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Florida State Film Review: Third Quarter

The passing game sputtered in the third quarter. Let’s take a look to see why.

NCAA Football: Florida State at Louisville Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

Sometimes I learn things as I write these posts and I definitely learned a lot in this quarter. The UofL offense moved the ball on the ground extremely well to start the third quarter but they ended up falling in love with the pass. I’m not sure if they really should have changed their approach, but this was when things started to shift.


I like the draw action on this play because the blocking scheme helps against a good front like FSU. Lukayus McNeil and Cole Bentley essentially pass block and let their man up the field. At that point, Hassan Hall is just running past them into the second level. I also really love to see how Hall finishes this run. That will keep him on the field even if he has some other things he has to work on. He picks up extra yardage with pure effort here.


This ended up being one of the best runs of the game and it was blocked very well. Everyone got their seals and Hall had a path to not only run through but to weave through. That means that people got to their blocks and they maintained them. Neither of those things have happened consistently for a few years.


Florida State has been burned on man coverage a good amount this year so they decided to run a kind of weird zone blitz scheme that never worked. They never adjusted out of it, so UofL kept looking to hit open guys in the middle of the field. The corner blitzes off the edge and everyone behind him shifts a position. It looks nice on paper but Bobby Petrino prepared for it and they were able to scheme around it well.

On this play Pass has to wait an extra second because Jaylen Smith gets pushed off his route a bit. That extra second allows Kyle Meyers(#14 at the top of the screen) to get to him and hit him before he can follow through. That leads to the ball being high and it’s a missed touchdown opportunity


FSU doesn’t have any trust in the offensive line so a play like this is expected. It was poorly executed but what stood out to me is how UofL’s defense played it. By the time the runner is tackled on this play, 10 guys are in the screen. The only one that isn’t is lined up 40 yards away at the opposite corner spot. Everyone ran to the ball on this play and that made sure that the first missed tackle didn’t allow the play to go for more. If you want this season to turn around, this is what you want to see.

Another thing that is great to see is guys congratulating each other and showing excitement after the play. It’s been almost completely absent this year and it was great to see here.


This is the same play as the first play in this post. Petrino called the same play a lot on Saturday, but if they’re working, I don’t see why you wouldn’t. This time around Brian Burns (#99 at right end) dives inside and kills the blocking scheme. I can’t tell if he’s motioning before the play because he knows what’s coming, but he nearly runs into his own man so it looks that way to me.

Hassan Hall uses his speed to just bounce this outside and he gets another big gain. This is just another play that shows how he can overcome some of the issues on offense.


I like to think that this play was called as a counter to the previous run plays in the half. This play hits the hole a little bit more quickly and only asks that the offensive line doesn’t allow penetration. It’s not designed to be a home run play but it is designed to get just about what Trey Smith gets here. He runs through an arm tackle and gets some yards after contact.


I am now a full on Jawon Pass footwork truther and I probably would have never noticed it if it wasn’t brought up in the comments in the second quarter review. This is Pass’ first overthrow with no pressure on him and he is nowhere near Jaylen on this throw.

So the question is whether or not, his happy feet in the pocket led to the double clutch here. The linebacker jumps into the window so I’m not sure if that’s the case, but there’s still a throw there. Even if it wasn’t his footwork on the double clutch, you can clearly see that this throw is all arm and he doesn’t follow through.


I’ve seen some people say that this is the play that they think Pass was hurt on. I don’t think he gets hit in the head here but it’s possible that he does when he hits the ground. I haven’t seen him “wobbly” like I’ve seen folks say but we all see things differently.

Linwood Foy lets Marvin Wilson (#21 at right defensive tackle) run right past him and he just smokes Pass. This ends up being a tough catch for Tutu Atwell because Levonta Taylor (#1) ends up coming over to make a play on the ball. I think that threw the concentration off and it goes off of Tutu’s hands.


This is the play that we know Pass was hurt on. Mekhi Becton (At RT) gets beat by Brian Burns (#99) and Burns spins Pass around. You can see after the play that he’s limping a bit. He ends up going to the medical tent after this and he was seen riding the exercise bike later in the game.

To me, it looks like his leg gets caught under him a little bit and twists on him. I was under the impression that this might have led to his overthrows but I think it might be a mix of this and his footwork issues.


The broadcast was showing some piece on the Belle of Louisville but this replay view actually shows the defense much better anyway. I don’t know what the defensive call is here, but it’s a base 4-3 look and no one does much of anything. The safeties are cheating up to about 8 yards so maybe they are just keying on the run here. FSU had been running the ball on first down all game long.

No matter how Brian VanGorder approached this play from a call standpoint, Willie Taggart set it up very well. He adjusted as the game went on and used two tight ends more often. That is a normal run formation and he kept running it even when it didn’t work. He waited for his opportunity and got his fastest guy in single coverage and he had an easy touchdown.


Pass’ footwork is so much better on this throw even as he’s being hit. His base is calm and he steps into this throw. You can see his back foot come up after he releases the ball. That’s a good sign of a strong follow through. He also puts this ball on the money. Easily his best throw over the middle this year.

After the catch is just a perfect example of why this team can’t get out of it’s own way. Jaylen should know that he can’t block this guy when he’s running with his back turned like this. Just run with him and let Tutu pick which side he wants to go to. A bigger concern (worry?) is that Tutu gets caught from behind on this. He’s supposedly one of the fastest guys on the team and he gets chased down pretty easily. I’m hoping that it was more the angle and #23 being a guy that gives insane effort every play. He was their special teams star last season.


This is the point in the game where Pass missed a few throws in a row. You can see that his footwork is an issue again as he’s chopping his feet before he throws. Dez Fitzpatrick gets held up a bit on his route and that’s why I thought this throw was off when I first watched it. It doesn’t take much for the timing to be thrown off.

After watching it again, Pass just throws the wrong ball here. This throw should be lofted towards the middle of the end zone right at the middle of the goal post. There’s no safety, so let Dez just run under it and make an easy catch. Instead, he puts it on a line and even if he puts on his hands, it’s a much tougher catch than it needs to be.


This was the worst throw of the game for me. Pass has Tutu open from the snap here and he is looking at him from the snap. All he has to do is stick this on his chest and it’s a touchdown. Once again, his footwork is bad and he ends up “aiming” this ball. Both of those things are signs of a quarterback that is pressing. At the very least he could put this ball out in front of him with some air and it’s a touchdown that way. He just flat out misses and he misses badly.

From the defensive side, you can see at the end of the clip that A.J. Westbrook (#19) flips out. That’s because #23 (His name is like 20 letters long and I’m not looking it up) should be running down the field with Tutu. He lazily backpedals into a zone that no one is in instead and Atwell is wide open. This happened over and over again but the real issue is that the linebackers are showing blitz on all of these plays. It’s nearly impossible for them to be able to drop back with the receiver. This was terrible coaching that never got adjusted.


This play call was both a good call and a showing of just what was pissed away with all of the poor throws. Petrino calls this play because he knows that FSU will adjust and not run their terrible cover two anymore. Those throws are no longer an option. He also gets a safe call that will only help his kicker. I’ve obviously been a critic of Petrino’s decision making but this was good to see even if it seems like a little thing.