Bobby Bowden had barely gotten back to his seat following the pre-game festivities before this game was -- for all intents and purposes -- over. Florida State needed just five offensive plays to put up 14 points and had this game under control from the opening gun.
Any concerns about Florida State's mindset or preparation were answered almost immediately today. On the second play of the game Terrence Brooks covered considerable ground getting back on what looked like an overthrown Brandon Mitchell deep ball and picked it off.
Jameis Winston then lead Florida State on an opening drive that consisted of four plays -- three first downs and an 18-yard touchdown run -- to put the Seminoles up early.
They didn't look back.
After a three-and-out Winston found Kelvin Benjamin for a 39-yard touchdown on the very next play. It was 14-0 after five offensive snaps and FSU kept their foot down throughout the whole first quarter, dropping 35 points on NC State and holding the Wolfpack to just 32 offensive yards.
Jameis Winston -- with three first quarter touchdown passes -- matched EJ Manuel's career-high for touchdown passes in a season. Manuel had 23 over 14 games last season. Winston has 23 through six and a quarter this year. The Florida State record is held by Chris Weinke who chucked 33 in 2000. Suffice it to say that's in danger.
In addition to Brooks, Ronald Darby also had a first-half pick and Florida State regularly got pressure on Mitchell. NC State started to move the ball a little better in the second quarter -- when their players began running North-South instead of going side-to-side -- but Mitchell has been running for his life for most of the afternoon.
Offensively for FSU the second quarter was no where near as productive as the first. Florida State saw several drives fizzle out before a fake punt on 4th-and-7 late in the quarter got things sparked again. FSU has now scored at least 41 points in every game this season.
The Seminoles get the ball back at the start of the second half.
Passing: Jameis Winston (15/24, 277, 3TD)
Rushing: Devonta Freeman (9-62, 2 TD)
Receiving: Rashad Greene (8-137, TD)
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