Among The Wolfpacker's notes from today's press conference:
The red zone offense will get a lot of focus this week in practice. NC State leads the ACC with six red zone turnovers and is 11th in red zone touchdowns. O'Brien said the coaches have to do a better job of putting Wilson in a position to succeed.
(Quick correction: 11th in RZ touchdown percentage, not total touchdowns)
Is there anything meaningful behind State's low RZ touchdown percentage? The skill positions returned almost completely intact from last season--and State was very good in the red zone last season. The head coach is the same, the offensive coordinator is the same, the system is the same. So what could account for the difference this season other than coincidence, randomness, and untimely lack of execution? What systemic problem could exist now that didn't before?
NC State has scored on 36 of 48 trips into the red zone. The failed scores break down like this: 2 fumbles, 2 turnovers on downs (both in garbage time with the Pack winning big and Wilson out of the game, so toss those out), 4 INTs, 4 missed field goals. Russell Wilson has made some unfortunate decisions to account for those INTs, and one of the fumbles was an unforced error. The timing of those mistakes is most unfortunate, but those are not red zone issues. Those are everywhere-on-the-field issues.
I'm not sure there's much to say about the red zone struggles other than them's the breaks.