Panthers offense vs. Cardinals defense:
The biggest threat to disrupt the offense’s production will be the match-up of EDGE defenders Chandler Jones and Terrell Suggs vs. TACKLES Daryl Williams and Taylor Moton. Since 2015 Chandler has had 12.5, 11.0, 17.0 and 13.0 sacks with 90 QB hits. Suggs during his last four seasons played has had 12.0, 8.0, 11.0 and 7.0 sacks with 71 QB hits. They are capable of causing major headaches.
4 MR Solution:
- Better consistent fundamental play by Williams and Moton themselves is the first part. Also having help from TEs and/or RB chip blocks on every passing play to slow down and neutralize outside QB pressures. Also a huge redemption performance by C Matt Paradis is equally as vital for success. Expect the Cardinals to try to exploit both A gaps around him with DT stunts and LB blitzes.
- The Cardinals defense ranks 31st in total yards per game with 458.5 and gives up the 4th most rushing yards per game with 149.0. All Pro CB Patrick Peterson is out due to suspension. So there will be plenty of opportunities for WRs Moore, Samuel and Wright to have multiple big plays receptions.
- Detroit Lions rookie TE TJ Hockenson (6 catches 131 yards 1 TD) and Baltimore Ravens 2nd year TE Mark Andrews (8 catches 112 yards 1 TD) made huge plays repeatedly facing the Cardinals LBs. If the Panthers feature TEs Greg Olsen, Ian Thomas and Chris Manhertz in the passing game they can take turns having big impact plays.
- Tampa Bay did a large amount of what is called “Green Dog Blitzing”. A green dog blitz is a defensive technique where a defender rushes the quarterback after his man coverage assignment stays in to pass block. A linebacker or safety assigned to a running back or tight end in man coverage will often green dog blitz when he recognizes that offensive player blocking another pass rusher. This helps the defense get pressure on the quarterback even if the offense protects with six or more blockers, by adding a late rusher that the blocking scheme often cannot account for. This was the main way they limited RB Christian McCaffrey. The best way to counter this is to have either FB Alex Armah or RB Jordan Scarlett lined up in the backfield as well so that they can stay in to block which frees him to run routes.
- If the Cardinals “copycat” Tampa Bay’s defensive game plan of stacking the line of scrimmage with defenders to stop McCaffrey and leaving our WRs in one on one coverage then expect our passing game to put up big plays and results. This will then allow the reemergence of the Panthers vaunted run game.