Florida State film review: Jameis Winston's passing plays through 4 games against FBS teams

Jeff Gammons

127 passing plays. 65 on first down, 34 on second, 28 on third.

That's how many passing plays Jameis Winston has run against FBS teams before garbage time to date in his career.

And with those, a whole lot of success. Let's face it, after an up-and-down fall camp, the Jameis Winston from spring has shown up in every FSU game this season. He is the reason Florida State is now considered a national title contender.

One of the cool things about being the only FSU site to break down every play each week is that we can bring you additional breakdowns once we acquire more data.

This does not include: Plays in garbage time (Winston has played very little in garbage time); plays against D1-AA school Bethune Cookman; or designed quarterback runs.

After the tables, we have our analysis.

Note: there are certain schematic and tendency things we do not discuss in these reviews out of respect for our sources, the school and coaching staff.

Video is available at all of the links.

Pitt

Down/Distance/Yard Formation Result Analysis
1-10-FSU-14 01 gun (10:44) Jameis Winston passed to Kelvin Benjamin for 13 yards. FSU opens up in 11 personnel, then shifts to an empty look, with Devonta Freeman splitting out wide. Quick under route to Kelvin vs. a slot blitz.
1-10-FSU-27 11 pistol (10:30) Jameis Winston passed to Kenny Shaw for 20 yards. FSU seems to want to go no huddle whenever they are in 11 personnel and Pitt has 3 linebackers on the field. Playaction gets a hard bite from the backers and Kenny Shaw is wide open on the over route. Putting Jameis on the edge and giving him a run/pass option.
3-1-PITT44 11 gun (8:20) Jameis Winston passed to Kelvin Benjamin for a loss of 1 yard. Jet sweep. Bobby Hart appears to block the wrong guy, leaving an unblocked defender. Not sure this play is going anywhere anyway. Curious call.
2-10-PITT24 21 gun (4:11) Touchdown. Jameis Winston passed to Nick O'Leary for 24 yards. The route by O'Leary and Winston's throw have already been analyzed to death. What you may not have noticed is that Pitt has a massive blitz on. They rushed 7 guys on this play. The anticipation, the read, the subtle move in the pocket are all tremendous. Great route by O'Leary...that's actually one of Pitt's starting CBs he shakes on that route.
2-6-FSU23 11 pistol (2:10) Jameis Winston passed to Kenny Shaw for 11 yards. This is a packaged play consisting of a dive and a bubble screen. With the slot defender showing blitz, the defense is outleveraged by the bubble.
1-10-FSU34 21 (1:49) Jameis Winston passed to Kelvin Benjamin for 14 yards. FSU starts out in a bunch formation with base personnel, then motions the fullback into an offset I alignment, all of which screams run. Then runs some variation of a snag concept and hits Benjamin on the snag route. Good disguise.
1-10-FSU48 20 gun (1:25) Jameis Winston rushed for 9 yards. Kelvin breaks open for a TD on the post and there are a few tenths of a second where Jameis could have made the throw, but I do not have a problem with pulling it down and scrambling for positive yards here. The risk of getting hit as he threw and serving up a wounded duck into the middle of the field was high.
1-10-PITT40 20 gun (15:00) Jameis Winston passed to Kenny Shaw for 21 yards. Not sure if this is a true packaged play or play action, but neither was the Pitt defense. Backers flowed HARD and Kenny Shaw was wide open on the drag. This is Jimbo's offense at its best. Balance combined with checks at the line have the defense completely flummoxed and guys are running wide open.
1-0-PITT2 (13:41) Touchdown. Jameis Winston passed to Nick O'Leary for 2 yards. It can perhaps be excused in a goal line situation, but Pitt's backers are incredibly susceptible to play action. O'Leary makes a great adjustment on this ball.
1-10-FSU22 11 gun (9:11) Jameis Winston passed to Rashad Greene for 9 yards. If the defense is going to play 10 yards off Rashad Greene, take the free yards.
1-10-FSU36 11 gun (8:14) Jameis Winston passed to Rashad Greene for 11 yards. Same play from previous first down.
1-10-FSU47 11 gun (7:59) Jameis Winston passed to Rashad Greene for 8 yards. Same play again.
2-17-FSU40 10 gun (6:57) Jameis Winston passed incomplete to Kenny Shaw. Double shakes. Kenny Shaw caught that ball, but Jameis could have thrown it earlier/flatter to avoid it being an issue.
3-17-FSU40 10 gun (6:51) Jameis Winston passed to Rashad Greene for 20 yards. Scissors concept. Tremendous job hanging in the pocket and throwing an accurate pass while getting hit. Carter got bullrushed right into Winston.
1-10-PITT40 10 gun (6:30) Jameis Winston passed to Rashad Greene for 8 yards. Smash. Shad is all alone on the hitch.
2-2-PITT32 10 gun (5:55) Aaron Donald sacked Jameis Winston for a loss of 7 yards. Smash again. Donald beats Carter with a swim move, but Winston needs to get rid of it instead of trying to scramble here.
3-9-PITT39 10 gun (5:13) Jameis Winston passed to Kelvin Benjamin for 19 yards. Camera angle is too narrow to see the pass pattern, but that's a heck of a throw from Winston. Seeing the middle of the field well. He takes a pretty hard shot after the throw.
1-10-PITT20 21 gun (4:45) Jameis Winston rushed for 2 yards. Some sort of miscommunication here. Winston appears to be looking for the bubble, but the receivers are running double slants.
1-10-PITT41 11 gun (1:56) Jameis Winston passed to Devonta Freeman for 2 yards. FSU was penalized 15 yards. Dumb penalty. The guy was way behind the play. FSU needs to study up on obscure blocking penalties as they're clearly a point of emphasis with the ACC this year.
1-28-FSU41 10 gun (1:03) Jameis Winston passed to Rashad Greene for 36 yards. 3x1 set with a double post and a drag to the trips side and a deep curl on the single side. Not sure the window is as small as it looked initially. Winston's most remarkable asset is the speed at which he can put a decision into action once he makes it.
1-10-PITT23 10 gun (0:38) Touchdown. Jameis Winston passed to Rashad Greene for 23 yards. Not sure, but this looks like the same play that Benjamin caught on third down on the previous play.
1-10-FSU26 11 pistol (14:54) Jameis Winston passed to Kenny Shaw for 42 yards. Play action off stretch, Jameis fakes to wrong side, sucks both Pitt LBs and two DBs in anyway. Shaw makes 3 men miss in open field
1-15-PITT37 11 gun (14:05) Jameis Winston passed to Devonta Freeman for 9 yards. Screen to Freeman on field side, nearly blown up early with missed block from Hart, who gives himself an angry tap on the head. Stork tries to cut a defender a hair early, but is still effective. May have been in Carter's way, and if Carter can get on a man, Freeman may have had space to get the 1st down.
3-G-PITT6 11 pistol (11:34) Jameis Winston lost 2 yards. Winston not able to find anyone open in compressed area, can't find a clean running lane out of the backfield. Probably needs to be thrown away.
1-10-FSU42 21 offset I (3:36) Jameis Winston passed to Kelvin Benjamin for 28 yards. Play action, NOL & KB run deep corner and big over route. KB meets the turf monster.
3-6-PITT11 11 pistol (1:23) Jameis Winston passed incomplete to Rashad Greene. Pitt sends six, wanted slant on backside, couldn't with pressure. Not great blitz pickup. Winston probably should've thrown this one away.
1-10-PITT49 21 Gun (15:00) Jameis Winston passed to Chad Abram for 5 yards. Reuben Carter gets beat badly by Pitt's stud DT #97. Winston has no time to set his feet but is able to get a dangerous pass off to Abrams in the flats. Abrams shows nice elusiveness to break a few tackles for a positive gain, Fisher will probably use this play as a teaching moment for JW. Just take the sack. On his coaching show, Jimbo Fisher said that FSU had a deep shot play called here, and that they didn't have time for it to develop.
3-6-PITT45 11 Gun (13:50) Jameis Winston passed to Rashad Greene for 11 yards. Pitt shows pressure and then backs off, actually has a backer acting as a spy on JW. Houston. Greene crosses the face of CB on the slant, Speed rush almost gets him from the back side but Jameis stands tall and hits him in stride for the easy first down pickup.
2-2-PITT26 11 Pistol (12:32) Jameis Winston passed to Christian Green for no gain. Welp. Bubble to Christian Green. I rewtached it a few times to see if I could validate Jimbo's claim that KB was telling CG the play. It appears he was yelling someting at him. Either way poor effort from KB gets CG blown up. Only real blemish on KBs night.
3-2-PITT26 11 Gun (11:48) Jameis Winston passed to Nick O'Leary for 11 yards. Pitt shows blitz and the backs off. Matias handles #97 easily while Carter and Stork double #50. Erving does just enough slow down the speed rush and gets beat but recovers to push his guy upfield, JW steps up in the pocket to help his OT's out. Pitt jumps Greene on the curl and and JW hits O'leary on the TE option route. Another perfectly placed ball thrown on time by JW.
3-5-PITT10 21 Gun (9:32) Touchdown. Jameis Winston passed to Nick O'Leary for 10 yards. Excellent playaction to Devonta sucks both of Pitts LB's in, O'leary is wide open on the option route. "Easy Money"

Nevada

Down/Distance Spot Formation Result Analysis
3-12 at Fs33 11 gun WINSTON, J. crossing pass complete to SHAW, K. for 22 yards to the NEV45, 1ST DOWN FS (KEETON, Bryson), PENALTY NEV roughing passer (YATES, Rykeem) 15 yards to the NEV30, 1ST DOWN FS, clock 10:04. Three verts. Winston finds the hole behind the linebacker and in front of the safety vs. cover 3. Excellent timing and accuracy.
2-10 at Nev18 11 WINSTON, J. rush QX for 7 yards to the NEV11 (LYONS, Matthew;MCNEAL, J.), clock 08:19. The reverse rollout works perfectly and forces the backside LB to choose between chasing the QB or covering the receiver. The defender takes the QB and Winston needs to make him pay for it by throwing to the open receiver. Bad decision to keep it.
3-3 at Nev11 11 gun WINSTON, J. MR pass complete to GREENE, R. for 8 yards to the NEV3, 1ST DOWN FS (LANE JR., Bryan;LYONS, Matthew), clock 07:52. This is actually an incorrect read by Winston. Nevada is playing Cover 2 and doesn't have enough underneath defenders to the 3 receiver side. Kenny Shaw is wide open. Rashad is running a slant directly towards a linebacker. However, Winston does see the linebacker and places the throw behind Rashad so he can pivot away from the defender and get upfield. Classic example of throwing a receiver open.
2-G at Nev06 11 gun WINSTON, J. crossing pass incomplete to GREENE, R., clock 06:28. Post-dig concept. Coverage was pretty tight. Winston may have been throwing this away.
3-G at Nev06 11 gun WINSTON, J. crossing pass incomplete to BENJAMIN, K., clock 06:23. Double post route combined with a mesh concept underneath.
2-8 at Fs13 11 gun WINSTON, J. post pass intercepted by KEETON, Bryson at the FS38, KEETON, Bryson return 10 yards to the FS28 (O'LEARY, N.). Nevada is in a Tampa 2 defense. The Corner route to O'Leary on the other side of the field is probably the best choice, but the seam route is not wrong. Just a poor throw.
1-10 at Fs26 21 WINSTON, J. sacked for loss of 11 yards to the FS15 (JONES, Lenny), clock 11:08. Hart, Cam Eving and Carter all get beaten. Completely unacceptable.
1-10 at Fs08 11 gun WINSTON, J. WS pass complete to SHAW, K. for 13 yards to the FS21, 1ST DOWN FS, out-of-bounds (GARRETT, C.), clock 05:46. This is a package play, outside zone with a bubble screen. If the linebacker walks out over the slot and the other 2 adjust to be centered, the QB will hand off to the back. If the linebacker does not split out, you've got 1 defender over 2 receivers and throw the bubble screen. That's what occurs in this case and due to a great block by Kelvin, it's a big gainer.
1-10 at Fs21 11 gun WINSTON, J. WS pass complete to SHAW, K. for 8 yards to the FS29, out-of-bounds (GARRETT, C.), clock 05:31. Same formation, same defense, same play, same result.
1-10 at Nev40 20 gun WINSTON, J. MR pass complete to WILDER, J. for 9 yards to the NEV31 (GARRETT, C.;REYNOSO, Jack), clock 04:10. A quick decision means Wilder gets the ball with some room to operate. FSU was trying to take a downfield shot but it was covered.
1-10 at Nev24 11 gun WINSTON, J. flag pass complete to SHAW, K. for 24 yards to the NEV0, 1ST DOWN FS, TOUCHDOWN, clock 03:21. Playaction out of the same look they've been using all drive. Typical FSU smash route vs. a 2 deep look. The throw is amazing. 40 yards in the air, falling backwards and drops it right in the bucket. Great job by Kenny Shaw to fight through the defender grabbing his facemask on the break.
1-10 at Fs44 11 gun WINSTON, J. sideline pass complete to SHAW, K. for 5 yards to the FS49 (SMITH, Markus), clock 01:38. Devonta Freeman is all alone in the flat on the far side. Winston puts the hitch up high and Shaw takes a shot to the ribs as a result. Ball should gone to Wilder on the other side.
2-5 at Fs49 10 gun WINSTON, J. crossing pass complete to BENJAMIN, K. for 8 yards to the NEV43, 1ST DOWN FS (MITCHELL, E.), clock 01:14. Under route vs. press man coverage. The ball is actually quite a bit behind Benjamin, who makes a great catch.
1-10 at Nev43 10 gun WINSTON, J. deep out pass complete to GREEN, C. for 19 yards to the NEV24, 1ST DOWN FS (KEETON, Bryson), clock 00:50. Jesus Wilson has no idea where to line up and with the clock running and no timeouts, Jimbo has a minor fit. Great throw. Getting the bench route all the way to the opposite sideline in front of the safety takes a ton of velocity.
1-10 at Nev24 10 gun WINSTON, J. deep pass complete to GREENE, R. for 24 yards to the NEV0, 1ST DOWN FS, TOUCHDOWN, clock 00:38. Rashad Greene is covered on this play. He is not remotely open. Winston puts it where only his guy can get it and Greene makes an absurd play. These last two plays are NFL throws. Good blitz pickup
1-10 at Fs39 11 pistol WINSTON, J. middle pass complete to O'LEARY, N. for 7 yards to the FS46 (LYONS, Matthew;BERTRANDO, Alex), clock 11:01. Curl over the middle. Easy yards. Gets the obligatory Nicklaus reference.
1-10 at Nev30 11 gun tight WINSTON, J. middle pass complete to BENJAMIN, K. for 29 yards to the NEV1, 1ST DOWN FS (BERTRANDO, Alex), clock 10:14. 2x2 "tight" gun formation. 7 man protection off play action. Looks like a shot play to beat the Tampa 2. Greene/Benjamin do a high-low stretch over middle of the field. Benjamin wide open
1-10 at Nev45 11 under center WINSTON, J. deep out pass complete to SHAW, K. for 22 yards to the NEV23, 1ST DOWN FS, out-of-bounds, clock 06:31. O'Leary motions to wing, runs play action. Matias defender gets turned around, but Winston slides quickly to the left and makes the throw under pressure on the deep crosser to Shaw. Great feel from Winston, makes a great throw off balance.
2-13 at Nev26 11 pistol WINSTON, J. middle pass complete to O'LEARY, N. for 9 yards to the NEV17 (DE KONING, B.), clock 05:30. Quick hitch in the middle. O'Leary does a nice job finding a hole in the underneath zones, as usual. Easy dump off and easy yards.
3-4 at Nev17 11 gun WINSTON, J. MR pass complete to GREENE, R. for 7 yards to the NEV10, 1ST DOWN FS (MITCHELL, E.), clock 05:00. 5 man blitz, miscommunication between Matias and Erving lets an end come free. Jameis slides forward to avoid him and throws a jumping pass to a spot only Rashad Greene could get to. Really nice improvisation from Jameis here. Just a natural.
1-G at Nev10 11 under center WINSTON, J. rush right for 10 yards to the NEV0, TOUCHDOWN, clock 04:41. Hart comes off for Lovelady for a play. O'Leary motions to field side forcing Nevada to shift. Play action naked rollout, Jameis looks to pass it until he crosses the line of scrimmage and walks into the end zone.

Boston College

Down/Distance Spot Formation Result Analysis
1-10 at Fs25 22 WINSTON, J. pass incomplete (K Pierre-Louis). Play action rollout. Freeman is open in the flat. O'leary needs to control his man better and tie up his arms so he can't deflect the pass.
2-10 at Fs25 21 WINSTON, J. pass incomplete to BENJAMIN, K. (S Rositano). Play action corner route. Deep third defender jumps the pass and nearly intercepts. Questionable decision and KB needs to flatten out the corner more vs. Cover 3.
3-10 at Fs25 11 pistol WINSTON, J. sacked for loss of 11 yards to the FS14 (K Ramsey). Tre Jackson gets beat soundly on an inside move by the DT. Have to handle the twist.
2-11 at Fs24 11 gun WINSTON, J. pass complete to BENJAMIN, K. for 38 yards to the BC38, 1ST DOWN FS (M Asprilla). 3 verts. The TE in the seam is the better option here, but Benjamin goes up and makes a play for his QB.
1-10 at Bc38 21 WINSTON, J. pass complete to GREENE, R. for 13 yards to the BC25, 1ST DOWN FS, out-of-bounds (B Jones). Play action rollout, great effort to extend for the catch on the deep out.
2-10 at Bc25 11 gun WINSTON, J. rush for 3 yards to the BC22 (B Jones). Cam Erving gets beaten on an inside move and forces Winston to tuck it and run.
3-7 at Bc22 11 gun WINSTON, J. pass incomplete to GREENE, R.. Winston is late on the slant. Winston should throw this to the inside slant to the 2 receiver side when the linebacker blitzes.
3-5 at Fs30 10 gun WINSTON, J. pass incomplete to SHAW, K. (S Rositano). Jameis tries to hit Kenny Shaw in the seam, but is late and high with the throw. Benjamin is wide open on a crosser that would have gotten the first down.
1-10 at Fs25 11 WINSTON, J. rush for 4 yards to the FS29 (S Divitto). Bootleg, BC covers up, Winston wastes no time to pick up four.
2-6 at Fs29 11 gun WINSTON, J. pass incomplete to GREENE, R., PENALTY BC pass interference 15 yards to the FS44, 1ST DOWN FS, NO PLAY. BC jams Greene way down the field. Nice pass pro from Winston on a defensive end.
1-10 at Fs44 21 bunch WINSTON, J. pass complete to GREENE, R. for 56 yards to the BC0, 1ST DOWN FS, TOUCHDOWN, clock 10:35. BC plays cover two, corner tips it early, and Greene runs an awesome snake route. Winston hits him in stride. Good pass pro. BC may have made a coverage error here. Way, way too much space between the two safeties. BC tried to bait Winston into throwing hot to boundary with corner bluffing blitz. Winston doesn't take bait.
2-8 at Fs21 11 gun WINSTON, J. sacked for loss of 2 yards to the FS19 (M Abdesmad). Tre' Jackson gets beat on a delayed blitz. Footwork is bad, doesn't punch it and stay balanced, BC actually screws this up, I think, running a green dog.
3-10 at Fs19 10 gun WINSTON, J. pass complete to WILDER, J. for 8 yards to the FS27 (S Daniels;S Sylvia). Awesome screen call by Jimbo Fisher, motion to field helps draw backers, BC does blitz, cut block missed by Stork (too low), or this may have gone for a lot of yards.
1-10 at Fs20 11 gun WINSTON, J. pass complete to GREENE, R. for 11 yards to the FS31, 1ST DOWN FS (M Abdesmad). 5 in the box, Winston should check to run. Play action, hits Greene on a crosser. Good pass pro on safety blitz.
1-10 at Fs31 11 gun WINSTON, J. pass complete to O'LEARY, N. for 14 yards to the FS45, 1ST DOWN FS (K Pierre-Louis;S Rositano). Winston should check this to a run (6 in box, both safeties way deep). No blitz, pass pro meh, Hits O'Leary in stride on option route.
1-10 at Fs45 11 gun WINSTON, J. pass complete to SHAW, K. for 12 yards to the BC43, 1ST DOWN FS, out-of-bounds (K Pierre-Louis). Maybe could check to run on this, too, but it's not as clear. Quick game, quick out, NFL throw to Shaw.
1-10 at Bc43 11 gun WINSTON, J. rush for 20 yards to the BC23, 1ST DOWN FS. BC is all up on the LOS, backs off into cover 3, FSU has an over route, pass pro is fine, Winston can't find anyone, nice scramble and an even better slide. BC trying to bait Winston here and he doesn't take bait.
1-10 at Bc23 21 gun WINSTON, J. rush for 7 yards to the BC16 (B Jones). Nice job by Erving to run his rusher past the pocket. Winston needs to throw this to Abram.
1-G at Bc10 21 WINSTON, J. pass complete to ABRAM, C. for 10 yards to the BC0, TOUCHDOWN, clock 01:49. Play action, fake isn't great, BC covers option #1 over top, Abram wide open, Winston puts it on him. Good pass pro.
1-10 at Fs40 10 gun WINSTON, J. sacked for loss of 9 yards to the FS31 (K Edebali). Cam Erving poor technique. Lunges against smaller defender. Fisher said they had an over route open, but Erving gives up the pressure.
3-5 at Fs45 10 gun WINSTON, J. pass complete to SHAW, K. for 55 yards to the BC0, 1ST DOWN FS, TOUCHDOWN, clock 00:00. Matias and Stork (more so Matias) allow a pressure, Winston ducks it. BC is for whatever reason not playing prevent defense here, given no time left on clock. Shaw does excellent job with scramble rules to go deep, and Winston does a great job to avoid pressure and give Shaw a catchable ball.
1-10 at Fs25 11 gun WINSTON, J. pass complete to SHAW, K. for 17 yards to the FS42, 1ST DOWN FS (B Jones). Winston finds Shaw on a vertical in the middle of the field.
1-10 at Fs42 11 under center WINSTON, J. pass incomplete to BENJAMIN, K.. Play action, good stunt inside from BC LB chases Winston out of the pocket, tries to hit KB on the sideline, just too far outside.
2-10 at Fs42 10 gun WINSTON, J. pass incomplete to GREENE, R.. Right side of the line lets two men come free, this is either a throw away or a bad overthrow of Greene.
3-10 at Fs42 10 gun WINSTON, J. pass complete to BENJAMIN, K. for 24 yards to the BC34, 1ST DOWN FS (S Rositano). Stack right, KB and Greene release vertical and post, respectively. Winston throws to KB in double coverage. Looked like better decision would have been to go to Greene over MOF, but Winston fit it in the window and got the first down. KB helps him out here. Threw it way early.
1-10 at Bc23 21 gun WINSTON, J. pass complete to ABRAM, C. for 5 yards to the BC18, out-of-bounds. Play action, Jameis finds Abram on a flat route. Would probably be a first down if not for BC's field/our cleats issue.
1-G at Bc10 20 gun WINSTON, J. pass complete to GREENE, R. for 10 yards to the BC0, TOUCHDOWN, clock 09:06. Rashad Greene and Jameis Winston are both excellent players. This is an example of that. Rashad does an inside move and gets the BC corner to flip his hips inside, then moves outside to get separation. He flattens out this route to keep the corner behind him, and Winston throws a ball where only he can get it. Jimbo said this was Jameis' best throw of the game.
1-10 at Fs40 11 gun WINSTON, J. pass incomplete to BENJAMIN, K. (S Daniels). Winston throws the dig a bit high and early. KB does a good job extending to bring the ball in, but it's jarred loose by the BC LB. If better thrown, KB may be able to get around him.
2-10 at Fs40 11 gun WINSTON, J. pass complete to SHAW, K. for 9 yards to the FS49, out-of-bounds. Packaged zone/bubble play. Numbers in favor of bubble. KB does a good job blocking for Shaw. He must like Shaw more than Christian Green.
1-10 at Bc31 11 gun WINSTON, J. pass incomplete to WILLIAMS, K., PENALTY BC pass interference 15 yards to the BC16, 1ST DOWN FS, NO PLAY. Karlos goes out on a wheel route to boundary side, BC LB just mugs him downfield. Easy call for the ACC refs.
1-10 at Fs17 11 gun WINSTON, J. pass complete to BENJAMIN, K. for 41 yards to the BC42, 1ST DOWN FS (C. Jones). Benjamin runs a vertical route, makes an excellent move off the line to get behind the corner and he just goes. Winston puts beautiful touch on pass, and KB catches it in stride. Great throw and catch, with a well run route from Benjamin.
1-10 at Bc42 11 gun WINSTON, J. pass incomplete to GREENE, R.. We sped it up a little bit on this drive. Four man rush from BC. BC LB stones and knocks over Freeman, Winston has to get the ball out. Overthrows sideline pass to Greene.
3-12 at Bc44 11 pistol WINSTON, J. rush for 20 yards to the BC24, 1ST DOWN FS, out-of-bounds (S Rositano). Excellent vision from Winston. Sees running lane open up, cuts outside and lets Freeman spring him free. Winston shows surprising speed. He's a clumsy-looking runner because of his long legs, but he has very solid quickness and deceptive speed.
1-G at Bc09 11 gun WINSTON, J. pass complete to GREEN, C. for loss of 3 yards to the BC12 (M Asprilla). Packaged zone/bubble. Numbers dictate bubble, Christian Green gets it and gets hit in the backfield. Once again, Kelvin Benjamin misses block on bubble for CG. Poor kid just gets no luck. Throws the ball in frustration, needs to not do that.
2-G at Bc12 21 gun bunch WINSTON, J. pass incomplete to O'LEARY, N.. Tight coverage on O'Leary
3-G at Bc12 11 gun WINSTON, J. rush for 9 yards to the BC3 (J Keyes). BC drops 8 into coverage, think Winston expected blitz. Scramble rules, O'Leary falls down, nowhere to throw it. Smart not to force anything.
2-7 at Fs28 11 gun WINSTON, J. rush for 7 yards to the FS35, 1ST DOWN FS, out-of-bounds. Winston doesn't see (Shaw?) running wide open deep for the TD, But good scramble.
2-7 at Fs38 11 gun WINSTON, J. rush for 13 yards to the BC49, 1ST DOWN FS, out-of-bounds. Blitz flushes Winston, good hustle by Erving to cut backer and get Winston extra five yards. Good evasion by JW.
1-15 at Fs46 11 gun WINSTON, J. pass complete to WILDER, J. for 10 yards to the BC44 (M Asprilla). Blitz, good job to get ball to checkdown and get back on schedule. Blitz handled well, but Bobby Hart was lazy with feet and allowed inside pressure.
3-7 at Bc46 21 WINSTON, J. pass intercepted by D Williams at the BC20, D Williams return 16 yards to the BC36 (FREEMAN, D.). FSU snaps the ball before BC is ready. Benjamin is on a double move, but Winston thinks he has him and throws it flat. In a way, BC not being lined up screwed up Winston's read. Fisher says if he sticks with it and lays it over the top this is a touchdown. I initially thought Benjamin needed to fight back for this a bit, but it's not that bad.

Maryland

All film review links here.

Down/Distance Spot Formation Result Analysis
1-10 at Fs23 20 gun WINSTON, J. WS pass complete to SHAW, K. for 18 yards to the FS41, 1ST DOWN FS (Davis), clock 12:45. Package play, quick bubble uncovered to Shaw. PA holds backer. Excellent block by Benjamin.
1-10 at Fs41 21 WINSTON, J. MR pass complete to BENJAMIN, K. for 7 yards to the FS48 (Likely), clock 12:22. Motion to bunch from twins with FB as HB, curl/flat, think he should throw flat to Abram but gets away with it via excellent throw to Benjamin (curl).
2-3 at Fs48 11 gun WINSTON, J. sideline pass complete to FREEMAN, D. for 4 yards to the UMD48, 1ST DOWN FS (Robinson), clock 11:52. Back on an arrow route against linebacker. Very quick read by Winston and good throw and catch.
2-9 at Umd26 10 Pistol WINSTON, J. rush QX for no gain to the UMD26 (Kilgo;Bowers), clock 10:14. Think this was supposed to be a screen.
3-9 at Umd26 11 gun WINSTON, J. middle pass complete to O'LEARY, N. for 10 yards to the UMD16, 1ST DOWN FS (Robinson), clock 09:43. Option route to O'Leary, great chemistry between QB & TE, and great blitz pickup by Freeman. He's very good there.
2-8 at Umd14 11 gun WINSTON, J. ML pass complete to FREEMAN, D. for 13 yards to the UMD1, 1ST DOWN FS (Nixon), clock 08:33. Another arrow route to Freeman. Again, he's open and Winston hits him in stride. Quick game. Good to see him get it to his back.
2-6 at Fs28 00 gun WINSTON, J. slant pass incomplete to SHAW, K., clock 04:43. Maryland seems to auto blitz empty backfield, quick game, throw is behind Shaw.
3-6 at Fs28 10 gun WINSTON, J. crossing pass complete to GREENE, R. for 7 yards to the FS35, 1ST DOWN FS (Hendy), clock 04:27. Well handled blitz/stunt, gives Winston time to find his third receiver and make a strong throw across the field.
1-10 at Fs35 11 WINSTON, J. flag pass incomplete to GREENE, R., clock 04:03. Play action, deep cross to Greene, just misses him. Very good coverage.
2-10 at Fs35 11 gun WINSTON, J. deep pass incomplete to GREENE, R., clock 03:57. Almost an awesome play. First and second are covered so the deep to Greene is the throw. Just out of bounds.
3-10 at Fs35 11 gun WINSTON, J. rush QX for 6 yards to the FS41 (Cudjoe-Virgil), clock 03:41. Winston a little antsy in the pocket here, but a good scramble.
1-10 at Fs47 10 gun WINSTON, J. sideline pass incomplete to GREENE, R., clock 01:48. Mistimed snap No. 1
1-10 at Fs33 21 WINSTON, J. rush QX for 1 yard to the FS34 (Robinson), clock 13:52. Boot to the field, could have thrown it to O'Leary, but this is great coverage by Maryland.
3-9 at Fs34 10 gun WINSTON, J. sacked for loss of 9 yards to the FS25 (Monroe), clock 13:01. Winston holds this ball for a long time and the sack is somewhat on the offensive line but also on him. Needs to get rid of it.
2-9 at Fs21 11 gun WINSTON, J. slant pass complete to GREENE, R. for 15 yards to the FS36, 1ST DOWN FS (Nixon), clock 09:49. Excellent pass pro and Winston hits Greene on the crosser.
1-10 at Fs36 11 gun WINSTON, J. middle pass complete to SHAW, K. for 11 yards to the FS47, 1ST DOWN FS (Likely), clock 09:19. Another blitz, another quick throw. Shaw good moves to get the first. Well done. Surgical.
1-10 at Fs47 11 gun WINSTON, J. middle pass incomplete to O'LEARY, N., clock 08:55. Good blitz pickup, should be a big play to O'Leary but he launches high. Bad throw.
3-10 at Fs47 10 gun WINSTON, J. post pass complete to GREENE, R. for 38 yards to the UMD15, 1ST DOWN FS (Davis), clock 08:11. Great blitz pickup, Winston awesome throw to Greene over one defender and underneath another. Greene runs this as a seam against Cover 3 and it stems to a skinny post against cover 2. That's what this was, cover 2. Great job by Greene to sell the seam route on his long catch before stemming to skinny post v. cover 2. Awesome trust and anticipation from Winston. He throws it well before Greene brekas.
2-11 at Fs21 11 gun WINSTON, J. sideline pass complete to O'LEARY, N. for 25 yards to the FS46, 1ST DOWN FS, out-of-bounds (Goree), clock 02:49. Jackson gets beat, Winston evades, defense loses O'Leary on option route (I think).
1-10 at Fs46 21 WINSTON, J. middle pass incomplete (Robinson), clock 02:24. Play action, want to take a big shot down field, really poor blitz pickup by Abram. No knee bend, no extension. Runs into Winston.
2-10 at Fs46 11 gun WINSTON, J. crossing pass complete to BENJAMIN, K. for 18 yards to the UMD36, 1ST DOWN FS (Nixon), clock 02:17. Quick triple read. Read it curl, flat, then the under route, which is Benjamin. Easy throw and catch against man coverage and a bust at that.
2-10 at Umd36 11 gun WINSTON, J. MR pass complete to FREEMAN, D. for 18 yards to the UMD18, 1ST DOWN FS (Davis), clock 01:36. Maryland blitzes, free release for hot Devonta, hits hot, moves the chains with awesome juke move.
2-10 at Umd18 10 gun WINSTON, J. sideline pass complete to SHAW, K. for 13 yards to the UMD5, 1ST DOWN FS, out-of-bounds (Davis), clock 00:33. Maryland brings pressure again, Shaw matched up on a safety, in and out, ball out quickly, good play, protection could be better.
1-G at Umd05 22 WINSTON, J. crossing pass complete to BENJAMIN, K. for 5 yards to the UMD0, TOUCHDOWN, clock 00:28. Play action, ball thrown literally at the height of the cross bad, where 6'6 Kelvin Benjamin goes up and gets it. This is difficult to stop.
1-10 at Fs06 21 pony WINSTON, J. deep pass complete to GREENE, R. for 48 yards to the UMD46, 1ST DOWN FS (I.Goins), clock 14:49. Rashad Greene beats the Maryland DB on a pure go route. Jameis puts it right in the bread basket on the outside shoulder. DB lines up like he's going to press, allows RG outside release, and Rashad is gone.
1-10 at Umd46 10 gun WINSTON, J. post pass complete to GREEN, C. for 22 yards to the UMD24, 1ST DOWN FS, clock 14:31. Trips right, three verticals. Christian Green runs a skinny post over the middle, Winston makes an excellent read. Throw is a bit behind Green, who makes an excellent play on the ball in the air.
1-10 at Umd24 10 gun WINSTON, J. sideline pass incomplete to GREEN, C., clock 14:15. 2x2. Whip route by Christian Green is poorly run and well covered. Doesn't get separation, Jameis throws it out and away. Green gets pulled off the field.
3-15 at Umd29 10 gun WINSTON, J. rush QX for 20 yards to the UMD9, 1ST DOWN FS (Hendy), clock 13:23. Trips right, three verticals again. Cam Erving gets beat on an inside move after setting himself wide for speed rush. This is a good way to get beat by Vic Beasley up at Clemson. Jameis sense pressure, slides out of the pocket to the right. Winston evades 3 defenders before being taken down inside the 10. Could have been dumped down.
2-G at Umd08 21 pony WINSTON, J. middle pass complete to O'LEARY, N. for 8 yards to the UMD0, TOUCHDOWN, clock 12:18. O'Leary makes up for a poor block on the previous play. Excellent double move freezes the Maryland defender, and NOL is wide open. Easy one for Jameis. This ball was actually tipped at the line.
1-10 at Fs45 20 gun WINSTON, J. deep pass incomplete to GREENE, R., clock 11:21. Pony formation, play action. Wilder does a good job cutting blitzing corner, Winston exits the pocket right, sets his feet and fires at Greene's vertical downfield. Perfectly thrown ball. Rashad Green is literally tackled before he can get the ball. Would have been a touchdown. This is an insanely bad missed call from the refs. Rashad could have caught the ball here, but was probably distracted by the tackle before the ball got there.
2-10 at Fs45 10 gun WINSTON, J. crossing pass complete to GREEN, C. for 17 yards to the UMD38, 1ST DOWN FS (Nixon), clock 11:13. Could (should) have checked it down. Trips left, three verticals again. Benjamin is wide open on the short crosser. Winston throws it high and is bailed out by Green. May have sailed to safety behind Green here. The corners are covered, Green would have been hit hard if he caught this at chest height. This ball should go to KB, or even Wilder in flat. Great play from CG in the air again. Great vertical and hands, high points the ball.
1-10 at Umd25 10 gun WINSTON, J. flag pass incomplete to SHAW, K., clock 10:34. 2x2 "tight" set. Double smash/whip. 5 man rush. Winston goes for the corner to Shaw but throws it late and wide. Not much depth to boundary side to work with. Christian Green was open on field side underneath.
3-6 at Umd21 10 gun WINSTON, J. deep out pass complete to SHAW, K. for 21 yards to the UMD0, 1ST DOWN FS, TOUCHDOWN, clock 09:47. Scramble rule. 2x2, Cam begins to get beat on an inside move and Jameis rolls left. Shaw sees this from downfield and moves with his QB - good scramble rules awareness. Jameis just does an excellent job placing the ball where only Shaw can get it, and does it while on the run. Impressive throw and catch.
2-12 at Fs45 10 gun WINSTON, J. flag pass complete to SHAW, K. for 33 yards to the UMD22, 1ST DOWN FS (Farrand), clock 04:05. Trips left, Maryland brings five men. Protection slides left, leaving Freeman on an LB. Winston does a good job to get out of the pocket to the right as it collapses, and hits Shaw on the slant downfield. Complete mismatch. Shaw being covered in man by an LB. Gets toward right sideline, makes DB miss, then LB miss, goes down just outside the 20. Maryland has just 5 DBs on the field to cover FSU's 4 WR set. This is a win for FSU every time. This is where they miss their starting corners. Could be playing dime with more DB helath. While 5 does a good job keeping his eyes downfield, he had Christian Green wide open for a TD left side of the field. May not have been able to set his feet and throw it, though.
2-11 at Umd12 11 gun WINSTON, J. sideline pass complete to O'LEARY, N. for 12 yards to the UMD0, 1ST DOWN FS, TOUCHDOWN, clock 01:50. This is "the play". Sportscenter #1 on top 10. Both tackles are blown back into Winston, he manages to escape, spin around left side of line towards the right, then fires an immaculately placed ball to O'Leary in the corner of the end zone. All Jimbo can do is chuckle to himself. Amazing.

What do we notice?

  • Winston often needs to check the football down, or check FSU in to a run. He gets in trouble when he is too aggressive.
  • Winston has totally destroyed the blitz. FSU has picked it up well, veteran receivers are winning 1-on-1 matchups, and Winston clearly trusts them.
  • Winston is a special player. Even when he makes the wrong choice, it still typically works out because he has a phenomenal feel and sense for how to fit balls into spaces. He has great hands that help to shape the ball, and he sees things developing quite well.
  • Winston does an awesome job keeping his eyes downfield scrambling. He is not looking to run most of the time. And he wants to launch deep when he scrambles, and has done so with great accuracy.
  • When he misses, it is usually a result of missing high. Against single coverage, this isn't all that big of a deal. If teams start to play soft coverage and he continues to be very aggressive down the field, and misses high, it could lead to more interceptions.
  • It's not easy to sack him, despite his lack of great speed. You've seen the highlights, but this is a very strong player.
  • Winston could stand to step up in the pocket a bit more. He does drift a bit.
  • Winston really wants to throw to or further than the marker. Very few of his throws for first downs are thrown beneath the sticks and then taken beyond them.
  • Winston has a 59% success rate on passing downs. That. Is. Ridiculous.
  • Breaking it down further, Winston has a 64% success rate on second-&-8+ (16 to the good, 9 to the bad).
  • Winston has converted more third and longs (5+) than he has failed to convert. 13 conversions to 11 non-conversions. 8 of the 13 have been third-&-9 or more. In fact, Winston has converted 2/3rds of third-&-9+ downs.

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