By Matthew Marczi
While Lawrence Timmons has seen his performance become somewhat erratic this season for a variety of reasons, his coverage ability was perhaps the closest aspect of his game that saw some consistency throughout the year. Outside of one significant exception, that theme continued in the season finale against the Cleveland Browns.
Timmons did an excellent job for most of the day staying disciplined and keeping an eye on the backs coming out of the backfield during passing situations. Such was the case on this early second quarter play.
Edwin Baker had just carried for four yards on successive plays to set up third and two, and looked to convert the first down off a check down pass from Jason Campbell, but Timmons had his eye on him and hunted him down, using his excellent quickness to wrap him up before crossing the line of scrimmage.
The Browns’ last drive of the first half was also plagued by the skill of Timmons in coverage. After a couple of first downs, Joe Thomas was flagged for holding, setting up a first and 20 situation.
To try to gain some of that yardage back, the Browns tried a screen to the running back, but Timmons, again, was all over it, this time stopping Baker for a loss of one. Take note of the ground he covered on this play.
Two plays later, the Browns were stuck in third and 21. Campell tried to make something happen with Jordan Cameron, his tight end, crossing the middle of the field, but Timmons was blanketing him and brought him down after just a gain of four yards.
Later in the third quarter, Timmons was all over Gary Barnidge in coverage. Even with a better throw by Campbell, Timmons still might have broken up this play.
All was not perfect on the day, however. Late in the fourth quarter, he suffered one lapse, failing to keep his eye on Fozzy Whittaker coming out of the backfield. Campbell found him and the delay by Timmons was all it took for Whittaker to get the step on the linebacker as he raced for a 35-yard touchdown.
It was far too late to make a difference in the outcome of the game, but it’s certainly a play that Timmons would like to have back.