If you followed along with my work in this space last year, you know that I endeavored to provide snap counts for every Missouri player for every offensive and defensive snap that counted during the season.
If you were not...well, I just explained what this is in the last graf. You should have paid attention.
Anyway, I pored over the film of the Tigers’ 50-17 win over Tennessee to see who Missouri used on offense and defense, how often and in what ways. Then I tried to gather it in a way that wouldn’t bore you too terribly.
Did I fail? Did I succeed? I suppose that’s up for history to decide.
On we go with Year 2 of ... Snap Chats...
- So, for the second straight week, I tried to chart where Missouri was running the ball. Because, for the second straight week, Missouri was running it down someone’s throat.
- And, again, the left side was the money side. Though the right side didn’t do too bad, either. The Tigers ran 26 times for 276 yards (10.6 per) to the left and 23 times for 162 yards (7.04 per) and both touchdowns to the right.
- The most fruitful areas were off tackle. Missouri ran 10 times for 155 yards off left tackle and 15 times for 118 yards off right tackle for a total 273 yards on 25 carries outside the tackles (10.9 per). Though I think you’d also take 6.88 yards per carry between the tackles (24 for 165) any day of the week.
- How these off-tackle runs usually worked is whichever side of the line it was collapsed the defensive end and tackle into the middle to create a seam off the tackle, then the H-back charged through that seam to pick whichever linebacker was coming up on the outside, and the back ran off that block.
- Pretty much all of the offensive linemen had really good days, even though Paul Adams, Tre’Vour Simms and Kevin Pendleton should get special props. Also, Albert Okwuegbunam and Kendall Blanton were very effective blockers on a day in which they caught no passes. Do yourself a favor and go back and watch Blanton’s block to help spring Ish Witter’s 52-yard run.
- First, let me say something nice about Emanuel Hall. He always seems to find a way to get himself open. Whether it’s insinuating himself into an advantageous position like he did on his 31-yard touchdown catch on a post, or completely burning a safety like he did on his 50-yard bomb touchdown (again...go back and watch that...beautiful stuff), he has the sort of deceptive speed and athleticism that opposing defensive backs just have not caught up to yet.
- But...the drops. Oh, the drops. I had him at five for at least 65 yards. So, instead of five catches for 102 yards and two scores in 11 targets, you’re looking at 10 catches for at least 167 yards and probably another touchdown in 11 targets.
- And Drew Lock’s line improves to 18-of-28 for 282 yards and possibly five scores. Got to work on those drops.
- Missouri was not very kind to Will McBride in his first start. Not only did the Tigers lodge five sacks, but I counted TEN more hits on McBride besides the sacks. And that’s not counting the nine more hits he took on runs throughout the game.
- So, out of 37 dropbacks, McBride got hit 15 times, or on 40.5 percent of the dropbacks. I will say, though, that on plays in which he was hit but not sacked, he actually had a better rating than on plays in which he was not rushed: 5-of-10 for 55 yards, a score and a pick. Or a rating of 109.2 versus 73.0.
- The main culprits? Marcell Frazier (two sacks, three hits), Tre Williams (two sacks, hit), Terry Beckner and Cale Garrett (two hits each).
- Here’s a little microcosm. Missouri was in the Dime 11 times. Tennessee threw on 10 of those. Three were sacks, three were hits. On 60 percent of third-down dropbacks against the Dime, McBride was going down, one way or the other.
- Again, Missouri camped out in the three-wide/H-back set on offense, running 62.7 percent of its plays out of it. The Tigers ran 33 times for 348 yards in that set and had 523 yards on 52 plays total.
- More of that, please.
- Another interesting wrinkle was pretty balanced play calling in the four-wide set: eight runs (one of them a scramble), 11 passes. What Josh Heupel has started to do out of that is spread all the wideouts really far, then run the speed option out of it. Interesting little look on a set that’s been 70-30 pass all year.
- Again, the Tigers’ main two defensive sets — 4-3 and Nickel — weren’t all that spectacular on a per-play basis, giving up 4.94 yards a pop. Tennessee is averaging 4.82 yards a play against Power-5 teams not named Missouri this year.
- But here’s the blueprint the Tigers have happened upon, and it’s a two-parter. One, get teams to third-and-long, then feast. We mentioned those 11 Dime plays earlier. Two of them went for 27 yards and a touchdown. The other nine went for -16 yards, for a total of 11 yards on 11 plays. This game was very “Vanderbilt last year” in that Tennessee knew Missouri was coming for McBride on third down, and the Volunteers couldn’t do anything about it.
- Two, when all else fails, get turnovers. Three takeaways in 53 plays out of the 4-3 and nickel, or one every 17.7 plays.
- Witter held a 54-46 rep advantage over Rountree, making it very much a 1A/1B relationship. Missouri was a 63-37 run team with Witter in the game and a 55-45 run team with Rountree in the game.
- Okwuegbunam loosened the stranglehold on the tight end spot a bit, with Blanton and Reese working up to a 53-37-10 snap split with Lock in the game. Reese even got his first snaps with the first-team offense in a while. Okwuegbunam and Blanton both should be huge parts of the Tigers’ identity going forward.
- Richaud Floyd got three series in relief of Johnathon Johnson with the first-team offense, making him the only Tigers’ receiver who gets series flagged for him more than a snap or two here or there.
- Trystan Castillo played only 25 snaps before going out with an undisclosed injury, which was kind of jarring, seeing as how he’s been the Tigers’ iron man all year. But Barry Odom told reporters after the game that Castillo was fine. And Jonah Dubinski played well in his stead. This line really can do no wrong right now.
- Also in the “precautionary” mold, Tyler Howell came in for Paul Adams, who hobbled off the field, in the middle of a drive, shifting Yasir Durant to right tackle. Adams’ injury didn’t look serious, though.
- Adam Ploudre had a series designed for him, but he held on the first play of it, got yanked for Kevin Pendleton and didn’t come back until garbage time.
- Tre Williams continues to creep up on Jordan Harold in snaps and, as long as he keeps being this productive, it’s going to be hard to keep him off the field much longer. At least he’ll be a nice sophomore piece to build around on a line that will — again — probably have a lot of question marks heading into next year.
- Speaking of question marks, and I ask this for the third week in a row, who is going to come out of that scrum at defensive tackle? Who will join Beckner in his quest for world domination? Still a bunch of guys playing similar numbers of snaps. Walter Palmore did well with his 18 snaps (four tackles, TFL). Could his stock be on the rise?
- Garrett was just devastating on the blitz. He’s so much better crashing forward than treading water or retreating. And Terez Hall...I just love Terez Hall.
- Kaleb Prewett and Anthony Sherrils had their best games. No busts, always in position, created three turnovers. DeMarkus Acy and Adams Sparks played well, too.
- At long last, the secondary is stabilizing. None too soon.
Missouri When Running...
Off LT: 10 for 155 (15.5 avg.)
LT/LG: 6 for 42 (7.00 avg.)
LG/C: 10 for 79 (7.90 avg.)
Left Side: 26 for 276 (10.6 avg.)
C/RG: 3 for 14 (4.67 avg.), TD
RG/RT: 5 for 30 (6.00 avg.)
Off RT: 15 for 118 (7.87 avg.), TD
Right Side: 23 for 162 (7.04 avg.), 2 TD
Outside the Tackles: 25 for 273 (10.9 avg.)
Between the Tackles: 24 for 165 (6.88 avg.), 2 TD
Scramble: 1 for 3
Sack: 1 for -1
Muffed Snap: 1 for -5
Kneel: 1 for -2
Emanuel Hall: 5 for 65 yards
Dominic Collins: 1 for 7 yards
Total: 6 for 72 yards
The People Haunting Will McBride’s Dreams
Marcell Frazier: 2 sacks, 3 hits
Tre Williams: 2 sacks, hit
Terry Beckner: 2 hits
Cale Garrett: 2 hits
Joshuah Bledsoe: sack
Jordan Harold: hit
Terez Hall: hit
Total QB Hits: 15 (40.5 percent)
Performance Under Pressure: 5-of-10, 55 yards (5.50 avg.), TD, INT
Offensive Set Success
Run: 33 for 348 (10.5 avg.), TD
Pass: 11-of-19, 175 yards (9.21 avg.), 3 TD, INT
Total: 52 plays, 523 yards (10.1 avg.), 4 TD, INT
Run: 8 for 40 (5.00 avg.)
Pass: 3-of-10, 51 yards (5.10 avg.), TD
Sack: 1 for -1
Total: 19 plays, 90 yards (4.74 avg.), TD
Run: 7 for 51 (7.29 avg.)
Total: 8 plays, 51 yards (6.38 avg.)
Run: 3 for -3 (-1.00 avg.), TD
Kneel: 1 for -2
Defensive Set Success
Run: 21 for 115 (5.48 avg.), fumble recovery
Pass: 9-of-17, 81 yards (4.76 avg.), INT
Sack: 1 for -10
Total: 38 plays, 186 yards (4.89 avg.), fumble recovery. INT
Run: 7 for 41 (5.86 avg.)
Pass: 5-of-7, 41 yards (5.86 avg.)
Sack: 1 for -6, fumble recovery
Total: 15 plays, 76 yards (5.07 avg.), fumble recovery
Run: 1 for 8
Pass: 2-of-7, 17 yards (2.43 avg.), TD, INT
Sack: 3 for -14 (-4.67 avg.)
Total: 11 plays, 11 yards (1.00 avg.), TD, INT
Run: 3 for 12 (4.00 avg.)
Total: 4 plays, 12 yards (3.00 avg.)
Drew Lock — 71
Micah Wilson — 12
Ish Witter — 38
Larry Rountree — 33
Dawson Downing — 12
Albert Okwuegbunam — 23
Kendall Blanton — 19
Jason Reese -- 10
Kendall Blanton — 6
Albert Okwuegbunam — 5
Jason Reese -- 5
J’Mon Moore -- 69
Emanuel Hall — 65
Johnathon Johnson — 47
Richaud Floyd -- 22
Dominic Collins -- 14
Albert Okwuegbunam — 11
Nate Brown — 9
Daniel Ellinger — 9
Cameren Rivers — 9
Kendall Blanton — 5
Jason Reese — 4
Kevin Pendleton — 71
Tre’Vour Simms — 71
Paul Adams — 62
Jonah Dubinski — 58
Yasir Durant — 45
Tyler Howell — 35
Trystan Castillo -- 25
Alec Abeln — 12
Kyle Mitchell — 12
Adam Ploudre -- 12
AJ Harris — 9
Samson Bailey — 3
Marcell Frazier — 31
Jordan Harold — 29
Tre Williams -- 29
Chris Turner -- 22
Nate Anderson — 15
Franklin Agbasimere -- 5
Terry Beckner — 38
A.J. Logan -- 22
Kobie Whiteside — 21
Walter Palmore — 18
Rashad Brandon — 16
Marcell Frazier -- 8
Akial Byers — 5
Markell Utsey — 5
Jordan Harold -- 3
Marcell Frazier — 1
Tre Williams -- 1
Terez Hall — 53
Cale Garrett — 47
Brandon Lee — 42
Joey Burkett -- 15
Eric Beisel — 13
T.J. Warren — 16
Cam Hilton — 11
Joshuah Bledsoe — 10
DeMarkus Acy — 59
Adam Sparks — 59
Jerod Alton — 9
Finis Stribling — 9
Kaleb Prewett — 54
Anthony Sherrils — 50
Cam Hilton — 9
Anthony Hines — 9
Thomas Wilson — 9
Ronnell Perkins — 5