November 27, 2011

Position grades for Florida State's win over UF

Offensive Grades

Passing Game

Last week's game film from Florida State's 14-13 loss to Virginia was tough for quarterback EJ Manuel to watch.

Saturday's film against Florida may be equally tough for Manuel to watch, but easier to swallow because FSU came away with a 21-7 victory.

Manuel completed 6-of-13 passes for 65 yards and was sacked four times. Christian Green led the way with two catches for 27 yards. Rodney Smith had two catches as well.

Bert Reed had one catch for 12 yards on a critical third down conversion.

Overall passing game grade: F

FSU just never got in a rhythm offensively and Manuel didn't look comfortable in the pocket at all. The offense averaged just five yards per drop back. Four sacks is not acceptable no matter how good the opposing defensive line is.

Top Performer: Rodney Smith

Smith had just 16 yards receiving on two catches, but came up with perhaps the biggest play of the day for the passing game. Manuel floated a pass to Smith on the outside and it looked like a sure interception for UF safety Matt Elam, but Smith came back to the ball and knocked it loose for an incompletion.

Running Game

Much like the passing game the running game never got much of anything going against the Gators. Thanks to 51 yards lost on sacks by Manuel FSU finished with just 30 yards rushing on 46 carries.

Manuel did have a long touchdown run that was negated by a holding call on Zebrie Sanders. Lonnie Pryor was the lone back to not lose yards with 15 yards on six carries.

Devonta Freeman led the way with 44 yards on 15 carries and two touchdowns. Jermaine Thomas finished with six yards on 12 carries thanks to a loss of 12 yards on one play. Thomas also fumbled in UF territory to set up the only Gators' score.

Overall running game grade: F

It was a rough day for all around for the FSU offense. Anytime the running game averages an abysmal 0.7 yards per carry it's not gong to get a passing grade. FSU did fix it's problems at the goal line as it punched it in on each chance, but Thomas' fumble was also the lone turnover and cost the defense its shutout.

Top performer: Devonta Freeman

Things might have been different if Freeman was hampered by back spasms. He rushed for 44 yards on 15 carries, an average of 2.9 yards per carry. He also had a pair of 1-yard touchdown runs.

Defensive Grades

Front Seven

It was perhaps the best performance of the year for the Seminole defense. FSU dominated UF up front allowing just 184 yards of total offense and 54 yards rushing.

FSU recorded 13 tackles for loss, 11 of which came from the front seven. Defensive tackle Everett Dawkins and linebacker Christian Jones each recorded a sack.

Jones finished the game with four solo tackles and two for loss.

Cornellius Carradine recorded two tackles, one for loss, but also pressured backup QB Jacoby Brissett into a pick-six that put the game away for FSU.

Overall front seven grade: A

There is no doubt that the defense won the game for FSU. UF averaged just 1.6 yards per rushing attempt.. The defensive line controlled the game all night long and kept UF down and the linebackers made a number of big plays as well.

Top performer: Everett Dawkins

Dawkins had four solo tackles, two for loss, and a sack. UF tried a shuttle option that has killed FSU in past, but Dawkins was right there tonight to make a tackle for loss.


The Seminole secondary made up for a season that has lacked turnovers all in one night as it came away with four interceptions. The four picks were the most in one game for FSU since 1999 against Maryland.

Greg Reid recorded two interceptions in the game. Mike Harris also came up with his first pick of the year and returned it 89 yards to UF 2-yard line. Harris also recorded three solo tackles and a pass breakup.

The game was put on ice by Terrance Parks who returned his first career interception 29 yards for a touchdown.

Brissett and John Brantley completed 14-of-29 for 130 yards, a touchdowns, and four interceptions.

Overall secondary grade: A

The lone touchdown pass was set up by an FSU fumble. The secondary had four picks and the team had six pass breakups total in the game.

Top performer: Greg Reid

Reid finished with two picks (one of which set up the game's first score), a pass breakup, and one tackle. Reid has struggled at times this season but came up with two big turnovers against the Gators.

Special Teams Grades

Another good day for the special teams' unit. Shawn Powell averaged 44.4 yards per punt, had four of 50 yards or more.

Dustin Hopkins missed his only field goal attempt wide left from 50 yards out. He also had three touchbacks on his four kickoffs.

Greg Reid averaged nine yards per return. He had a 39 yard return in the third quarter that was again pushed back by a personal foul of Karlos Williams.

Overall Special Teams grade: B

Hopkins' miss and the penalty knocked the special teams down from an A. Still Powell and the coverage units were spectacular again.

Top performer: Shawn Powell

Powell continues to prove how much of mistake the Ray Guy Award made by nominated him earlier in the month. His 62-yarder was his sixth punt of 60 yards or more this season. Five of his punts landed inside the UF 20-yard line.

...More... To continue reading this article you must be a member. Sign Up Now!