FanPost

Week 4 - Florida State Seminoles

What’s at Stake?

Florida State comes into Death Valley with mixed emotions.  They are coming off of a deflating loss to Oklahoma, but bent on beating the Tigers and taking control of the Atlantic Division.  An obvious question is: Can they take control after just 4 weeks?  The answer: Absolutely.  The remaining schedules for both teams are vastly different when it comes to ACC play.  If the Seminoles take this win it becomes a much larger hill for us to climb to win the Atlantic Division.

 


CLEMSON

 

FLORIDA ST

@

Virginia Tech

@

Wake

vs.

Boston College

@

Duke

@

Maryland

vs.

Maryland

vs.

North Carolina

vs.

NC State

@

Georgia Tech

@

Boston College

vs.

Wake Forest

vs.

Miami

@

NC State

vs.

Virginia

 

The highlighted games pose the biggest threats to both teams.  Judging by the performances in the ACC, Clemson has two major games that will determine their ACC credentials, while FSU looks at a longer stretch before their toughest competition.  Clemson also plays their two toughest remaining ACC games as the away team while FSU hosts Miami. 

 

**Disclaimer: Any ACC team can defeat another ACC team, but judging by top performers this is my analysis.

 

With that said, Clemson must make a statement Saturday in order to prevent digging a hole in their ACC chances.  So, with just 3 days of practice left, where does Clemson stand?

 

Quarterbacks

Both Clemson and Florida State quarterbacks have combined for a staggering 1,894 passing yards in 6 games.  It is evident that both teams are looking to establish a passing game to keep them competitive.  This is obviously Tajh Boyd’s game for Clemson, but FSU’s head man isn’t so clear.  EJ Manuel is day to day.  He has not practiced thus far this week, but FSU Coach Jimbo Fisher indicated there was no structural damage to the QB’s shoulder.  The passing statistics for the probable quarterbacks are shown here:

 

Clemson

CMP%

YDS

TD

INT

Tajh Boyd

67.3%

911

10

1

 

FSU

CMP%

YDS

TD

INT

EJ Manuel

67.0%

666

6

4

Clint Trickett

60.9%

310

4

1

 

With EJ’s status (for now) up in the air, and a somewhat untested Trickett possibly behind center, the ever improving Tajh Boyd looks like a leader in this category.

 

EDGE: CLEMSON

 

Receivers

Seeing that the Quarterbacks have done so well leads you to believe that the receiving cores are doing just as well.  Clemson has thrown to 11 players for a total of 918 yards.  FSU has spread the ball amongst 14 players to mass 976 yards throughout 3 games.  Both teams have quality receivers who will make plays and gain yards.  The top 5 receivers for each team are here:

 

CLEMSON

 

FLORIDA ST

TDS

YDS

Player

TDS

YDS

Player

4

292

Sammy Watkins

4

195

Rashad Greene

2

191

DeAndre Hopkins

1

171

Rodney Smith

2

149

Dwayne Allen

0

106

Kenny Shaw

1

103

Jaron Brown

1

95

Greg Dent

1

96

Martavis Bryant

0

94

Jarred Haggins

0

41

Charone Peake

3

64

Bert Reed

 

Clemson’s impact players in the receiving game will be Sammy Watkins and Dwayne Allen who both made a good showing in week 3.  Florida State’s impact receivers will be Rashad Green and Burt Reed who have combined for 70% of their passing touchdowns.

 

There is so much talent on both sidelines that there is no clear favorite in the ‘Receiving’ category.  However the defensive play will ultimately determine who wins the receiving battle.

 

EDGE: SPLIT

 

 

Rushing

Neither team looked like dominant rushing attacks during week 3, but Clemson used just enough rushing to open the passing game.  Florida State, on the other hand, has been lackluster thus far with its rushing performance.  The teams’ leading rushers are listed here:

 

CLEMSON

 

FLORIDA ST

TDS

YDS

Player

TDS

YDS

Player

2

300

Andre Ellington

0

79

EJ Manuel

1

136

Mike Bellamy

0

76

James Wilder

1

117

Dwayne Allen

1

45

Chris Thompson

 

There are a few things to consider in the running game on both sides.  Andre Ellington has a hamstring issue that could hinder some running in this game, as well as EJ Manuel’s shoulder injury (even if he plays, they won’t risk further injury with risky runs).  Also, Clemson’s defense has struggled with run defense, therefore FSU could try and capitalize and use some reserves to pound the ball.  In the end, the edge has to go to Clemson since FSU’s running game has been sub-par.

 

EDGE: CLEMSON

 

 

Defense

 

This might be the most lopsided issue addressed in this post.  The FSU defense is, right now, leagues above Clemson’s defense.  However, Clemson’s defense has made great strides through the first three games to make improvements in each area.

 

CLEMSON

 

FLORIDA ST

YDS

Player

YDS

Player

674

Rushing Defense

354

Rushing Defense

583

Passing Defense

231

Passing Defense

1257

Total

585

Total

 

Hats off to FSU’s defense who have held three teams to under 600 total yards of offense, one of those team being the #1 Oklahoma Sooners.  They are a strong defense that will demand respect, apply QB pressure, and stop most any runs in the interior.  Clemson’s defense is averaging over 400 yards per game, but showing improvement.

 

EDGE: FLORIDA STATE

 

Who wins?

Obviously this analysis is taken only at face value since Florida State’s defense is much more difficult to move offensively on than Troy, Wofford, and Auburn.  However, I think there are some key strengths to Clemson’s Saturday attack that could overwhelm ranked Seminoles.  The deciding factors will be;

 

Can Tajh Boyd get enough time in the pocket to be effective?

 

Will we have a better running attack than last week?

 

Will EJ Manuel play?

 

Can Florida State run on our defense?

 

Can our secondary stop the passing attack?

 

Can Death Valley disrupt enough plays?

 

Can the CU offense keep the FSU defense on the field long enough to tire them out?

These opinions are not necessarily those of the Proprietors of Shakin' The Southland.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Shakin The Southland

You must be a member of Shakin The Southland to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Shakin The Southland. You should read them.

Join Shakin The Southland

You must be a member of Shakin The Southland to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Shakin The Southland. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9347_tracker