With all the other news happening, let's take a few minutes out to look back at something fun from the last game. Yes, actual football and not just stories about the football team. Shocker.
In his game analysis post, Alec already talked about Kendrick Raphael's touchdown run to put the game away for NC State against the visiting Miami Hurricanes last Saturday night in Raleigh. Also, I am really good at run-on sentences. I felt this single play had so many elements in it that we could devote an entire film room session to it. Buckle up, this will be fun.
As always, let's go to the video tape!
At the beginning of the play, Miami lines up and shows blitz. The LB's are hedging to the line and they're bringing a CB (#0) to rush from the edge.
#0 has no idea how badly this will go for him. I wish I could tap him on the
shoulder just to warn him, but then we'd be robbed of the ensuing demolition.
Anthony Belton is the left tackle, Trent Pennix is at tight end, and I'm pretty sure that's Josh Crabtree at receiver (*EDIT: Correction here, I've been told that is Dacari Collins*).
2. Anthony Belton at LT seals his man off so fully that all Pennix has to do is handle his rushing CB (#0). The remaining rushing CB may be #23, but he is not the Jordan of blitzing because he takes the long way around the outside and is out of the play by the time he realizes how big of a hole opened up.
We have to be honest and say that NC State has not been great at power running this year, so this play was a pleasant surprise.
Those guys highlighted in blue at the top of the play are left tackle Tim McKay and receiver Keyon Lesane . They will get involved further down the play, more on them shortly.
3. Pennix drives his defender into the back of Belton and more or less out of existence. There is one remaining Miami LB (#51) left to pick up the pieces, he watches Raphael move towards the A gap and commits there. His issue is Raphael puts his foot in the ground and changes direction into the seas that just parted in front of him. If #51 was Payton Wilson he would have met the runner in the appropriate gap and stopped the run, maybe even for a loss. But too bad for him Wilson is one of one and at minimum, this was a guaranteed first down, at the very least, but soon became much much more.
4. Now that Raphael has some field ahead of him, he looks up to see his options. Just out of frame down below was a cornerback closing off the option to cut it outside, so he puts his shoulder down and goes in for a #20 on #20 collision.
The thoughts of these guys, probably...
The LB #51 is attempting to make up for his initial mistake of picking the wrong gap by trying to make a loose arm tackle from behind. One of the funniest parts of this play is #20 thinking he could take Kendrick Raphael down just by...bumping him with his helmet?
A close-up of some of the worst tackling technique I think I've ever seen. After watching this 1,000 times I think he was going for a "highlight" move here. Like when guys hit a dude so hard they just fall over, giving them the chance to jaw over them and look all cool and strong. But that plan will backfire if you don't finish the move. Then you're caught flat-footed by failing to pull an Oklahoma drill in-game.
5. You'll see that #20 actually bounces backwards when Raphael hit him harder than he did. That sets him up for what comes next, because this play just keeps on giving.
Here's where things REALLY get fun:
6. #20 and #51 realize that they've failed and are now trying to pursue from behind.
#11 broke off from his initial rush at the line and was looking to get back in the play. He was pursuing to back up #20 but now that Raphael is changing direction, he will attempt to turn and fail immediately.
#6 is doing his best and has no idea where he'll end up in the next few seconds.
#5 at the bottom is just here for the vibes.
7. If you can't see #11 anymore it's because he's now fully underneath #6. He fell trying to change direction and #6 ran into him and now they're both going down.
Credit to Raphael to bounce off and not just settle for the seven yard gain and first down. He doesn't hesitate, just looks to his right and sees his teammates (remember Lesane and McKay from earlier?) arriving to the scene right in the nick of time to give him an edge to run around. The way Raphael kept his head on a swivel and kept churning forward without hesitation made this run what it was.
Lesane doesn't even need to block the #11 and #6 combo platter, they have taken themselves out of the play, thank you very much. So he turns his sights to #20, who's day just went from bad to worse with McKay also flying in for good measure:
Now #20 gets hit by both Lesane AND McKay at the same time to create a wonderful Hurricane domino effect and releasing Raphael to greener pastures.
The guy I feel kinda bad for is #11. He was doing his best and lost his footing, then ended up with two of his teammates on top of him. This is a textbook case of fratricide, or friendly fire. Like two guys on the same team going for the rebound, instead they run into each other resulting in a fast break going the other way.
#20, I don't know, dude. Your day went from bad to worse, you missed a tackle, and now a 300+ lb lineman jacked you up into and onto not one but two of your teammates. Yes, #11 is still at the bottom there.
This is my favorite gif in the whole set. I just keep watching McKay come in and light up #20 after Lesane had essentially already sufficiently blocked him. Meanwhile, just as #6 realizes he's getting tripped up by his own man (#11), #20 comes in at the same time. The timing of this whole sequence couldn't have gone worse for Miami, with all three of these guys ending up on top of each other.
It's just a madcap series of events.
I don't envy #20's next film room session. Having to relive this moment with your coaches will not be fun. You may be thinking that #20 is tripping over #11, since he was the one that lost his footing, right?
But no, that's #6, remember? He tripped over #11, and ended up getting run over by #20, thus completing this triple domino of failure.
From there it's an easy 20 yard job to the finish line...
And a kiss good night for the Hurricanes.
Hope you enjoyed this change of pace other news that's been going on this week, and let's hope the Wolfpack can continue this level of success and more on offense to finally get that Winston-Salem-sized monkey off their back!