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Analyzing Arizona’s offense vs. Utah with Pro Football Focus

arizona-wildcats-football-utah-utes-analysis-offense-pro-football-focus-stats-ratings-2021 Photo by Rebecca Noble/Getty Images

The Arizona Wildcats gave the likely Pac-12 South champions, the Utah Utes, all they could handle on Saturday. UA came close to upsetting Utah but fell short after a long 8+ minute drive by the Utes in the 4th quarter.

Let’s take a look through the Pro Football Focus lens, in conjunction with my analysis, to see how Arizona’s offense performed against Utah.

As a reminder, see the grading scale below:


QUARTERBACKS

Will Plummer

  • Snap Count: 64
  • Stat Line: 19-for-34, 223 yds, 1 TD, 0 INT & 10 car, 50 yds, 1 TD
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (57.7) & California (67.5)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (60.4) & California (66.8)
  • Running (Last 2): Utah (53.2) & California (65.1)
  • Notes: Plummer had another good game. His decision-making improvement cannot be overstated. He did another great job of limiting errors against the Utes, with only about one or two throws that I would deem dangerous. He did miss a couple of throws, or just plain didn’t see the wide open player in the middle of the field, but that is something I believe he will fix with time and experience. His ability to run and make plays with his legs continues to impress. Case and point, his 43-yard run on fourth and five in the first quarter. I don’t agree with any grades that PFF gave him. He definitely was graded too low.

RUNNING BACKS/FULLBACK

Michael Wiley

  • Snap Count: 29
  • Stat Line: 3 car, 2 yds & 4 rec, 48 yds, 1 TD
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (68.9) & California (54.5)
  • Running (Last 2): Utah (62.6) & California (60.9)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (74.9) & California (57.9)
  • Pass Blocking (Last 2): Utah (85.2) & California (5.5)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (55.3) & California (60.1)
  • Notes: Wiley didn’t have the type of game on the ground as you want, but he definitely offset that lack of production with his performance in the passing game. He scored UA’s go-ahead touchdown in the first quarter on a 6-yard tunnel screen after finding the lane that his blockers gave him. He also had an impressive 32-yard catch and run on a trick play. It is worth noting that Wiley also did a fantastic job in pass pro this game as opposed to last week against Cal.

Stevie Rocker Jr.

  • Snap Count: 25
  • Stat Line: 6 car, 22 yds & 2 rec, 7 yds
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (58.5) & California (65.0)
  • Running (Last 2): Utah (63.2) & California (66.2)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (59.0) & California (58.8)
  • Pass Blocking (Last 2): Utah (40.2) & California (6.4)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (47.7) & California (68.3)
  • Notes: I thoroughly enjoy watching Rocker run. Besides being a punishing power runner against the Utes, Rocker showed excellent change of direction on a couple of runs. He also showed that he can be a little slippery, showing fluidity in his upper body to avoid defenders, while keeping a solid base with his legs.

Jalen John

  • Snap Count: 8
  • Stat Line: 3 car, 6 yds & 2 rec, 6 yds
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (73.1) & California (54.7)
  • Running (Last 2): Utah (62.3) & California (55.7)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (82.1) & California (57.7)
  • Pass Blocking: Utah (72.3)
  • Notes: John had a little better of a game this week. He had a better showing on the ground, though his stat line doesn’t reflect it. Though that has more to do with lack of carries than anything. He really made an impact in the passing game, snagging two catches for six yards, including a key first down in the red zone. He also did a solid job in pass pro.

Clay Markoff

  • Snap Count: 8
  • Stat Line: N/A
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (57.3) & California (63.7)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (57.6) & California (57.5)
  • Pass Blocking: Utah (88.4)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (58.0) & California (58.0)
  • Notes: Markoff didn’t get a carry or catch, unfortunately, He did, however, do an excellent job in pass pro. In fourth quarter, Plummer had a nice play action pass with a rollout to the right for 18-yards to a wide open Dorian Singer. In fact, they ran the same play against Cal in the fourth quarter with just as much success. Well, against Utah, Markoff did a great job of getting out in front of Plummer and keeping him clean of a Utah defender.

Drake Anderson

  • Snap Count: 4
  • Stat Line: 1 car, 2 yds
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (59.4) & California (68.3)
  • Running (Last 2): Utah (59.6) & California (69.6)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (60.0) & California (62.1)
  • Pass Blocking (Last 2): Utah (70.0) & California (29.9)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (60.0) & California (59.5)
  • Notes: Anderson did not have much run during the game against the Utes.

WIDE RECEIVERS

Stanley Berryhill III

  • Snap Count: 57
  • Stat Line: 4 rec, 52 yds & 1 car, -2 yds
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (61.1) & California (65.2)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (61.3) & California (62.0)
  • Running (Last2): Utah (59.5) & California (68.1)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (59.1) & California (60.2)
  • Notes: Berryhill continued his strong season. He wasn’t as effective in the running, but no big deal there since he was extremely effective in the passing game. His first catch was a doozy as Plummer fit it into a window between three Utah defenders. Berryhill snagged it for a good gain and a first down. His best play was on a third and 19. He caught the ball well short of the sticks, turned around, saw about three Ute defenders in his face, preceded to bounce it outside, and outrun everyone for a 28-yard gain. Even better, this came after Arizona was called for holding on second and 19. Utah declined the penalty.

Dorian Singer

  • Snap Count: 48
  • Stat Line: 5 rec, 84 yds
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (58.2) & California (58.7)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (59.7) & California (58.7)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (42.0) & California (58.0)
  • Notes: Singer had another strong outing against Utah. He continued to show his ability to consistently get open and even showed his ability to make contested catches, though most were out of bounds. He did have a drop that would’ve put UA inside the five or a touchdown. Yes, the Utah defender was in good position, but Singer had the ball hit him in the hands and he couldn’t hang on. Still, he is quickly solidifying himself as one of the better receivers on the team.

Anthony Simpson

  • Snap Count: 34
  • Stat Line: 1 rec, 15 yds
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (57.4) & California (56.1)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (57.3) & California (58.5)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (59.9) & California (42.9)
  • Notes: Simpson caught a nice 15-yard pass in the first quarter, but that was his only catch out of three targets. There was one instance where he was wide open in the middle of the field but Plummer didn’t see him.

B.J. Casteel

  • Snap Count: 20
  • Stat Line: 1 car, 6 yds
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (58.6) & California (54.6)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (53.4) & California (54.2)
  • Running: Utah (63.3)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (60.1) & California (60.5)
  • Notes: Casteel had a pretty quiet game against the Utes. He did carry the ball for six yards.

Boobie Curry

  • Snap Count: 14
  • Stat Line: 2 rec, 14 yds
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (57.7) & California (56.6)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (58.8) & California (56.6)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (54.6) & California (60.3)
  • Notes: Curry snagged two catches for 14 yards. He was wide open in the middle of the end zone for a touchdown on a trick play, but the play wasn’t executed properly and Plummer had a Ute defender in his face.

Tayvian Cunningham

  • Snap Count: 9
  • Stat Line: 1 car, 5 yds
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (51.3) & California (66.2)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (54.7) & California (54.8)
  • Running (Last 2): Utah (57.5) & California (69.1)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (59.4) & California (55.7)
  • Notes: Cunningham’s day was cut short due to what appeared to be a hip injury during a kick return. Before that, he carried the ball once for five yards.

Jamarye Joiner

  • Snap Count: 7
  • Stat Line: 4 car, 11 yds & 1-for-1, 4 yds, 0 TD, 0 INT
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (69.0) & California (34.8)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (69.3) & California (34.5)
  • Running (Last 2): Utah (62.3) & California (57.6)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (60.0) & California (60.0)
  • Notes: Joiner looked really good running the ball against the Utes. He looked fast and shifty. Looks like his knee is feeling a lot better. I think his running grade is too low for how well he actually ran the ball. He also completed a pass for four yards.

TIGHT ENDS

Alex Lines

  • Snap Count: 66
  • Stat Line: N/A
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (44.6) & California (55.5)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (44.6) & California (59.4)
  • Pass Blocking (Last 2): Utah (64.2) & California (59.0)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (50.7) & California (52.5)
  • Notes: Lines did not help Plummer out too much. He had at least two passes in his hands that he couldn’t wrangle in, to include one in the end zone. Good news is Lines is still young and has a bright future and high upside. He has been getting better in pass pro and had another good showing in that category against Utah.

Bryce Wolma

  • Snap Count: 9
  • Stat Line: N/A
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (42.7) & California (57.2)
  • Passing (Last 2): Utah (58.2) & California (52.2)
  • Pass Blocking (Last 2): Utah (75.6) & California (72.6)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (39.5) & California (60.6)
  • Notes: Wolma had another really strong game in pass pro but did not stand out in any other category.

OFFENSIVE LINE

Paiton Fears

  • Snap Count: 67
  • Stat Line: 2 Pressures (1 sack, 1 QB hurry)
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (53.5) & California (70.3)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (52.9) & California (65.3)
  • Pass Blocking (Last 2): Utah (52.4) & California (76.8)
  • Notes: After having a good game against Cal, Fears had the opposite against Utah. He gave up his team-leading sixth sack of the season and gave up another hurry. I do actually believe he is a little low in his pass pro grade, even with the two pressures. He has had multiple successful games this season, so we’ll have to see if he can build off those next season.

Donovan Laie

  • Snap Count: 67
  • Stat Line: 3 Pressures (3 QB hurries)
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (56.5) & USC (62.1)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (48.0) & USC (59.6)
  • Pass Blocking (Last 2): Utah (78.5) & USC (67.0)
  • Notes: Laie missed the Cal game due to concussion protocols, but was back for Utah. He did allow three pressures, and because of that, I’m actually surprised his pass pro grade is as high as it is. He has been very good in pass pro all season, allowing only one sack, but his run blocking hasn’t been as effective, and the game against Utah was no exception. Laie posted his second lowest run block grade of the season.

Jordan Morgan

  • Snap Count: 67
  • Stat Line: 2 Pressures (2 QB hurries)
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (56.6) & California (45.1)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (55.3) & California (47.9)
  • Pass Blocking (Last 2): Utah (56.0) & California (35.8)
  • Notes: Morgan had a better game than he did against Cal, but it still wasn’t that great. He gave up another two pressures, leading him to a team-leading 23 pressures given up. He hasn’t had that great of a season overall, but he does have a lot of lessons to build upon for next season. Once thing he’ll need to work on is his quickness and his footwork, both have plagued him this year.

Josh McCauley

  • Snap Count: 64
  • Stat Line: 0 Pressures
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (56.8) & California (65.1)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (54.6) & California (60.6)
  • Pass Blocking (Last 2); Utah (84.2) & California (77.1)
  • Notes: McCauley had another great game in pass pro, allowing zero pressures for the fifth time this season. He did, however, struggle in run blocking. He did struggle in that regard, and one might wonder if it’s due to him being nicked up early in the game. Regardless, he just didn’t look strong in the run game. That shouldn’t deter from his overall performance this season, as he has easily been Arizona’s most consistent o-linemen this year.

Josh Donovan

  • Snap Count: 44
  • Stat Line: 0 Pressures
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (56.2) & California (58.3)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (52.5) & California (54.2)
  • Pass Blocking (Last 2): Utah (88.0) & California (73.5)
  • Notes: Donovan had another decent game. He wasn’t great in run blocking situations, then again only one lineman really was (will get to him later). If it’s one thing that Donovan has been excellent at this season, it’s been pass pro. He had an fantastic game in pass pro and gave up zero pressures for the second game in a row. He went down with a left knee injury, though it is unknown how serious it is.

Josh Baker

  • Snap Count: 26
  • Stat Line: 0 Pressures
  • Overall (Last 2): Utah (79.3) & California (64.1)
  • Run Blocking (Last 2): Utah (80.2) & California (57.9)
  • Pass Blocking (Last 2): Utah (76.5) & California (86.9)
  • Notes: Baker had his second straight game of playing very solid football. He came in for a few snaps when McCauley was banged up and spent most of his time giving Josh Donovan time to recoup from his injury. And Baker did wonderfully. He was really the only o-lineman on the day who was extremely good in run blocking. Baker is really starting to come along and should be a very solid piece along the line the next few years.