The offense scored more points on Sunday against Dallas, but many would argue that they didn’t exactly play better. Offensive coordinator Mike Groh spoke to reporters on Tuesday afternoon, and lauded his team’s efforts in practice and attention to detail during the week, but talked a bit about ways they are looking to improve — although mostly in generalities compared to specifics.
And while Groh wouldn’t point out any one play or player that needs to improve, he did say that he would guess every single person would say that they need to do better. Everyone.
Here’s what the OC had to say:
On the offense’s slow start
Groh wanted to assure everyone that he and the staff are focusing on getting off to a fast start, but it isn’t just one thing that they can fix. He said that they are pointed out what needs addressed, but they are spending a lot of time on that specific issue.
The first play of the game was not an RPO, and while Carson Wentz may look more comfortable later on in games, they are all working toward a much more effective fast start. He later elaborated that they had Nelson Agholor and Alshon Jeffery lined up on the perimeter, and that Zach Ertz wasn’t a primary target on that play.
Ertz then wasn’t assigned Lawrence Taylor, but ended up on him. Groh was then asked if maybe they should have reconsidered having a tight end matchup against one of the best lineman in the NFL on the first offensive snap, to which he replied that it was something to consider.
Later on, Groh was asked about his role in the first 15 scripted plays of any game, but the OC wouldn’t divulge that kind of information.
He also wouldn’t discuss the exact things that they’ve identified as issues they need to address moving forward to create the type of fast starts they aim for. Groh did emphasize that it wasn’t one particular player or position that needed to improve.
On Golden Tate
Groh was asked about the lack of looks for Tate and whether that was due to the uptempo offense — as mentioned by Doug Pederson on Monday. The OC quipped that they brought Tate to Philly in order to use him a lot, so as he gets more comfortable they’ll incorporate him more. He did echo what Pederson said, and that as they went no huddle, his role was reduced.
He did say that they had a “healthy” number of packages for Tate that he felt comfortable running, and that he and the coaches worked really hard to find ways to utilize him right away.
Groh did also say that there are some opportunities they’ll have to get Golden Tate and Dallas Goedert on the field during some of those two tight ends sets.
On the run game and explosive plays
Groh said that Josh Adams has been playing well and is one of the guys who has warranted additional playing time. Adams missed the spring and most of training camp, so Groh said that the rusher is just now playing his best ball, and that he expects we’ll see more of Josh moving forward.
On Saints prep
Groh said that facing New Orleans doesn’t really change their game plan, in that the offense’s goal each and every time they take the field is to score a touchdown. So while they understand the challenges ahead of them, their main goal doesn’t change based on who they are playing.
The OC talked about things the offense is doing well, in terms of getting first downs and moving the ball down field, but they aren’t doing it consistently enough to win games. He went on to say that they aren’t finishing enough drives and they aren’t scoring when they have the opportunity.
Later on, Groh noted that the Saints defense has been limiting points and been taking the ball away often this season. He also noted that playing in New Orleans will be a loud and challenging environment, and that they’ll have to be prepared to play in and offset some of that noise.