Oct 26, 2014; Foxborough, MA, USA; New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski (87) catches the ball to score a touchdown as Chicago Bears strong safety Ryan Mundy (21) defends during the first quarter at Gillette Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports
The Bears defense struggled continually against the Patriots aerial attack and could not contain tight ends Rob Gronkowski and Tim Wright. The front four was unable to disrupt Brady all day and he picked apart the Bears secondary and linebackers. Let’s take a look at the film to see how Gronkowski used his big frame for a three touchdown day.
Rob Gronkowski 6 yard TD catch
Game situation: 1st down and Goal at the Bears 6 yard line (1st Quarter 9:47 left)
Personnel: 12 (1 RB, 2 TEs, 2 WRs)
Defense: Cover 0
Offensive scheme: Flat-Corner
After aligning in a 3×1 set, Edelman motions across the formation and releases into the Flat at the snap. Gronkowski releases from the line of scrimmage on the Corner route. Look at the release Gronkowski gets off the line, no defender touches him and then he initiates contact with Mundy. This gets Mundy in a trial position and now Gronkowski has the levearge to win on the route. He stems to the corner with Mundy now having to face-guard the receiver. Brady throws a great ball, dropping it into the outstretched arms of Gronkowski with Mundy on his back.
Rob Gronkowski 46 yard TD catch
Game situation: 3rd down and 4 at the Bears 46 yard line (3rd Quarter 12:54 left)
Personnel: 11 (1 RB, 1 TE, 3 WRs)
Defense: Cover 1
Offensive scheme: High-Low Crossers
Brady sets up in the shotgun in an empty look with the receivers spreading the field in a 3×2 set. Gronkowski is flexed from the line in a two point stance on the trips side of the formation. The Bears play Cover 1, Mundy and Williams roam the deep and intermediate middle zones, while the rest of the defenders match-up 1-on-1 versus the Patriots receivers. Conte draws Gronkowski as his assignment on the play, lining head up on the receiver.
Gronkowski utilizes his big body on the play, engaging Conte five yards down the field and then pushing off as he stems his route across the field. He continues to create separation by working away from Conte’s leverage. A window emerges for Brady to deliver the football when Gronkowski clears the roaming linebacker, Williams. Conte fails trying to undercut the throw and Gronkowski has plenty of green in front of him. Mundy comes up to make the tackle, but tries tackling up high and gets stiff-armed out of the way as Gronkowski does the rest rambling into the end zone for his third touchdown of the game.