Unsung heroics Saturday

vamosjackets

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This is a thread for folks to post things that stood out to them that helped win the game Saturday for the rest of us who might not have noticed. I have three in mind.

1.) DJ White pulled a brilliant and classic bait-and-switch on that VT QB on the last interception. The defense had given up that short out route all game long and the VT QB had been taking it all game long. You know that QB wanted to make the longer throw, but we were always playing it conservative and giving them the short one. Then the stakes were raised on the last drive and the VT QB wanted to make a bigger play down the field to make the game winning drive. And, DJ baited him right into it. He sat on the flat route like he was determined to finally stop that short route, and then the instant he saw the QB go into his windup, he took off in a backpedal toward the corner route, and it was a can of corn at that point. I marveled at that play. I am still wondering if that was all DJ's jedi-mind-game or if somehow he was coached to do it. Either way, that was crazy-brilliant. I'll never forget that play.

2.) Chris Milton's block of the field goal. HUGE play ... not only to the final score but to the momentum and psyche of each team. It looked like we had just handed them the game right at the start of the 2nd half with the pitch-fumble turnover in our own redzone. For them to come away from that with no points was amazing by the defense and then by Milton with the block. All effort and pure speed. Some guys just have a knack for blocking kicks ... he's got it. I'd like to see them send him after some punts too. I had been sort of down on Milton in my head for some of his defensive play and then he does that AND makes another huge tackle for loss on a bubble screen on a key drive late. He's got some weaknesses but he can make some plays too.

3.) Zack Laskey and the OL established the dive. That was a major factor in the game - much bigger than the stat line would show. The OL was driving folks off the ball and making the dive a productive play and gave it a chance to even break a few longer ones. It didn't quite break the really long one, but it showed that it was a major possibility. That changes how a defense plays and helped JT to do his thing with other plays - on the edge, play action, pass blocking, etc. Establishing that dive helps everything. I loved seeing that.
Check out the OL drive blocking on the first play of the game. Every one of our 3 options could've gone for big yardage on that play. That VT defense knew it was in for something tough that day.
 

kg01

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1.) DJ White pulled a brilliant and classic bait-and-switch on that VT QB on the last interception. The defense had given up that short out route all game long and the VT QB had been taking it all game long. You know that QB wanted to make the longer throw, but we were always playing it conservative and giving them the short one. Then the stakes were raised on the last drive and the VT QB wanted to make a bigger play down the field to make the game winning drive. And, DJ baited him right into it. He sat on the flat route like he was determined to finally stop that short route, and then the instant he saw the QB go into his windup, he took off in a backpedal toward the corner route, and it was a can of corn at that point. I marveled at that play. I am still wondering if that was all DJ's jedi-mind-game or if somehow he was coached to do it. Either way, that was crazy-brilliant. I'll never forget that play

Thanks for highlighting that. The VT blog breakdown of the game and that play in particular reminded me how great a play it was.

On top of the jedi mind trick to bait the throw, the timing of the leap/catch was brilliant. How many times do we see a guy in position to make that play but only able to get a hand on it or have it go just out of his reach. Great play by White. Seems to be growing into quite a good corner.
 

John

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Great post!

I thought PJ's pick-6 was game changer and shifted the momentum as the offense was struggling to get anything going in the 3rd quarter. Of course, on the next drive, VT got lucky and took the momentum right back but still PJ kept us in the game.

Also that 4th-and-15. I don't know about everyone else but my heart was thumping the last two minutes of the game. That could've been the end of the game right there. So glad that the OL could give JT the time he needed. Laskey also did a great job protecting JT's blind side.
 

ChasonBaller

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I thought that a huge play in the game was Snoddy on the kick return making a big play out of nothing and it could of easily gave VT great field position or a safety. I'm my opinion that is when the game swung.
 

potatohead

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there are so many plays looking back on it that could've swung the game the other way, alternatively there are plenty of plays that could've blown the game open for us. Its nice to finally look back on what went right to get us the W.

Oddly, I'm relieved to see the not so pretty "W" against a quality opponent. When our offense puts together a complete game, we could embarrass some good defenses.
 

nod

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Nice info / breakdown.

How about Snoddy's awesome kick return? Didn't want to chance a touch-back as he may have touched it , VT could have had him in the end-zone but he took it 30+ yards to setup nice field position for the Jackets. Not many talking about it but it VT would have tackled him in the end zone it would have been game over momentum wise.

Funny thing was when he came to the sidelines - Coach Johnson didn't know if he should chew him out or give him high five, Coach was at a lost for words.
 

GTRX7

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Nice info / breakdown.

How about Snoddy's awesome kick return? Didn't want to chance a touch-back as he may have touched it , VT could have had him in the end-zone but he took it 30+ yards to setup nice field position for the Jackets. Not many talking about it but it VT would have tackled him in the end zone it would have been game over momentum wise.

Funny thing was when he came to the sidelines - Coach Johnson didn't know if he should chew him out or give him high five, Coach was at a lost for words.

Turned out great, but I honestly wouldn't have minded if CPJ chewed him out. Touching it in the first place was an extremely stupid thing to do. Almost resulted in a safety and should have probably resulted in us starting from inside our own five. Great job recovering and making something pretty good out of an almost catastrophic mistake, but I would still prefer to see Golden back there in the future.

In the moment, all I could think was Orwin's touchback safety against Miami that turned out to be one of the key plays in that loss two years ago.
 

vamosjackets

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Nice info / breakdown.

How about Snoddy's awesome kick return? Didn't want to chance a touch-back as he may have touched it , VT could have had him in the end-zone but he took it 30+ yards to setup nice field position for the Jackets. Not many talking about it but it VT would have tackled him in the end zone it would have been game over momentum wise.

Funny thing was when he came to the sidelines - Coach Johnson didn't know if he should chew him out or give him high five, Coach was at a lost for words.
Ha! Yep, I noticed that. On TV, it looked like Snoddy came to the sidelines and got congratulations from teammates, but it looked like CPJ didn't know what to say, so he didn't do anything, just went on to calling in the next play.
 

vamosjackets

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Turned out great, but I honestly wouldn't have minded if CPJ chewed him out. Touching it in the first place was an extremely stupid thing to do. Almost resulted in a safety and should have probably resulted in us starting from inside our own five. Great job recovering and making something pretty good out of an almost catastrophic mistake, but I would still prefer to see Golden back there in the future.

In the moment, all I could think was Orwin's touchback safety against Miami that turned out to be one of the key plays in that loss two years ago.
I agree, how do you let a kickoff actually hit the ground in the middle of the field at the 5 yardline? I was trying not to cuss, and then I thought he was going to take it for a TD.
 

kg01

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I noticed our D line did a good job controlling the line of scrimmage. Didn't get pushed back much and actually got good push often. Didn't lead to any sacks till we started blitzing but helped slow the run game down IMO.

We did really well stopping the run. I know I'm beating a broken dead horse record, but I'm sure rotating more guys throughout the game didn't hurt that effort.
 

nod

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I agree, how do you let a kickoff actually hit the ground in the middle of the field at the 5 yardline? I was trying not to cuss, and then I thought he was going to take it for a TD.

To defend Snoddy
The kick was a hard one to judge, like an outfielder in baseball do you charge hard and go for the catch, or do ease up and play it cleanly off the bounce. Ball could have bounced any way so you have to play the ball on a kickoff, not like a punt where you can just let hit and hope it doesn't dive on the one yard line.
 

Eric

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I agree, how do you let a kickoff actually hit the ground in the middle of the field at the 5 yardline? I was trying not to cuss, and then I thought he was going to take it for a TD.

As I have been saying for awhile...I would like him off kickoff returns. Oh well...He made a good play.

Good thread Vamos.
 
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