In my season preview I raved about Jaylen Samuels and Dravious Wright as being my guys this year because I love how they play the game. Well the season opener against Troy showed everybody exactly what I was talking about. Just look above at the ferocious sack-fumble hit that Dravious put on Troy’s QB Brandon Silvers. I’m surprised the kid got up from that one. I thought he was dead when it happened. That hit was good enough for the #8 Top Play on SportsCenter.
And all Samuels did was 37 yards rushing on 4 carries (9.3 average) including 3 TDs. Add in 4 catches for 10 yards and that’s a TD on 37.5% of his touches. In interviews after the game he said his goal was to score 2 TDs every game. I love the confidence. It’s a little far-fetched, but if anybody can do that it’s JaySam. He is the NC State version of #BeastMode and will be a key cog in the offense throughout the season.
Quick Hit Observations:
- Jacoby Brissett was extremely accurate going 21 for 23 for 196 yards and 2 TDs, with 1 of the incompletions being a throw away out of bounds.
- Matt Dayes set a career high in rushing yards with 128 yards on 24 carries (5.3 average) and 2 TDs getting the start in place of suspended Shadrach Thornton. He also led the team with 5 receptions for 65 yards.
- Jumichael Ramos is back, with 3 catches for 45 yards and a TD after only having 1 catch for 7 yards all of last year.
- The defense gave up 4 big plays (157 yards), which is a concern, but other than that they stifled the Troy offense (42 plays for 148 yards).
- CB Mike Stevens had his first career interception and TE Benson Browne his first career TD.
- The Freshman special team guys had a solid, mistake-free start to their careers.
- Speaking of Freshman, NC State played 23 (10 true, 13 redshirt) tying them with Florida State for the most in FBS.
- NC State had 0 turnovers, 1 penalty, and 41:34 time of possession. Dominant stats in those 3 key categories.
Here’s the game highlights from the ACC Digital Network: