Tim Jenkins has a lot of criticism to throw around on the Broncos’ loss to the Bengals Sunday, but ironically, it wasn’t the QB room with the worst day on the field, according to the QB whisperer.
And it wasn’t necessarily Pat Shurmur’s play calling, he maintains.
Jenkins pointed to one particular play in the fourth quarter when the Broncos were trying to get out of their territory - and make up for an untimely holding penalty that practically negated a 24-yard completion to Albert Okwuegbunom.
Calling “Elway” at the line of scrimmage, Courtland Sutton ran a spear route and Drew Lock threw it high and behind Sutton for an incomplete.
“Where do you put the blame...did Drew Lock make a bad throw because it was behind Courtland Sutton; did Courtland Sutton not go up and make the big-time catch that he’s supposed to be the receiver that does that; or was it a bad play call?” Jenkins asked. “When guys are open 1-2 yards with a chance to make a play, I have a hard time saying, ‘yeah the OC sucks’.”
I generally do not, but I do appreciate Jenkins’ question and the debate - because rarely is a play only one person’s fault.
And to back up his point, Jenkins pointed to an AFC West rival - the Chargers. That third-down play, Jenkins argues, is one where you’d either expect Justin Herbert to make a better throw or Keenan Allen to make a better play.
“That’s just the reality in our division,” he added.
Because designing a play to your best receiver in that scenario - and expecting him to get it even if not a perfect throw - is why he’s paid the big bucks.
“I do think by and large Pat Shurmur does put together a good game plan,” Jenkins said. “I think where you fault him is probably in his sequencing. Because you feel like ‘why the hell did we just call this play on this down and distance?’ But when I look at the All-22, it’s hard to fault his game plan.”
One place he does fault the game plan, however, is the use of Jerry Jeudy. Or should we say, the non-use of Jerry Jeudy.
“We’re utilizing one of our best receivers with the jet sweep stuff - and I get what they’re trying to do - which is create flow and then hit people behind him,” Jenkins said, noting that last week Shurmur used Jeudy effectively when he put him in motion and then ran the F ship route. “But then we come back a week later and fail to revisit that play, or a version of that play.”
For Jenkins, the answer to his host’s original question about whether it’s play calling or execution, is best answered in the context of Jeudy.
“If there was a ‘hey, this is why Shurmur is terrible,’ it’s failing to get Jerry Jeudy involved, who I believe is our wide receiver 1,” Jenkins said. “I just think the kid has done everything right outside of dropping the ball Weeks 1 through 3 his rookie year.”
Luckily for Shurmur, Jenkins had designed the perfect sail route play for Jeudy against the Raiders if the OC is still struggling to figure out how to use No. 10.
Attacking The Raiders— Tim Jenkins (@TJenkinsElite) December 22, 2021
Concept 1: Flutie
If Shurmur is smart with his formation use he can utilize Jerry Jeudy as the sail runner and coach Lock to read this top-down and the Broncos could have an easy chunk play Sunday.#BroncosCountry
Quick Breakdown! pic.twitter.com/kENioEESMo
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