Re: Kareem Jackson
4. After another TD by the Pats, the Bears started out with the ball on their 38 with another 3-WR set from the straight-I formation (no TE).
The Pats were in cover 1 with a single safety deep and 3 DBs playing off-man on the receivers.
Up front, they were in a 4-3; however, notice that the WILL stepped to the outside, showing help to McCourty on the Y receiver # 13 Knox.
The Pats did not attack the play-action-fake-run; their LBs stayed put and read the pass all the way.
In fact, the Pats did a lot of things right.
Their 4-man pass rush managed to put pressure on Cutler from all 3 sides (against 7 blockers - 5 linemen, the FB and the RB.)
The other 2 DBs covered the X and Z receivers well, with the lone safety backing them up.
The 3 LBs crowded the middle and slowed down the Y receiver, who ran a check down pattern, a very shallow slant route through the middle of the field toward the other side (underneath the two deep receivers.)
WR Knox actually almost had to stop to avoid colliding with one of the LBs.
This gave McCourty plenty of time to catch up and follow Knox accross the field.
Due to pressure, the pass was low and behind the receiver.
Once gain, Knox had to slow down and turn back to catch the late and low short pass. This caused him to run horizontally after the catch.
As McCourty came over to make the tackle, it should have been ruled that forward progress was stopped as Knox put on the brake (looks like he wanted to make a spin move.)
Knox had only one hand on the ball as he spun around and practically sat down on the field after he took a couple of steps backward. He caught the ball near the 41 yd line and was tackled by McCourty just behind the 40-yd line and ended up on his butt just past the LOS (the 38-yd line).
McCourty did the right thing trying to wrap (at least his right arm) around the ball carrier and had his hand on the ball to pry it out, barely before Knox was ruled down. Maybe the refs thought that the receiver temporarily (very) sat down on McCourty's right foot.
It was a good play by McCourty and the call was irrelevant.
What is relevant was the fact that McCourty had helps (from pretty much all the players on defense) and that the receiver was slowed down by different things (the impeding LBs and the low/behind throw due to the pass rush.)
McCourty was not on the receiver like glue.
A Pats LB recovered and took the ball in for a TD.