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Official Husker Locker Blog

2010 Oct 14

NEBRASKA-TEXAS: Five NU Players to Watch


By HuskerLocker

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Five players to watch from Nebraska in Saturday's game vs. Texas:

Quarterback Taylor Martinez: He has to make good reads on zone running plays, keep NU out of negative-yardage situations, and manage his emotions. Yes, they're in there somewhere. Martinez is taking a huge leap in defensive competition here. He won't be able to outrun every UT defender on the field. Stay steady, stay tough, and take advantage of the playaction passing situations that the Longhorns will allow.

Running back Rex Burkhead: Money time for a kid who was shunned by his home-state team. Burkhead would never admit to a small chip on his shoulder, but he knows how to play with one, and you'll see some of that toughness on Saturday. Look for him to work in between the tackles for tough yards and Roy Helu is Mr. Outside.

Right tackles D.J. And Marcel Jones: Texas' has the kind of defensive ends that can give a rickety pass-blocking offensive line the chills. Here's one of NU's weak links. They must consistently protect Martinez's front side. When Martinez gets flushed out of the pocket, he's not as good of a passer.

Wide receiver Niles Paul: Once or twice in Saturday's game, offensive coordinator Shawn Watson will dial Paul's number. Will No. 24 answer? Can he make up for a slow start in the return game? He'll get a few chances with UT's so-so punting game.

Peso Eric Hagg: Texas will run its share of jet sweeps tunnel screens and bubble screens, and stopping those plays is part of why Hagg's on the field. Texas tries to do a lot of damage with its slot receivers, another Hagg assignment. Look for him and Dejon Gomes to be busy men all afternoon.

See also: Five Keys to the Game, Five NU and UT Players to Watch, and NU-UT Position Matchup and Guess The Score

Tags: texas game, taylor martinez, rex burkhead, lavonte david, marcel jones, dj jones, eric hagg

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