Anatomy of a Touchdown Week 3: Kareem Hunt Breakin’ Ankles and Records

 

 

As another week comes to an end, it is time, once again, to break down a touchdown from the third-best offense–and best rushing offense–in the National Football League.

 

I don’t know what genie lamp former general manager John Dorsey rubbed, or who he sold his soul to in order to uncover the gem that is Kareem Hunt, but I’m sure I’m not alone when I say I’m thankful for him. Hunt has made quite the impact since he has arrived on the scene in Kansas City, outrushing 26 entire teams, by himself. He is the current rushing leader in the NFL, and is nearly halfway to a 1,000 yard season. After three games. Let that soak in. The next best running back is over 100 yards behind him on the stat board. And Hunt isn’t just a workhorse. He’s a stud running back with a nose for the end zone. In addition to having the most rushing yards in the league, he has the most touchdowns (tied with Todd Gurley from the Los Angeles Rams.)

 

On the play I am about to break down, Hunt did something that no other NFL running back has ever done. He scored a touchdown from over 50 yards out for the third game in a  row. Absolutely amazing.

 

 

 

As quarterback Alex Smith lines up his team for the fourth quarter play that occurred as the teams came back from the final two-minute warning, it was obviously a run. The Chiefs were already leading 17-10 at this point and only had an interest in running down the clock, expecting to walk out of the city of angels with a one-score victory.

 

The formation was a simple I-formation jumbo package. The fullback, Anthony Sherman, lined up in front of Hunt. The Chargers, obviously expecting a run, put six men at the line of scrimmage, in an attempt to bottle up Hunt, something they had not been able to do the rest of the game, as he already had over 100 yards at this point.

 

 

 

As the play gets going, Smith puts tight end Travis Kelce–who was effective at blocking but an ineffective pass catcher in this game, finishing with one catch for one yard–in motion, moving from the right of the formation to the left. Smith knew that this was going to be a counter play, where Hunt would start running towards the right of the line before cutting back to the left. By moving Kelce to the left side of the line, he was able to seal the hole for Hunt to blast through.

 

 

 

The Chargers middle linebacker Hayes Pullard can see the handoff happening, and points out the run as Hunt moves up to take the ball from Smith. However, the Chiefs have more than enough blockers up front to stop the initial onslaught of Chargers defenders. The Chiefs offensive front five have done a terrific job this season sealing lanes for Hunt, and this play is no different. You can see the wall they create as the play first gets underway.

 

 

 

Looking at the secondary view of the all-22 film, it becomes clear just how good this Chiefs offensive line is in run-blocking. The hole they create is phenomenal. You can see the lane that Hunt has to move through. He sees it too, also noticing that there is only one Charger in between him and the end zone, safety Tre Boston.

 

 

 

This is the other view of the moment Hunt busts through he line. The arrow shows his direction of travel. You can see that Boston was in a position that should have allowed him to tackle Hunt with nothing more than a 10-yard gain at about the 40-yard line. Hunt had other ideas.

 

 

 

I’m not sure if Boston was just slow to react, or if Hunt is just that fast–I’m going with the latter–but either way, you can see how close Boston was to Hunt, before he has to start chasing him. There was no chance that any Chargers defenders were going chase Hunt down, so it became a one-on-one battle between him and Boston.

 

 

 

As Hunt blew past Boston, none of the other defenders had a chance to catch him. This is what makes the rookie so dangerous. He is a powerful runner who can lower his shoulder and truck defenders. He is an elusive running back who can make guys miss–he made five defenders miss him on a single run earlier in the game. Finally, he is a fast running back who can turn on the jets and outrun even the fastest defenders when he hits the open field. By the time he finished out this run, he had 10 yards on the nearest defender.

 

Another point I’d like to make here is that Chris Conley, who has been a bit of a blue-collar, under appreciated workhorse this season–ran the entire play with Hunt, making sure his teammate made it all the way to pay dirt unmolested. That is the kind of hustle you like to see from your wide receivers, who have nothing to do with the play, but run the whole way to block.

 

This play was a perfect example of a perfectly executed run play that should have gone for a 10-yard gain and a first down, but instead went 69-yards to the house, cementing the victory for the Chiefs. Oh, and it broke a record along the way.

 

This week the Chiefs are back home and under the lights of Arrowhead as the Washington Redskins come to town. I can’t wait!

 

 

 

 

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  • Laurels and limitations

    crazy just how the o-line is so much better at run blocking than it is at pass blocking. Watching past run blocking plays ran by KC this season and you can see tons of pulls and double teams effectively being ran which require well-above-average athleticism and timing to execute properly. Then it’s like KC substitutes an entirely different team for pass blocking.

    One of the great things I like about Hunt is that he doesn’t hesitate to hit the hole and can even get skinny when he has to. Add in Hunt’s ability to never, ever, ever go down on first contact and that is all that is required for a sizeable gain.

  • Laurels and limitations

    As much as I hate to say it, the o-line is starting to look war-torn. The KPL injury concerns me also as I was starting to see him pop up more on ST’s plays.

    #Chiefs injuries ThursdayDNP: LB Dee Ford (back), C Mitch Morse (foot)LTD: OL Eric Fisher (back), LB Kevin Pierre-Louis (groin)— Pete Sweeney (@pgsween) September 28, 2017

  • Laurels and limitations

    While I fully believe that Trevathan ‘s hit was disgusting, there are trolls out there in the interweberverse who are very efficient…

    Somebody gave Danny Trevathan’s Wikipedia page a thorough and proper update. @Grindin_59 pic.twitter.com/06Cpw3gN9A— Jeffrey Higginbotham (@RealReffjey) September 29, 2017

  • Laurels and limitations

    HAHA!…at least the Ref. took it in the spirit was intended and had fun with it…

    Up next on @PFT_Live, it's @PAOnTheMic. #boomandgloom #hesloose @NBCSN pic.twitter.com/wS8Ytvixoj— ProFootballTalk (@ProFootballTalk) September 29, 2017

  • Laurels and limitations

    Congrats, @Kareemhunt7!AFC Offensive Player of the Month AND NFL Offensive Rookie of the Month. pic.twitter.com/jYIJFOCCte— Kansas City Chiefs (@Chiefs) September 28, 2017

  • Laurels and limitations

    Just because…

    When you realize the weekend is almost here pic.twitter.com/mZFs3EoDSE— Darth Vader (@DepressedDarth) September 29, 2017

  • Laurels and limitations

    pundits recycling nick-names in order to get clicks, this is sad.

    T. Cohen for the @ChicagoBears can't be called the "Human Joystick" come on! That's Dante Hall @Chiefs #poser— Lawrence Tynes (@lt4kicks) September 29, 2017

  • key to the left side blocking: 97 is looking for the run up the middle LD-T blocks outside with a very effective block on the OL Stunt, Fish takes out #97 who was keying inside, takes him on completely out of the play, which ties up most of the Defensive front three. Kelce who has gone in motion outside, stutters, stops, and steps back in to take the next man on who is a linebacker rushing, and he ties him up–not a great block but an effective one. The LB disengages but it is too late to react to the huge hole which the inside wall blocking stunt has effectively set up. Kudos on this to Fish and LD-T. Kelce didn’t punish the LB but his block kept him engaged so that #5? can’t react. That leaves a CB and safety. Conley is to engage the CB, and CB has the responsibility of Pass defense, recognizes the play but Conley’s first move locks him up. The CB is late to react. Conley has no block but it doesn’t matter. Hunt is already breaking through and that CB should have read the play and didn’t. He goes outside Conley and by then has taken himself out of any play. That CB should have stuffed Conley and broke inside to try to get where the LB should have been. Neither can react at all. All that’s left is Hunt’s burst and a poor reaction by the safety. Field level confusion appears to me to be caused by the stunt and the look inside right that the hand off with a run off Morse and cut back along the newly created wall. Very effective.

  • Laurels and limitations

    Not sure if this has been posted on AO yet, but 538 posts should always be read.
    https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/wed-love-kareem-hunt-even-if-he-had-537-or-539-total-yards/

    • Chiefs-Kings-A’s

      DC’s have got to be scratching their noggins over this team…..How the hell do you game plan to stop Hunt…..and Hill…..and Kelce…..and Conley…..and yep, even Wilson.
      Chargers tried the best available scenario, and that was to get to Smith often, but that didn’t completely work either.
      WhooHaa! What a problem to have.

      • Laurels and limitations

        kind of a weird problem to have. Oh well, I’ll simply have to endear to suffer through, I suppose, lol.

        • Chiefs-Kings-A’s

          We picked a good time to have a pale offensive line…..have you heard the rumors coming out of Oakland?

          • Laurels and limitations

            Nuh-uh, what rumors are those of which you speak?

          • Chiefs-Kings-A’s

            Rumor has it that Oaklands all black OL let Carr get sacked on purpose in their loss to the Redskins in retaliation for him being the only player to stand for the Anthem.

          • Chiefs-Kings-A’s

            “A new report from The Armstrong and Getty Radio Show has sent shockwaves throughout the sports world after it was claimed that members of the NFL’s Oakland Raiders may have purposefully allowed their star quarterback to get sacked multiple times after he refused to kneel during the National Anthem.”

  • Chiefs-Kings-A’s

    Well….it looks like that round house, piledriving karate chop that ole Dirty Dan laid on a Charger last week is going to cost him some green—lol
    Hehe…I just watched again….what was he thinking?

    • Laurels and limitations

      people are all surprised when Dirty Dan acts all Dirty Dan-like. I remember a game back in the early 90s between the Chiefs and the Raiders. A bench clearing fight occurred, DT58 and crew went to work. This last game vs SD reminded me of that game vs Oak. Spirits were high, honor was at stake, the threshold was breached and there was no holding back. When JH50 gets upset, there is something out-of-the-norm happening and I have no problem with our guys finishing it. In fact, I expect it as championship teams don’t take hits, they give them.

    • Laurels and limitations

      Ha, and get this…it’s the exact same amount as OBJ doing the doggy pee. $12,154. Seems personal violence and spitting in the leagues face draw like penalties.

  • Laurels and limitations

    “We do a great job with fighting until the clock says zero.” ~ @ghost_0836 pic.twitter.com/xjU0tW32oi— Kansas City Chiefs (@Chiefs) September 30, 2017

  • Laurels and limitations

    wow, 15 comments, it’s like I’m slow on the up-take or something.

    • I think this game is going to be overhyped. The biggest exposures? The beat up OL. Morse is not back yet. Ehinger is FP but will he be ready to play? I think not but what do I know? Fish got a little dinged up(Back), LP Thurs but DNP Fri). Good thing it’s a Mon game.

      Exposure 2 is of course, OLB. Hali isn’t back, Ford is dinged up. Zombo can spot start but that means Sutton will have to scheme. proly means one of two things or a combo: Houston will focus on pass rush on passing downs and not drop into coverage as much or some sort of mix and match. I would prefer to seem him balls to the wall after Cousins.

      Which means when it is that time, Jones should get totally after it as well. If not Zombo, can KPass be inserted on Pass Rush downs????? I like our front 3 mix: Bailey, Logan, Jones along with Miller and RN-R. I think we are good and they themselves are putting on pressure without LBs in consideration. Will we see the presence of a LB or Safety Blitz? Maybe one or two CB blitzs from the blind side?

      I think Oakland has been exposed, I don’t think the Redskins are a division winning talent. My game score tells me that it should be something like 30-17. Like that(despite the 2 exposures). What do I know.

      • Laurels and limitations

        you know more than me, but I think KC can potentially run away with this one. I do think Cousins can hurt you in the air but I also believe that Kc can hurt an opposing QB FOR throwing through the air. My bet, war-torn 0-line and all, KC puts this one away by the 3rd quarter but he takes his foot off of the gas again.

        • Not sure about run away. Power away if our defense is a “nuisance” to Cousins. A week or so ago I wrote about the secondary briefly and I don’t think we have a problem. Parker, Murray, Dirty Dan are pretty good. Mitchell is showing he can play and then we have Peters. I remain a bit concerned about slot coverage but I still think it’s too early to worry about Gaines too much… his 3rd game under his belt after 2 essentially lost seasons. We’ll see. DJ can drop back as can Houston so I think we cover the short game as well. Our front three pass rush was more than sufficient and we are holding opponents under 20 or under (except the pats). If I use my number of 17? I think the Chiefs win the game with that type of defense, 17 or under. Our offense is “explosive”. With Hunt in the backfield? Hill, Kelce(yeah, he will do his damage this week), and Conley(I wish Al Smith would target him for high passes along the sideline — Conley will get the ball… I agree with your basic view…. ah. I know some but I would gather that you see some too– so to Self-deprecating (not)– I am told that I don’t make mistakes(just small errors in judgement –no. That’s what I always said of myself. huh.