One in every of the breakout stars for the Buffalo Payments this season has been tight finish Dawson Knox. The Payments have leaned closely on him, with Knox solely falling below 80 p.c of snaps in three video games he’s appeared on this season. The final time this occurred was in mid-October. Towards the visiting Atlanta Falcons, Knox fell simply shy of 90 p.c of taking part in time. Regardless of this new emphasis, Knox was solely focused twice in opposition to the Falcons. He had zero receptions. Did they do one thing particular to remove the budding star? Let’s discover out.
From the very first play Atlanta confirmed its major technique to gradual down Dawson Knox—get in his manner. That is just like the controversial Cole Beasley bump on the interception. Defenders are allowed to guard themselves so conditions like this usually aren’t referred to as as a extra incidental sort of contact. The one on Beasley is much less incidental, however you get the thought. Issues like this occur quite a bit.
This one is shut sufficient to the line the place blocking can happen. The defender would have an excellent case of defending himself too, for the document. The result’s the identical. Get the place you assume Knox will likely be operating. Anticipate contact. The Falcons performed bodily in opposition to Dawson Knox early.
One other consider Knox’s quiet day was respectable strain by Atlanta. Pro-football-reference.com has the Falcons pressuring Josh Allen 23.3 p.c of the time. That’s not world-beating (the Payments pressured Matt Ryan 42.4 p.c of drop backs). However it occurred sufficient to impression Knox’s recreation.
Knox was recurrently subjected to “competent protection” as effectively. You may keep in mind Mark Sanchez speaking a couple of route the place Knox was subtly pushed to the sideline. That was good protection. On this play Knox is roofed effectively. It occurred an excellent quantity.
Josh Allen was credited with 26 passing makes an attempt. That’s tied with the recreation in opposition to Kansas Metropolis for the lowest of the season. In contrast, Buffalo ran the ball 44 occasions. A giant purpose that Knox had a quiet day was on account of play calling by Buffalo. General, Knox was fairly efficient as a run blocker. This was not a press release I’d have made final season and is probably going a significant component in the Payments’ newfound consolation in making Knox almost omnipresent on the area.
That is an instance of particular enchancment I noticed just a few occasions in opposition to Atlanta. Understanding the place the operating again goes and turning a block away from the lane is a superb talent to own. It was good to see it.
Lastly, I believe Josh Allen actually was having an off day. This was first down and the Payments haven’t any purpose to be in desperation mode after they’re up by seven. There are defenders who can shut and sure cease a large acquire by Knox, however nobody is shut sufficient to interrupt up the go or cease him earlier than he will get at the very least an excellent acquire. I don’t know the play name or progressions, nevertheless it appears bizarre to me Knox wouldn’t be thought-about an possibility on this play as he’s not concerned in something aside from being open.
The Falcons did have a plan to maintain Dawson Knox. I wouldn’t name it a grasp plan, nevertheless it labored after they wanted it to. That’s no disrespect to Atlanta because it was an excellent plan for the document. I simply can’t name it a grasp plan that took Knox out of the recreation as different “non-Falcons” causes contributed to the tight finish’s lack of manufacturing. Atlanta did effectively, however they didn’t create a blueprint for different groups to take Knox out of the equation.