In the first part of this week’s Film Room, we took a look at the key plays on the Packers’ first touchdown drive in the 4th quarter of their comeback victory over the New Orleans Saints. In this part, we’ll look at the three key plays on the second scoring drive, the game winning drive that Jordan Love and the Packers offense engineered late in the fourth quarter to take a one point lead.
The final score of the game ended up at 18-17 as the Packers were able to chip away at the 17-point lead the Saints sat on at halftime. In the second half Love finished 15/28, 185 yards, one touchdown, one interception, and one rushing touchdown. He finished the fourth quarter 9/18 with two total touchdowns.
First play, 4th quarter, 1st and 10 @ GB-31, 4:28 remaining
After converting a 3rd-and-1 in a down series that included another Jayden Reed drop, Love ended up here on first down, scrambling for 24 yards and tiptoeing down the sideline where he somehow managed to stay in bounds.
It’s not at all clear what the play call is here, or what they’re trying to do schematically as two receivers end up in the same vicinity as one another, with Romeo Doubs (No. 87) unable to get off of the contact from the corner back. Love drops back and sees the congestion with the two receivers and two defenders in the same area and has to pull it down to scramble anyways.
Pressure off the edge around left tackle Rasheed Walker forced Love to side step the rush and climb through the pocket to take off. He gets out to the edge and tiptoes down the sideline for 24 yards.
Second play, 2nd-and-10 @ NOR-45, 4:01 remaining
Love completed a slot fade here to Jayden Reed, who was able to get some good separation through a crafty arm placement without pushing off. The play by Reed was perfectly legal as he did not impede or alter the path of the defensive back as the ball was in the air.
The play is full field read from left to right of a common concept the Packers run with a backside dig route with a hitch underneath, and verticals on the right from the #2 and #3 receivers on the trips side of the formation. Love progresses from left to right, sees the routes blanketed to the left, and moves to the slot fade by Reed after confirming the inside vertical is capped by the safety.
Love places the ball downfield in front of Reed with good placement and away from the defender where only Reed can catch it. Reed makes a spectacular diving grab.
Third play, 4th quarter, 3rd-and-3 @ NOR-8, 2:59 remaining
On second down, LaFleur called their “disk” concept, double stick with a backside alert fade route. Love overshot Romeo Doubs just out of his reach.
With Doubs singled up at the bottom of the screen and the Saints in single high coverage, Love immediately went to his alert route because he was 1-on-1 with the corner who had no safety help. The pass is a bit too high for Doubs to bring down.
LaFleur called the same play again, same formation, same receiver alignment and spots with Doubs singled up again.
This time, with a sense of feel for the timing from the first play, Love didn’t miss and threw a perfect back shoulder pass that Doubs caught and hung on to as he was going to the ground. The Saints were again in a single man coverage cover-1 defense so Love went right back to the alert fade and it paid off.
The defense struggled to get stops on the Saints final drive as they drove down to the 28 yard line and proceeded to attempt a game winning field goal with just over a minute left. The kick was wide right and no good and the Packers held on to win a wild home opener.