Mark Schlereth particulars how Bengals offensive line can have success vs. Aaron Donald and Rams defensive entrance


Mark Schlereth by no means needed to face Aaron Donald, however he did face a problem just like the one the Bengals offensive line will face in Tremendous Bowl LVI. 

In Tremendous Bowl XXXII, Schlereth and the remainder of the Broncos offensive line confronted a Packers defensive entrance that included formidable run-stuffer Gilbert Brown and Corridor of Fame pass-rusher Reggie White. A double-digit underdog towards the defending Tremendous Bowl champions, the Broncos pulled off the upset behind Terrell Davis’ 157 yards and three touchdowns. Schlereth was requested if the Bengals offensive line — a bunch that has allowed 63 sacks of Joe Burrow this season — can have comparable success towards a Rams entrance that features Donald, a three-time Defensive Participant of the 12 months. 

“They’ll must have a plan,” stated Schlereth, who will lead a exercise on the eve of the large recreation in Los Angeles as a part of his partnership with Hydroxycut. “That comes right down to teaching, the way you name performs and placing your gamers in place to have success. … You as a participant must deal with your enterprise, however lots safety and eliminating sacks actually has to do with the best way you name performs as an offensive play-caller. Taking strain off guys and utilizing defensive gamers’ strengths towards them.”

Happily, the Bengals have one of many NFL‘s high offensive line coaches in Frank Pollack, who additionally serves because the crew’s run recreation coordinator. Pollack, who was the Cowboys offensive line coach throughout Ezekiel Elliott’s breakout rookie season, gained a Tremendous Bowl as a member of the 49ers offensive line on the finish of the 1994 season. The Bengals offensive line allowed only one sack of Burrow final Sunday after giving up 9 sacks the earlier week in Tennessee. 

The road additionally opened up holes for Joe Mixon, who had his finest speeding efficiency since his 165-yard efficiency towards the Steelers in Week 12. Cincinnati modified issues up final week by splitting its proper guard duties between Hakeem Adeniji and rookie Jackson Carman. Bengals coach Zac Taylor stated that he expects that to proceed main as much as Tremendous Bowl LVI. 

“You may’t put a participant ready to fail after which be shocked when stated participant fails,” Schlereth stated. “Your job as a coach is to mitigate potential disasters. No. 99 Aaron Donald is a catastrophe ready to occur, proper? So what’s our plan?”

For the ’97 Broncos, former Denver coach Mike Shanahan was capable of create a plan that allowed his undersized but athletic offensive line to have success towards Inexperienced Bay’s protection. Just like the Bengals will attempt to do towards the Rams’ protection, the Broncos discovered and took benefit of a bent throughout the Packers’ protection. 

“Mike Shanahan got here to us late within the week and stated, ‘Here is what we’re operating and let me present you what is going on to occur,'” Schlereth recalled. “We will run 18 Handoff. Each time they’re on this formation, their weak facet linebacker, Brian Williams, goes to slip out and be 2 yards deeper and a pair of yards additional outdoors. That is going to permit their security, LeRoy Butler, to fall down and so they’re principally operating an change. So LeRoy turns into the weak facet linebacker and Brian Williams actually turns into the security. 

“Mike confirmed us, ‘That is what they do, 100% of the time. That is how they play this formation. We’re going to intestine them on 18, 19 Handoff. We’re going to completely destroy them.’ I child you not, we line up first play of the sport, we run 18 Handoff out of the robust proper slot … and I hit LeRoy proper within the tooth. Wham! TD cuts up behind it for a 15-yard acquire. I simply turned to Gary [Zimmerman] and go, ‘We’re going to eat these guys’ lunch.'”

The Broncos would go on to defeat the Packers in one of many largest upsets in Tremendous Bowl historical past. And whereas the execution of Schlereth and his teammates was a significant key within the upset, Shanahan’s recreation plan set in movement what performed out on Jan. 25, 1998. Schlereth feels that the Bengals offensive line has an opportunity to do one thing comparable if the Bengals teaching employees places it in place to take action. 

“That comes right down to teaching. In relation to Zac Taylor and his offensive employees, it’s important to have a plan,” Schlereth stated. “I am not saying it is simple, as a result of Aaron Donald is the perfect soccer participant within the NFL, bar none. It is not going to be simple; he’ll make some performs. However it’s important to mitigate the variety of massive performs that man makes.” 

Schlereth, a three-time Tremendous Bowl champion who gained two rings with the Broncos and one other with Washington, will kick off Tremendous Bowl weekend by main a ’90s themed exercise in Los Angeles’ Grand Park, the place he can be joined by Bengals Corridor of Famer Anthony Munoz. 

“It is going to be superior. I will have leg heaters on, a head band. I will look the half,” Schlereth stated.

Together with the free exercise, the Hydroxycut Large Recreation Sweepstakes contains a $100,000 prize if an offensive or defensive lineman scores a Tremendous Bowl landing. Different prizes embody one 12 months of groceries (valued at $10,000) or a one-year fitness center membership. 

“I am all the time excited when a giant guys scores,” Schlereth stated. “One, we do not know what to do with the ball, and it simply appears to be like cool when a giant, big man has the ball in his palms and he goes to spike it.” 



Leave a Comment