- David M. Hale, ESPN Staff Writer
One week after a dismal loss, Florida State responded with a dominant victory over Boston College stuffed with enough big performances that sorting out the top of the power rankings is a nearly impossible task. Here's how things stand after seven weeks, with last week's rankings in parentheses.
1. Chris Thompson, RB (1)
It wasn't a spectacular game for Thompson, who finished with 68 yards rushing on 10 carries, but his cumulative work for the season keeps him atop the power rankings. He has now tallied 640 rushing yards for the year, surpassing Devonta Freeman's team-leading tally from all of last season in just seven games. Thompson needs to average just 60 yards per game the rest of the way to become FSU's first 1,000-yard back since 1996.
2. EJ Manuel, QB (4)
After struggling mightily in a losing effort last week, Manuel's answer against BC was emphatic. He threw for a career-best 439 yards -- more than double last week's total -- and tied career highs with 4 touchdowns and 27 completions.
3. Bjoern Werner, DE (3)
For the fourth straight game, Werner was held without a sack, but his impact was definitely felt. On FSU's goal-line stand against BC on the opening drive, Werner deflected a pass, made a tackle and forced an early throw on fourth down to keep the Eagles out of the end zone, setting the defensive tone for the game.
4. Lamarcus Joyner, S (2)
Joyner made his first interception of the year off a ball tipped by cornerback Nick Waisome. The 33-yard return helped set up an FSU field goal as time expired in the first half. More importantly, the strong effort by Joyner and the secondary never allowed BC the big play it needed to climb back into the game after the Seminoles built a big lead.
5. Timmy Jernigan, DT (5)
Boston College found no running room up the middle, and Jernigan combined with Werner to stuff Andre Williams' goal-line run on the Eagles' opening drive. For the game, he had 3 tackles, half a sack and 1.5 TFLs.
6. Menelik Watson, RT (NR)
It's tough to single out one lineman as the reason Florida State's offense was clicking Saturday, but Watson's return was noticeable. After missing the NC State game with flu symptoms, he helped anchor a line that gave Manuel plenty of time to throw. One week after allowing 9 tackles for a loss, including 4 sacks, the Watson-led O-line allowed just two negative plays Saturday.
7. Christian Jones, LB (9)
Jones was FSU's leading tackler for the second consecutive week, and the beleaguered linebacker crew, which struggled to find an answer to NC State's short passing game a week earlier, rebounded nicely in shutting down the BC attack.
8. Xavier Rhodes, CB (6)
Rhodes had just one tackle as BC attacked Waisome and Ronald Darby with more frequency. Still, the FSU secondary was sharp, and the Eagles had just one passing play go for more than 20 yards in the game.
9. Cornellius Carradine, DE (9)
Carradine had 2 QB hurries and added 5 tackles to his team-leading tally. He now has 41 tackles on the season, just one fewer than Miami's Shayon Green for the most among ACC defensive linemen.
10. Rodney Smith, WR (NR)
It was a big day in the FSU passing game, but the Seminoles' most consistent wide receiver was also their best. Smith had a career-high 9 catches for 108 yards. He now has caught a pass in 32 straight games.
Honorable mentions: S Terrence Brooks, WR Kenny Shaw, WR Kelvin Benjamin, WR Rashad Greene, K Dustin Hopkins, RB Lonnie Pryor, CB Nick Waisome, RB James Wilder Jr.
6dDavid M. Hale
6dDavid M. Hale