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Clemson-FSU Film Review: Third Quarter

NCAA Football: Clemson at Florida State Melina Vastola-USA TODAY Sports

FSU Ball, FSU 25, 15:00

1st and 10, 11 vs. 4-2, Ryan Carter in at nickel, Ferrell does a good job closing down the b-gap on power however FSU is a team that will have the guard seal block the end and turn a play like this into an outside run, Kendall Joseph and Tankersly do a great job tackling Dalvin Cook in a pile up…

2nd and 10, 11 vs. 4-2, Clemson is showing press man to the single receiver side with the one safety over the top shaded to trips, Tankersly is good enough that Clemson can leave him on an island, short throw to the flats broken up by Joseph… 3rd and 10, 10 vs. DOD, Cook leaks out of the backfield on an option route and manages to manufacture the last four yards out of thin air after Joseph misses a tackle…

1st and 10, 10 vs. 4-1, Watkins forms a pile on inside zone and drags a guard and Cook with him… 2nd and 7, 21 bunch vs. 4-3 under, inside zone cutback away from trips, both linebackers get caught with their eyes in the backfield but Wiggins flies in from the secondary to keep the gain short… 3rd and 2, 21 bunch vs. 4-3 under, FSU tries to run mesh with the single receiver and the LOS receiver on the trips side, Clemson sends a fire zone, hats off to Ferrell for doing a fantastic job following a wide receiver in pass coverage and knocking the ball down, both linebackers hit the line hard and forced a bad throw… PUNT

The Seminoles offensive line isn’t full of drive blockers, but they’ve done a good job opening holes just wide enough to gain a handful of yards at a time. With that said, the only first down came because Cook was just barely able to gain ten yards in the open field. There’s not a ton to be done to prevent that. Tankersly is a man on an island at boundary safety and more than good enough to hold it down, allowing the safeties to key in on the run and Venables to pressure liberally.

Clemson Ball, Clemson 5, 12:03

1st and 10, 11 vs. 4-2, inside zone bluff but Leggett gets tangled up in the end being read and manages to half block him and the linebacker, who combine to entirely complete the tackle for a loss

2nd and 11, 10 vs. 4-2, FSU has the nickel out wide and both safeties over the tackles, they appear to be trying to keep everything inside, Leggett is open in the flats but the pass is batted down… 3rd and 11, 10 vs. 4-1, Watson threads the needle to Cain on a fade route, putting the ball over the corner and under a rapidly closing safety…

1st and 10, 10 vs. 4-2, not enough men line up over the bunch formation wide, quick bubble screen to Scott for a few yards… 2nd and 3, 10 vs. 4-2, FSU has had a nose tackle to the strong side line up head up the center and two gap while the backside three tech and both ends try to penetrate

The slant route to Scott is just open enough for a handful of yards…

1st and 10, 11 vs. 4-3 under, jet sweep motion to RRM3, play action heave to Cain is good again, #24 for FSU has not had a good drive, he got outran again and there’s no safety help, FSU has been asking the field corner to play bump and run with one safety over the top, but it’s a lot to ask a middle of the field safety to provide help at the sideline…

1st and 10, replay was still going at the snap, incomplete on a bubble screen… 2nd and 10, 10 vs. 4-2, false start, 2nd and 15, 11 vs. 4-2, FSU’s safety stumbles but recovers and nearly picks a throw off to Renfrow who looked open on a skinny post, FSU is asking the corner, nickel and safety to play quarters over the two receiver side… 3rd and 15, empty vs. 4-1, seven players are on the LOS, four man rush, Watson tries to scramble but barely avoids his run being counted as a sack… FIELD GOAL GOOD

Negative plays usually kill drives, and Clemson was lucky not to punt out of its own end zone. With that said, the depth of the Clemson WR/TE group forces defenses to leave someone extremely talented open. Most teams can account for one of Williams and Cain, however, very few can account for both. FSU felt it had to leave a corner on Cain in man coverage in order to play more conservative zone coverage to the strong side of the field and got burned twice.

FSU Ball, FSU 23, 9:03

1st and 10, 11 vs. 4-2, play action roll out, the deception gets Francois a relatively clean pocket and he almost hits the comeback route on the sideline, Fields barely gets to the ball and gets flagged for pass interference…

1st and 10, 21 vs. 4-3 under, Joseph blitzes at the snap, Pagano manages to tangle up two blockers and pursuit tackles Cook from behind… 2nd and 11, false start… 2nd and 16, 11 vs. 4-2, crossing route incomplete with Boulware flying to the receiver… 3rd and 16, 11 vs. DOD, Francois is sacked immediately by a three man rush, Bryant blew past the tackle like he was cemented to the ground… PUNT

The PI call was borderline, but given how many flags FSU has caught it should be expected the refs would throw the flag quickly. Other than that FSU fell behind quickly in the next set of downs, and after a false start wasn’t able to pass its way out. Clemson has been able to generate an easy pass rush all night.

Clemson Ball, Clemson 33, 7:07

1st and 10, 10 vs. 4-2, RRM3 jet sweep motion, Watson has the option to keep but hands the ball off, gain of a few yards as the safety cleans up… 2nd and 8, 10 vs. 4-2, both linebackers on the LOS, Watson tries to throw the same play (single receiver to the boundary fade) that worked twice for Cain to Williams and gets picked off, at the snap it looked like the corner would blitz, a look FSU ran repeatedly, before dropping into the flats…

Good job of FSU adjusting, that was a well run fire zone they had set up with multiple corner blitzes prior. Watson likely didn’t even see the corner drop back.

FSU Ball, Clemson 43, 6:26

1st and 10, 11 vs. 4-2, both linebackers on the LOS and Van Smith creeping into the box as almost a deep third linebacker, FSU likes to run power away from a tight end in a wing position and does so again here, Boulware and Lawrence both take the B gap, which is a slight issue on a run designed to hit the C gap, Van Smith was almost in position to make the tackle but is about a yard too far inside, gets beat to the edge, and that’s all it takes…

Well, that certainly shifted the momentum.

Clemson Ball, Clemson 25, 6:18

1st and 10, 11 vs. 4-2, Gallman bounces outside on inside zone and finds almost enough space at the boundary for a first down… 2nd and 1, 11 vs. 4-2, FSU still has a defensive tackle head up the center and there’s a huge bubble in the B gap for Gallman to cut back into, inside zone read dive is good for a couple, could have gone for further if Crowder had done more than shove the play side linebacker…

1st and 10, 11 vs. 4-2, strong safety drops down and FSU has both outside corners pressed, play action roll out and Hearn erases pressure from the edge while on the run, good block by Leggett and Renfrow is able to get open on a deep out route…

1st and 10, 10 vs. 4-1, trips bunch out wide, Gallman gets dragged down by the nose tackle… 2nd and 10, 10 vs. 4-2, massive gap opens between the right guard and right tackle and Watson takes off running and someone was holding… 2nd and 20, 10 vs. 4-2, FSU’s entire DL sniffs out a screen, Renfrow might have been lucky he wasn’t able to catch it… 3rd and 20, empty vs. 3-2, FSU runs a stunt and Crowder isn’t quick enough to adjust inside when the backside tackle loops around, Guillermo did no one any favors allowing the first man in the stunt to get past him as well, Watson is able to avoid the sack, rushed pass to Jordan Leggett falls incomplete… PUNT

Clemson is, and looks like it will be, much more efficient than explosive this year. You can win games like that. A lot of games. The issue with this is that you have to avoid negative plays and turnovers or your offense stalls out rapidly. Usually the Tigers have been able to do that, but for chunks of the game at a time the offense disappears, and it really only takes a handful of bad plays to throw the offense off an entire quarter.

It’s all downhill from here for this dude

FSU Ball, FSU 30, 3:07

1st and 10, 12 vs. 4-2, Joseph gets through the line too quickly to make the tackle, Dexter Lawrence just abused that man, no one is blocking well, there’s nothing Francois can do here.

2nd and 12, 11 vs. 4-2, Boulware rushes up the middle, both the tight end and running back release into routes, leaving Lawrence one on one again and Francois is a brave man for stepping into this throw, but all the bravery in the world won’t make the Auden Tate turn his head in time, that’s the third pass attempt in a row that’s ended with Francois on his back…

3rd and 12, 10 vs. DOD, Lawrence is pushing the center back like a rag doll, Austin Bryant isn’t far behind him, Francois gets the ball to a receiver on a crossing route but with eight defenders dropping back there’s no room to work… PUNT

It is very hard to pass when you don’t have time to pass. It’s gotten to the point I can’t believe Francois can get back up I’m upset at Fisher for not keeping a running back in or something. Francois is getting hit so much I am mad days later at his coach in a game I am rooting for him to lose and know he will lose. Lawrence absolutely took that drive over, working the left guard twice before blowing the center up as a change of pace.

Clemson Ball, Clemson 29, 2:32

1st and 10, 10 vs. 4-2, play action, Hyatt gets beat off the edge on a long developing play and Watson has to step up into a nose tackle who beat Falcinelli… 2nd and 15, false start, 2nd and 20, 11 vs. 4-2, Gallman stumbles but manages to get back up and gain eight yards on a sprint draw, the offensive line does a good job of sealing the linebackers off to the inside… 3rd and 8, 10 vs. 4-1, six players on the LOS, four men rush, same stunt as the one that ended last drive, Cain is open deep but Watson sails the pass five yards… PUNT

As has happened all too often Clemson falls behind early in a drive and has to punt again. These three and outs seem most common in the third quarter, and I’m not sure if it’s because ScElliot are getting out-adjusted, but this has been a trend in multiple games. Clemson was shut out in the third quarter against Troy, Louisville and GT. Clemson had a field goal in the third against Auburn and FSU. Even when the offense is productive this quarter turns into a mire.

FSU Ball, FSU 30, :55

1st and 10, 11 vs. 4-2, power away from the tight end and Ferrell gets sealed inside again, Boulware gets caught inside, and Van Smith can’t chase down Dalvin Cook, who scores another touchdown…

Well, Dalvin Cook chose a great time to rediscover his form.

Clemson Ball, Clemson 25, :43

1st and 10, 10 vs. 4-2, Fruhmorgen does a good job opening up the cutback on a zone read … 2nd and 6, 10 vs. 4-2, inside zone dive dragged down at the LOS and that’ll take us to the fourth.