We only gave up 14 points, but for most of the game, we were outplayed. We were "exposed" a little by Mettenberger. They had the right game plan: short, quick throws to take what we give up. The 50% 3rd down success was due in part to consistent gains of 3-4 yards on 1st and 2nd down, and in part due to Mettenberger being in a great rhythm from the easy early throws. Our tackling was off, our pressure was poor, and we still were close late despite playing our worst 58 minutes of the year. We're not the juggernaut we were made out to be, but we'll come back stronger for this game. While I am thrilled with the final result, I was a bit concerned with how it felt like almost every 3-and-out started with a pass play and our sustained drives seemed to be from consistent run plays on 1st down. If someone has numbers that show it differently, I'll gladly concede the point, but it sure seemed like we tried to hard to call passes on 1st and 10, putting ourselves into a hole early in drives, hurting the field-position battle.
It was obvious that LSU was picking on a DB, who came through with a huge tackle at the end. Very few quarterback are capable of trying to exploit us in any way, and they will also have to be playing at their peak.
LSU had an excellent gameplan for us. It was apparent that they spent a lot time - well before the bye week - planning for our defense. The biggest problem was that their interior OL was winning their share of battles and keeping them on schedule offensively. They're really the first team in a long time that has at least had a "draw" on the battle up front. The second problem they presented is that their simplicity offensively actually made it difficult for us to affect the passer without creating liabilities on the backend. Yes, they called plenty of 2-man and 3-man patterns which should be easy to cover but the max protection made it impossible to force a pass without leaving the backend in a lot of one-on-one situations. Their level of preparedness showed in they often had the exact routes called to find the soft spots in any blitz package we executed.
They knew all our blitzes seemingly. By playing a lot of 22 personnel (2 back, 2 tight) and max protection, they limited what we could execute which certainly helped their seemingly "being in our headsets" like playcalling. I told people that Mettenburger was closer to being the QB they need than many gave credit. They gave him a lot of simple reads, the coaches kept him safe but effective playcalls, and he was mostly given the protection needed to play pitch and catch with those short stick routes and button hitches on the outside.
This was probably the finest offensive gameplan I've seen against us since the 2009 UT game - which we also won - in terms of seemingly being in Saban/Smart's heads. Other teams have been more explosive but none of them were as well prepared for blitz packages and flat out consistently finding the soft spot as last night.
Mettenberger played the game of his life.
With this play, in addition to the LSU's running attack, it gave them a balance that is almost impossible to defend effectively.
It's much like our offense - when it's clicking -- it's pick your poison and teams don't stand a chance.
Our bread and butter is making teams one dimensional. If we can do this, we ratchet up the pressure and can be dominating. However, LSU's play and balance last night gave us fits and we could never get off the field.
Exposed? Eeeeeh, hard to say. We had tackles for loss we didn't come up with. We played uncharacteristically all night, especially while up 14-3. Sure we can clean some things up. But the way LSU played, well, you've gotta take your hat off to that. Metty got hot at the right time. But we handled it thankfully! I believe we just had a bad game but stood up at the right time.
he had a ridiculously good game a lot of it was him making really good throws that we couldn't do much about. The TD over belue was perfectly thrown and a perfect catch. He had a very similar game to what AJ had in New Orleans last year or Tebow against us in 08. Nothing we could do about those. Most of the throws he has missed all year long or his WR's have dropped they made them last night.
What really hurt us was the combo of Copeland and Hill, Copeland killed Jesse or any linebacker that found the running lane last night and gave Hill an easy 5 yards every time out of the I formation, it doesnt hurt that Copeland is HUGE and an NFL FB. We won't see another Oline or FB that good the rest of the year, or even a similar offense.
Also cant discount that LSU has been working towards this game all year, reportedly at the expense of a few of their other opponents, Maybe explaining the AU game.
Also despite 400 yards of offense, they only scored 17. D did a better job than the stats show.
Also we won, they lost, they can go cry themselves to sleep at Krystals.
Serve no master but your own ambition.
One aspect that I believe the press missed this week was how bad LSU wanted to win this game. Cecil Hurt didn't change his mind over to Bama squeaking by until Friday and I know he thought he were much better on paper. In any close game there is going to be areas where the other team played well, but considering nothing was glaring, LSU's motivation trumps everything. Nothing redeeming to others teams came out of this game besides Bama winning the most difficult game of the year.
I think this game was a godsend. The coaching staff now has tons of film on things to work on. It's much better to know this stuff now than during the SECCG or BCSCG.
If we execute a couple of relatively simple pass plays on 3rd down on our first two drives of the 2nd Half, maybe, just maybe we would have taken control of the game thus saving us all the wailing and gnashing of teeth.
And who would have thought that Mettenberger would have outplayed AJ for most of the second whenquarterback was unanimously considered the position of greatest advantage.
What a victory for us and such a terrible loss for a pretty valiant LSU team.
Last edited by Tidetwin; November 4th, 2012 at 01:30 PM.