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in General Discussion Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:17 am
by linchao • 33 Posts

The top tier of this year鈥檚 class of draft-eligible quarterbacks has crystallized over the past few months: Clemson鈥檚聽Deshaun Watson Authentic Dylan Larkin Jersey , Texas Tech鈥檚 Patrick Mahomes, North Carolina鈥檚 Mitchell聽Trubisky and Notre Dame鈥檚聽DeShone Kizer聽all have a strong case for first-round consideration, and barring a disaster all four will be off the board by the middle of the draft鈥檚 second night. But as analysts pick apart each player鈥檚 game and project what he could be at his best, it鈥檚 important to remember no quarterback is immune from the occasional off day.

Watson tossed three interceptions in his only loss of a national championship season.聽Mahomes completed only 50% of his passes in a blowout loss to an Iowa State team that finished ninth in the Big 12. After throwing just four interceptions all year, Trubisky threw two against Stanford in the Sun Bowl. And Kizer鈥檚 breakout season cooled off when Boston College dealt him the first and only three-pick game of his career.

So what exactly did these defenses do to stump the QBs who will dominate the draft discussion at the end of April? We picked the brains of the coaches and defensive coordinators on the opposite sidelines for a firsthand explanation of each signal-caller鈥檚 sub-par performance.

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More than four months later, Pat Narduzzi still can鈥檛 believe it.

The Pittsburgh coach had long thought his Panthers forced Watson to throw the ball 50 times in their 43-42 upset win over Clemson in November.

鈥淚 think they threw it over 50 times, which is not good for any offense, especially in college Authentic Bo Scarbrough Jersey ,鈥?Narduzzi said. 鈥淲hen you throw it 50 times, something bad is going to happen.鈥?/p>

Actually, Coach, Watson threw the ball 70 times.

鈥淗e threw 70 times?!鈥?/p>

The Panthers forced the two-time Heisman finalist into the worst day of his spectacular junior season. Watson completed 52 of those 70 pass attempts but tossed three interceptions 鈥?including two costly ones in the red zone 鈥?in Clemson鈥檚 only loss of the year.

Narduzzi’s defense had played some top quarterbacks leading up to the Clemson game: Trubisky, Oklahoma State鈥檚 Mason Rudolph and Miami鈥檚 Brad Kaaya. Pittsburgh had combined to give up 133 points and 1,349 passing yards in those three games, all road losses. Something had to change.

Pittsburgh had struggled at the cornerback position all season, and even though Narduzzi likes to play press coverage, he knew it wouldn鈥檛 be in his team鈥檚 best interest to do it against Clemson. The Tigers boasted several athletic receivers, most notably Mike Williams Eagles Markus Wheaton Jersey , and a couple of deep shots could sink the upset bid.

鈥淲e fell victim to so many great quarterbacks this year that it wasn鈥檛 necessarily the coverage or the players, it was more of … I say a fade ball is 50/50 but really it鈥檚 80/20 [in favor of the offense],鈥?Narduzzi said. 鈥淎nd through my stats as a defensive coordinator at Michigan State, it鈥檚 more like 90/10. We faced a lot of great quarterbacks and we were kind of scared with Deshaun where it was like, 鈥楬ey, let鈥檚 not do it again.鈥?We had enough of them.鈥?/p>

The Panthers gave up a lot of yards to Clemson. Watson threw for 580 yards, which set an ACC single-game record, but he got there without many deep passes 鈥?his longest completion was just 31 yards. Playing mostly Cover-4 throughout the game Authentic Matt Murray Jersey , Pittsburgh let Watson have the underneath throws as long as he didn鈥檛 blow open the top of the secondary.

The visitors鈥?first break came early in the game when Ryan Lewis intercepted a Watson pass thrown into double coverage in the end zone, preserving an early 7-0 lead. Midway through the second quarter, Watson threw his second interception on a pass that glanced off Deon Cain鈥檚 fingertips and was corralled by Avante Maddox at the Clemson 14. Pittsburgh turned that into a 10-play possession that ended in a touchdown to go back up 27-21.

Some of the biggest mistakes came on Clemson鈥檚 final two possessions. The Tigers led 42-34 with just more than five minutes left in the game and had the ball at the Pittsburgh 3-yard line. Watson used a play-action fake and threw into the end zone between two Tiger receivers 鈥?but there were three Panther defenders waiting. Linebacker Saleem Brightwell picked off Watson and returned the ball 70 yards to Clemson鈥檚 30. Pitt would score a touchdown three plays later to cut the deficit to just two.

鈥淵ou watch NFL guys throw picks and they鈥檙e sitting in the pocket and you have five linemen protecting for you and four guys rushing and there are nine people and they get in those windows where you can鈥檛 really see,鈥?Narduzzi said. 鈥淚 think [Brightwell] was just covered up by a guy to the point where he wasn鈥檛 in Deshaun鈥檚 vision.鈥?/p>

The Panthers trusted their front four to be able to stop the run like it had all season 鈥?they finished ninth in the nation a. Cheap Damian Lillard Jersey , Womens Mark Andrews Jersey , Francisco Rodriguez Jersey Womens , Tyson Ross Jersey Womens ,

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