Coming off the loss to Florida State, there is a lot LSU needs to work on.
We saw issues in just about every area of the game, even though some were to a lesser degree. Some of these problems improved throughout the game while others persisted all night.
Brian Kelly said after the game that he takes responsibility and the coaches need to do a better job of putting their guys in a position to succeed. LSU will have the chance to work out some kinks against Southern, an FCS opponent.
The Tigers were in a similar spot last year after the loss to UCLA, coming back home to face an FCS opponent in Week 2. LSU beat McNeese 34-7. That game was more of a struggle than it should have been, and it would be nice to see LSU put together a more convincing win on Saturday night.
Here are some areas where LSU can show immediate improvement in Week 2.
Jayden Daniels needs to get the ball out quicker
Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports
In the first half, we saw Daniels struggle to really take control of the offense. He was keeping drives alive with his legs, but he left something to be desired in the passing game. It just wasn’t clicking. There was no rhythm.
We saw some rhythm established later in the night and it led to successful drives for LSU.
On Saturday, Daniels needs to come out firing right away. This is a good chance for him to develop more chemistry with these pass catchers, allowing him to see the field better and get the ball out.
If Daniels just improves a little bit in this area, it would make things a whole lot easier for a struggling offensive line and potentially take LSU’s offense to a new level.
Communication in the secondary
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Against Florida State, LSU allowed far too many conversions on third down. Many of these came on passes over the middle of the field. LSU’s coverage on the outside remained strong, but FSU was able to find holes almost everywhere else.
This is a new look secondary. These guys haven’t played together before. The same can be said for the middle linebackers, where a guy like [autotag]Greg Penn III[/autotag] is getting his first real run as a starter. There needs to be more chemistry. Offenses can’t find holes in the zone on a consistent basis like Florida State did.
The talent is there and communication is something that can be coached. I expect to see LSU look better in that department on Saturday night and going forward.
(Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
I almost didn’t include this because it was so obvious. Special teams cost LSU the game on Sunday night. A program of LSU’s caliber can’t have those miscues.
Special teams often come down to coaching, meaning this is something that can be improved throughout the season.
[autotag]Brian Kelly[/autotag] and special teams coach [autotag]Brian Polian[/autotag] have worked together for a long time. I would assume a lot of thought was put in this week to make sure these issues don’t appear again.
A game against an FCS team is a good time to try some things out. LSU starts SEC play in Week 3 and the issues need to be fixed by then.
Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports
This isn’t a criticism of the play calling, I thought it was fine on both sides of the ball, but in a coordinator’s first game with a team, there are going to be some growing pains.
[autotag]Mike Denbrock[/autotag] and [autotag]Matt House[/autotag] are still getting to see how these players fit into their systems. It takes a while to really understand your personnel and know how to put each individual in a position to succeed.
We saw LSU get better over the course of the game in this department as both units played a better second half. The Southern game serves as another opportunity to continue getting a grasp on what works and what doesn’t before conference play begins.