Defensive Tone

Florida State defensive coordinator Mickey Adrews wasn't too thrilled with his unit's performance in Saturday's scrimmage. "We didn't play with as much aggression, I don't think, today (Saturday) as we did in Wednesday's scrimmage. We got quite a few sacks, got ‘em on some pressure, stunts and blitzes and whatever, but I know there's two, maybe three touchdown passes," Andrews said. Click here for the entire interview.

Q: How would you gauge your performance as a unit? Was this disappointing?

A: "It would appear that way, because we started from the 35-yard line, they had 65 yards to score, and they got one score out of four series, and that was against the twos (second-team defense). Then we put the ball on the 50, and they scored twice on the first group and none on the second. Then we put it on the 20, and they didn't score once. And that was with a 10-play series, or an 11-play series, that wasn't supposed to exist, but it did.

"But when we got on the goal-line, it was a different picture. We had too many walk-on guys in there, that don't know how to play the technique, and we didn't force with our backers and our safeties hard enough. The first group gets scored on three times, and the second group got scored on one time. That's four scores out of eight opportunities. That won't get you any championships.

"We had two turnovers (forced) by the first group, and we had two turnovers by the second group. That part's good. But we dropped, I know, two other intercepts, maybe three. Just flat had the ball in our hands and we didn't catch it. You can't let a dang quarterback get away with a bad throw. We did that too many times. We had too many penalties. Either part of it is that the players don't understand the rules, or I don't understand the rules. Maybe it's a combination of both. The officials understand the rules.

"The first group had four three-and-outs. That's good, but our goal is six in a ballgame. We didn't have the same number of snaps we'd have in a ballgame, but our goal is to get six three-and-outs. We only got four with the first group, and four with the second group. The worst thing was, we gave up too many scores. It was either by a big play or a penalty that set up a score. We put ‘em in scoring position, and we gave up two touchdowns after we got to the 50 and to the 20. That's the first group. The twos didn't give up any. That's two too many. I know it's a lot harder when you put a team 50 yards from the goal-line, but there's going to be times where that happens. The offense gets backed up, you punt the ball, and the defense goes on the field at the 50-yard line. You can't let ‘em get in the end zone. We don't understand that yet. Some of our little walk-ons are having to play – we had a walk-on corner with the second group, a walk-on with the first group in the front. But that's what we've got, and that's what we play with. I don't know how many times they ran the ball. We got a lot of scale scrimmage today. I don't know how many compared to passes. We weren't consistent against anything, run or pass."

Q: One of your walk-on linemen, Brian Ross, seems to be playing with a lot of emotion. How is he doing?

A:"He's with the first team. He must be doing pretty good. Brian's been here. Brian's been here several years. He knows how to play that position. He's trying to get to the point where he can help us win. When he does, he'll be on scholarship. He's mighty close right now, when you look at him."

Q: On the goal-line, he was very demonstrative. Do you have enough of those guys?

A: "That's good, if you turn it around and you're playing harder than you're supposed to play. If he's hollering, and he turns around and gets his fanny knocked back good, he don't even need to be on the field. You're a pretender. We didn't play with as much aggression, I don't think, today as we did in Wednesday's scrimmage. We got quite a few sacks, got ‘em on some pressure, stunts and blitzes and whatever, but I know there's two, maybe three touchdown passes. And down on the goal-line – there's no excuse to give up four touchdowns down there. Give the offense a little credit, too. We had shut their butt out. They had scored maybe one time in eight tries in the last two scrimmages. Give them a little credit. They came out and they wanted it a little bit more than we wanted to stop them today. You can't stop anybody on what you did last week, or last scrimmage."

Q: Your guys seemed to have some spirit in Wednesday's scrimmage, but they didn't seem as fired up today. Why was that?

A: "I don't have any idea. Probably, it was because they weren't keeping ‘em out of the end zone. You saw more spirit over there than you saw last Wednesday when they couldn't get it into the end zone Wednesday. Your spirit seems little higher when you're having success. When you need men to step up and act like men is when it ain't going so good. You've got to turn it around. We did get two turnovers down there on the goal-line. I don't think that's what the offense wants to do. We got stops four times and got two fumbles. Other than the (long) touchdowns, (goal-line) was the most disappointing thing. I know we put them in a bind with field position, but we've got to learn how to do that, regardless of how many starters are not in there. We've just got to find a way to do it. We had some good people that gave up plays. Rufus (Brown) might have given up two touchdowns. Kyler (Hall) was part of one of them. We've got to get to the point where we can prevent those kinds of plays from happening. We need to eliminate our penalties, and then make more plays than we're giving up. We weren't as aggressive. We didn't play with reckless abandon, like we did on Wednesday."

Q: Rufus Brown seems to get into position, but he seems to struggle to find the ball. Is that something that he has to learn?

A: "You recognize it. I'm out here every day with it, and I think I can recognize it even more. We're trying to help him. It's just like teaching a guy how to drive a car. Once he gets behind a wheel, you can't drive for him. We had a bunch of plays where we hung ‘em out, but dadgum it, we're trying to make something happen. You've got to make a play when that happens."

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