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The Anatomy of a 4th-&-Goal Escape Ladder TD

NFL: Los Angeles Chargers at Arizona Cardinals Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
  • Kudos to Steve Wilks and Mike McCoy for going for it on 4th and goal from the 2 yard line on the 1st drive of the pre-season.
  • What an amazing, miraculous play this is, highlighted by rookie Chase Edmond’s extraordinary hand balance and determination.
  • Formation (L to R)—-FB-TE-TE-LT-LG-C-RG-RT-TE (QB + RB)—-Overload left (FB & 2 TEs), TE right. Play call: 33 power dive (3 back up the 3 hole between LT/LG).
  • FB Coleman (#48) takes out the ROLB.
  • TE Wetzel (#73) double teams with TE Holmes (#85) on the RDE. Wetzel sticks his block, but Holmes gets knocked backward, right into the path of RB Edmonds (#29), who slips downward to the turf, but uses his free hand to keep from downing his knee.
  • LT Humphries (#74) and LG Iupati (#76) drive their men into the end zone, but Holmes getting rocked back into the hole doesn’t give Edmonds any open daylight.
  • C Cole (#64) gets stood up by the NT and rocked slightly backward. In the defenders’ frantic scramble to down Edmonds, Cole slips off his block to the turf. (Teaching Point: Cole knows he is supposed to get underneath the NT or lay on top of him to at least cut him down to size and neutralize him—-you never want to get stood up or knocked backward in that situation)
  • RG Justin Pugh gets a clean release and takes out the LILB in the end zone.
  • RT Andre Smith down blocks on the DT and pancakes him (key block—-as it turns out) which leaves Smith ahead of Cole and Edmonds on the turf.
  • TE Seals-Jones undercuts the DE, who then makes a dive for Edmonds.
  • Amazingly Cole and Smith have the wherewithal to form a ladder for Edmonds where Cole pushes and Smith pulls the crawling, outstretching Edmonds to safety over the goaline.
  • Upon replay there is no visual evidence of Edmond’s knees touching the turf and the play is confirmed a TD.
  • This play is the epitome of desperately creative, spur of the moment teamwork.