Oklahoma State defensive tackle James Castleman has faced a number of mobile quarterbacks over the past three seasons. All premiere athletes with the ability to scramble from the pocket, shed tackles and make plays with their arms as well as their legs.
Robert Griffin at Baylor. Collin Klein at Kansas State. Trevone Boykin at TCU.
“I never sacked any of them,” Castleman said. “But I pushed the pile that led to it.”
When the Cowboys open the year with Florida State, Castleman, a senior, will line up across one of the most prolific quarterback scramblers in all of college football this season in Jameis Winston.
“Of course I’d like to sack him,” Castleman said. “He’s a Heisman winner.”
Easier said than done. The Seminoles return four-of-five offensive line starters from last season’s national championship team and each is considered to have high NFL potential.
Winston wasn’t bashful about his thoughts on his big guys up front in a July interview with the Tallahassee Democrat:
“Well, our offensive line is the best offensive line in the country,” the sophomore star proclaimed earlier this week at the ACC Kickoff, “and I repeat that Florida State’s offensive line is the best offensive line in the country.”
And Winston is more than capable of doing things like this on a regular basis:
Blog coming soon about FSU QB Jameis Winston's scrambling ability. He threw a TD after this >> https://t.co/x3m2JsEMu1
— Kyle Fredrickson (@kylefredrickson) August 12, 2014
Plays like that had Mike Gundy raving about the Seminoles’ quarterback Monday night at the Tulsa Cowboy Caravan.
“If you aren’t gap responsible and you get out of place, (Winston) can take off and make plays,” Gundy said. “He’s big and strong. Players fall off of him and he can throw it down the field and make a play.”
The Cowboys have been game planning to contain Winston since early summer. But there’s no secret formula to stopping a mobile quarterback.
“It’s about staying in your lanes,” Castleman said. “You want to get him off balance, and then if you get the chance, you’ve got to try and contain him.”