Three Keys Revisited – Army vs Fordham

Army West Point was one of three FBS teams (Kansas & Washington State) to lose to FCS competition during the opening weekend of the college football season. It was a frustrating game where a number of positives were negated by the fact the Black Knights could simply not...

..keep Fordham off of the scoreboard and in the end the Army offense could not keep up. Fordham were undoubtedly better than advertised and if Army can pick out the positives then there is no reason the team cannot kick on from this and make the 2015 season a success.

Here is a look back at the three keys to see what the Black Knights must do better next week:

1) Pound away with the option - Fail

Against an FCS squad you would think that Army would be able to at least equal their average rushing yards per game from last fall. The Black Knights, however, finished with just 256 yards rushing on the day, a full 40 yards fewer than the average of 296 from 2014. When Army did run the ball they ran it very well, with the team averaging 6.1 yards per carry. The problem was that at a couple of critical points the run was not effective and as a result the team stalled. On the plus side Ahmad Bradshaw was everything he was advertised to be when he got into the open field, lighting up Fordham for 143 yards on 20 carries.

2) No turnovers from Ahmad Bradshaw - Fail

This is a fail because of the interception Bradshaw threw in the second quarter which led directly to a Fordham field goal. In general Bradshaw did an excellent job of holding onto the ball and making plays in the option scheme. There were a couple of risky pitches here and there, one especially noticeable as a late pitch when being tackled thrown semi-blind to the slot back is probably not in the game plan. If Bradshaw can keep learning while making one mistake a game though I think the Black Knights coaching staff will be ok with those growing pains.

3) Stop Chase Edmonds = Big Fail

At first glance holding Edmonds, the best back in the FCS and a guy who could start for all but the top ten or so FBS squads, to just 110 yards looks great. Dig deeper though and you will see that those 110 yards also included three touchdowns. Oh, and he added 140 yards on six catches just for good measure. Edmonds was omnipresent throughout this game and Army just could not deal with his combination of vision and elusiveness in the open field. He may only have touched the ball 26 times on the day, but Edmonds was the reason Army are 0-1.

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