Five Scrimmage Takeaways

Florida State held its second and final scrimmage of preseason camp on Saturday evening. Below are five takeaways from the scrimmage after speaking with coach Mike Norvell, offensive coordinator Alex Atkins, defensive coordinator Adam Fuller, and special teams coordinator John Papuchis.

 

1. Back-and-forth, physicality
Norvell was legitimately pleased with the overall back-and-forth action from the scrimmage. Sometimes the defense won, sometimes the offense won. But it didn’t sound like there were gimmies on either side of the ball, with effort and competition being emphasized.

“Guys handled the transition really well,” Norvell said, referring to the fact that FSU had to change plans and scrimmage inside the IPF instead of Doak Campbell Stadium due to nearby lightning. “Had a ton of energy, guys were flying around tonight.

“To end this week and you know, what, six straight days, the physical work that was put in, the mental strain, having to drive three hours, two-and-a-half, three hours back,this morning and you try to create some adverse situations and circumstances. I thought our guys handled it really well. And then I’m proud of the team for the work they put in tonight.”

 
2. Young QBs get a chance with the 1s
FSU knows what it has in Jordan Travis, who’s been extremely consistent all camp.

With that in mind, coaches opted to give him just a few series and allowed RS Soph. Tate Rodemaker and Fr. AJ Duffy to get some action with the 1s.

Apparently both impressed by being steady. No catastrophic deer-in-the-headlights moments, and they operated the offense well when they got their chances with the starters.

“There was no glaring issue that they weren’t putting us in a good position,” Norvell said.

 

3. Explosive plays
It sounds like the offense generated some big plays through the air at different points during the scrimmage. The younger quarterbacks weren’t afraid to push the ball downfield, and that led to opportunities for chunk gains.

Credit goes to the receivers for winning their share of those contested catches. WRs Malik McClain, Mycah Pittman, Deuce Spann, and Johnny Wilson were all highlighted as players who won on 50-50 balls. Wilson’s catch was closely guarded by CB Omarion Cooper, but the lengthy receiver was able to battle the ball away to continue what’s been a fun back-and-forth between the two this preseason.

TEs Markeston Douglas and Wyatt Rector were both mentioned as making big gains downfield. They’ve turned in good outings consistently this week.

Offensive coordinator Alex Atkins said that Wilson plays the game with violence at his size, and praised Douglas’ growth by specifically noting a big play that made him say “he got out and ran today, and ‘oh man’, he’s faster than I thought he was.”

   

4. Robinson ascending
S Jammie Robinson is doing what FSU wants from an effort standpoint. He’s practicing with consistent intensity even as he gets an extended workload on special teams.

Norvell mentioned Robinson as a defender who flashed at times during the scrimmage, while defensive coordinator Adam Fuller praised the starting safety for his energy through camp and on Saturday.

“Jammie’s trying to play as hard as he can every rep,” Fuller said. “He’s obviously playing a lot of snaps on defense, and we’re moving him around some to try to create flexibility for our defense, and to be able to showcase his talents. And, you know, Jamie’s really come on these last couple practices.

“He’s playing really hard, he’s playing fast, and we got to clean up a few of his angles on some, but I know what Jamie’s about.”

  
5. Specialists getting solidified
Special Teams coordinator John Papuchis said that FSU has a pretty good idea of its primary returners to begin the season.

On kickoff return, RB Trey Benson, CB Sam McCall, and Spann are distinguishing themselves.

On punt return, it’s Pittman, McCall, and WR Keyshawn Helton.

“Those are the names that are going to be the key figure,” Papuchis said. “I’m sure when coach is ready to name a starter he’ll certainly be excited to do so, but I want to defer to him on that.”

Papuchis also noted that PK Ryan Fitzgerald had a good scrimmage.



#Scrimmage #Takeaways

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