FSU football had arguably the worst offense in the ACC in 2018. It wasn’t because Willie Taggart didn’t try something different.
FSU football fans thought the offense couldn’t get any worse than the 2017 season with a true freshman quarterback who didn’t enroll early.
They were wrong as the 2018 team was worse in almost every major category. One thing we pointed out prior to the season was Willie Taggart’s offense being centered around the run game.
In fact, his offenses ran the ball on average 65 percent of the time over the past three seasons with his Gulf Coast Offense.
However, in order for that to happen he needed a decent offensive line and a quarterback that could make decisions in the RPO game.
Unfortunately, injuries plagued the offensive line coupled with lack of depth and the quarterback he choose to play in Deondre Francois missed all of spring and never became adept at running the offense consistently.
The latter falls on Taggart for making that decision, but that’s not to say he didn’t change his approach drastically to try and win in 2018.
Heck, we pointed out after the Samford game (game No. 2) the only way FSU football had a chance at winning in 2018 was relying on the passing game.
That’s what Willie Taggart did, but unfortunately the offensive line coupled with poor QB play wasn’t good enough to give the defense a shot at winning most games.
There were too many turnovers deep in their own territory (22 of 26 turnovers occurred there) and the offense could never consistently put together scoring drives.
Now, some of this can be attributed to FSU football always getting behind and having to pass, but a lot of it was simply that was the only way they could move the ball.
When you break down the numbers FSU’s offense passed the ball 54 percent of the time compared running the ball 46 percent of the time.
Think about that, Willie Taggart’s offense went from running the ball 65 percent of the time to just 46 percent of the time.
Some of that might be slightly influenced by allowing FSU offensive coordinator Walt Bell to call plays the last few games of the season.
The point remains Willie Taggart was willing to drastically change his approach to try and win in 2018. He’s shown he’s willing to try new things in the past and not allow his ego to get in the way.
It’ll be interesting to see his offensive approach in 2019. Could we see a more balanced attack if the offensive line is competent and QB play is better?
That could be the next wrinkle to the Gulf Coast Offense depending on how opposing defenses try to defense the Noles.