Most coaches around the country lose sleep, forget to eat, and maybe even pull out some hair, when dealing with the stress of losing your best offensive weapon. But, as the Noles prepare to open camp, the coaching staff is feeling just fine, as they are still in good hands at the running back position.
With all the early off season hype surrounding 5-star recruit Cam Akers it is actually another back who’s getting the call, as the opening day back for the Noles.
Jimbo Fisher made it official earlier Tuesday:
HC Fisher: "Jacques Patrick is the starting RB."
— FSU Football (@FSU_Football) August 1, 2017
Just who is Jacques Patrick? Patrick was rated a 4-star recruit coming out of Timber Creek in Orlando, where he was named the Florida Gatorade Player of the Year. While Patrick may not spilt out wide and make a catch down the sideline, he can run you over down the heart of your defense.
At 6-2 and 231 pounds, no question he is the power back of the group. We haven’t seen a power back at FSU since James Wilder Jr, who could be a great comparison for Patrick. And, it’s not like Patrick is completely inexperienced, he had a 162-yard game with 3 touchdowns in 2015 vs. Syracuse.
Patrick will bring a dimension to the running game that they may have lacked with Cook, which is his power. The power can do a number of things to help the run game and offense as a whole. He can turn those 3 and 4 yard runs into 5 and 6 yard runs by just powering his way through a tackle for extra yards.
Also by running hard and with power, the runs that go for 3 yards or fewer are still grueling for the defense. You still have to make the tackle on such a big man. All of that adds up to the defense becoming more and more tired. Which then can open up the passing game, or runs outside of the hashes.
All in all, you can’t expect Jacques Patrick to be Dalvin Cook 2.0 because he simply is not. What you can expect is for him to be Jacques Patrick 1.0, because that is in fact who he is. Patrick is going to work hard for this team by running hard and teaching the young guys behind him.
While you can’t expect him to do things Cook did, you can expect to see things Cook did not do. The Noles haven’t had this kind of power potential at tail back in a few seasons. It should be exciting to see how the offense plays out in Tallahassee this season.