Mike LaFleur, Scheme, Film, NY Jets, Elijah Moore, Highlights
Elijah Moore, New York Jets, Getty Images, Jet X Graphic

Mike LaFleur did a fairly good job scheming plays against the Miami Dolphins’ man coverage

You don’t have to go way back in time to remember when New York Jets fans were calling for the head of offensive coordinator Mike LaFleur.

Struggling to get things going with an overthinking rookie quarterback, LaFleur’s offense was highly criticized over the first six games of the season.

Now, after a four-week sequence in which the Jets have benefited from steadier quarterback play, the Jets offense has picked things up.

New York is the ninth-best passing attack in the league based on yards per game right now (258.8), also leading the NFL in that category over the past four weeks at 346.5 yards per game.

The offense’s late resurgence has the stamp of youth.

The breakouts of Michael Carter and Elijah Moore – both drafted by Joe Douglas in 2021 – are playing a key role in this attack improvement.

The numbers are better now, yes, but fans still credit play-callers way too much.

LaFleur has been creative since Week 1. The all-around execution was simply much worse at that point.

From the quarterbacks to the receivers, to the offensive line, everybody is now more acclimated to the scheme.

LaFleur’s main change – ditching the run – is generating yardage results at this moment, but it’s an approach that can hurt the offense’s overall ceiling. In this scheme (and especially with Wilson) the dominance will only come with a threatening rushing attack.

There’s no denying it: LaFleur’s pass-happy approach changed the Jets’ offense. But, still, it’s an overrated aspect of the improvement.

Against Miami, for example, everyone knew the Dolphins’ plan.

Miami would blitz and play man coverage behind it. There’s not much an OC can do besides game-planning good, quick answers for his quarterback. That’s what LaFleur did.

Still, success lies in the hands of the players.

It was up for the Jets players to execute and win their one-on-one matchups.

Sure, LaFleur can make it easy on them from time to time, but the bottom line is that it’s a game of individual duels – and they happen inside the four lines.

An offensive coordinator can not scheme guys open on every play. Predetermined targets limit the quarterback. When the defense picks it up, the play is doomed.

Nonetheless, that’s enough philosophical football discussion.

The bottom line is that, against Miami, Mike LaFleur did a fairly good job at designing plays to beat Miami’s aggressive defense. Miami stopped some while others worked to perfection.

From Jamison Crowder‘s touchdown to Nick Bawden’s slant, LaFleur knew how to attack Miami’s tendencies and designed smart plays.

These four play calls caught my eye when watching the film.

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A former quarterback, Vitor Paiva wants to showcase a deep analysis of what's really happening on the field, showcasing what's really on the mind of a football player during a play, in his Sidearm Session. Email: vitorpaivagon@gmail.com

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