One of the main reasons for the offensive improvement in week 9 was the fact that Deshaun Watson had finally returned to action, which provided the passing game with a much-needed spark. Though the run game didn’t stand out like it usually does each week, there were a few nicely designed and executed plays that stood out amongst the rest.
Perhaps the most exciting play was Kareem Hunt’s three-yard touchdown run at the 7:52 mark in the 4th quarter. It’s such a fascinating play because it’s something that you usually don’t see in the NFL as much as you do at the collegiate or high school level. They lined up in a traditional “Wing-T” formation that usually goes by the name “Tight Right” or “Tight 100/900”, depending on the terminology of the offensive coordinator.
Once they were initially set, Harrison Bryant motioned into the backfield next to Nick Harris who was lined up at fullback or #4 in the diagram above. They essentially shifted into what’s called the “Power-T” formation.
The most threatening aspect of this formation for the defense is the fact that there is no “strong” or “weak” side of it. There are three players on each side of the center at the line of scrimmage, and three players evenly lined up in the backfield. This play design takes away the defense’s ability to overload one side of the formation because if they do, the offense can just audible and change the point of attack to where they have a “numbers” advantage.
Once the ball was snapped, both of the tight ends and offensive linemen zone-blocked to the right while Bryant took an outside path to block the play-side cornerback. Harris released inside of Wyatt Teller and Dawand Jones’ double team block, looking for the first linebacker that he could find. Hunt took the handoff from Watson and initially took an outside path before cutting up behind Ethan Pocic’s block and accelerating to the endzone with ease.
These types of diverse formations are very effective when used properly and with the correct personnel groupings. Needless to say, Kevin Stefanski and his offensive staff drew up an effective play that resulted in Cleveland’s game-sealing touchdown in the 4th quarter.