Ohio State football: Charting the offense, Florida A&M

Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

Here is the weekly look at the snaps played by Buckeye skill position players, while analyzing the way they were utilized.

This week, the Buckeye offense ran 81 plays versus the Florida A&M Rattlers, staying on par with last weeks game versus Cal. They have averaged 77 plays per game, up from 72 per game a year ago. The last two games they have eclipsed 80 plays and I expect that number to go up as the season goes on.

Through the four out of conference games, the offense is averaging 52.5 points per game and 529 yards per game. They have scored on 95% (21 of 22) of their red zone trips and have converted on third down 48.15% of the time. They have a 60%/40%, run/pass split on the season, primarily due to being up on their opponents and running the clock down.

It was great to see some of the guys that work hard all off-season and on the scout team to get playing time with the game out of hand.

Quarterbacks Number of Plays
Kenny Guiton 58
Cardale Jones 23
  • Although Guiton broke the record for most passing touchdowns in a game by a Buckeye with six, I felt that he could have been better. His interception in the endzone was very poor and there were a few lazy throws that he could have made. Granted it is tough to get up for a team like FAMU but at least the coaching staff will be able to correct some mistakes.
  • Due to the ineffective FAMU defense, Guiton may have to get his timing back against the Buckeye defense this week in practice. Playing against a team that has no pass rush and one that cannot cover, it could lead to some mechanical and timing breakdowns if he starts versus Wisconsin. Saturday's game will be played at a much different speed than it was played at last Saturday.
  • Looks like the Buckeyes added a "Two Tight End" set with Guiton under center for short yardage plays. It was ran twice, with Devin Smith on the outside and Chris Fields lined up in the slot. Then Jeff Heuerman at the tight end flex position and Nick Vannett lined up on the line of scrimmage to the left. Jordan Hall scored out of this formation the first time it was ran and Carlos Hyde was the tailback the second time it was used. Expect Hyde here in future short yardage situations.
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Running Backs Number of Plays
Jordan Hall 12
Dontre Wilson 13
Ezekiel Elliott 22
Warren Ball 9
Rod Smith 15
Carlos Hyde 15
Devonte Butler 5
  • It is scary to think that the running game does not skip a beat as you go down the depth chart.
  • Wilson lined up as a wide receiver on 11 out of his 13 snaps. Getting him on a linebacker or a nickleback will be a huge advantage for the offense. He was on the field with Hyde for three snaps, something we will be seeing much more of in the future.
  • It was interesting to see that Hyde also lined up at receiver on 4 out of his 15 snaps. They deployed a five wide set, which split Hyde out wide on three consecutive plays.
  • Hyde adds an element of toughness to this running game that will wear out defenses (see the '12 Michigan game). The running game will be borderline unstoppable with Hyde's powerful running style, the breakaway speed of Hall and Wilson, and the two quarterbacks.
  • Safe to say the Buckeyes have their running back of the future with true freshman Elliott, who ran for an impressive 162 yards on 14 carries. He shows the ability to break tackles and also has the speed to outrun defenders.
  • This was Elliot's career high in snaps.
  • For a team that runs the ball 60% of the time, it is not a problem to have five solid running backs in the case of an injury.
Wide Receivers Number of Plays
Corey Brown 22
Devin Smith 33
Evan Spencer 40
Chris Fields 31
James Clark 1
Frank Epitropoulos 29
Kato Mitchell 30
Brandon Ojikutu 28
Devlin McDaniel 5
Joe Ramstetter 3
Peter Gwilym 9
  • It was nice to see Spencer grab two touchdown passes after doing a great job of blocking the first three games. It will only benefit the team if he can become a weapon across from Smith.
  • It is hard to gage the receivers against a team like FAMU who cannot cover very well (look at Spencer's wide open second TD for an example).
  • It seems that every receiver can play both the X and the Z, and line up the slot. The coaches moved everyone around much more versus FAMU to different positions than in weeks prior. This will benefit them in the long run if injuries occur.
  • It was awesome to get the walk-on's some playing time. These players play a huge role on the scout team and get the team ready to play every single week.
  • Have to feel for Clark after getting rolled up on from behind, causing him to get carted off the field. Hopefully he will be back next season at 100%.
Tight Ends Number of Plays
Jeff Heuerman 25
Nick Vannett 40
J.T. Moore 13
Charles Kinzig 4
  • As noted in the quarterback's section, they ran out of double tights twice in short yardage, something they have not shown this season.
  • Just like Spencer, it was great to see Heuerman get into the endzone. Both Heuerman and Vannett have the size and the hands that make them reliable tight end options in the passing game.
  • As noted in the broadcast, Coach Heuerman said that although Heuerman is talented, why take the ball away from the other speedy play makers in the offense? Makes sense.
  • It was good to get Vannett more playing time as I do not believe the drop off between the two tight ends is too severe.
  • Just like the receivers, it was nice to get some of the guys who work hard in practice some playing time.
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