July 24, 2006

Cornerbacks look to be a team strength in 2006

Last year, a lot of blame for Florida State's five-loss season fell on the offense. However, the defense also wasn't up to its usual high standards. Even though the 'Noles led the ACC in sacks and had a respectable defense against the run, the passing defense and turnover margin finished in the bottom half of the league statistics.

The disappointing numbers against the pass aren't surprising given the lack of experience at cornerback. When FSU entered the 2005 season without preseason All-American Antonio Cromartie, the position had no returning starters and practically zero game experience. By the second half of the season then redshirt freshman Tony Carter and true sophomore J.R. Bryant ended up as the first-teamers.

With so little experience, it's not surprising that the position was exposed by opposing offenses. Considering their overall youth, the unit held its own but made very few big plays. That was most evident in the turnover department as the cornerbacks managed only one interception all season, and that came in the final game in the Orange Bowl.

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