NoleDigest Take: Offense

Florida State did not play their best offensive game on Saturday, but still walked out of Doak Campbell Stadium with a 24-19 victory over Boston College. The win is their fifth straight and FSU now sits at 4-0 in the ACC. Here is a look at how the offense did.

General Thoughts

We think that FSU outsmarted themselves in this one. The line of thinking would go something like this. FSU has been outstanding running the ball this year and BC knows that and will be expected to gameplan for that. So we came out throwing the football. Well it did not work according to plan as there were clear struggles there.

The decision may appear "wrong", but the execution was not crisp either. Bottom line, we never quite got on track today offensively.

Quarterback

Christian Ponder: 19-31, 170 yards, 2 TD, 3 INT

The three interceptions is not what we are looking for and another was called back. Ponder had some good moments including more than few perfect balls.

He is not getting a ton of help from his wideouts(addressed later), but he needs to shoulder some of the blame at this point. The pick six is how you lose games that you are supposed to win and the senior knows that better than anyone else. He seems to be struggling with the velocity of his passes. He is putting too much "touch" on some throws that need to be fired in there.

He still had his moments and these are college aged kids, they will struggle at times. The man is winning games right now and is making enough plays to score consistent points. To be a great team, though, Ponder needs to be better, more consistent, and clean up his decision making.

Running Back

Jermaine Thomas: 5-44

Ty Jones: 10-35

Chris Thompson: 10-25

The running numbers will look better with Reed's 42 yard TD, but for the first 3.5 quarters there was not a lot of opportunity. Even when we did run the ball, it was not very affective.

The final drive when FSU salted the game away showed what this rushing attack can do when motivated(and not flat).

It was great to get Jones back in the mix, his inside, no nonsense running is a breath of fresh air. Thomas continues to get the job done when called upon while Thompson has had better days.

If we take that last drive and do it on the FIRST drive, the whole offensive game could have been different. In the end, we have seen what this running game can do and nothing that happened today changes that. It IS the backbone of this offense and our most consistent unit.

Wide Receivers

Rodney Smith: 6-49

Taiwan Easterling: 3-42

Bert Reed: 4-35, 1-42 rushing, TD

Willie Haulstead: 3-19

Greg Dent: 1-12

Beau Reliford: 1-10, 1 TD

Lonnie Pryor: 1-3, TD

Smith had a few moments today and certainly played with a little more confidence today. He wanted the ball and displayed more physicality than he has in the past. This is a good sign going forward. Easterling's two 23 yard catches pretty much define him as a player. He has outstanding feel for the game, soft hands, and enough quickness/wiggle to do something after the catch.

Reed's 42 yard reverse was his biggest play of the year and he showed signs on a few others that he is going to start to step up. Earlier it was Thomas who needed to step up and he has responded, perhaps this was the beginning for Reed to do the same.

Haulstead made a couple of tough catches, but did not pick up a lot of yards. Dent got some run today which is an interesting development, by most accounts he was the most physically and mentally ready of the freshmen to play, we could see more of him down the stretch.

Getting Reliford involved with a TD catch was terrific to see, the Tight End is not a huge part of the offense right now, but he can help.

Offensive Line

It was a pretty average performance for the offensive line today. Like the rest of the team, they were flat early and took awhile to get into the game. The last drive was the highlight as the started to show the form they impressed us with a week ago.

It is a good BC front 7 and they might have surprised us a bit with their punch. FSU did enough to win and we will take that, but Coach Trickett is going to have plenty of things to correct in the film session.


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