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Making The Play: Kansas State

One issue is compounded by another and it made it really difficult for the Missouri offense to function against Kansas State.

Missouri v Kansas State Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images

A lot of things went wrong for Missouri’s offense in Manhattan. The offensive line was outmatched. The quarterbacks were inaccurate. The play calling wasn’t very good either.

With football though, I think we forget sometimes how one aspect of the team can affect another. So, if you’re struggling to block up front, that may change how you call a game. When you change how you would call plays to compensate for a part of your offense that isn’t performing, you naturally limit yourself in your playbook. That adds more stress to other positions, namely the quarterback.

So, for example:

This was early in the game on Missouri’s first drive. On a 3rd and 2, Missouri runs a zone trap.

As the play develops, #80 is supposed to block down on the linebacker (#41) but he actually hesitates and the linebacker beats him into the hole. The hesitation may have stemmed from being confused about which linebacker to block or if one of the offensive lineman was going to move up to the second level, but still… Not good.

Once he’s in the hole, the whole play is wrecked and Peat has no real chance to make a move with a defender in his lap.

This is one example of many— where the blocking up front is actively affecting what Missouri is able to run on offense. I counted 16 runs where the ball carrier was tackled at or behind the line of scrimmage. Since Missouri hadn’t been able to establish a running game, and the score was what it was, they had to be one dimensional at a certain point in the game. Unfortunately, it played right into the hands of what Kansas State’s defense wanted.

They dropped seven to eight defenders in coverage, and confused Missouri’s quarterbacks all afternoon long.

Kind of like this.

I don’t know if he didn’t see the safety or what the deal was, but that throw just can’t happen. I get that you’re trying to make a play, but Burden is actually open to the left side of the field as well as the running back in the flat.

At the end of the day though, this situation was really a byproduct of not being able to run the football at any point in the game and being forced to throw.

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