Sunday, November 23, 2014

Michigan State at Michigan

Michigan State brings a balanced offense into the Big House to take on Denard Robinson and Michigan in Week 6.

Michigan State offense vs. Michigan defense
• Spartans RBs Edwin Baker and Le'Veon Bell are both strong downhill runners, but there are differences between them. Baker shows above-average vision, patience and leg drive. Bell doesn't read blocks as well but has rare quickness, lateral mobility and speed for a 230-pound back. They run behind an offensive line that is getting into position and covering defenders at the first and second levels, and the Spartans' backs and tight ends do their part as well. Michigan State can line up in an I-formation or put three backs, including a tight end/H-back, in the same backfield. FB Nick Bendzuck is at his best sealing linebackers inside on the stretch play, and he will line up next to one of the tight ends -- Charlie Gantt or Brian Linthicum -- as well as Bell or No. 3 RB Larry Caper. All the aforementioned players can turn linebackers and safeties outside. On the other side of the ball, Michigan MLB Obi Ezeh can anchor, and WLB Jonas Mouton flashes a violent punch when teams run at them. However, Ezeh can take too long to shed blocks once engaged, and Mouton can get engulfed by interior offensive linemen. Michigan is also not stout enough up front to consistently protect its linebackers by tying up multiple blockers at the line of scrimmage.



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