The Florida State Seminoles are coming off an upset loss at home against the No. 15 Wake Forest Demon Deacons. Looking ahead to next weekend, the team will travel to Raleigh to face the No. 14 NC State Wolfpack on the road in a matchup that could prove to be all too familiar. Coordinators Alex Atkins, Adam Fuller, and John Papuchis reflected on the team’s performance and what FSU needs to do to recover from their 21-31 defeat.
Offensive coordinator Alex Atkins
Coming off a loss, offensive coordinator Alex Atkins took some of the blame for the team's performance saying that he has to coach them better if they want to see results.
“If we are playing too reactionary then that's on me. We should be dictating, knowing what's coming, knowing how to get it and I have to eliminate that reactionary trait, you're gonna have some of it but it can’t be a lot.”
Ball security was unusual, to say the least, during the start of Saturday’s game along with penalties. Atkins reflected on that saying it was the first time this team, with all the new faces, would have to overcome those deficiencies.
“Possessions are premium because you never know how many you’re going to get in the game. You don't go into the game saying we’re gonna run 80 plays. You just try to run the best plays you can and make sure you take advantage of every possession that you get. So when you talk about the penalties, you talk about the turnovers, those eliminate possessions so it makes you press a little bit more and this group, this is the first time (this season) we’ve had to overcome that.”
When looking at NC State, Atkin’s noted the size of their defensive tackles and that he thinks getting the matchups they would like up front will be challenging.
“The first thing you see is they got size. All the defensive tackles are 290 pounds and they play with three of them on the field. That's a little unique because they always got those three D tackles right there that do a good job stopping the middle and its hard to find those double teams, to try and create those double teams.” adding that, “They also do a good job of keeping everything in front of them.”
Atkin’s full interview can be seen below:
Defensive coordinator Adam Fuller
Getting off the field on third down proved to be difficult against Wake Forest and Fuller reflected on that.
“The name of the game is to get off the field and get the ball back to our offense and we didn’t do that enough on Saturday, especially in those ‘in long’ situations we have to get better.”
“Number one, give credit to their quarterback, I mean, he’s a really good player and he executed - we did not. You know, whether it was execution of, you know, the call, the technique, the finis, on how the play should have been defended better, but definitely disappointing. I thought we’d been making some strides on third down.”
Looking ahead to NC State, Fuller spoke about opposing quarterback Devin Leary:
“The development of the quarterback and, you know, this would be year two that we’ve defended them and, you know, he’s got an extremely strong arm he’s really comfortable in their offense, but just his arm strength in the pocket is really impressive. That ball comes out fast and on a line and, you know, he can make field throws and he’s got a real command of it. He’s got a comfortability with some of those wide-outs that he’s been playing with.”
Fuller’s full interview can be seen below:
Special Teams coordinator John Papuchis
Papuchis expanded on the kicking game and specifically Ryan Fitzgerald also commenting on the return game for wide receiver Mycah Pittman who had a career game this past weekend.
“He’s a guy that’s like all of our guys I would imagine (who takes) a lot of pride in his performance. When he doesn’t do well or doesn’t do as expected he certainly takes it to heart, you can see it on his face. Following the game the other night, you know, and I talked to him a little bit after the game, but was trying to give him a little bit of space but then, you know, yesterday he came back just like all of our guys did ready to continue to work... It’s not an easy thing that he’s going through but he’s doing the best he can to work through it, block out all the noise that isn’t beneficial and just focus on trying to get better every day and that’s really the message for everybody.”
Papuchis’ full interview can be seen below: