Scot McCloughan’s To Do List: Part 5 – Defensive Backs

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Sep 25, 2014; Landover, MD, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Rueben Randle (82) catches the ball over Washington Redskins cornerback David Amerson (39) at FedEx Field. Mandatory Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

David Amerson

David Amerson took over the RCB spot in 2014 and although he struggled through parts of the season, he did show some development. Amerson was primarily the third CB in 2013.

Amerson began the season well. He scored a 0.86 rating versus Houston in week one. Amerson followed that up with an excellent 1.15 rating versus the Jaguars in week 2. He had 2 passes defensed in that game.

Amerson began the season well

Amerson did not give up a TD until week 5 versus Seattle when he got out of position on a 3 deep zone coverage. He aligned over the outside receiver with Brandon Meriweather over the slot receiver Jermaine Kearse. Kearse shot to the end zone as Meriweather went to his right to cover the short zone. Amerson got caught flat footed as he watched Kearse catch the TD.

Amerson allowed his second TD of the season versus Dallas in week 8. WR, Dez Bryant caught a quick pass from QB, Tony Romo, and broke Amerson’s tackle as he ran into the end zone. Amerson finished with a 0.88 rating for the game as he helped shut down the Cowboys for most of the game.

Amerson did not allow another TD until week 9 versus Miunnesota. Amerson had deep third coverage as the outside WR ran him deep into the end zone. TE, Chase Ford, ran a simple out and up the sideline covered by Ryan Clark.

It should have been an easy play for Amerson to react to and make a play on except that he decided to play man coverage on the WR. He got turned around and didn’t see the play happen as he got into position to cover the WR as he ran into the end zone. Ford made the catch for the easy TD.

Amerson was playing man coverage while everyone else was playing zone

Amerson gave up just those 3 TDs until he faced the Colts and Andrew Luck in week 13 of the season. He again had problems in zone coverage. The first time was when he had responsibilty for the deep third of the field again.

TE, Coby Fleener came open for an easy TD when Amerson ran with a WR to the middle zone. Once again, Amerson played man coverage when everyone else was playing zone. The second TD he gave up was different as he lost track of TY Hilton in the corner of the end zone as Luck had plenty of time to throw.

The third TD of the game was more of the same for Amerson. Rookie WR, Donte Moncrief, got past him as he didn’t seem to realize until too late that he was responsible for the deep third of the field. Amerson went from having a good second season to looking lost versus Indianapolis.

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The fourth TD reception of the game that Amerson was responsible for wasn’t entirely his fault. Phillip Thomas was behind him in 2 deep coverage but Amerson inexplicably peeled off of Moncrief to cover Hilton in the flat. He saw that Breeland had him covered and then turned  to see Moncrief running past Thomas.

Week 15 versus the Giants wasn’t a great game for Amerson either. He scored a 0.72 rating for the game. He also gave up a TD towards the end of the fourth quarter where he lined up 7 yards off the ball with the ball on the 6 yard line. Amerson then backed up at the snap and Odell Beckham Jr. caught an easy game winning TD.

Amerson gave up his ninth TD of the season in the Redskins upset win over the Eagles in week 16. Riley Cooper caught a quick 3 yard slant from Mark Sanchez in front of Amerson. He did play much better, scoring a 0.94 rating in the win.

In the rematch versus Dallas, Amerson had another poor outing. He earned a 0.66 rating in the season’s final game. Amerson gave up 2 first quarter TDs to Bryant which helped put the game out of reach early.

Amerson was responsible for a staggering 11 Td receptions

The first TD was a quick pass out to Bryant who just shook off Amerson’s tackle and raced 65 yards for the score. The second TD was a reversed call where Bryant tip toed on the sideline of the end zone as Amerson lost track of him and the ball. Amerson was responsible for a staggering 11 TD receptions in 2014.

Amerson ended the 2014 season with 7 passes defensed, half of what Breeland had in his rookie year. He had no INTs after snagging 2 in 2013 and returning one for a TD. Obviously, Amerson played much better in his rookie season.

Amerson has the size and speed to be an excellent CB in the NFL. He has shown the athletic ability to do the job. The question is if he is able to mentally handle the position.

There are many CBs who look the part every year who flame out due to the intense pressure of the position. There are many fewer CBs however, who don’t make the cut. The third season for Amerson may determine which one he chooses to be.

Next: DeAngelo Hall