Although they shouldn't pose that much of a threat on Saturday, let's see what Florida A&M likes to run on offense.
While the Rattlers like to run a basic I formation on first down, this team is at its best when running a 3WR or 4WR set with the quarterback only. Expect to see FAMU resort to running these multiple WR sets once the Bulls start to pull away.
The Rattlers will throw out sophomore QB Austin Trainor to start the game. The Tallahassee native had about as average a game as you could have against Hampton last week, going 18-for-37 for 189 yards and two interceptions. The stats are also a little skewed once you account for a 15-yard comeback route that went for 63 yards after Brian Tyms broke two tackles on FAMU's final drive. With the exception of the big play, Trainor only accounted for 3.5 YPA.
Trainor did not look comfortable at all last week, consistently missing his target all night no matter the distance. Trainor doesn't have a great arm and rarely threw anything past 15 yards. The time he did it fluttered in the air and gave the Hampton safety plenty of time to get to the sideline for the interception. This could be a big night for our back seven with takeaways.
Florida A&M has a three-back rotation, led by all-around back Eddie Rocker (5'8", 175 lb) who started last week against Hampton. Rocker wasn't effective running the ball against the Pirates, gaining only 10 yards on seven carries. He is a threat out of the backfield on flare routes, and gained 13 yards on his two catches last week.
When FAMU goes to their spread offense, be on the lookout for Purdue transfer Al-Terek McBurse (5'11", 205 lb). McBurse was the best back that I saw last week, showing off a great burst once he got past the line of scrimmage. Al-Terek led all rushers last week with 36 yards rushing on seven carries, and like Rocker he is excellent catching the ball in the open field. McBurse had three catches for 17 yards as a safety valve for Trainor.
The Rattlers' short yardage back is Lavante Page (5'11", 208 lb.). Page was used primarily in 3rd and short and goal line situations, and had both FAMU touchdowns last week.
My favorite person on the roster is starting fullback Ronald Jackson. Jackson is living every fat guy's dream as a skill player while coming in at 6'0" and 285 lbs. Let me repeat that for you. JACKSON IS SIX FEET TALL AND TWO HUNDRED EIGHTY-FIVE POUNDS! Ronald Jackson is my new favorite player in all of sports, and there is nothing anyone can do to stop this.
The Rattlers wide receivers pretty much start and end with seniors Brian Tyms and Kevin Elliott. Both are big receivers at 6'3" each, and they are easily Trainor's favorite targets. Tyms had the big night against Hampton last week with his seven-catch, 105 yard effort, but Elliott was the preferred receiver in FAMU's opening week win against Fort Wayne State. This will actually be a decent matchup with Quenton Washington and Kayvon Webster.
FAMU's third receiver is Lenworth Lennon (5'10", 175 lb). Lennon has four catches on the year, and is the target of most of the bubble screens that FAMU will run. He also was part of a double pass last week, so the Bulls should be on the lookout for that. Other receivers we will mention but probably not see much of include LeShad Tookes and Edmond Baker.
FAMU's starting tight end is Michael Etheridge. Mostly used as a blocking tight end, Etheridge is occasionally sent off on pass routes, but his hands are iffy at best. He dropped a sure touchdown last week with the nearest defender five yards away.
This is not a great offensive line. They are plenty big across, averaging over 300 pounds across, but they lack the explosiveness needed to produce any sort of run blocking needed to be successful. They do a decent job pass protecting, only giving up two sacks this year, but that's more on the Rattlers using a three-step drop for 90% of their attempts. This is going to be a big advantage this week with our front seven against these guys.
Defense will be tackled later this week. Seriously. We promise.