Once again, it’s time to gear up for this week’s slate of NFL games with analysis from the best in the business — Greg Cosell of NFL Films and ESPN’s “NFL Matchup.” Greg gives you a sense of the week’s upcoming games you won’t get anywhere else, based on his conversations with players and coaches past and present, and his OCD-level evaluation of coach’s tape. Since the podcast was recorded on Friday morning, we started by reviewing the Denver Broncos’ Thursday night win over the Oakland Raiders. From there, we went into the Sunday and Monday games, though with more and more teams completely out of the picture at this point, we spent more time on teams and concepts than specific matchups. The Shutdown Corner Week 14 Preview Podcast with Greg Cosell A few words of wisdom from Mr. Cosell: On Peyton Manning’s supernatural ability to throw with anticipation: “Do you remember the first touchdown pass he threw to Demaryius Thomas against Tampa Bay? People who can look at coaching tape should go look at that touchdown. Look at when Manning started to pull the trigger. The premise of throwing with anticipation means this: The quarterback starts his delivery before the receiver has even come out of his break, or very often, before he’s even begun his break. These are usually on intermediate routes. If you wait in the NFL for a receiver to actually break before you deliver the ball, you will be late with your throw. When you’re throwing any kind of breaking routes at the intermediate level, you must start your delivery before the receiver breaks. Otherwise, the cornerback or driving safety will knock the ball down, intercept it, or hit the receiver.” On Cincinnati Bengals defensive tackle Geno Atkins: “I don’t think he’s quite J.J. Watt, but he’s the best pure defensive tackle in the NFL, and I’ve been saying that for weeks. In the Texans’ 3-4, Watt is their strong-side defensive end. When they go to their dime sub-package, he moves inside and becomes a 3-tech defensive tackle. Geno Atkins is purely a defensive tackle. The first thing about Atkins that immediately jumps out is explosion off the snap. He’s really quick off the ball, and he’s got very light and quick feet for a big man. He’s very good at speed-to-power [leverage], as Von Miller is. There was one play two weeks ago against Oakland, where Atkins literally drove the right guard into Carson Palmer. That is speed to power — it’s explosion off the ball. It happens so quickly that you get inside the guard and underneath him, and just drives him right back. The other thing that’s so good about him is the way he plays the run. Because he’s so athletic, his ability to play down the line of scrimmage is really impressive. He’s not just a ‘box’ defensive tackle. He makes plays against outside zone runs. He runs 15 yards to make plays in the outside run game.” The Shutdown Corner Week 14 Preview Podcast with Greg Cosell On Pittsburgh’s current defense: “That’s a Super Bowl defense.
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