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The Mizzou Tigers lost against Army on the last play of the Armed Forces Bowl. Coach Eli Drinkwitz and players Brady Cook, Blaze Alldredge and Harrison Mevis gave post-game interviews.

FORT WORTH, Texas — One last time in 2021, let’s take a look a the snaps and grades from Missouri’s last game of the season, the Tigers’ 24-22 last-second loss to Army in Wednesday’s Armed Forces Bowl.

Every week, using Pro Football Focus’ data, we take a closer look at the Tigers’ game, starting with complete snap counts for every player on offense and defense, then a deeper dive into their production and ratings. Reminder, PFF grades on the following scale using NFL terms: 90-100, elite; 85-89, Pro Bowl; 70-84, starter; 60-69, backup; 0-59, replaceable. 

WEDNESDAY'S SNAPS  & GRADES

OFFENSE

Mizzou’s top three overall graded players who played at least 10 snaps: quarterback Brady Cook (83.7), receiver Barrett Banister (82.5) and running back Elijah Young (68.3).

Offensive line

Left tackle Javon Foster, 74

Left guard Luke Griffin, 74

Center Mike Maietti, 74

Right guard Connor Wood, 74

Right tackle Hyrin White, 74

PFF clearly missed that Xavier Delgado played some snaps at right guard in the second half. Rough night for pass protection. PFF tagged the Tigers for allowing 16 pressures, five by White and four by Wood. White gave up four hurries and Wood allowed two sacks. White also had a pivotal holding penalty that spoiled a promising drive. White, Wood and Griffin all tallied pass-blocking scores under 50. Wood was much stronger in the run game, posting the line’s best run-blocking grade at 70.7.

Quarterback

Brady Cook, 74

Outstanding night for Cook, who made his first career start and scored the game-opening TD on an triple-option keeper and threw the go-ahead touchdown pass in the game’s final minutes. He posted a strong passing grade (75.1) an even better running grade (81.5) and logged a solid NFL QB rating (105.6). His NCAA passer rating (147.9) was the third-best for a Missouri starter this season against FBS competition. Cook completed just 1 of 5 passes targeted 20 yards downfield, but was 5 of 6 for 57 yards on balls targeted between 10-19 yards. Under pressure he was 6 of 9 for 46 yards and three sacks. Army blitzed him only seven times, resulting in three completions on five attempts for 26 yards and a sack.

Running back

Dawson Downing, 44

Elijah Young, 30

B.J. Harris, 1

With Tyler Badie out, Downing and Young split the carries and both had productive nights. Young combined for 107 yards rushing (75) and receiving (32) and ran for 41 yards after contact. Downing combined for 100 yards rushing (69) and reciving (31) and ran for 35 yards after contact. Dawson had a costly fumble in the fourth quarter, the game’s only turnover, and seemed to mistime his jump for a high but catchable 2-point conversion toss by Cook on MU’s final series. Eli Drinkwitz said the Tigers planned to lean on Michael Cox if they got to a two-score lead in the second half but that never happened

Wide receiver

Tauskie Dove, 63

Keke Chism, 62

Barrett Banister, 48

J.J. Hester, 28

Dominic Lovett, 13

Boo Smith, 5

Mookie Cooper, 5

Chance Luper, 1

Micah Wilson, 1

As usual, Drinkwitz leaned heavily on his three veteran receivers. Bannister was excellent with a team-best six catches for 53 yards, including what might have been the signature grab of his career on the final series, when he took a pounding from an Army defender and hung onto the ball. Chism led the Tigers with 64 yards on five catches, including a 23-yard screen he nearly converted into a touchdown in the first quarter, and then the go-ahead TD catch late in the game. Drinkwitz praised his young receivers after the game, but Hester, Lovett and Cooper were targeted a combined six times in the game.

Tight end

Ryan Hoerstkamp, 37

Kibet Chepyator, 21

Connor Tollison, 8

Hoerstkamp, making his first career start, was the team’s highest-graded pass blocker (75.2) but he wasn’t targeted once all night. Cook threw to Chepyator once but he couldn’t hang onto the ball. Tollison played strictly as an inline blocker alongside the offensive tackle. The Tigers didn’t have their three regular tight ends from the regular season in Daniel Parker Jr., Messiah Swinson and Niko Hea. Shortly after the game Parker announced his verbal commitment to Oklahoma.

DEFENSE

Mizzou’s top three overall graded defensive players who played at least 10 snaps: defensive end Isaiah McGuire (77.1), linebacker Devin Nicholson (72.1) and defensive tackle Darius Robinson (69.8)

Defensive line

End Isaiah McGuire, 55

Tackle Mekhi Wingo, 54

Tackle Darius Robinson, 52

End Trajan Jeffcoat, 50

Realus George Jr., 24

End Johnny Walker Jr., 18

End Cannon York, 7

No pressures from the defense on a night when Army only put the ball in the air nine times, but the Tigers were solid against the run for the most part. Army won this game on short-yardage conversions and rarely, if ever, gashed the Tigers for long gains. Four players finished with rush defense grades better than 70: McGuire, Nicholson, Williams and Darius Robinson. Ten players had tackling grades better than 70, led by McGuire at 80.3. The defense, completely depleted on the back end, gave the Tigers a chance by bottling up the run with sound tackling, starting up front.

Linebacker

Chad Bailey, 65

Blaze Alldredge, 65

Devin Nicholson, 28

Bailey missed three tackles. Nicholson was solid coming in off the bench as a third linebacker. Alldredge closed his lone year at Mizzou with 2.5 tackles for loss and knocked Army’s starting quarterback out of the game. Alldredge finished the year with a team-high 89 tackles and 15 tackles for loss.

Secondary

Nickel Kris Abrams-Draine, 65

Cornerback D.J. Jackson, 64

Safety Shawn Robinson, 54

Safety Jalani Williams, 50

Cornerback Stephen Benson, 25

Safety Stacy Brown, 14

Cornerback Allie Green, 13

Safety J.C. Carlies, 7

Safety Tyler Hibbler, 5

Just a brutal night for an already depleted secondary. Cornerback Akayleb Evans opted out. Safety Martez Manuel was out with an ankle injury. Carlies was knocked out on Army’s first series and Green was knocked out on Army’s second series. That led to Benson, a converted walk-on running back, getting his first action of the season. Hibbler, a freshman, got his most significant work of the year. Robinson was back after missing the regular season’s last five games, had a couple missed tackles and gave up a 42-yard pass in coverage. Army picked on Jackson late and converted three passes on four attempts for 30 yards on the freshman.

Dave Matter

@dave_Matter on Twitter

dmatter@post-dispatch.com

This article originally ran on stltoday.com.

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