Eye in the Sky: 2nd Quarter

IrishEyes' film breakdown of Notre Dame's offense in the second quarter Saturday vs. the Boilers.

Below is the Part II of IrishEyes' full game-tape review of the Notre Dame offense vs. the Boilermakers. This season's film reviews will be broken down by quarters.

Click here for Part I and a review of the 1st Quarter.

First Notre Dame Drive/2nd Quarter:

Breakdown: The Irish took over at their own 45-yard line with 14:02 remaining in the second period. ND 7 Purdue 0 Duval Kamara in at wide receiver for Tai-ler Jones.

  • (3-wide right including slotted Rudolph/Floyd near left): A handoff to Armando Allen gains just two over the left side. Purdue freshman Bruce Gaston slipped past a block by right guard Trevor Robinson behind Allen while Justin Kitchens overpowered Chris Stewart at the point of attack. Center Braxston Cave missed his block in space on linebacker Joe Werner who cleaned up Allen on the carry.
  • (Floyd and Rudolph near left/Kamara and Riddick far right): Crist gains 12 over the left side, escaping initial pressure from a six-man Boilers' blitz. With the pocket forced backward, Crist tucked and found a seam over the left side before cutting back past Boilers' DE Gerald Gooden in space for the first down toward the near sideline. Irish left tackle Zack Martin held his solo block long enough to allow Crist's scramble. Armando Allen picked up a blitzing safety outside to Crist's right.
  • (Kamara and Riddick aligned close right/Floyd and Rudolph bunched near left): Crist stands strong in the pocket to find Michael Floyd for 19 yards and his first grab of the season. Floyd ran a down and out with Rudolph curling underneath him – an action which caused hesitation by Purdue boundary cornerback Charlton Williams, allowing Crist a passing lane to the open Floyd. Nice read by the junior quarterback.
  • (Floyd/Rudolph bunched near left/Kamara and Riddick bunched near right): Allen gains 11 yards behind the pull blocks of Chris Stewart and seal of Trevor Robinson over the right side. Tremendous job by Robinson to delay then open a running lane with a seal behind Allen. Riddick might have missed an assignment on a crack back though Allen ran through the ensuing arm tackle.
  • (2-Wides far right/Rudolph tight right/Floyd solo left): With a 1st Down at the Boilers' 11-yard line, Allen gains 7 more on a counter over the left A gap. Right tackle Taylor Dever pulled (right to left) to completely stifle linebacker Jason Werner in the hole; Martin sealed outside left while Robinson and Cave overwhelmed their defenders – with Cave offering a pancake block to the freshman Bruce Gaston. Riddick did his job on linebacker Joe Holland but Allen failed to shake safety Logan Link or he would have scored.
  • (2-Wide Right/Rudolph tight right/Floyd solo left): Crist fakes a sprint draw handoff to Allen but keeps the ball, looking for room over the left side. After a nice cut outside to avoid traffic, Crist loses a yard when Gerald Gooden shakes a Martin block late and untouched Jason Werner cleans up the junior quarterback on the carry.
  • (Empty backfield/3-wides far right/Rudolph slot left and Floyd near left): Facing 3rd and 4 from the 5-yard line, Crist misses a wide open Rudolph for an easy score. Rudolph broke free but Crist – with a nice passing pocket – simply sailed a post route into the crowd.
  • DAVID RUFFER 22-yard field goal attempt is good: 10-0 ND

Second Notre Dame Drive/2nd Quarter:

Breakdown: The Irish take over following a 15-play Purdue drive that ended in a 25-yard field goal. Notre Dame takes possession at their own 25-yard line with 3:50 remaining in the half. Notre Dame 10 Purdue 3 Cierre Wood in at tailback for Armando Allen to begin the drive. Tyler Eifert in for Rudolph at tight end.

  • (3-Wide far left wit Eifert slotted/Floyd solo near right): Crist flips a shuffle pass to Wood who gains 11 easy yards over a vacated middle before Kerrigan tracks him down. Eifert succeeded in his downfield block but Chris Stewart missed his in space (never attempted it) though Wood sidestepped Stewart's assigned defender. Good block by left tackle Zack Martin, who collapsed his defender inside to allow the play its initial success. On the tackle: Kerrigan diagnosed the play from his LDE spot, shoved through Trevor Robinson's initial block and hustled downfield to make the tackle. Wood would have had just one more man to beat over the next 20-30 yards to his right.
  • (2-Wides left/Eifert tight left/Floyd solo right): Wood took a handoff right, cut back to make one PU defender miss behind the line, but was then drilled from behind by RDE Gerald Gooden pursuing down the line. Yet another unaccounted for backside defensive end making the play vs. an ND run. There's either a design/timing flaw or Kerrigan and Gooden are simply quicker than other 4-3 defensive ends in pursuit. Four Irish linemen won their blocks at the point but Stewart failed to block anyone at the second level for the second straight play.
  • (Empty backfield/3-wide left/Floyd near right with Rudolph detached right): Crist hits Riddick for a 7-yard gain on 2nd and 8. Riddick ran a quick out from the right slot and had spun free from an ankle tackle but was cleaned up by the second hitter, Ricardo Allen.
  • (2-Wides right/Floyd solo left/Crist under center with Wood set-back): Following a timeout, Crist took a QB sneak under center for a 2-yard gain on 3rd and 1 and an Irish first down at their own 47-yard line. Of note: Eifert remained in the game for the post-timeout short-yardage situation.
  • (Paired bunched receivers offset right and left of the O-Line): Crist fires pass to T.J. Jones for a 21-yard gain. Nice adjustment by the freshman on a pass behind him over the deep middle. Jones ran down the seam and simply hooked up inside vs. a very deep-set pair of Boilermakers safeties (almost 25 yards downfield on the pass). Terrible coverage scheme.
  • (2-wides split to both sides): Wood limited to two yards by Gerald Gooden. Wood made two hard-charging Boiler defensive linemen miss in the backfield but Gooden stayed home to make the play. Offensive tackles Dever and Martin had both shot out and appeared to secure blocks at the second level while Eifert was set to allow Wood a cutback left (nice play by Gooden to kill the play). Interesting blocking scheme with both guards pulling and both tackles immediately kicking to the second level. Cave missed the defender that Wood easily sidestepped in traffic.
  • (2-wides split to both sides): Crist throws incomplete to Riddick down the right seam. Poor read by Crist and an even worse pass into a coverage.
  • (3-wides right/Rudolph detached right/Floyd solo left): Facing 3rd and 8 from the Boilers' 30-yard line, Crist escapes to the right but throws low to Riddick at first down yardage. An experienced receiver might have made the low catch, but Crist rushed the throw with no pressure behind him.
  • Ruffer's career-best 47-yard field goal is good

Third Notre Dame Drive/2nd Quarter:

The Irish took a knee to end the half at their own 10-yard line.

Second Quarter Observations:

  • Notre Dame's biggest O-Line question mark – senior right tackle Taylor Dever – fared as well as could be expected vs. one of the two best defensive ends he'll face this season.
  • Chris Stewart had a rough second quarter.
  • The Irish committed just one first half penalty (none in the 2nd Quarter).
  • Crist should show huge improvement in terms of decision making and throwing more freely (he pulled the string twice in the first half, both key incompletions) from Game One to Game Two. He must if the Irish are to defeat their rivals from the north.
  • Crist 1st Half numbers: 12-16 for 123. Long throws of 21 and 19 yards (both complete). Missed one downfield throw (nearly intercepted).

Halftime Score: Notre Dame 13 Purdue 3

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