Verica: Seminoles don't blitz as much as people might think
But according to Virginia fifth-year senior quarterback Marc Verica, Florida State's high sack total does not necessarily reflect a blitz-heavy defensive design. Rather, the Seminoles' four down linemen are just that good at creating pressure.
"They run pretty simple stuff, a lot of zone stuff," Verica said Wednesday. "They don't really blitz that much. They get a lot of pressure with their front four, so a lot of people who don't really know what's going on, they're thinking: 'Wow, Florida State has all these sacks. They must be blitzing a ton.' But that's not it at all.
"They create pressure with their four down linemen, with a lot of twists and stunts and stuff like that, and they play a zone behind it. We'll have our opportunities to do some things, but they're a fast, quick defense. Overall, they're pretty good, so we definitely have a good challenge."
Sophomore defensive end Brandon Jenkins -- 6 feet 3, 250 pounds -- headlines Florida State's defensive line. He has tallied 19 tackles, 6.5 tackles for a loss and 4.5 sacks. He also has forced a fumble. Virginia offensive line coach Ron Mattes called Jenkins "a quick little cat" who is "very slippery."
As for Florida State's other starting defensive linemen, senior defensive end Markus White -- 6-4, 265 pounds -- has registered 15 tackles, forced one fumble and recovered two of them. Sophomore defensive tackle Everett Dawkins -- 6-2, 285 pounds -- has recorded 12 tackles, 4 tackles for a loss and 2 sacks. And sophomore nose guard Jacobbi McDaniel -- 6 feet, 298 pounds -- has compiled eight tackles and an interception.
"They're a big, physical unit up front," Mattes said. "Their tackles are big boys. They're all big thick defensive linemen. And their ends, they've got some shape to 'em. It's going to be a challenge to stay in front of them."
| September 30, 2010; 7:39 AM ET
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