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Purdue vs Rutgers Film Review: 2nd Quarter

Purdue had the ball forever and scored 3 points

Purdue v Rutgers Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images

My 1st quarter film breakdown caused a little controversy. Guys, I promise I’m not lying to further my “agenda.” I’m trying to explain what’s going on. I don’t actually make any personell decisions.

Drive 4 Cont

Clock: 15:00

Field Position: Purdue 40

Down: 1/10

Personnel: 12

Formation: Shotgun, Pistol (RB behind QB), Split WR tight TE Bunch R

Play: Fake Flea Flicker, A Gap L run

Outcome: 41 Yard DJ Knox gain


As I mentioned earlier, Rutgers is not biting on any of Purdue’s motion or gadget plays. Brohm takes advantage of this, because the Purdue flea flicker has become a thing in college football and I guarantee every defensive coordinator has drilled their defense flea flicker. This play works, in part, because Matt McCann gets beat, but the fake by Knox sends the DE past him, leaving a giant hole in the A gap. Knox splits the linebackers, but what I find really interesting, is that Rutgers has 2 safeties waiting for him deep in the secondary, these safeties aren’t chasing him, they’re waiting for him. He beats one, but gets brought down by the 2nd. Rutgers is playing a deep cover 2 almost to the point of being a prevent defense. Also not that this is the first play Purdue has run out of the pistol formation. This will be another play teams look out for when Purdue lines up in the pistol.

Clock: 14:29

Field Position: Rutgers 19

Down: 1/10

Personnel: 21

Formation: Shotgun, FB/RB Stack L (shotgun I) WR Split, TE L

Play: Jet Sweep R to L

Outcome: 4 Yard Sparks gain


This is another to file under in the “if only we had been disciplined ” folder. This play is designed well. Purdue lets the LDE go, and it’s Sparks job to beat him around the edge off the jet motion, which he does. Worship and Jones are tasked with sealing off the sideline. Worship finds his man, but Jones loses discipline, and instead of sealing off the sideline, he runs ahead of Sparks and doubles a safety. The guy Jones is supposed to block pursues from the inside out and cuts Sparks down after a 4 yards game while Knox is blocking someone 10 yards down the field. Good play, poor execution by 1 player, and a play with TD potential is stopped after 4 yards.

Clock: 13:57

Field Position: Rutgers 15

Down: 2/6

Personnel: 10

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset L, WR Spread

Play: Run, A gap L

Outcome: 7 yard Jones Run


This is a decently blocked play, with Jones doing what he does best. LG McCann blocks out, and LT Swingler pulls around McCann to open the hole. Jones presses the line, the hole opens, and he bounces it through the A gap, runs through and arm tackle, and finishes the run strong, falling forward for another 3 yards.

Clock: 13:36

Field Position: Rutgers 8

Down: 1/Gl

Personnel: 11

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset R, Slot L, TE Flexed R

Play: Jet Motion L to R, Swing pass to motion

Outcome: -1 yard completion


A great defensive play ruins a well run play. Anthrop goes with the jet sweep motion, and continues out to the flat. Sindelar delivers an accurate pass, but the Rutgers safety reads the play well and blows it up before Anthrop can’t get his shoulders turned down field. The play is designed to isolate Anthrop on the safety, and that happens, but you’ve got to think Rutgers has seen that play on film, because the safety crashes immediately.

Clock: 12:57

Field Position: Rutgers 9

Down: 2/Gl

Personnel: 11

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset R, Slot L, TE Flex L

Play: QB Draw, A Gap R

Outcome: 5 Yard Sindelar gain


Sindelar is never going to be confused as a dual threat QB, but he’s a big dude (6’4 230) and can run straight ahead. Barron gets whipped at the snap and his man gets a piece of Sindelar’s ankles as he follows Knox through A Gap R. Sindelar is big enough to lunge forward for a 5 yard game. A better block by Barron may have given the play a chance.

Clock: 12:18

Field Position: Rutgers 4

Down: 3/GL

Personnel: 12

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset R, TE1 Flex L, TE2 Wing R, WR Split tight

Play: Wing TE Motion L to R...False Start

Outcome: False Start Matt McCann


Hard to say how the play actually ends up, but it looks good at the snap. Sindelar is looking to roll left and hit Hopkins on the overload, w/ Sparks occupying the outside DB (Rutgers is in a zone), but McCann commits his 2nd 3rd down false start of the day. Barring a bad pass or a drop, this play will score if McCann doesn’t flinch, as Purdue gets the overload they are looking for.

Clock: 12:18

Field Position: Rutgers 9

Down: 3/Gl

Personnel: 11

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset R, Slot L, TE R

Play: RB R, Slot Reverse, Flea Flicker, Boundary receiver out (Best I can do)

Outcome: Incomplete Pass


This play shows me how little faith Brohm has in his receivers getting separation. Sindelar hands the ball to Knox, who runs L to R, and hands Anthrop the ball on the slot reverse, meanwhile, Sindelar drops back and Anthrop basically options the ball back to him. The ball is on target to Phillips (low and outside, giving Phillips the only chance to catch the ball) but the DB gets through Phillips and gets his hand involved in the play.

It doesn’t look like the ball actually touches the DB though, and the ball gets through and bounces off Phillips chest. It would have been a tough catch but Phillips needs to do a better job breaking back to the ball initially, and while the DB makes it difficult, the ball does get through. Once again, Rutgers shows no interest in Purdue’s motion and ball handling, as the reverse to Anthrop is stuffed (I think Anthrop actually has the choice to keep or pitch) and the DB doesn’t bite at all on the reverse, leaving Sindelar a tiny window to complete the pass.

4th Down:

Purdue FG

Drive Summary:

We saw a fake flea flicker and an actual flea flicker but a crucial 3rd down penalty and Phillips failing to make a good play (it’s a tough catch, obviously) leaves Purdue with 3 instead of 7.

Drive 5:

Once again, it’s all about field position as Rutgers pins Purdue deep with a punt that takes Antrop out at the Purdue 18, tack on a 10 yard holding penalty and Purdue starts at the 8 yard line. Also, Blough is in for this drive.

Clock: 10:30

Field Position: Purdue 8

Down: 1/10

Personnel: 11

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset R, Slot R, TE Flex R

Play: Stretch run (not super good at the running play names)


Worship 5 yard gain


Purdue line blocks left, and Worship sees a crease between Barron and McCann and pushes the ball through the hole for a tough 5 yard gain. It could have been more, but McCann’s man is able to get off the block and get a piece of Worship as he goes by, slowing him down and running him into the linebacker.

Clock: 10:10

Field Position: Purdue 13

Down: 2/5

Personnel: 11

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset L, Slot R, TE R

Play: Right B Gap Run

Outcome: 9 yard gain


Purdue goes with tempo and catch Rutgers and B10 network sleeping, so I only get a picture of the Rutgers defense milling around followed by a shot of Worship with the ball. Steinmetz does a good job of kicking his man outside, and Worship finds the B gap wide open and Bearooz Yacoobi does a decent job of sealing off the inside and getting down the field to help Worship. Rutgers is still dropping their safeties deep, so there isn’t much room for Worship after about 7 yards, but another solid run utilizing tempo.

Clock: 9:55

Field Position: Purdue 24

Down: 1/10

Personnel: 11

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset L, Slot R, TE Flex

Play: A Gap Dive

Outcome: Worship 7 yard gain


Purdue goes with tempo again, as Barron and McCann do a great job firing off the ball, and Swingler pulls around and the A gap is open for Worship to blast through for a solid 7 yard game.

Clock: 9:29

Field Position: Purdue 31

Down: 2/3

Personnel: 11

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset R, Slot L, TE R

Play: Pop pass to slot motion

Outcome: Anthrop 5 yard completion


Purdue puts Anthrop in motion and Blough his him with a pop pass as he runs by, followed by a run fake to Worship. The end bites down on the play fake, Herdman gets his block on the outside linebacker, but Anthrop can’t beat the safety 1 on 1 and gets taken down after only 5 yards. The play worked to perfection, but Anthrop has got to be able to beat the safety in the open field. It’s tough when plays that should go for 20+ only result in a 5 yard pick up.

Clock: 8:57

Field Position: Purdue 36

Down: 1/10

Personnel: 20

Formation: Shotgun, RBs Split (Worship offset right a step in front of Blough, Knox offset left a step behind Blough, in a unique split back set), Slot L

Play: PA, Boundary WR Out

Outcome: Incomplete pass / Defensive holding


Purdue fakes the run to Knox with Worship as the lead blocker left. Unfortunately, Steinmetz gets smoked off the line and Blough has to basically throw it away before he gets drilled (he gets drilled right after the throw), in the direction of Phillips. Phillips, however, was held by the DB prior to the pass, so Purdue catches a break with a 5 yard penalty and automatic 1st down.


Field Position: Purdue 41

Down: 1/10

Personnel: 11

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset R, Twins R, TE Flex R

Play: WR motion, B Gap Run

Outcome: Knox 6 yard gain


Phillips goes in motion and ends up almost in a wing position, Blough hands to Knox and then fakes the option out to Phillips. Steinmetz is much better in the run game, and pulls around Yacoobi and picks up a solid block. Yacoobi does a good job of walling off to open the hole and Knox squirts through for a 6 yard game. It will be interesting to see if Purdue ever fakes the handoff and goes with the option pitch to the WR at some point.

Clock: 8:30

Field Position: Rutgers 48

Down: 2/4

Personnel: 11

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset L, WR Trips L, TE L

Play: RPO, WR screen left / B gap run

Outcome: Knox 2 yard run


Purdue gives the Run / Pass option look, as Phillips drops at the snap for the WR screen. Blough elects to go with the handoff and Barron’s man gets across his face and closes the B gap hole, forcing Knox into the DE. Barron has not impressed me at all so far.


Field Position: Rutgers 46

Down: 3/2

Personnel: 11

Formation: QB under center, RB 8 yards deep, Slot R, TE Flex L

Play: Jet Sweep/RB Dive option

Outcome: Blough 0 yard run


This play was a disaster. Purdue lines up under center and nothing good happens. The play is designed to be a jet sweep to Anthrop or a handoff to Worship. The timing is off on the jet sweep, and Anthrop is a step past Blough at the snap. Instead of simply dropping for the handoff, Blough freezes and then runs into Barron’s back as he attempts to push forward. My only thought is that Blough had predetermined to go with the jet sweep, the timing was off, and Blough totally forgot about the 2nd option. Just really poor execution by Blough.

This is...not good

Image Note: Blough misses the jet sweep and then runs forward into the center instead handing the ball to Worship.

Clock: 7:16

Field Position: Rutgers 46

Down: 4/2

Personnel: 11

Formation: Under Center, RB Wing L, Slot R, TE R

Play: Jet Motion, QB Sneak

Outcome: Blough 0 yard run


Another disaster, as Blough goes under center again and things fall apart. From the Press Conference, we know that Blough is supposed to press the A, B, and finally C gap on the right side until he finds room to fall forward. Instead, he gets stacked up behind Barron and goes left for some reason. Barron certainly doesn’t help matters by getting shoved into the QB at the snap, but Blough has to follow the play, as the right side is collapsing down.

Not Again

Image Note: The play was designed for Blough to follow the blue line and slide off Herdman’s rear end, instead Blough went to the right for some reason.

Drive Summary:

Purdue sticks with the run the entire drive, completing 1 pop pass, and getting a bail out holding defensive holding call. Purdue goes under center twice, and Blough messes up twice (per Brohm’s presser). Purdue again stops themselves as Rutgers just sort of hangs back and makes Purdue execute.

Drive 6

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before, but Purdue starts at their own 20 yard line once again, after Anthrop first completes a fair catch at the 20, which is called back by a bonehead Phillips running into the kicker penalty, followed by a touchback. The endzone is 80 yards away. Blough remains in the game.

Clock: 6:06

Field Position: Purdue 20

Down: 1st and 10

Personnel: 21

Formation: Shotgun, FB/RB stack R, TE R, WR split

Play: WR motion R to L, A Gap R run

Outcome: Jones 1 yard run


Herdman attempts to block down but gets dominated and Swingler also gets dominated, and the guys they are attempting to block converge on Jones who is lucky to get back to the line.

Clock: 5:39

Field Position: Purdue 21

Down: 2/9

Personnel: 12

Formation: Shotgun, Pistol, TE1 R, TE2 R Wing, WR split tight

Play: PA, Roll Right

Outcome: Blough 4 yard run


Yacoobi gets beat almost immediately with an inside move, and Blough comes out of the play action with a defender in his face. Blough does and excellent job using his athleticism to get to the corner, and then tucks it and dives forward for 5. Blough turns what looks like a 10 yard loss into a 4 yard gain.

Clock: 5:07

Field Position: Purdue 26

Down: 3/5

Personnel: 11

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset L, Slot L, TE Flex L

Play: RPO Zone Read / TE skinny Post

Outcome: Incomplete pass / ineligible down field


Another tough one for Blough, as it appears the run portion of the run pass option is wide open, but Blough pulls it and delivers a pass below Hopkins knees on the tight end skinny post. The pass would have been inconsequential anyway, as Barron was certainly blocking like it was a run play, and is called for being too far down field when the pass is attempted.

Should have went with the run

Image Note: This is just after Blough pulls the ball from Jones to go with the pass option. Barron (circled) is blocking like this is a run, and picks up the penalty. The middle appears to be wide open for the run.

4th Down:

Fake Punt - 1st down

Schopper rolls out for a rugby kick, does some quick math, sees he has 3 blockers and 2 defenders and tucks it and runs for a 1st down. I have no idea if this was a fake all the way, or if Schopper has this option if the numbers are right. I’ve got to think it’s an option and if the numbers look bad, Shopper punts away. Regardless, first down Purdue and the drive continues.

3 vs 2...Shopper runs for the 1st down.

Image Note: Excellent job by Schopper. Purdue has the numbers it wants and he runs for a 1st down.

Clock: 4:23

Field Position: Purdue 39

Down: 1/10

Personnel: 02

Formation: Shotgun, TE1 Flex L, TE2 Flex R, Twins L

Play: Quick Slant TE Flex R

Outcome: Incomplete pass, Drop


Blough gets rid of the ball quickly with no pressure around and fits the ball in perfectly between the MLB and the S, but Hopkins uses his hands to defend himself from the incoming pass instead of using them to catch the incoming pass and the ball hits the ground. This is the 2nd drop of the day for Hopkins on what should have been an easy 10 yard gain.

Clock: 4:14

Field Position: Purdue 39

Down: 2/10

Personnel: 11

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset R, Slot L, TE L

Play: Boundary Receiver Out

Outcome:Phillips 6 yard reception


Purdue is trying to get the passing game going with Blough. Steinmetz gets walked backed into Blough and his man gets a fingertip on the pass. Blough does a good job of muscling the ball to the Phillips. Excellent play by Blough.

Clock: 3:42

Field Position: Purdue 44

Down: 3/4

Personnel: 12

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset R, TE1 R, TE2 Flex R, WR twins L

Play: Shallow WR L to R Mesh Route

Outcome: 2 yard Phillips Reception


The play works perfectly as the two tight ends go across the formation right to left, and Phillips comes under them going left to right, for what should be an easy first down completion. Blough, unfortunately, delivers the pass well behind Phillips, forcing Phillips to turn around to catch it, stopping all momentum. Phillips appears to pick up the 1st down on a solid effort play, but is ruled down short of on replay. The replay is close, but appears to be correct. What should have been an easy 1st down is derailed by a poor Blough delivery.

Blough throws the pass behind Phillips on 3rd down.

Image Note: If Blough delivers the ball in front of Phillips, this is an easy first down.

Drive Summary:

Field position and poor execution is killing Purdue. Rutgers continues to play off and let the Boilermakers self destruct. Blough was off on both 3rd down passes in this drive.

Drive 7:

Purdue finally gets a 3 and out, and starts this drive in excellent field position after an Anthrop fair catch. Sindelar is back on the field for this drive.

Clock: 2:10

Field Position: Purdue 47

Down: 1/10

Personnel: 11

Formation: Shotgun, RB offset R, TE R, WR Slot R

Play: Roll Right, Outside Go

Outcome: Interception


Brohm is obviously looking to take a shot, but Rutgers just won’t allow anything deep. On this play, the safety remains over the top, and is in perfect position to pick off the Sindelar pass. It looks like Sindelar was set on throwing that pass regardless of the coverage, and didn’t look at the other receiver in single coverage. I don’t mind taking the shot, but Sindelar has to see the safety and has to deliver the ball to the outside instead of the inside. Phillips also does absolutely nothing to help his QB and break up the pass. A bad read leads to a bad pass, which ruins Purdue’s best field position.

Sindelar doesn’t see the safety

Image Note: Rutgers is keeping a safety deep to prevent the deep ball, Sindelar loses patience and throws the ball to the safety instead of throwing to the underneath receiver (note: pay no attention to the top receiver because Sindelar was rolling right)

Drive 8

Purdue gets the ball with 26 seconds left, attempts a shovel pass, and then goes with a run to the half.

Quarter Summary:

Purdue moved the ball against Rutgers soft defense, but only ended up with a field goal after a crucial penalty, some terrible execution in the run game, and a bad interception. Sprinkle another drop or two, and Rutgers is just happy to sit back and watch us do our thing.

Runs: 12 designed, 1 QB scramble

Pass: 8 (9 designed passes)

Sindelar: -1 yards with an int on 3 attempts

Blough: 13 yards on 5 attempts, including a drop


Brohm went with the run, but once again, Purdue just doesn’t have a running back capable of paying it off in the open filed. Rutgers was content to play field position, let Purdue run the ball, keep their safeties deep and wait for Purdue to implode. Honestly, hats off to Rutgers for coming into this game with an excellent gameplan.