Sorry about missing last week guys, I wasn’t able to get access to film in time to do this. This week, we’re back with another installment, this time from the Vandy game. It was a big step up for both the offense and defense, but there were still several issues that need to be corrected.
Q1 7:10 1st and 10: Clinton Lynch quietly hauls in a pass with 1 hand and gets upfield for the first down. Thanks to the conversion, the Jackets scored a TD later this drive.
Q1 5:02 1st and 10: This is a play many noticed live, but we’re going to look at it again anyway. Mikell Lands-Davis comes in and destroys Cunningham, the best player on the Vanderbilt defense. Vandy made a point to attack JT on this play to force an early pitch. The downfield blocks by the A-backs were not very effective, but Mills weaved between a couple of defenders to score nearly untouched.
Q2 13:02 1st and 10: Just a beautifully blocked option play. Andrew Marshall chooses to go for the Safety instead of the LB, but the result of the play is the same. If Burden manages to get Cunningham, this could have been a huge play. This was so, so refreshing to see.
Q2 3:40 2nd and 10: Gamble pushes his man back against the zone run to get penetration, then gets off his block with 1 hand to make the tackle for a minimal gain. Run support was late to the point of attack, and this could have been a much bigger play.
Q3 12:16 2nd and 8: Simmons comes all the way from the backside to chase down an outside run and help Freeman take down the RB for a minimal gain. Simmons is really flashing his potential this year.
Q1 2:52 3rd and 7: The defense fails to contain the Vanderbilt quarterback, and he escapes on a scramble. He can easily get the first down, but hesitates just enough to get stopped 1 yard short. This one was bad all-around.
Q1 11:22 3rd and 4: Vandy gets away with an obvious illegal pick on a crosser that converts a 3rd down. The TE came off the ball and hit Brant Mitchell 5 yards downfield. This should have been flagged for Offensive Pass Interference, and would have set the ‘Dores way back. Instead, they scored on this drive.
Little Big Player of the Game: DE Antonio Simmons
This was a tough one between Antonio Simmons and Mikell Lands-Davis. I ended up giving the nod to Simmons, as MLD just didn’t get quite enough snaps to have as big an impact.
In addition to Simmons’ play above, Simmons had another big play where he knifed into the backfield to stop a Vandy drive. On another play, he forced the QB to step up into a sack by Brentavious Glanton. Simmons has been all over the field in the early goings this season, and is finally putting his athletic ability to use. If he can keep building on his talent, look out.
Other Quick Hitters
- Officiating was just bad this game. In addition to the play above, the holding call on Brad Stewart was terrible, as was the first of the 2 chop block calls. Good ol’ SEC refs.
- Vandy had 2 good players on D. #41(ILB) and #34(5-Tech DE). #41 was all over the field and defeated several blocks in key situations. #34 was stout, and stood up Shamire Devine repeatedly. The rest of the defense didn’t really stand out.
- On that note, the Guard position has been pretty uninspiring to this point. That position will need to improve if Tech wants to have success against more talented teams. Tackles had a few whiffs, but they had a better day overall.
- Guys were great with the ball in their hand today, making defenders miss and breaking tackles. Vandy had issues tackling against MTSU, so we’ll find out soon if this was a product of Tech playing well, or Vandy playing poorly.
- Mills needs to work on the mesh, he’s trying to take the football when it isn’t his.
- Justin Thomas looks like himself again. This is going to be fun.