Scouting Florida State: how the Seminoles win
1. Think big: With the FSU offense on record-breaking pace, the Seminoles are thinking 'touchdown' on just about every touch. Three receivers are averaging better than 17 yards per catch. If they can buy Jameis Winston adequate time, look for the Seminoles to test the Tigers deep.
2. Pound the football: The difference in last year's 49-37 FSU victory at Tallahassee was the Seminoles' running game - 287 yards on 40 attempts, including 65 yards and two touchdowns by James Wilder, who is hitting his stride as one of FSU's committee of backs. So far this season, the Seminoles rank second in the ACC in rushing and are averaging six yards per attempt.
3. Get the pass rush going: The Seminoles' new-look defensive line has not been as disruptive as Jimbo Fisher would like, as FSU ranks just ninth in the ACC in sacks with 10 in five games (cornerback Lamarcus Joyner leads the team iwith two). Just as Clemson can't let Winston have time to find open receivers, FSU can't afford to let Tajh Boyd find his rhythm. The Seminoles have no one in the ACC's top 20 in tackles for loss, and no defensive lineman in the top 20 in sacks.
4. Cash in on opportunities: Both teams have good defenses, but few people would predict a low-scoring affair when the Tigers and Seminoles meet. FSU has been remarkably efficient so far this season, as the Seminoles have scored touchdowns on 55 percent of their drives, while field goal kicker Robert Aguayo is perfect on seven attempts. The red zone will be another strength vs. strength battle: FSU has scored on 28 of 29 red zone possessions, while Clemson leads the ACC and ranks fourth in the nation with its .600 red zone defense.