I must admit I have a soft spot for the dude. So often vilified by many of us fans, Chris gets nothing but ignored in weekly media sessions. The fluff piece on PE.com about his volunteer work at a Voorhees Animal shelter really made me want him to be a good player.
There was an article a while back where Gocong describes himself as the Defensive Fullback (Brookover), in the article Gocong says that he can have a great game and not even show up once in the stat sheet. Everytime somebody blasts Gocong, I think about that article and wish I could offer up video evidence of what the heck he was talking about. Thanks to the "Anatomy of a Play" that they posted on PE.com today, I've got it.
The play in question was Spoon's strip sack. The video quality they post on PE.com isn't great, and you have to watch a bunch of stuff before you get to the play in question so I link you to NFL.com instead. I watched this play several times and will outline what happened after the jump.
The Eagles come out in a basic 4-3 look with the standard personnel. Parker, Patterson, Bunkley, Cole, Gocong, Witherspoon, Jordan, Samuel, Brown, Mikell, and Harris.
Just prior to the snap, Mikell and Gocong run up to the pressure the strong side of Washington's formation. Gocong moves up to become almost a 5th Defensive Lineman and Mikell replaces Gocong as the 3rd LB.
When the Ball is snapped, both Gocong and Mikell rush the passer, Cooley and the WR's release deep, and Spoon goes slightly delayed through the gap Mikell and Gocong attack.
This play worked for a couple of reasons:
1) Washington's LT bit on Trent's rush fake and essentially took himself out of the play.
2) Clinton Portis (in the diagram above, he's the back with no arrows) chose to help out up top where JP and Mikell were getting ridden off by Washington's RT and FB.
3) Chris Gocong engaged and sealed off the Redskin's guard, almost like you would hope a fullback would in order to open up a hole on a running play. Because of Gocong's block (if you will) a gigantic gap opened in the Redskins' offensive line for Spoon to rush through completely untouched. Portis made the wrong read or this might not have been a sack at all, but hey let's take what we can get.
Anyway, this is a perfect example of a play where Gocong doesn't get a number, but he absolutely contributed meaningfully to the play's outcome.