Monday Mailbag: Running backs, young guys, and #Tribe18

Florida State and its new staff have officially wrapped up their first set of spring practices. There were plenty of positives and negatives to take away from the Garnet teams 31-13 result over the Gold.

The offense was clearly much faster and put a premium on getting quickly to the line and snapping the ball. The days of methodical drives that take seven minutes and 18 plays to score are over. Lethal Simplicity is here. At the same time, the Seminoles need more out of their offensive line. They surrendered 12 total sacks during the game.

The defense was more aggressive and seemed to be flying to their assignments rather than having to think too much. All three levels of the defense looked like they were comfortable within the new scheme.

Let’s hop on this week’s questions. You can view last weeks Monday Mailbag here.

  • How many backs do you think will get 40+ carries this season? – @ErikR122

The returning duo of Jacques Patrick and Cam Akers seemed primed to continue where they left off last season. The two became more comfortable with their two-headed attack as the season went on. Now, the gulf coast offense will present even more opportunities for them. I think those two are locks for 40+ carries.

Then you have Khalan Laborn, Amir Rasul, and Zaquandre White. Laborn broke out in the spring game with a 91-yard burst up the middle for a score where he outran everybody. The former five-star recruit finished with 14 carries for 130 yards and was the lone running back to find space during the game. Rasul has played sparingly over his first two collegiate seasons while White redshirted last year.

Oregon had five running backs record 44+ carries last year and a sixth had 30 carries. I think it’s safe to expect at least four of these running backs touch the ball 40 or more times next year with room for a fifth depending on how much FSU relies on the run.

  • Of all the young guys stepping into new roles next year, who do you expect to have the biggest impact? – Zack Moore

This is tough because there’s a lot of redshirt freshmen who showed out on Saturday. Laborn, Tamorrion Terry, and Deonte Sheffield were the most productive offensive players. On defense, DeCalon Brooks, Jaiden Woodbey, and Cyrus Fagan brought some noise.

I think Laborn and Terry will have the most impact because of there exceptional fits into this offense. Laborn can run it up and down the field and catch the ball out of the backfield. He could be a big part of the offense in he continues to improve and earn his spot. Terry is a big receiver who uses his size to make plays. He also had an uncanny sense of awareness on the sideline. Both of these guys have a chance to be a huge part of Florida State’s success.

Defensively, I really like what Woodbey and Brooks have done this spring. Brooks is a smaller linebacker but his aggressiveness and ability to be around the football makes him stand out. He’s among the favorites to line up next to Dontavius Jackson next season. Woodbey enrolled in January and he’s been pushing ever since. He had a great offseason in The Chase and that has carried into the spring. He led all defenders with nine total tackles in the spring game. There’s a lot of young talent on this team and that bodes well towards the future.

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