I receive questions daily on social media and in person, the answers to which don’t make it into articles. Recently, I’ve fielded great questions about the FSU football program that I wanted to flesh out beyond 280 characters on Twitter.
I figured it was time to do my version of a mailbag – a second mailbag.
Feel free to email me firstname.lastname@example.org or hit me up on social media to see your questions answered
@a_price01: “Who do you think will be the biggest freshman to contribute this season?”
That’s a loaded question. I personally think we will see three freshman make big impacts this season: Jaiden Woodbey, Jordan Young and Asante Samuel.
Woodbey and Samuel are in a position group where young players make an impact early. From what we’ve seen this spring, FSU will play many defensive backs. Safety is full of young, talented players, but Woodbey has the build for what we’ve seen out of the “star” position – a hybrid safety and linebacker.
I think “Black Ice” (Hamsah Nasirildeen) will be that main guy, but I can see Woodbey coming in and making an impact.
Wide Receiver is where I think there will be a constant push. I have to go with Young, a.k.a. Mr. Abusement Park. The way he burst onto the recruiting scene with his hunger mixed in with his speed and measurables fits this Gulf Coast offense very well.
@activeagent: “As a former player, what’s your brutally honest take on uni’s? Traditional, few variations, straight with it? How much affect does it play with recruits?”
I like a certain amount of uniform combos. I think Oregon is too much. But Black, White, Garnet and a Gold Jersey would cool. You should have special games for it.
Personally, I hate our gold pants, but I can see a lot of mix with the pants.
My favorite home combo is garnet top with white pants with the garnet stripe. We wore that a lot at my alma mater @FloridaHighFB. I was a Seminole eight years.
Away? Well, as the rapper Nelly said, “Don’t nothing get them hype on first sight like white on whites!”
As far as helmets go, I like the black helmet. I’m not sure about that Vegas yellow, but a garnet helmet would be cold.
My only regret about playing pre-Bowden collapse was not being able to wear the all black uniforms.
@theycallmejeaux: “How long will we keep Walt Bell or Harlon Barnett?”
@patpoose4real: “Coaching staff expectations, for example, how long should we expect Walt Bell to be around and how long until we move coach Kelly back into the other position and hire a new wr coach?”
If done right two to three years.
The way the college game is now, if you’re successful, you will see coaches go. Walt Bell has been very strategic in his resume building process. He is an excellent young coaching mind. I think if he is able to blend his philosophies with Willie Taggart’s offense, putting up points in bunches, you can see him going to the next stop – hopefully not inside the ACC.
Barnett can revolutionize the way the 4-2-5 defense is run. I think he’s taking over a unit that doesn’t need many upgrades, more subtle tweaks – mainly being able to get off the field in 3rd-and-Kelly (3rd and long) situations.
You can already see the defensive backs showing better footwork and being more physical in the spring. If that translates into turnovers and scoring on defense, I can see him leaving quicker. He’s fighting age (51-years-old).
He coaches young. He’s a damn good coach. Same with David Kelly. When I first heard about him, it was more as a general manager in terms of player development and recruiting. He’s a good wide receivers coach, but from what I was first told about him, I must admit, I was more excited about him taking on recruiting, which he still is.
@irate_king: “Who is the most important person that Willie Taggart needs to keep around the program in order to keep this momentum going? Exclude Bobby Bowden please because we all know he’s the goat.”
I personally think Mickey Andrews, Jim Gladden and Clint Purvis need to stay around. These are guys who truly care about making FSU the best program around. I love that Taggart brought Charlie Ward back into the fold. Guys like Ward, Kez McCorvey, or any other notable alumni need to be kept around to keep the old traditions fresh in the mind as these young guns create new ones.
From Facebook: “With Akers and (Khalan) Laborn seemingly built for Taggart’s offense, how will (Jaques) Patrick be used? Short yardage only? Or as more of a blocking back in long passing situations?”
I like Patrick’s growth, especially towards the end of last season. It’s like he finally realized he was a big back with speed.
I like him when they go pistol-formation and just let him run downhill.
This backfield reminds me of a better version of Freeman-Wilder-and-Williams. Akers and Laborn are more like Freeman and Williams with Patrick coming in a better version of Wilder.
I’m excited to see these three on the field at the same time. Let’s also not forget the fact that Patrick isn’t a bad pass catcher out of the backfield.
“Who will have the better year: Matthews or Murray, Terry or Gavin, Labron or Akers?!?!”
All the above are needed in order for this offense to work effectively. I think D.J. (Matthews) is going to provide a spark in special teams and turn the corner in his effectiveness as an offensive weapon off the jet sweep as well as in the slot.
Noonie (Murray) has got to be able to become “the man” in the receiving core.
I think Tamorrion Terry will be the next big wide receiver for FSU. His size and speed are tough to defend. In the spring he was the best receiver FSU had with Noonie going down.
The day Keith Gavin learns how to use his body in running routes against defenders matched up with his speed along with him realizing he’s got big hands that should be able to catch everything is the day the ACC will be in fear. Until then, Terry over Gavin, but both have gifts you’re just given.
When I told folks Cam Akers reminded me of a mix of Devonta Freeman and Dalvin Cook, I was told I was crazy. He’s got all the talent in the world and I’m not discounting anybody who has the wisdom of knowing that if you, “see a wide-ass open hole so I hit that bihh!”
Laborn might not have the stats Akers does, but man will he be fun to watch. You could see them both split 30 carries a game and have video game numbers at times.
“Are there 5 true “power 5 dominant” offensive linemen on the roster and if so can they play at a championship level?”
Man, you guys have got to chill out on the offensive line. Yes, they played poorly at times. Was it scheme or that they are just that bad?
I’m not putting a bunch of weight in the spring performance. They are learning a completely different style of offense whereas the defense has been simplified. They have a strength and that’s their ability to run block.
FSU has a talented stable of running backs. Teams are going to have to respect that and if FSU QBs are making quicker reads on offense, then you’ll see better line play.
As I’ve stated before, Greg Frey comes highly-regarded as a great coach in terms of technique. They’ll improve. They need confidence. Personally, I don’t think Oklahoma or Clemson offensive lines were great.
There’s only a few offensive lines that I look at and just think, “My God. That’s a wall!”
That’s Georgia, Bama, Wisconsin, etc. Only two of them are playoff teams.
Hell, FSU’s line didn’t perform great, but didn’t necessarily get folded by Alabama’s defensive line. Less sacks come with WRs getting open quicker.
Article Originally Appeared on Gridiron Now: http://gridironnow.com/answering-questions-about-fsus-running-backs-offensive-line-and-wrs