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Snap Count Takeaways: Biggest notes from Ducks’ usage report in Holiday Bowl victory

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December 31, 2022 5:40 am PT

The Oregon Ducks got a big win over the North Carolina Tar Heels on Wednesday night in the Holiday Bowl. It’s not a victory that will go down in history for Oregon, but it was a thrilling game that saw a relatively depleted roster come back from 10 points down in the final minutes of the fourth quarter, scoring the go-ahead touchdown with 19 seconds on the clock.

We’ve talked a lot about the game in general, going over some of the biggest takeaways and seeing which players bumped up their stock the most, but now we want to get into the nitty-gritty a little bit before we head into the offseason.

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Throughout the season we’ve done snap count takeaways after certain games that give us a glimpse at the depth on the roster, and see what we can learn about how much some players played. With so many young players getting a chance to play during the Holiday Bowl, we figured it would be a great time to dive into the snap counts and see what they tell us. Here are the snap counts from Wednesday, followed by some of our major takeaways.

Total Snaps — 70-80

(Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)



CB Trikweze Bridges (72)
S Bennett Williams (72)

Total Snaps — 60-70

Oregon Ducks Holiday Bowl (Photo Courtesy of Ethan Landa)


QB Bo Nix (66)
LT T.J. Bass (66)
RT Malaesala Aumavae-Laulu (66)
TE Terrance Ferguson (64)
WR Troy Franklin (63)


LB Keith Brown (68)
LB Mase Funa (68)
LB Jeffrey Bassa (65)
DL Brandon Dorlus (61)

Total Snaps — 50-60

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports


WR Chase Cota (56)
LG Marcus Harper II (51)


Total Snaps — 40-50


RG Steven Jones (48)
C Alex Forsyth (44)


CB Dontae Manning (45)
S Jamal Hill (43)

Total Snaps — 30-40

Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports


TE Cam McCormick (39)
LG Ryan Walk (37)
RB Bucky Irving (32)
RB Noah Whittington (32)


S Steve Stephens IV (34)
DL Jake Shipley (33)
S Bryan Addison (32)
DL Casey Rogers (32)
DL Keyon Ware-Hudson (31)

Total Snaps — 20-30

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports


WR Kris Hutson (28)


S JJ Greenfield (28)
CB Jahlil Florence (27)
DL Taki Taimani (25)
DL Jordon Riley (22)

Total Snaps — 10-20

(AP Photo/Young Kwak)


RG Jackson Powers-Johnson (18)


DL Keanu Williams (12)
DL Treven Ma’ae (11)

Total Snaps — 0-10

Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports


RB Jordan James (8)
TE Patrick Herbert (5)
LT Josh Conerly (3)


LB Micah Roth (7)
S Daymon David (4)
LB Anthony Jones (3)
LB Emar’rion Winston (1)

The 100% Club

Oregon Ducks Holiday Bowl (Photo Courtesy of Ethan Landa)

Whenever we do the snap count takeaways, I always love to see which players got 100% of the snaps. On offense, it’s typical that the QB and five offensive linemen are on the field for every snap unless it is a blowout, but on defense, it’s always interesting to look at. For the Holiday Bowl, here are the guys who didn’t come off the field:

QB Bo Nix
LT TJ Bass
RT Malaesala Aumavae-Laulu
S Bennett Williams
CB Trikweze Bridges

The name that stands out to me the most in that group is Bridges, who is making a solid case to step into the Christian Gonzalez role as the CB1 next season. He played well on Wednesday night and was obviously a very important part of the defense.

Terrence Ferguson’s Increased Role

Oregon Ducks Holiday Bowl (Photo Courtesy of Ethan Landa)

Terrance Ferguson has seen a lot of playing time this year, but with TE Moliki Matavao no longer in Eugene after transferring to UCLA, it’s clear that Ferguson’s role got a little bit bigger. He played all but two offensive snaps against North Carolina and had an awesome game to show for it, catching 5 passes for 84 yards, and leading the Ducks in receiving. It’s clear going into 2023 that he is the TE1 on the roster.

The Leading Linebackers

Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

Without Noah Sewell or Justin Flowe playing in this game, we wondered who would take over as the next crew of LBs for the Ducks. It appears that we have an answer to that question, with Keith Brown, Mase Funa, and Jeffrey Bassa all stepping up to the plate. The good news is that all three are coming back for the 2023 season as well, so there will be some major consistency and carryover for Oregon’s defense.

Marcus Harper’s Presence is Impossible to Ignore

(AP Photo/Young Kwak)

Marcus Harper has started at LG for much of the season, but he didn’t get the start in the Holiday Bowl, with the Ducks instead going to Ryan Walk and Steven Jones at the guard spots. It’s clear that the Ducks wanted him on the field tough, with Harper ending up playing 51 of the 66 snaps at left guard, compared to Ryan Walk’s 37 total snaps on the night. With a lot of the offensive line going through a turnover this offseason, Harper is the one starter expected to return in 2023, and he’s absolutely proven his value down the stretch.

Dontae Manning and Jahlil Florence

The Ducks are looking for starting cornerbacks who can contribute in 2023, and while Trikweze Bridges may be the front-runner, with Alabama transfer Khyree Jackson also holding a strong case, one of the more entertaining things to watch on Wednesday night was the cases made by Dontae Manning and Jahlil Florence. Both played very well and showed that they’ve improved from the start of the season, with Manning getting more snaps in the end (47 vs. 27). If you had to rank the likely starters right now, Manning probably comes ahead of Florence, but it will be fun to watch that depth chart play out over the offseason.

The Running Back Split Remains

Oregon Ducks Holiday Bowl (Photo Courtesy of Ethan Landa)

The stats that Bucky Irving put up in the Holiday Bowl — 149 yards and 2 TD — were impressive, but seeing that he did it on only 13 carries, averaging 11.5 yards per attempt, is downright insane. It feels like Irving has taken over as the de facto No. 1 RB on the roster, but to the final game of the season, he remained in an even time-split with Noah Whittington, with both seeing a total of 32 snaps.

There’s a fine line between going with the hot hand and splitting reps to keep everyone healthy, and the Ducks have been walking it from start to finish this season. I’m very curious to see how they treat Irving in 2023, and if he will be the feature back in terms of snaps and rushes or not.

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