Jaguars coach Tom Coughlin explained the final play of Sunday's loss to the Seattle Seahawks in greater depth today. The play at the Seattle one-yard line with no time left on the clock (it followed a pass-interference penalty against Seattle) resulted in a botched pass attempt and a 28-21 Seahawks win.
"They were in press (coverage). The two inside people were right in the gaps, indicating blitz. The adjustment (Mark Brunell) made (on the left side) was not carried out. The other adjustment, on the right side, was carried out," Coughlin said.
Jimmy Smith was wide to the left and Alvis Whitted was in the slot on the left. Kyle Brady was split wide to the right and Keenan McCardell was in the slot on the right. Fred Taylor was a single back behind Brunell.
The play called in the huddle was a quarterback draw, but Brunell decided at the line of scrimmage that a run would not succeed. He audibled to a pass to the left for the slot receiver, who was supposed to cross paths with the wide receiver on the left, the intention of which was to "pick" the defender and leave the slot receiver uncovered as he broke for the back-left corner of the end zone.
Whitted confessed to not understanding the call Brunell made at the line of scrimmage. Whitted also said he had never previously run the play, Smith confirmed that, and Coughlin initially absolved Whitted of blame, saying the sophisticated rub-off technique on the left side was usually executed by Smith and McCardell.
However, today, Whitted seemed to get more of the blame for the play's failure.
"I would say he does need to know," Coughlin said of Whitted's knowledge of the play and the call, which Whitted said he thought was a dummy signal Brunell was making to conceal the quarterback draw that was called in the huddle.
"He's been in many meetings when that has been discussed and gone over. The first thing that happened was he lined up wrong. Some guys have the poise to do things. Some guys need (practice repetitions). That's basically the case here," Coughlin said.
Whitted should've been lined up as the wide receiver, leaving Smith in the slot. "It's a special situation call," Coughlin added.
Coughlin did not blame Brunell for the audible or the pass, which sailed over Whitted's head and landed near the back line of the end zone, about 10 yards from where Whitted appeared to be dummy-blocking Seahawks defender Chris Canty.
"Mark thought the adjustment to the left side would function more easily. He's looking at the defense and the defense is dictating to him. He's going to take the most successful play he can take," Coughlin said in defending Brunell.
Whitted had become the Jaguars' number three wide receiver two weeks previous, as a result of the lack of development in first-round draft choice R. Jay Soward.
"He's been inconsistent. He makes a big play and then he drops the ball," Coughlin said of Soward.