The Cleveland Browns won a huge game in the early part of this season, beating their in-division rivals Baltimore Ravens, 40-25, on Sunday. The victory saw the offense reawaken from its slumber to regain a lot of the processes and production of Freddie Kitchen’s 2018 offense. There were a lot of standouts on offense, including wide receiver Jarvis Landry. Landry caught eight passes for 167 yards against the Ravens. He was a big play producer, who made game-changing plays for the Browns. So, how did he do it? Well, in today’s film room, we will examine all eight of Landry’s receptions to see how the play succeeded. Let’s take a look.
Q1 11:21 first-and-10: Mayfield to Landry for 16 yards
This is an excellent play design. The Browns run a play-action pass out of 12 personnel. The Browns two receivers in the play are running a slant and a post route with Landry’s slant route being the primary route for the play. The fake handoff completely fools numerous defenders on the Ravens defense. There were three key defenders that the fake fooled that allowed this play to succeed. The first is the right defensive end, who hesitated to rush the quarterback thinking he had to stay and set the edge on the right. This gave quarterback Baker Mayfield just enough time to get rid of the ball. The other two defenders key to making this play work are the two inside linebackers. They bit hard on the fake and broke toward the line of scrimmage, leaving a void behind them. This is where Landry comes in. He runs a perfect route right into the void where the linebackers left. Mayfield quickly fires a pass over the crashing linebackers to Landry, who runs it for a few more yards after the catch. Landry’s ability to find the right depth on his route was important for the success of the play.
Q1 5:34 second-and-7: Mayfield to Landry for 5 yards
This is a nice read and a good quick hitter for the Browns. Mayfield makes this play happen with a good blitz read. He sees the blitzing defensive back on the left side of the field show late and knows exactly where to go with the pass. With the defensive back vacating the left side of the field, the Browns have a numbers advantage. Cleveland has three receivers against only two Baltimore defenders in off-coverage. Mayfield sees this and throws a quick pass to Landry, who is running a flat route behind the two outside receivers running streak routes. Landry quickly turns his head around toward Mayfield at the snap because he knows Mayfield needs to get the ball out fast. The pass is completed with Landry receiving it with space to run. The play is a nice second pickup that gave the Browns a short third-down situation.
Q2 14:10 second-and-6: Mayfield to Landry for 13 yards
The Ravens once again bring a blitz on this play, giving the Browns one-on-one matchups on the right side of the field. The Browns did a nice wrinkle pre-snap to shift one of the tight ends from right to left and move the other tight end out wide to the right. The safety over the top moved even further to the left to shade toward receiver Odell Beckham Jr.’s side, meaning the Ravens had single coverage with no help on the two targets on the right side of the field. Mayfield sees that, but this means the Browns have to win the one-on-one battle and Landry does. He is running a curl route that stops right at the first down marker. Mayfield fires the pass with good timing right when Landry begins to make his break. Landry gains great separation with the quick curl route, allowing him to catch the ball in space. Landry makes a nice fake move that allows him to run upfield for a nice gain after the catch.
Q2 7:04 first-and-10: Mayfield to Landry for 18 yards
Another great play design by Kitchens. The pre-snap motion by running back Nick Chubb and fake handoff do big things for the success of the play. It moves the linebacker two steps to the right as he motions toward the play fake. This slight movement will come up big later. The next key is Mayfield and his eyes. At the snap he keeps his eyes on the left side of the field, drawing the safety, who was up in the box on the left side of the field, to move a few feet to the left as he reads Mayfield’s eyes. These two movements by the linebacker and safety leave a slight window in the middle of the field. Landry is the route that will fill that window, as he is running a post route. When Landry gets past the linebacker, he cuts quickly inside and looks toward Mayfield as he waits for the pass. Mayfield may have been a tad late, but his accuracy makes up for it as he fires it right between the linebacker and safety where Landry is waiting. It was a great all-around play by everyone involved.
Q2 1:46 second-and-10: Mayfield to Landry for 65 yards
Let’s begin with the pass play. The two key routes to watch for are from Landry and tight end Ricky Seals-Jones, who are lined up right next to each other in the left slot. They both are running crossing routes across the middle of the field with the tight end running it about seven yards deeper downfield. The route action gives the linebacker on the other side of the field a conundrum. Should he close on the deep or short route? He chose the deep route, leaving Landry open underneath when he passes the underneath coverage. Mayfield fires an accurate pass to allow Landry to run after the catch. That is where Landry shows off his after-the-catch ability and toughness. He makes the catch and runs about six yards downfield, running around and through multiple defenders.
Q2 :36 third-and-10: Mayfield to Landry for 9 yards
This is an excellent rub action and play-call for the third-down situation. The three routes to watch are from the receivers in the bunch formation on the left side of the field. The Ravens cover it with man coverage and a safety over top. The outside receiver, Damion Ratley, is running a streak route. Beckham, inside of Ratley, is running a seam route. And, Landry, who is closest to the line, is running a flat route. Beckham and Landry’s routes cause a rub action that gets Landry’s defender separated from the receiver as the defender has to go around Beckham’s defender. Mayfield quickly fires the pass to Landry, giving him the ball in space yet again. The last part of the play is Ratley, who is running upfield and clearing the outside for Landry to run. The play worked perfectly and Landry finishes it off strong by running through the tackle to get what should have been a first down. The spot was wrong, nonetheless, the play was well executed.
Q3 2:36 second-and-15: Mayfield to Landry for 12 yards
In a long second down situation, Landry makes a great play to make it a manageable third down. This is all about finding the mismatch and Mayfield finds the mismatch quickly. The Ravens send a blitz, but they have their left defensive end go out into coverage which just so happens to be in the area of Landry. Landry is running a slant route from his spot on the inside of the bunch set on the left side of the field and he runs that route with perfection. As the play starts, the defensive end moves out and is covering Landry. Landry goes upfield for a couple of steps and then fakes an outside route. This draws the defensive end to bite on it, allowing Landry to easily swim inside and get away from the defender and be open for Mayfield to give Landry the ball in space. When Landry catches the pass, he immediately goes vertical knowing he needs to gain a lot of yards. He makes a defender miss and picks up a nice gain.
Q3 1:56 third-and-3: Mayfield to Landry for 29 yards
This is my favorite play call in the game. The Browns line up in a compressed formation with a bunch set on the right end of the line. The Browns run a pre-snap motion to the left with Beckham crossing the formation from his spot on the right end of the bunch set. The ball is snapped and Mayfield fakes a handoff to running back Dontrell Hilliard going to the right. This fake handoff happens right when Beckham is crossing the face of Mayfield. It disguises the handoff and makes the defenders on the right side have to stay in their spot because they cannot see where the ball is at and if Hilliard is taking the ball. But, Mayfield still has it. This leads to the last wrinkle where Landry crosses the formation behind Beckham. Mayfield tosses it to Landry and this sets up an option type action between Landry and Beckham. However, before we get there, we must appreciate the blocking by the offensive line. Left tackle Greg Robinson and left guard Joel Bitonio crash down to the right, leaving an unblocked defender on the left. But, right guard Eric Kush pulls to the left and picks up the defender, while also helping tight end Pharaoh Brown pin the left defensive end inside. This great blocking and play call ends up leaving Landry and Beckham versus just two Ravens defensive backs on the left side of the field. The option possibility leaves the defenders with a decision and that leaves to hesitation. Landry takes advantage of the inside defender’s hesitation and splits the two defenders to cruise downfield for a big gain. This is a fun play and one we will definitely see again with multiple different options available for the Browns to use off this action.
Quick Ending Thoughts