up in a nine-technique outside the tight end. From the jump, both the tight end and right tackle are assigned to slow down Garrett, with the tight end getting a significant chip right at the snap.

Despite having two defenders tasked to slow him down, the All-Pro hardly breaks stride here and gets to the quarterback with ease. He sacks Minshew and does a great job of getting the ball out in a pivotal situation. The ball is loose in the end zone, and the Browns’ defense jumps on it for a touchdown late in the half to take a 24-21 lead with under two minutes left in the half.

This touchdown was probably the most meaningful play of the entire game, giving the Browns a lead despite the offense struggling. The defense got another stop right after and managed to get a critical 27-21 lead right before the half. Winning those last two minutes of each half is essential to winning games, and the Browns executed perfectly in this one.

Denzel Ward Interception

The defense had its worst day of the season, but being on the field more created a ton more opportunities for turnovers. Denzel Ward got in on the party early in the second half, making a play on a ball despite being fooled at first.

The Colts motion the dotted-line receiver over and execute a run action to get all the defenders away from the boundary. Since the Browns run a lot of man coverage, the Colts schemed a ton of natural picks, where one receiver runs right at another defender to free up a man and get easy yards. Michael Pittman Jr. is defended by Ward here, but he’s going to act like he’s picking Juan Thornhill and then work upfield.

This is a great wrinkle off a play that was beating the Browns all day, and Ward had his hips turned the wrong way and nearly tried to jump the underneath route in the concept. He does a great job of noticing that Pittman is actually running upfield and flips his hips with insane closing speed to intercept the pass. The Browns’ secondary was caught in the wrong places all day, but this was a great job by Ward to get a turnover and put the Browns’ offense in a favorable spot despite a smart play call by Steichen.

Jerome Ford Fumble on Fourth Down

Late in this one, the Browns were faced with a fourth and two, up two points in the Colts’ territory. Because of the offense struggling, usually, this would be a good spot to punt, but the Colts had moved down the field pretty easily. Coach Stefanski elects to go for it, and they run a fake fullback dive to a pitch to the running back.

The call is absolutely perfect, as Harrison Bryant is going out to seal the edge defender, and Amari Cooper runs his man off, leaving a huge running lane. The Browns just have to get to the 39-yard line, but Jerome Ford doesn’t handle the pitch, and the Browns turn it over on downs.

Ford might have scored here, and the play call and execution were almost perfect. If Ford handles this ball, he gets the first down with ease and might even go on to score. The game would have been in hand much earlier if plays like these could be executed in big situations.

Flea Flicker Screen

Kevin Stefanski’s best skill is finding ways to scheme guys open and get cheap yards no matter who’s running plays. Here is a great example of that late in the game, as the Browns run a unique flea-flicker screen.

PJ Walker hands it off to Kareem Hunt, who then pitches it back to him. Walker hits David Njoku, who engaged in a block and then released, and there’s a huge running lane for a nice pickup. The play design is perfect, and it puts a ton of stress on the linebackers.

On the handoff, the linebackers read the run and start to crash in. Then, on the flea-flicker, they immediately react to a deep ball and quickly retreat back. This creates a ton of room underneath, and the Colts have no chance with Jedrick Wills and Ethan Pocic out to block in space. This play is one of many examples where Stefanski creates openings and easy lanes for his playmakers and finds easy yards. They will need plenty of these plays going forward with Walker at the helm.

Clutch Throw by PJ Walker

While PJ Walker came in to lead the Browns to another win, it was far from a perfect performance. He struggled against the blitz getting it to his hot receiver and also just had some throws that weren’t accurate enough. However, he came through when we needed him most again, leading an 80-yard drive in just over two minutes to win the game.

The Browns faced a third-and-ten early in this drive, feeling like they were in trouble already. The Colts ran some type of cover two here, where both safeties play deep halves of the field with five defenders in a zone underneath.

In cover two, the weaknesses are in between the deep zones, the hole shot in between the safety and corner on the sideline. Walker does a great job of immediately recognizing the coverage and knows the hole shot up the sideline to Elijah Moore will be open. Regardless, he has to make a great throw to keep it away from the safety and get it away from the corner.

Walker makes a perfect throw here, and Moore does a great job after the catch for a big gain in a huge situation. The chunk play gave the Browns the needed momentum, and they went on to finish the drive to win the game. Walker hasn’t been great through two games, but he’s made just enough plays in both to get wins. He’ll need to be better to win consistently, making it interesting to see the direction they go at that position.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Sign Up For Our Newsletter

If you're a fan of Cleveland sports and want to stay up-to-date with the latest news, scores, and insights on your favorite teams, signing up for the Cleveland sports newsletter is a no-brainer.

Copyright © 2024 Believe In The Land

threads icon