Top 35 Plays of 2015: #5 – Josh Dobbs’ Game Winner

The number 5 play in our countdown to determine the best plays of Tennessee’s 2015 season is Josh Dobbs’ go-ahead touchdown run against Georgia.The last four plays in this series have come from the Tennessee-Georgia game. All the plays were important, but none of them would have mattered much without Josh Dobbs’ go-ahead touchdown run in the fourth quarter.

With 8:45 remaining in a game tied at 31, the time for the Vols to make their move had come. Dobbs showed why he is the leader of the team, accounting for all but seven yards on an eight play, 78 yard drive.

After seven plays, the Vols had the ball at the five yard line and faced first-and-goal. Offensive coordinator Mike DeBord called a play that put the ball in Dobbs’ hands one more time.

The Vols ran a quarterback counter play. We’ve covered this basic blocking scheme before . Here’s a quick recap.

“This inside run scheme is a staple of Butch Jones’ playbook. The blocking scheme itself is very straightforward. The playside offensive linemen (tackle, guard, and center) will all “block down.” This means they will all block the defender inside of them. These down blocks effective serve to push the defenders away from where the running back is aiming to run. Since the playside linemen are all blocking to the inside, the two outside defenders, a defensive end and a linebacker, will be left unblocked.

“The backside guard will pull around to kick out the end. With his block pushing the end outside and the other linemen sealing the interior defenders inside, the running back will have a lane to run through. A backside H-Back/wing tight end, will pull through and lead the running back through the hole. His blocking assignment is to blast the playside linebacker.”

The blocking scheme remains the same, but instead of handing off to the back, Dobbs faked a handoff on a sweep, and kept the ball up the middle.


The strong safety was intentionally left unblocked. The fake handoff to Kamara as meant to hold the safety outside. With Kamara’s speed, the safety could not afford to duck inside and leave the edge undefended.

From a blocking perspective, the Vols’ couldn’t have done much better. DeBord called this play for Dobbs to run right behind two true freshman who were seeing their first significant playing time: right tackle Chance Hall and right guard Jack Jones. They were able to successfully get movement on the defensive tackle on a combo block, before Hall moved off to block the middle linebacker.

Ethan Wolf pulled around from his tight end spot and was able to use his shoulder to force the playside linebacker outside, opening up a running lane.

Perhaps the best block on the play came from Dylan Wiesman, playing at the pulling left guard position. He absolutely buried Georgia outside linebacker Leonard Floyd (a top 10 pick in the 2016 NFL Draft) on his kickout block, sending Floyd to the ground.

Dobbs was able to run behind his blocks, and powered his way through three Bulldogs on his way into the end zone, putting the Vols up for good, 38-31.

For more information on the quarterback counter and the rest of Tennessee’s offensive scheme, be sure to check out my book, Fast and Furious: Butch Jones and the Tennessee Volunteers’ Offense. It is the most in-depth study of Coach Jones’ offense ever released, and is a must read for any football fan who wants to learn a little bit more about the game.

You can learn more about the book and order your copy on Amazon by clicking HERE.


You can read previous installments of this series by clicking below:

Play #35 – Evan Berry’s Pick Six

Play #34 – Preston Williams’ First Touchdown

Play #33 – LaDarrell McNeil’s Comeback

Play #32 – Malik Foreman’s Interception

Play #31 – Josh Dobbs and the Sweep

Play #30 – The Speed Option

Play #29 – Alvin Kamara’s First Touchdown

Play #28 – Jalen Hurd’s Big Hit

Play #27 – Dobbs to Smith

Play #26 – The Jump Pass

Play #25 – Dobbs to Malone

Play #24 – Vereen Sacks Bama

Play #23 – Thomas Blocks Two

Play #22 – Darrin Kirkland Jr.’s Interception

Play #21 – Von Pearson’s Double Move

Play #20 – Cam Sutton’s Career Long Punt Return

Play #19 – Evan Berry’s First Kickoff Return Touchdown

Play #18 – Derek Barnett’s Sack

Play #17 – Todd Kelly Jr.’s Interception

Play #16 – Brian Randolph’s Interception

Play #15 – Alvin Kamara and the Dual Sweep

Play #14 – Dobbs to Kamara

Play #13 – Kerbyson and the Line Pave the Way

Play #12 – Dobbs Outruns Kentucky

Play #11 – Derek Barnett’s Safety

Play #10 – The Double Pass

Play #9 – The Fumble

Play #8 – Von Pearson’s Catch

Play #7 – Randolph’s Pass Breakup

Play #6 – Trevor Daniel’s Big Punt



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