With a running game well established, the Vikings now have to use this running game to their advantage to open up the passing game via play action pass.
Often called the "Peterson Factor," (as dubbed by NFL film analyst Greg Cosell) the running game and threat of Adrian Peterson opens up the passing game down field by bringing eight to nine guys in the box.
By bringing these extra guys close to the line, normally, it opens up the passing game immensely. The problem is, without a sufficient quarterback, the “factor” is useless.
This play is meant to open up the right side of the field by selling the threat of a toss to the left. The original set up is meant to bring the wide receivers in close to the offensive line with a tight end on each side.
The tight end on the right goes in motion to the left side still giving the impression of a toss to the left.
Upon the snap, the quarterback fakes a toss to the running back to the left and bootlegs to the right. The tight end that moved in motion then runs back across to the right side behind all the linemen leading left which creates a an obstruction to hide the tight end.
The receivers bring the corners off the ball by stretching the field and creating a sense of urgency for the eight or nine in the box to not let the play get behind them. However, the key to this play is the linebackers.
By sending the tight end in motion, the linebackers will see the last blocker that could potentially lead the running back to the right side. As such, the linebackers shift to the left, selling their commitment to a toss on the left side.
Once the weak-side linebacker commits, the play takes full shape as the motioning tight end crosses to the right into the vacant zone he has just left open.
The pass is only airborne for maybe five to ten yards, but due to the streaking receiver, the safeties have pulled back leaving a wide open field to work with.
The Vikings best demonstrated this play best against the Atlanta Falcons last year in week sixteen at the Metrodome. Tarvaris Jackson took the snap from center, faking to Peterson, while Bobby Wade pulled the strong-side linebackers and safeties up field while Bernard Berrian stretched the weak-side leaving an open zone for Visanthe Shaincoe to score a 21-yard touchdown.
With Percy Harvin now on this offense, the effectiveness of this play should only improve.