I ran through my thoughts of Saturday's game against Florida International immediately after the game, but there are always more things that pop up afterwards that I may have not mentioned or only touched on. I refuse to do the wildly overdone Good, Bad, Ugly deal that so many sites do, but will offer up some final thoughts.
- The start was really bad and just about everything that could have gone wrong did. The fumbles inside the ten-yard line, the shanked punt by Ryan Winslow, the safety, the deep passing play, etc. For Pitt to fight back to not only win, but do so by 17 points is pretty impressive, despite the opponent. The game as a whole might not have been terribly impressive, but I have a really hard time complaining about winning by three scores on the road to anyone.
- I was really hoping Pitt would get out to a good start and take some pressure off of the offense to try some things. In particular, I really wanted to see them air it out a bit to get Chad Voytik some real work in throwing the ball. That, of course, didn't happen because for a large chunk of the game, Pitt was working to catch up and then win the game.
- The passing game is really nonexistent right now and that's an issue. A great passing day is to go for 300 yards and Chad Voytik doesn't even have that through three games (he's at 284). It's not all entirely his fault, but the lack of a downfield passing attack is something you really want to see rectified. Pitt can't continue to get sub-100 yard passing games and eventually, teams are going to just stack the box against James Conner and company.
- Continuing with the passing theme, Tyler Boyd, as a result, isn't having the year most of us expected. For what it's worth, Boyd has four touchdowns and has scored in every game so far. But he also has a very modest 11 catches for only 140 yards. You've got to think he'd like more touches and he's too big of a weapon to not be used. Pitt is trying to get the ball in his hands in the return game and even gave him a rushing attempt (that didn't go well) against FIU, but as we saw on Saturday, he can even be neutralized on special teams if the opponent kicks the ball away from him or out of bounds as FIU did.
- I thought the secondary played really badly. Reggie Mitchell was burned on the big passing play down the sideline where FIU scored, Lafayette Pitts committed a terrible pass interference, and Terrish Webb botched a tackle pretty badly. Quarterback Alex McGough had 224 passing yards - more than he had over his first two games combined ... and those were against FCS teams.
- David Durham didn't play due to a shoulder injury per the Trib. That gave Luke Maclean his first career start.
- Chris James is the backup running back to James Conner, but didn't get a single carry. Pitt instead turned to Isaac Bennett for that role and Bennett even got the first carry of the game. And Bennett only got six carries on the day as well. Not sure where James was or if they just wanted to get Bennett some work, but James' disappearance was curious. The staff told Bennett he was going to be the third-down guy, but he clearly was the No. 2 guy on Saturday. Will have to see if that means he's surpassed James, if James was injured, or if they just wanted to get Bennett some work.
- Chris Blewitt quietly continued his good start with another field goal and he's now 4-4 on the season.
Be sure to join Cardiac Hill's Facebook page and follow us on Twitter @PittPantherBlog for our regular updates on Pitt athletics. Follow the author and founder/editor @AnsonWhaley.
- James Conner breaks Pitt record in FIU win
- Pitt vs. FIU: Chad Voytik's legs help propel Panthers to win
- Pitt shakes off slow start for 42-25 win over Florida International, begins season 3-0
- Dave Wannstedt uses halftime of Pitt-FIU game to blow up athletic director Steve Pederson
- Going Scouting: Iowa Hawkeyes