USC Football: Offensive grades in Trojans' gut-wrenching loss at Utah
USC Football ended up losing their Week 7 Pac-12 battle with Utah by a score of 43-42. Obviously, the defense played poorly. Obviously, however, the offense was outstanding. Every position group played well, and most played exceptionally well. The O racked up 556 yards on the day.
It was arguably the best offensive game of the year for the Trojans, at least when factoring in who their opponent was and who ended up getting injured during the game (Jordan Addison). The offense was electric, starting with a position group that emerged as one that can potentially really make an impact on this team moving forward.
Offensive grades in USC Football's gut-wrenching loss at Utah
With Addison potentially out in future games (as of this writing), the tight end position may be featured more than it usually is in this offense. The position group most certainly got off to a strong start if that's the case in this last game.
Grading USC Football's Tight Ends in gut-wrenching loss at Utah: B+
Josh Falo really emerged at tight end for USC Football in this one, catching two passes for 14 yards. That's few catches and few yards, though, correct? It is, but it's about WHEN and WHERE those catches were made. both catches were touchdowns for SC.
Falo also continues to pass the eye test when it comes to blocking, too. While none of the other tight ends were used much in the contest, the one who was called on to make big plays, made them.
Grading USC Football's Offensive Line in gut-wrenching loss at Utah: B
There were plenty of times when USC Football's O-Line could have done a better job protecting QB1 Caleb Williams. Williams was sacked four times. The line also had a clutch false start penalty from Left Tackle Bobby Haskins in the final seconds of the contest.
That being said, SC's run-blocking was nothing short of excellent. SC was able to run for 175 yards on 27 carries. That's a 6.5 yard per carry average, and SC scored a touchdown on the ground as well. The line could have been better in pass protection, but they continue to be dominant in the run game, which is undoubtedly just as important.
Grading USC Football's Running Backs in gut-wrenching loss at Utah: A+
Again, USC Football's running game absolutely killed it on Saturday. The backs in particular, ran for 92 yards on 16 carries. That's a dream 5.75 yards per carry. Travis Dye led the way with 76 rush yards on 11 attempts. He scored a touchdown on the ground too, and even caught three passes for 43 receiving yards too.
Austin Jones also made much of his limited carries. He only had four attempts, but averaged a not too shabby four yards per tote. The running backs were not to blame for the loss at all, and quite frankly should have been used even more than they were.
Grading USC Football's Wide Receivers in gut-wrenching loss at Utah: A+
When Addison was in the game for USC Football, he was destroying the Utes' defense. He came down with seven balls for 106 yards and a touchdown. He also ran the rock twice for 27 rushing yards. When he was out, Michael Jackson III stepped up with a 20-yard touchdown catch. Mario Williams was electric all game--catching four passes for 145(!) yards.
Kyron Hudson also had a touchdown catch himself, as many different receivers gave Caleb the opportunity to spread the ball, and provide sure hands even when Addison went down.
Grading USC Football's Quarterback in gut-wrenching loss at Utah: A+
Caleb put together a Heisman-level performance for USC Football. He was a freak both with his arm, and in the ground game. As a passer, he averaged 9.1 yards per pass attempt for 381 yards. He threw for FIVE touchdown passes. Again, remember that he didn't turn it over once. On the ground, he averaged 7.1 yards per carry; racking up 57 rushing yards on eight attempts.
Williams did all this while under constant pressure, and when forced to take on a taxing workload due to Lincoln Riley choosing not to hand the ball off as much as he likely should have. Williams was working, though, so Riley kept going back to him. It's hard to fully blame him. He continues to be elite.
SC's offense was terrific. They were not a problem at all on Saturday. If they can get Addison back from injury, they'll be even better moving forward. Every position group looks strong, though, and will likely continue to even if Addison has to leave the picture.