The Explode Package

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The Explode Package

Postby JansenFan » Fri Jul 23, 2004 9:46 am

Based on an earlier thread in hog wash, here is an article about the "explode package"

Some of Gibbs' stuff had confused the Dolphins enough to keep them from overplaying Riggins. The topper was the particularly zany Explode Package, in which the five eligible pass receivers lined up in strange places, jumped into different locations and took their prescribed one-second pause. As usual, a receiver then went in motion.

"We put it in at 3:30 a.m. Thursday morning," Washington offensive coordinator Joe Bugel said. "It was at the end of our coaches' meeting. We were trying to think of something special. Someone would make a suggestion. It didn't click. Then someone would make another. We'd have a cup of coffee, a candy bar. All of a sudden Coach Gibbs said, 'How about moving everybody?' And one guy said, 'Now you're talking.' And the Explode Package was born. That morning at 10 o'clock we presented it to the team. Coach Gibbs diagrammed it and said, 'Men, we call this Explode!' and there was this yell throughout the room: 'Yeeahhh!' It sure got their attention."

The Skins used the Explode about five times and got two short touchdown passes out of it, a four-yarder to Garrett in the second quarter and the final TD, a six-yarder to Brown, at the end of the game. Both came out of an alignment in which the two little guys started out together, almost in single file, then split and crossed into the end zone. Both times the coverage was close. Maybe the formation provided a split second's indecision, maybe it didn't, but it didn't hurt.

Gerald Small, the right cornerback, ended up with the coverage on both touchdowns. The first one was a little fade pattern, in which Garrett ran to a spot and Theismann dropped the ball on him. The second was a crisscross in which Brown started inside and then cut for the corner. Small caught up to him the moment the ball arrived and gave him a mighty push out of bounds, but the official ruled Brown had been forced out, and the touchdown stood.

The point is that however they did it, the Redskins wound up with the coverage they wanted both times -- Small on the hot receiver.

Some of the wrinkles were more subtle. Warren, the regular tight end, occasionally would go in motion. Rick Walker, the second tight end, who sets up behind the line and who had been going in motion all year, stayed put.

"It's the first time we did that all year," Gibbs said. "The idea of the reverses, the flea-flickers, the Explode, was to keep them loose, to keep them from getting after John. We wanted a situation where John could get decent yardage on first down so we wouldn't have to throw when they were expecting it. In the second half we accomplished that. Give the offensive line credit for a lot of that.
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