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Clemson vs FSU Film Review: 2nd Quarter

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NCAA Football: Florida State at Clemson Joshua S. Kelly-USA TODAY Sports

Clemson ball, 14:54, Clemson 26, 7-0 Clemson lead

Down & Distance Formation Play Analysis
Down & Distance Formation Play Analysis
1st & 10 11 shotgun vs nickel Bubble screen Thompson gains 2. Actually a well thrown ball, out in front of Thompson so he could build momentum during the catch. No blocking though.
2nd & 4 10 shotgun vs nickel Swing screen to Fuller gains 6. Better perimeter blocking this time, particularly from Cannon Smith.
3rd & 2 11 shotgun vs nickel Speed option keeper gains 9. Brilliant call; speed removes the risk of a run blitz destroying a zone read mesh (as we later learn near the goal line) and breaks the QB counter/power tendency.
1st & 10 11 shotgun vs nickel Power handoff to Fuller gains 3. There was a lane initially but Christmas manhandled Simpson and made the stop, gotta do better Big John...
2nd & 7 11 shotgun vs nickel Fake RB screen, tunnel screen to Thompson is blown up, loss of 2. The running back screen had a convoy and would've gone places.
3rd & 9 10 shotgun vs nickel Deep curl complete to Thompson vs cover 6, gain of 15. Good anticipation from Bryant to get the ball to the hole in the zone right when he saw it. Needs more zip on the ball though.
1st & 10 11 shotgun vs nickel Dropback vs cover 4, deep in to Renfrow "incomplete." A perfectly thrown ball and what should've been a catch before the ground knocked it loose. Here's an example of how the stats on Bryant's downfield throws are somewhat misleading, because this was a perfect pass down the middle between zones.
2nd & 10 11 shotgun vs nickel Bubble screen to Cain (stacked behind Greenlee) complete for a loss of 3. Greenlee had to block 2 defenders but chose none; his late shove at Thomas only helped Thomas make the tackle. Pitiful.
3rd & 13 Empty shotgun vs dime Corner fade to McCloud vs man cover 1, underthrown and easy interference call, 1st down. I like the corner fade in this situation. High reward and low risk given we're not in FG range and an interception is little more than a punt. Drew the PI as desired.
1st & 10 11 shotgun vs nickel Fake RB flare, QB power gains 5. Another big lane from the OL but failed blocks at the 2nd level.
2nd & 5 11 shotgun vs nickel PA out route to Cain in front of soft man cover 2, gain of 8. Taking what is given.
1st & 10 11 shotgun vs nickel Power handoff to Feaster gains 3. No hole at hole but tough running moves the pile forward.
2nd & 7 11 shotgun vs nickel Quick slant to Rodgers vs cover 4, gain of 6. I'm fine with a patient approach with this offensive line plus this suddenly soft coverage.
3rd & 1 11 shotgun vs nickel IV keeper up the middle gains 6. Simpson pulled and blocked absolutely no one, but the rest of the line did so well Bryant wasn't touched for 5 yards. Rough game for Simpson so far.
1st & 3 11 shotgun vs 4-3 ZR keeper, Bryant tries to get outside but the DE sat on him well, cuts inside and gains 1. Tough to tell if it was a misread since the DE played the mesh so well. The give would've been safer but Bryant thought he could outrun or make the DE miss.
2nd & 2 12 shotgun vs 4-4 ZR completely blown up at the mesh, fumbled and recovered by FSU. THIS is why I don't like ZR in short yardage: it invites a high reward/low risk speed rush to destroy the mesh and cause a fumble just like this. With the read man on the back side, Clemson wanted to overwhelm the strong/playside with numbers. A wonderful idea but honestly not necessary with at least 2 more play to punch it in from the 2.

FSU ball, 8:20, FSU 3, 7-0 Clemson lead

Down & Distance Formation Play Analysis
Down & Distance Formation Play Analysis
1st & 10 12 shotgun vs 4-3 IZ to Akers stuffed by Pinckney, OD, Huggins, no gain. Backup DTs were in and they got under blockers.
2nd & 10 21 shotgun vs 4-3 Huggins sheds the LG and hits Blackmon on release, duck nearly picked by OD, incomplete. Back to back big plays from Huggins, very impressive performance in Lawrence's stead (though he's playing 3 tech).
3rd & 10 21 shotgun vs 4-3 Cover 3 Will bullet, Ferrell gets around the edge instantly and strips Blackman, recovered by FSU, loss of 1. Erotic. Ferrell is a monster, LT barely got a hand on him.

Clemson ball, 6:39, FSU 28, 7-0 Clemson lead

Down & Distance Formation Play Analysis
Down & Distance Formation Play Analysis
1st & 10 11 shotgun vs nickel Power handoff to Etienne, easy lane behind Hearn's pull, who then blocks two dudes at once, untouched, TD. Etienne is a monster yeah but any of you could've scored on that run.

FSU ball, 6:34, FSU 25, 14-0 Clemson lead

Down & Distance Formation Play Analysis
Down & Distance Formation Play Analysis
1st & 10 12 shotgun vs 4-3 Dropback vs cover 4, nobody open and Huggins eventually gets the coverage sack, loss of 5. Huggins got a paw through the line as the pocket collapsed and pulled Blackman down.
2nd & 15 11 shotgun vs 4-3 Bubble screen, Bryant sheds the cut block and gets a mitt on the pass, almost the exact same pick he had against VT. This man is going pro this year, accept it now so it won't hurt in January.
3rd & 15 11 shotgun vs DIME OF DOOM Power handoff to Akers gains 3. Skalski shed two blocks and helped Chad Smith wrap up. So many backups playing well in significant snaps.

Clemson ball, 5:05, Clemson 30, 14-0 Clemson lead

Down & Distance Formation Play Analysis
Down & Distance Formation Play Analysis
1st & 10 11 shotgun vs nickel QB power is stuffed, gain of 1. FSU was ready and overwhelmed the play side.
2nd & 9 11 shotgun vs nickel Swing pass to Choice gains 4. Nifty move in space and a surprisingly solid block from McCloud gave Choice some room for yardage.
3rd & 5 11 shotgun vs nickel Facemask against the coverage is a 15 yard penalty. Renfrow's quick move at the snap led to the penalty.
1st & 10 11 shotgun vs nickel Fake option pitch leads to a wide open pass to Greenlee, gain of 33, wow. PA passes across the middle lead to busted zones!!! Who knew!!!

Continued

Down & Distance Formation Play Analysis
Down & Distance Formation Play Analysis
1st & 10 11 shotgun vs nickel IV give to Choice, free to the edge for 9 yards. First time I can remember seeing Bryant give on the inverted veer, could be deadly for Feaster or Etienne since Bryant is the established threat on the play.
2nd & 1 11 shotgun vs nickel ZR dive to Choice gains 4. Crowder got a push 4 yards downfield, Choice followed his lead.
1st & 6 11 shotgun vs 4-3 ZR dive to Choice, hole in the B gap, looks like he's clear to the endzone but Sweat barely trips him up. So close, ended up costing us 4 points.
2nd & 1 11 shotgun vs 4-3 Burns destroys the ZR mesh AGAIN, fumble, somehow recovered by Clemson, loss of 8. I will lament zone read in short yardage until I die. Inverted veer? Fine. Power? I can stomach it agaisnt a bad DL. But inviting an aggressive run blitz or edge defender into the backfield when you only need a yard? NO. NO. NO.
3rd & 9 11 shotgun vs nickel Bryant overthrows the slant to Cain by about 29 feet, incomplete. Set fire to my soul. Field goal good at least.

From here FSU fails in a 2 minute drill and Clemson kneels out the half.

4th quarter nug: the rally cat coach with impressive pad level on the crowd pump technique. Sue me.