Sometimes, a good choice of images can efficiently tell you so much about a particular game. Heck, in some situations, a couple images are far better than words.
For example, consider the following two images as demonstrating what’s wrong with (1) the Bears offense, (2) Andy Dalton, and (3) Matt Nagy’s usage of his best players:
— Zack Pearson (@Zack_Pearson) September 13, 2021
— Josh Norris (@JoshNorris) September 13, 2021
You don’t even have to look at the resulting numbers – just 6 catches and 35 yards for Robinson – to see immediately there was something funky going on.
The combination of those two charts tells you so much about what the plan was for this game. Where are the deep dots? What’s with EVERYTHING going horizontal in a vertical game? Isn’t this similar to what things looked like in 2019-20 with different quarterbacks? Yes, he can be a great possession guy, but shouldn’t you also be using Robinson to stretch the field a little more? When can we get off this rollercoaster?
I love that Robinson can run every route from every position in any alignment. But that route tree doesn’t do Robinson any favors, and certainly isn’t reflective of his skill set or (presumably) what he signed up for when he came to the Bears those many years ago.
Allen Robinson’s agent weighs in… LOL pic.twitter.com/K4a2fLsIfA
— Danny Parkins (@DannyParkins) September 13, 2021
Dalton’s dot chart serves as a reminder of his many limitations, even if what he was doing was just fulfilling the scheme laid out for him. However, maybe the big takeaway for me is that Nagy’s offense doesn’t fit what its best pass-catcher can do when given opportunities. Nor does it seem to fit a quarterback whose current skillset isn’t allowing him to max out his top receiver. Dalton might be the most veteran quarterback Robinson has played with, but it won’t matter if this version of Dalton can’t mesh with a player still in his prime like Robinson.
Here’s hoping this was all just a one-off scheming thing, particularly to the Rams, and not reflective of how Dalton and Robinson can work together in the weeks ahead (however long Dalton has the reins, I mean … ).
Brett Taylor contributed to this post.