Pro tip: If you find yourself in a close game with the Denver Broncos, late in the fourth quarter and your offense is on the field and they have a chance to either tie or take the lead, for goodness sake, find a way to chip Von Miller!!!
I can't for the life of me understand why teams continue to let Miller kill any chance they have for a comeback by not helping out their right tackle in crunch time. Who really gives a shit if Shane Ray or Derek Wolfe is singled up? Those guys aren't the reigning Super Bowl MVP.
Von Miller is!
Even if you do help your right tackle there is still a chance that Miller will get to the quarterback, but at least give yourself a friggin' chance.
On Sunday, the Indianapolis Colts, like so many other dumbass teams, had to learn this lesson the hard way.
It was 26-20 Denver with just under two minutes left in the game and Indy, who has the highest paid player in the league at quarterback, a guy who practically lives for late game heroics, had a legit chance for an improbable upset on the road. But did they put Andrew Luck in position to lead his team down the field for a game winning touchdown drive?
Instead they had right tackle Joe Reitz, who had already given up one sack to Miller and almost half of another at that point, out on an island all by himself. You already know what happened right?
Of course you do.
But please, allow me the honor of describing it to you anyway.
Miller, who might actually be part rubber band, had been bull rushing Reitz to pretty good effect for most of the game. In fact, it was a bull rush move that he used to get the aforementioned sack as well as the "almost" half a sack where his teammate DeMarcus Ware beat him to Luck by a milli-second. Well, Miller, being the master pass rusher that he is, decided to use that to his advantage by faking a bull rush this time around.
The Colts did at least line up tight end Dwayne Allen outside of Reitz to force Miller to take a longer route to the quarterback, but even though he was in perfect position to help Reitz by chipping Miller, Allen went out on a route instead.
Miller lined up wide outside of Allen and got off at the snap of the ball like he was going to do a speed rush to get Reitz to bail out of his stance. Then, just as Reitz was about to turn to try to block his speed rush, Miller hesitated just enough to give Reitz the impression that Miller was about to go speed-to-power as he had for much of the game. All it took was that little hesitation to get Reitz to set his feet and try to brace for the impact he thought was coming again.
As soon as he saw Reitz stop his feet momentarily, Miller simultaneously stepped wide with his outside foot and turned on the afterburners while also bending low to the ground for one of his patented dip-and-rip moves. It happened so quickly that Reitz damn near didn't even get a hand on him.
Luck, who was oblivious to all of this happening around him, had barely finished dropping back to pass before Miller was already breathing down his neck. Because it all happened so fast, Luck had no chance to actually try to protect the football and Miller almost effortlessly knocked it right out of his hand. The ball would bounce on the turf a couple of times before Ray picked it up and ran it in for the game clinching touchdown.
As I'm typing this I'm getting this weird feeling of deja vu. It's almost as if something very similar to this situation has happened before ...
That sack/caused fumble was undoubtedly the play of the game, but it was basically just the icing on the cake for Miller on Sunday. All told he ended up with three sacks, two tackles, two assists, a pressure, a pass knock down, and he also forced a holding penalty. It's also worth nothing that of those plays, he made four of them on third downs to help end those Colts' drives. Oh and that third sack? It came on the Colts' final offensive play of the game.
He literally ended the game.
That's some grade A domination there, Holmes!
It's only Week 2, but if teams don't wise up and start helping their right tackles, Von Miller is going to mess around and run away with the Hoss Of The Year award by midseason.
For now, I will just bestow upon him my Hoss Of The Week award for Week 2 of the NFL season. He definitely earned it.
* * *