The Downside | Syracusefan.com

The Downside

SWC75

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- “Just win baby!” And that’s what we do. We “just win”. 13-9, 19-14, 13-10, 36-34, 36-29, 21-14. Today was the best shot we had at an easy game this year and we made it hard. I guess that’s how we roll.

- There was a 31-7 win in that group, at Cincinnati. That was keyed by turnovers- three of them. Since then we’ve forced 7 of them in 7 games. Aggressive, fast defenses such as the one Scott Shafer teaches, are supposed to force turnovers. That’s what breaks open games like this. But we have to do it the hard way- trying to force punts. We aren’t bad at that but with a still struggling offense, it’s not enough.

- A big problem for the defense is that the front four can’t get into the backfield. Even with Chandler Jones last week, we didn’t get pressure until late in the game. The same was true today. Because of that we resort to “bringing the house” and it opens up areas in the defense a good quarterback like Tanner Price or Steve Probst can exploit.

- Containment. We left an open lane for Probst to run for first downs over and over.

- But the big problems tonight were on offense. Putting the sacks aside, we ran for 60 yards in 19 carries against an FCS team that was 5-6 last year. There is no excuse for that.

- We are still unable to protect Ryan Nassib in the pocket. Nassib still doesn’t have good pocket instincts but that shouldn’t matter against a team like this. He’s now been sacked 5 times in two games. We’ve avoid more with roll-outs but again , roll-outs make it had to use the whole field or throw deep. We’ve got to protect Nassib in the pocket . He’s showed in the Pinstripe Bowl what he can do when we do that.

- Nick Provo, where are you? One catch for 4 yards and a key drop at the beginning of the second half.

- Doug Marrone said we had the offensive line in the right blocking schemes but they didn’t block anybody. We have gone years without a quality offensive line. Even when we were winning before, we had trouble sustaining drives. Our best play was a quarterback scramble on third down. In the G-Rob year running plays were a mosh pit and the quarterback spent the afternoon on the run or on his back. This year, the O-line was supposed to be a strength of the team. Push is supposed to be great, Chibane a future pro, Tiller a monster, Hay an experienced guy and MacPherson a “great technician”. We couldn’t block Wake Forest because they were trying things we didn’t expect. This week we couldn’t run on or protect the quarterback against a mediocre FCS team. Will we ever have an offensive line that we can consider a strength of the team.

- Really dumb penalties. Dyshawn Davis and Mikhail Marinovich both decked the quarterback long after the play was over. On one scoring drive, we gifted URI with 30 yards in penalties.

- Can we please get some blocking for Jeremiah Kobena and Stephen Rene? It might help if we had two guys back for kickoffs so we could return them in either direction. Graham would make an ideal partner for Kobena. Kick returns are big plays for other teams- why not for us?

- 2-0 can become 2 and something else real quick. Our current level of play isn’t going to get us to another bowl game or even close to one.
 
Regarding a return partner for Kobena...why not PTG? He looked pretty freaking good last year returning kicks and almost broke a couple. As a secondary KR, seems like a nice option to me.
 
Graham was better. Gulley had 29 returns for 633 yards (21.8). Graham ahd 16 returns for 392 yards, (24.5). Gulley also had a couple of fumbles. Graham is a stronger, faster player.
 
Graham was better. Gulley had 29 returns for 633 yards (21.8). Graham ahd 16 returns for 392 yards, (24.5). Gulley also had a couple of fumbles. Graham is a stronger, faster player.

Totally agree on this..I dont care for PTG returning anything...
 
SWC, would you have any interest in doing a small study to determine how many times Nassib has been successful in producing a scoring drive in the 4th Q/OT in our wins and close losses?
 
Not at the moment. Maybe later. Actually you could do that by going to SU atheltics or ESPN and looking at the box scores.
 
QB SCRAMBLES.
that just infuriated me. biggest 3rd down weapon all day and we don't adapt.
PENALTIES.
the 15 yd personal foul BS has to stop. couple of the facemasks were incidental scrapes IMO but overall mostly poor judgement.
PROTECTION.
just sad.very sad.
 

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