Breakdown Of Steelers TE Michael Palmer Versus Giants


By Alex Kozora

A breakdown of all 19 plays of Pittsburgh Steelers tight end Michael Palmer from Saturday night against the New York Giants.

First Drive

Snaps: 2

Run Block: 2

Pass Block/Route: 0/0

Play-by-Play

- 1st and 10, 15:00 1st. Starts game in 12 personnel with David Paulson to lead off the game. Base block vs SAM Keith Rivers. Good block, holds it long enough for Redman to run past.

- 1st and 10, 13:08. 12 personnel with Paulson. Paulson off the LOS, pulling on Power O. Palmer on the line, fold block with Mike Adams. Palmer asked to base block vs Cullen Jenkins. Predictably gets pushed back.

Second Drive

Snaps: 4

Run Block: 3

Pass Block/Route: 1/0

Play-by-Play

- 2nd and 4, 8:30 1st. Pass block on the end. Did a nice job, slid with him and led him into the chipping RB.

- 1st and 10, 7:42. Double team with Paulson on this run. Palmer the inside player and doing bulk of the work (Paulson may be looking to second level if need be but no one is in the area so he stays with double team). Mathias Kiwanuka is filling the “D” gap to force the run inside so Palmer’s job of sealing him isn’t too difficult. But he does his job and that’s all you can ask for.

- 2nd and 4, 7:07. Down block. Gets overextended, doesn’t bring his lower half and ends up on the ground. Would have provided a GIF but don’t get a good enough camera angle to show it.

- 3rd and 1, 6:34. Palmer the in-line TE with Paulson standing up in the slot. Run block. Kiwanuka trying to slant inside to fill the “C” gap. Palmer with a good block, getting him turned and washing him out of the play. Kiwanuka slanting of course helps but when you see that, the goal is to block the path and then keep him turned. If you don’t let the end get square to the LOS, he can’t use his hands and you’re in control. Well done by Palmer. Only minor complaint is him falling off the block towards the end of the play.

Third Drive

Snaps: 2

Run Block: 2

Pass Block/Route: 0/0

Play-by-Play

- 2nd and 2, :35 1st. Outside zone away from Palmer. Bases the WILL. Good, albeit brief job before the linebacker gets off and follows the flow.

- 1st and 10, :08. Two TE set with Paulson. Palmer on the LOS. Bases the five tech. Good initial contact to stalemate him but the athletic Damontre Moore is able to shed. Doesn’t factor in on the play, however.

Fourth Drive

Snaps: 2

Run Block: 2

Pass Block/Route: 0/0

Play-by-Play

- 1st and 10, 10:37 2nd. Inside zone. Base vs the SAM. Turns him to the outside so Palmer does his job.

- 2nd and 4, 9:57. Outside zone away from Palmer. Works down the line but no one around.

Fifth Drive

Snaps: 2

Run Block: 2

Pass Block/Route: 0/0

Play-by-Play

- 1st and 10, 5:39 2nd. Base vs SAM. Good body position, gets inside of the linebacker as to not let him fall off the block and into the path of the running back. Check it out below.

Steelers Giants TE Michael Palmer

- 1st and 10, 3:35. End around to Markus Wheaton. Initially bases SAM then works off and dashes upfield. Lose him off screen but don’t think he picked anyone else up.

Sixth Drive

Snaps: 1

Run Block: 1

Pass Block/Route: 0/0

Play-by-Play

- 1st and 10, 11:54 3rd. Two TE set with Peter Titupou to lead off the Steelers’ first possession of the second half. Base block DE shaded to his outside. Gets run into the backfield and then falls over Baron Batch on the botched exchange between Batch and Landry Jones. Ugly play. The reason why “Yakety Sax” was created.

Steelers Giants Michael Palmer animated gif

Seventh Drive

Snaps: 5

Run Block: 2

Pass Block/Route: 2/1

Play-by-Play

- 1st and 10, 6:02 3rd. “Return” motion, going back to where he originally lined up. Off the line in a two point, Trips Bunch set with two receivers. Lost him in the scrum off the snap but the next time he shows up is on the ground. Looks like he tried to help down block the end (may have been a double team) and get overextended again, falling to the ground.

- 2nd and 8, 5:24. A pass route! Standing up in Trips Bunch. Releases down the seam. Lose him for a moment, then he reappears settling down in the middle of the field, showing his numbers to the QB. Probably ran a dig and against zone, as I said, you settle down (rules are settle vs zone, run vs man).

- 1st and 10, 4:53. Brief pass block vs Moore. Moore good hand fighting but doesn’t really showcase much of a rush. Inside step off the snap and then watches Jones to try and deflect the pass. So a relatively easy task for Palmer.

- 2nd and 2, 4:10. Base block against Moore. Defensive end able to get his arms extended, fight Palmer off, and shed with ease.

- 3rd and 2, 3:24. Moore beats him off the line with Palmer only getting a piece. However, hard for me to say exactly what is going on here. Palmer isn’t solo on Moore. Guy Whimper comes off the line with his kickslide and picks up the end just like he would if Palmer wasn’t blocking. But Palmer does give chase to Moore. Pretty positive this can’t be characterized as a “good” play for Palmer but again, difficult to tell what exactly the pass protection was like here.

Eighth Drive

Snaps: 1

Run Block: 1

Pass Block/Route: 0/0

- 1st and 10, 9:48 4th. Base block the defensive end. Can’t hold his block, get inside leverage letting the end fall off the block and make the tackle on Alvester Alexander (side note: Dibs on using “Alvester Alexander” as my future ska band name).

Total/Conclusions

Snaps: 19

Run Block: 15

Pass Block/Route: 3/1

I’d like to be able to provide some ground-breaking analysis of his performance that would make Greg Cosell faint, but that simply isn’t here, especially in limited playing time. He was used as a glorified lineman, blocking on 94.7% of his plays. Similar to what I wrote about Paulson, he isn’t going to drive anyone off the line with his strength but understands angles really well and gets himself in proper leverage on his blocks. Does need to work on finishing his blocks and carrying his lower half. And as the numbers from this game indicate, you’ll see Haley’s Comet twice before you Palmer hauls in a reception. But aside from this game, he’s a stop-gap with experience. That’s better than what Nathan Overbay or Peter Titupou currently bring to the table.

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  • CW

    I liked what I saw with Palmer since what the Steelers needed was the gap filling blocking tight end that David Paulsen isn’t until Miller and Spaeth are healthy.

    Palmer was never going to set any stat book on fire with his on field performance, but he’s good enough especially for a short time, late offseason stand in.

  • steeltown

    Looking for improvement from all TE’s, Paulson and Palmer especially and hope McCoy has a good showing

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