3 Offensive Keys to the game for the Oklahoma Sooners vs. TCU

·4 min read

On Saturday night, Oklahoma pushes forward and looks to take one step closer to an undefeated regular season. This week’s opponent will be the TCU Horned Frogs led by Gary Patterson. Patterson’s team is far from a heavyweight but they aren’t pushovers either. They come into the game with a record of 3-2 with losses to Texas and their big rival in SMU.

Defensively, they do not resemble the TCU defenses of the past. For years, TCU was a stingy, stingy defense that had impactful players at every level. While the talent isn’t bad, they lack the edge of TCU defenses from the past.

So, how does Oklahoma attack them when the Sooners have the ball? Let’s take a look at three offensive keys to put Oklahoma in a spot to come out victorious Saturday night.

Protect the Ball

Yes, it’s quite obvious. However, there is still uncertainty about who will be taking the snaps as starting quarterback. There has been no official word from Lincoln Riley about his decision but the point stands for either Spencer Rattler or Caleb Williams. Rattler was benched for his turnovers against Texas. A fumble on a scramble sealed his fate for that game and opened the door for Caleb Williams.

However, Williams has had some issues securing shotgun snaps. TCU quarterback Max Duggan is a veteran player and has the running and throwing ability to make Oklahoma pay if they give them extra possessions.

The Oklahoma Sooners are the more talented team. They can’t afford to let a team like TCU hand around by giving them good field position off of turnovers. Whoever the quarterback is the Saturday night has to protect the football.

RUN THE BALL

I’m a passing game lover. However, after looking at the film of TCU’s team, the most glaring weakness across their entire defense is their susceptibility to getting blasted by the ground game. Let’s check in on their recent opponents and how they fared running the ball. SMU ran 350 yards and two touchdowns on 52 carries. That’s 6.7 yards per carry.

Bijan Robinson, who the Sooners just saw first hand, ran for 216 yards and two touchdowns against the Horned Frogs. Even in a win against Texas Tech, TCU’s defense gave up 214 yards and four touchdowns on the ground.

If you combine those three games you’re looking at over 700 rushing yards and over 5.5 yards per carry.

Looking at the rhythm Kennedy Brooks is in coupled with Eric Gray’s shiftiness, Caleb Williams’ dual-threat ability, and the availability of Marcus Major, Saturday seems like a great day to get the Guard-Tackle counter rolling again.

Let these backs run free Lincoln.

Find Wide Receiver #2

After some very quiet games against Western Carolina, Nebraska, and West Virginia, wide receiver Marvin Mims has emerged from the shadows to reclaim his spot as the go-to guy on this roster. He’s here and it’s clear regardless of who is under center he’s the guy they look for.

As Oklahoma’s offense continues to evolve, whoever the quarterback has to develop the same level of trust with another target. It may be by committee but the Sooners will have to get explosive plays from other players.

Mims will continue to make plays despite teams game-planning heavily against him. Jadon Haselwood, Michael Woods, and Mario Williams are the three guys most heavily used in the wide receiver rotation. It’s about time one separated himself from the pack to claim that go-to receiver tag.

After several subpar performances, Oklahoma’s offense is showing signs of life. The offensive line is getting into a rhythm, the running backs are getting loose and their most potent big-play threat has re-emerged.

They aren’t a finished product and they shouldn’t be. It’s only October. However, as the calendar gets closer to “Championship November” and December, they have to keep improving if they want to hoist that seventh straight Big 12 Championship.

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