Floyd knows his way around the block

Posted by Darren Urban on August 12, 2013 – 9:48 am

The play was a risky one, with Carson Palmer dropping back deep into his own end zone, the line of scrimmage the Cardinals’ own 1-yard line. But it was executed well, with the Packers getting no pressure on Palmer before he delivered a 17-yard pass to an open Larry Fitzgerald.

It was hard not to notice, however, that — on a pass play — one of the key points of protection was wide receiver Michael Floyd blocking Pro Bowl pass rusher Clay Matthews. An odd matchup, to be sure, and certainly an unexpected one for Floyd to win. Floyd isn’t small at 6-foot-3, 225 pounds, but he isn’t Matthews’ 6-3, 255, nor does he have the experience to fend off a pass rusher in such a situation.

“(Michael) handled Clay pretty well on that play,” Cardinals coach Bruce Arians said. “I wasn’t really happy he was matched up on Clay. It was supposed to be a quicker pass. He blocked the crap out of him. Mike is a big strong guy. But hopefully, I think my coaching would be questioned if we put him on pass rushers like that every day.”

Floyd’s reputation from college was one of a willing and able blocker. That part isn’t a surprise. “You know, if  Coach puts me in a position where I’ve got to do something, I’ve got to do it,” Floyd said of the play. “If I don’t, that’s a sack for him and that’s a no-play for us. It’s something I’ve got to take care of. I take a lot of pride in my blocking and I have to get it done.”

What seems more surprising is having Floyd, one the top receivers, stay in on a passing play. On running plays, Floyd has already shown he can and will be effective as an edge blocker.

“I want to be an all-around receiver, not just making big plays and scoring touchdowns,” Floyd said. “I also want to help those guys running the ball be successful. If it means blocking a guy to get them in the end zone, I’ll do it.”

That’s the kind of attitude and performance most coaches appreciate. And Friday night, it helped lead to a completion (as seen below) and should be a point of pride. “When he watches the tape,” Arians said. “there will be some chest poking.”

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10 Responses to “Floyd knows his way around the block”

  1. By Mark W on Aug 12, 2013 | Reply

    The play-action was lethal when a guard was pulling, as was the evident on this play; not only did Clay dive down the line looking to tackle the runner, but #42 of GB neglected his flat when he saw Cooper scooting right.

    What an impressive move on the behalf of BA to take advantage of a defense looking to be aggressive and put points on the board this play.

    One concern from watching the game is the targeting of Fitzgerald on WR screens, I would much prefer to see Floyd or Roberts use their quick-twitch moves and allow Larry to utilize his blocking talents.

  2. By Mike G on Aug 12, 2013 | Reply

    Hey Darren–Hope all is well!– Nice article on “getting the run game going” I think Arians and Keim are really trying to bolster the offensive line and running game for the Cards. It seems they are putting an emphasis on blocking hence having Floyd block Matthews at their goal line. If the Cards can get yards on the ground this season in addition to an improvement along the offensive line the team will be improved. Those two things to me will open up the passing game. Floyd is a big target as a receiver and should grow as a nice number 2 behind Fitz. I expect him to be more comfortable in his 2nd season. Hey Darren–Do you think Floyd will be a deep threat for the Cards under Arians offense given his size?????

  3. By Darren Urban on Aug 12, 2013 | Reply

    Mike G —

    RE: Floyd

    I don’t see why he wouldn’t be an option sometimes.

  4. By Mike Hadzinski C.M. PUNK on Aug 12, 2013 | Reply

    smhh Anquan did the same thing…… he even played rb for a couple plays

  5. By Brandon on Aug 12, 2013 | Reply

    I remember when he jacked up drc in Philly last year

  6. By stevenanimator on Aug 12, 2013 | Reply

    With TE’s like Vernon Davis, who have the speed and catching ability of a receiver, it would make sense to use Floyd in that position from time to time to keep the defense guessing. Good to see this consistency of protecting the QB this year compared to last. I think the players understand how crucial keeping Palmer upright and healthy is going to be in having any success, whereas last year, it seemed like Whisenhunt put the onus mostly on his QB’s to get rid of the ball to avoid getting sacked, which led to a lot of interceptions.

  7. By Eric on Aug 12, 2013 | Reply

    so you’re saying that comparing him to anquan is a bad thing?

  8. By ored on Aug 12, 2013 | Reply

    don’t think floyd is tapped out yet,i think we see much more from him.

  9. By Eazy E on Aug 13, 2013 | Reply

    He did a great job, but let’s not go overboard, that is Clay Matthews now. You don’t ever wanna see that matchup again!

  10. By truths4all on Aug 13, 2013 | Reply

    Floyd did very well in his one block on Matthews. He kept Matthews from drifting right and prevented him from getting the angle to cut inside. Floyd did a very nice job on the one block.

    However, if you isolate on Brown, many times he set his feet to block off any inside move, but this allowed the defensive end to drift out to the right and reach over for Palmer. Luckily, receivers were open and Palmer make quick enough reads that Brown’s inability to keep his feet moving with the defensive end did not cost the Cards.

    In all fairness, after Brown was replaced by Potter (who keeps his feet moving with the rusher), there was some breakdowns when Cooper was pulled for the protection scheme and the defenders shot the gap and almost got Stanton who did an excellent job in avoiding the sack. Wasn’t sure if Potter was supposed to slide over of if that was Sendein’s assignment.

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