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Kyron Drones, Keli Lawson are the Hokies of the Game vs Rutgers

Kyron Drones 2 VT Rutgers 2023 From VT
Photo Credit: Virginia Tech Athletics

Virginia Tech didn't have their best games for a variety of reasons from run defense and offensive line struggles to injuries stacking up on their way to a 35-16 defeat to Rutgers. However, there were a few solid performances with a pair of guys earning Hokie of the Game honors.

Offensive Hokie of the Game: Kyron Drones

Grant Wells' injury issue led to Kyron Drones making his first career start today and while the Baylor transfer was not perfect, he stepped up and gave the Hokies a chance.

Drones had a solid first career start today going 19-32 for 190 yards, 1 touchdown, and 1 interception while adding 79 rushing yards on 18 non-sack carries. The Baylor transfer seemed to elevate the Hokies' running game in what was a better approach in general today to get the ball in space and run QB draw off of it while he also made some nice throws in this game down the field and not just on shorter passes.

Even if Wells is good to go next week, I think Tech may be wise to stick with Drones at least for now and see where he goes especially with the Hokies being without Ali Jennings for the foreseeable future and having Jaylin Lane banged up.

Da'Quan Felton had a strong day outside of his bad drop finishing with 6 catches for 84 yards and a touchdown. Meanwhile, Bhayshul Tuten added 45 rushing yards and a touchdown while Dae'Quan Wright was second on the team with four catches for 21 yards being a solid underneath option in this game.

Defensive Hokie of the Game: Keli Lawson

It may not have been a great day for the Hokies' run defense, but Keli Lawson wasn't a reason for that making plays all over the field in defending the run and in pass defense.

Lawson had a team-high 11 tackles including 1 for loss while looking very solid in coverage especially for a linebacker. Lawson's great athleticism and size continues to shine as a true three-down playmaker for the Hokies who is well on track to be an All-ACC player this season even with Tech's struggles.

If Brent Pry could clone himself a few more Keil Lawsons, he certainly would. Regardless, Lawson continues to shine even amidst the Hokies' struggles.

Tech's pass defense and especially the cornerbacks deserve tons of credit for holding Gavin Wimsatt to 7-16 for only 46 yards and a touchdown. Mansoor Delane showed tons of versatility and improved safety play when he got the chance there while finishing with a tackle and a pass breakup. Derrick Canteen added 6 tackles including 0.5 for loss in this game.

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