PITTSBURGH — The Steelers had a big second quarter offensively, and one of those explosive plays was Diontae Johnson’s 25-yard jet sweep run. With it, the Steelers went on to score a touchdown and take an early lead. It was a play that has been somewhat absent from the Steelers’ rushing attack this year, despite being Matt Canada’s staple.
The Steelers use Johnson as a wingback and essentially disguise this one from the jump. The outside zone action gets the eyes of the second-level defenders completely off-script. The Steelers get to the second level and make some extremely key blocks. This is the misdirection that Canada is known for. In fact, Johnson said the Steelers took some of their looks from the Rams, who gashed Seattle on this same play.
The Steelers are in a heavier set, but the same principles apply with the outside zone action forcing the eyes of the defenders to be drawn in different directions. The Steelers get that reduced over front too that the Rams got and saw success out of on this play. It is exactly what Johnson is talking about.
“We have seen the Rams that play against them,” Johnson said. “You know, they have a certain coverage to it, and they gave us the same look. We were able to get a big play on that one. About 25 yards or so. That was a good play that we prepared for them.”