My point was simply that Clifton HAS to block down (to his right) to pick up the blitzing linebacker, leaving the defensive end for Rodgers to worry about. Al couldn't seem to wrap his head around what I could possibly mean - why would you ever leave a man free? Why would you not have a hat-on-a-hat every time? I'm not saying that isn't preferable - but it's not how this particular protection is set up.
All this is lead up, of course, to the fateful sack on Sunday where TJ Lang seemingly let Jared Allen go and have a free run at Rodgers. While I was upset (to put it gently) when it happened, I reminded myself of the Clifton play above and went back to watch the Lang play (0:30 mark) again last night. And lo and behold - I think Lang did the right thing. Apparently, Tom Pelissero agrees with me:
Communication issues aside, it’s tough to fault to rookie LT T.J. Lang too much for blocking down on the play, since MLB E.J. Henderson was showing blitz in the A-gap and Lang couldn’t risk giving DT Kevin Williams a short path to the quarterback inside. Once Lang decided to turn Allen loose, it was on Rodgers to get the ball out.
There are those who seem to think Rodgers should be above criticism - nothing could be further from the truth. I'll never forget the deluge of email I got this past summer simply because I dared to write three posts on things Rodgers needed to work on. I just don't get why people are so upset when someone takes it upon themselves to point out that, yes, Rodgers is putting up some nice numbers, but there's a hell of a lot more to playing quarterback than putting up numbers. And yes, Rodgers isn't getting a whole lot of help. To which I say:
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