PORTLAND (KOIN) – After a huge road win, the Beavers are back in Reser Stadium to take on a tough Utah team.
This is what the Beavers need to do in order to win Saturday’s game:
1. Offense needs to stay in rhythm
This Utah defense is extremely talented and well-coached, the Beavers are going to have to find ways to stay on the field and not consistently going three and out. This means converting third downs, creative play-calling and moving the ball on first down in order to make the second and third down much more manageable.
2. Contain the QB
Utah’s breakout quarterback Tyler Huntley is a guy that can hurt you with his arm — and with his legs. The guy has tremendous speed, agility and vision. He can escape the pocket and give defenses fits. No matter what the Beavers throw at him, they have to make sure to keep him under control and not let him pick the defense apart in the air and on the ground.
3. Match Utah’s physicality
It’s no secret that Utah’s mentality is built on toughness and physical play. The Beavers are going to have to match that while in the trenches, when they tackle, when running the ball — everywhere. Players are going to have to be ready to take some big-time shots as well as be ready to lay big shots right back. It’s going to be a physical game, and if the Beavers can match the physicality, they have a real shot to win the game.
4. Win third downs
As previously stated, the offense needs to convert on third downs. Not only would consistently converting on third downs put the beavers in high spirits and give them opportunities to put points on the board, but it will tire out the Utes dominate defense. From a defense standpoint, if the Beavers can put a stop to Utah’s drives and at a minimum hold them to a field goal, the Beavers will be in a great position to control the pace of the game and ultimately not allow the Utes to get into a rhythm.
5. Tyjon Lindsey needs to shine
We witnessed what OSU wide receiver Tyjon Lindsey can do last week against UCLA. The speed, hands, and playmaking ability are all there and this is a perfect game for him to break out once more. With Hodgins having the unreal season he has had so far it’s not long before defenses double him and try and take him out of the game. With Hodgins getting the attention Lindsey will be match up in man coverage. This is when Lindsey needs to take full advantage and be the playmaker he has show he is. Beavers just have to find a way to get him the ball.
6. Hold Moss under 100 yards rushing
Certainly easier said than done, but Zack Moss is the centerpiece of this Utah offense and his ability to break tackles is why he is going to be playing on Sundays. The Beavers are going to throw everything they can in order to stop him. Whether it be bringing pressure from the linebackers, defensive backs, or stunting with the defensive line. No matter how they do it, the Beavers have to control his big runs. The easiest way to do it is multiple players running to the ball and wrapping him up. The arm tackles won’t work with this kid, the Beavers need a handful of defenders wrapping him up and securing tackles.