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Snap Counts and Season Analysis With Cody McKean

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A blurred journey comes to an end for a weary team and its fans.

Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic - Memphis v Penn State Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

It was a quick and crazy season. We’ve enjoyed working with Cody McKean this year as he gathered snap counts and other valuable information. While the season didn’t start out the way that we would hope there were opportunities for younger players to see the field as a result of the struggles.

Here are Cody’s final tallies and observations.

Offensive Snap Counts over 9 games (total 749):

  • QB:
  • Clifford - 563 (75.17%) - [9 games]
  • Levis - 182 (24.30%) - [8]
  • Roberson - 4 (0.53%) - [1]
  • RB:
  • Ford - 285 (38.05%) - [6]
  • Lee - 268 (35.78%) - [9]
  • Holmes - 153 (20.43%) - [9]
  • Cain - 5 (0.67%) - [1]
  • Bruno - 3 (0.40% - [1]
  • Smith - 1 (0.13%) - [1]
  • WR:
  • Dotson - 664 (88.65%) - [9]
  • Washington - 616 (82.24%) - [9]
  • KLS - 330 (44.06%) - [9]
  • George - 264 (35.25%) - [9]
  • Lutz - 99 (13.22%) - [9]
  • Jones - 89 (11.88%) - [7]
  • CSB - 53 (7.08%) - [6]
  • Dottin - 4 (0.53%) - [1]
  • Weller - 4 (0.53%) - [1]
  • TE:
  • Strange - 440 (58.74%) - [9]
  • Freiermuth - 268 (35.78%) - [4]
  • Johnson - 136 (18.16%) - [5]
  • Warren - 11 (1.47%) - [2]
  • Kuntz - 10 (1.34%) - [4]
  • Baker - 3 (0.40%) - [1]
  • OL:
  • Menet - 740 (98.80%) - [9]
  • Walker - 740 (98.80%) - [9]
  • Fries - 737 (98.40%) - [9]
  • Miranda - 662 (88.38%) - [9]
  • Wallace - 429 (57.28%) - [9]
  • Thorpe - 202 (26.97%) - [6]
  • Scruggs - 169 (22.56%) - [7]
  • Holmes - 71 (9.48%) - [4]
  • Whigan - 21 (2.80%) - [1]
  • Effner - 9 (1.20%) - [1]
  • Wormley - 4 (0.53%) - [1]

Offensive Personnel Takeaways:

  • For as bad as the injury luck hit the RB room, the QB, WR & OL rooms had great health on the season.
  • Devyn Ford dominated snaps until he went out after one drive vs Iowa. After that, Keyvone Lee was the lead back.
  • Jahan Dotson & Parker Washington were snap count studs in 2020 from day one. After Maryland Keandre Lambert-Smith took firm control of the 3rd spot. Daniel George started off hot but fell behind Isaac Lutz and at times TJ Jones by the end of the season.
  • Pat Freiermuth started the season with two 90%+ games, but I believe the OSU game is when he got injured the first time and his usage fell off. Strange never reached 90% but got close a few times.
  • There were multiple TEs on the field for 119 plays (15.89%) during the 2020 season.
  • Caedan Wallace took over as a starting OL from CJ Thorpe for the Nebraska game and never looked back.
  • Juice Scruggs started getting a lot of snaps towards the end of the season. He’s going to be a good one.
  • Michal Menet, Rasheed Walker, & Will Fries never came off the field until the one game of garbage time. It would be really nice to get Rasheed Walker back for 2021.
  • The OL had extra beef on 37 plays (4.94%) during 2020.

Offensive MVP:

  • Jahan Dotson - if you’re reading about snap counts you don’t need an explanation

Defensive Snap Counts (609 total):

  • DE:
  • Toney - 425 (69.79%) - [9]
  • Oweh - 359 (58.95%) - [7]
  • Isaac - 178 (29.23%) - [9]
  • Simmons - 161 (29.15%) - [9]
  • Vilbert - 45 (7.39%) - [4]
  • Tarburton - 40 (6.57%) - [7]
  • DT:
  • Mustipher - 443 (72.74%) - [9]
  • Shelton - 352 (57.80%) - [9]
  • Beamon - 166 (27.26%) - [8]
  • Hansard - 126 (20.69%) - [8]
  • Culpepper - 61 (10.02%) - [6]
  • Ellies - 36 (5.91%) - [3]
  • Izzard - 12 (1.97%) - [2]
  • Vanover - 12 (1.97%) - [2]
  • Hawkins - 3 (0.49%) - [1]
  • LB:
  • Brooks - 533 (87.52%) - [9]
  • Luketa - 431 (70.77%) - [9]
  • Smith - 411 (67.49%) - [9]
  • Dixon - 192 (31.53%) - [9]
  • Jacobs - 66 (10.84%) - [7]
  • Katshir - 25 (4.11%) - [3]
  • Fisher - 8 (1.31%) - [1]
  • Dwyer - 8 (1.31%) - [1]
  • Elsdon - 5 (0.82%) - [1]
  • CB:
  • JPJ - 417 (68.47%) - [8]
  • Wilson - 320 (52.55%) - [9]
  • Ellis - 216 (35.47%) - [5]
  • Hardy - 190 (31.20%) - [9]
  • TCF - 179 (29.39%) - [3]
  • Constantini - 8 (1.31%) - [1]
  • S:
  • Brisker - 501 (82.27%) - [9]
  • Wade - 474 (77.83%) - [9]
  • Sutherland - 153 (25.12%) - [9]
  • Brown - 130 (21.35%) - [8]
  • Rudolph - 8 (1.31%) - [1]
  • Jennings - 5 (0.82%) - [1]

Defensive Personnel Takeaways:

  • PSU is losing 78.23% of DE snaps for 2021. It’s a must-get position in the transfer portal for that reason. No positional group (as of now) has lost as much of it’s 2020 production.
  • There was a single DT on the field for only 7 snaps in 2020. When PSU went away from the base defense, it was almost exclusively to nickel.
  • Speaking of nickel, after two games Brent Pry decided on using a CB in the slot rather than Lamont Wade. Hopefully he keeps to that, a nickel corner makes more sense than a nickel safety.
  • Season snap counts for 2021 at LB better look more like the Illinois game, aka Brandon Smith with the most snaps or I’ll have big questions for Pry. Smith has All-American potential and needs to be on the field more. Whether that means he plays SAM in the base defense and WILL in nickel, or WILL at all times I don’t care that much (though I’d prefer the latter).
  • Due to injury at the CB position, Marquis Wilson had the second most snaps on the year though only started three games of the nine. Daequan Hardy started 0 games at outside CB but did get quite the number of reps at the outside in addition to his nickel CB role. I do prefer him inside covering quick guys and not bodied up on big and fast guys outside though.
  • JiAyir Brown and Jonathan Sutherland were similar in snap counts for the season but Sutherland came on strong late leading the two of them in snaps for the final three games.

Defensive MVP:

  • Joey Porter JR - this was a much more difficult decision with Brandon Smith neck & neck for me. JPJ was a lockdown CB and a sure tackler on the outside. He finished 4th on the team in solo tackles on the year without being tested too often. His coverage removed his man from many plays and he came downhill vs the screen pass extremely well. For 2021 some turnovers will be nice but he has the look of a R1 corner and that is something no one has ever seen at PSU.