Tyler Marcordes was coming off of a relatively quiet redshirt-freshman season when the Jackets’ 2013 campaign officially started. The Illinois native had appeared in all 14 games in the 2012 season and had gotten his first career start against MTSU, recording some solid tackles and a broken up pass. Other than that, he had flown mostly under the radar.
Fast forward to today, and he now is expected to be a starter in this fall’s opener against Wofford. And when Jackets fans see Marcordes in the starting lineup on the jumbotron at about 12:18ish on Saturday, August 30, one play will come to everyone’s mind - the play that officially introduced us all to Tyler Marcordes.
The Situation: Georgia Tech is hammering Elon. The offense is rolling and the defense looks solid too. Six minutes into the second quarter and the Jackets are already up 35-0.
However, the game being as lopsided as it is, the stadium begins to grow quiet. The intense late-summer heat has lulled the once-roaring crowd into a sleepy, siesta-like state. It doesn’t help matters that Elon is in the middle of their longest drive of the day, a 12 play, six minute drive against a largely second string defense.
Fortunately, Tyler Marcordes is wide awake and playing every down with fierce intensity. His diligence pays off.
The Play: Elon’s offense has 3rd and seven on the Georgia Tech ten yard line. Tech’s defensive shutout appears to be in jeopardy, as they have not been able to stop Elon yet this drive. Junior quarterback Mike Quinn lines up in the gun, takes the snap, and looks left.
Marcordes is in coverage and picks up Elon’s slot receiver on the left side. The receiver cuts to the center of the field, but Marcordes has his eyes on Quinn, who is clearly looking left to his wide receiver running a quick in. Marcordes comes off his man and jumps the route as soon as Quinn begins his throwing motion, intercepting the ball at the five yard line. The crowd jumps to its feet as soon as Marcordes takes off, realizing no one is going to stop him. The sophomore takes it 95 yards to the house for the pick six to give Tech a 42-0 lead and preserve their shutout.
This play ultimately sparked a terrific sophomore season for Marcordes, who finished the year with 16 tackles, 2.5 TFL, 1.5 sacks, and two interceptions (stats courtesy of ramblinwreck.com). Tyler had a great spring as well and will hopefully continue to produce this fall as he is expected to start.
How do you feel about Marcordes’ upside? Will he be a key player on defense this season? Join us tomorrow for our seventh ranked play from 2013! (Fans of taking singular, one-off instances of what could possibly be construed as indicators of talent or natural ability and extrapolating them into ridiculously idealistic opinions and Heisman predictions will enjoy it.)