NoleDigest Take: Defense

Florida State earned their first shutout since 2008 and first in ACC play since 2003 on Saturday with a 31-0 thumping of Wake Forest. NoleDigest takes a look at the stand-outs on defense.

Defense

Tackles

Kendall Smith: 7

Brandon Jenkins: 6

Nigel Bradham: 6

Mike Harris: 5

Sacks

Jenkins: 2

Bradham: 1

Telvin Smith: 1

Bjoern Werner: 1

Demonte McAllister and Amp McCloud: .5

Interceptions

Jacobbi McDaniel: 1

FSU's defense held the Demon Deacon's to 185 yards on 59 plays (3.13 a play). It was more dominating than the stats indicate because at no time did it feel like WF could move the ball effectively.

Markus White's play was better for the second week in a row and Jenkins is really coming into his own on the edge. Werner and Dan Hicks complete the DE rotation and this unit continues to improve. Werner is a future star. Five DTs recorded tackles led by Everett Dawkins three. FSU has settled into a nice rotation inside and this is yet another group of players that get better with every snap they take. McDaniel had a beautiful interception, something you don't see every day.

Six linebacker's recorded tackles with starter's Smith(7), Bradham(6), and Mister Alexander(4) leading the charge. Telvin Smith, Jeff Luc, Vince Williams, and Christian Jones all played and it is likely that three of the four will be starting next year(Bradham goes pro). Nothing has changed here, this is one of the deepest units on the roster.

The DB's held WF to under 85 yards passing and have come a long way in two week's since the OU game. Greg Reid had another strong game on the edge. Lamarcus Joyner also earned significant playing time, as well as Harris. We seem to have settled in with about seven DBs: Reid, Rhodes, Joyner, Harris, Moody, Parks, and Jenije. There is upside here because of the youth; five of the seven are sophomore's or younger. Harris is perhaps the most versatile; he is just very active.

Overall

This is the best of three solid defensive performances thus far in the young season. One thing is for certain: this defense is much better than last year's.....and that is a big step in the right direction. When you look at the YOUTH of the IMPACT defender's AND you consider that they are still learning the nuances of Coach Stoop's scheme, you see the potential down the road.

As long as this defense tackles well, they are going to be able to get team's off the field. There were no issues with Wake's offense entering this one(averaging 43 points per game), but they were made to look completely inept today.


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