Offensive Line Got Wakeup Call vs. Buffalo
By Rob Ogden
For the better part of two quarters against Buffalo last Saturday, Ohio State's offensive line looked like an impenetrable shield for quarterback Braxton Miller.
The Buckeye offense quickly marched down the field at ease, and the line opened running lanes seemingly so big that Jack Mewhort's uncle could have driven through in his Mustang.
But as the game wore on, the shield seemed to evaporate under the scorching sun.
Photo by John Porentas
"We started off pretty fast but then we kind of let our foot off the gas pedal," senior right guard Marcus Hall said. "I hate to admit it, but it's the first game of the season and it's hard to keep it going throughout the whole game. That was a wakeup call we needed. Good thing it was the first game."
It really was the first game for right tackle Taylor Decker, who made his first-career start as a Buckeye.
Decker's inexperience showed at times, as he was often beat around the corner by Buffalo linebacker Khalil Mack.
Buffalo finished the game with four sacks, two-and-a-half which belonged to Mack.
Meyer called that number "unacceptable".
"We had a couple sacks that were just pure misses by the offensive line, which has to get better," he said.
But the blame wasn't placed entirely on Decker, who Meyer said showed promise.
Photo by Jim Davidson
"We expect more out of our right tackle and we expect more out of Taylor but I thought he did okay," Meyer said about the sophomore. "I won't say he did bad, because I thought he played very well at times."
Hall said that the film showed that Decker "did pretty good".
Decker wasn't the only newcomer to the line. Sophomore Jacoby Boren played the majority of the snaps at center in relief of Corey Linsley.
"We have some things that we've got to fix, but the biggest thing is that we went hard," Boren said. "I know that for sure. We have some things that we need to work on but that's what this week's for."
This week, the Buckeyes get San Diego State. The Aztecs run the same 3-3-5 defensive scheme that was run by Buffalo, but execute it differently.
"They've got a lot of athletes on that defense," Hall said. "Buffalo definitely prepared us for this defense. I feel like we're better suited this week. We should have fewer mistakes."
Meyer added that San Diego State blitzes more than Buffalo does.
"It's a three-man front, although it's a much different front than we're seeing this week," Meyer said.
The Aztecs recorded three tackles for loss and zero sacks in a 40-19 loss against Eastern Illinois on Saturday.
No matter what San Diego State does, Hall wants to make sure the Buckeyes play with the same intensity.
"We talked about that as a unit," he said. "This week we're really focusing on starting off fast like we did but maintaining it throughout the game."
Donate by Check :
1380 King Avenue
Columbus, Ohio 43212
Help us bring you more Buckeye coverage. Donate to the-Ozone.
Click here to email this the-Ozone feature to a friend...or even a foe.
(c) 2010 The O-Zone, O-Zone Communications, Inc. All rights reserved.
This material may not be published, rebroadcast,rewritten, or redistributed.