Central Michigan vs Michigan State: 5 players who need to step up

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Sep 19, 2015; East Lansing, MI, USA; Michigan State Spartans mascot helps Michigan State Spartans celebrate win over Air Force Falcons after a game at Spartan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Mike Carter-USA TODAY Sports

Michigan State takes on the Central Michigan Chippewas this weekend continuing its quest toward the College Football Playoff. It’s still early in the season, but there is plenty on film of the starters as well as backups.

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Obviously, everyone still needs to make improvements but some have started right where they left off in previous years, some have shown improvement each week, and some are still trying to find their footing in the 2015 campaign.

Related: Central Michigan vs Michigan State: 5 bold predictions

Offensively, the Spartans have shown glimpses of what they can be. Against Western Michigan, Oregon and Air Force they had stretches of pure dominance, moving the ball through the air as well as on the ground and putting points on the scoreboard with ease. However, especially when it was time to put the game away, they lacked in creativity as well as the ability to move the ball and simply pick up a first down.

Defensively, it’s much the same for Sparty, stretches where the opposition looked like a JV squad attempting to keep up with the blitzes and speed of MSU, including several monster goal-line stands. Then there are the passing yards, the long drives, and the inability to get off the field on third down allowing teams to get back in to games they never should have.

Rounding out the units is special teams. Needless to say, each group has not been stellar, from kickoff return, punt return and the field goal unit, they have all caused Spartan Nation to face palm in frustration.

These are a lot of negative words to be written about a team that is 3-0 and ranked No. 2 in the nation. Sure there’s a lot better than there is bad right now but, again, for the Spartans to truly reach their goals this year, each unit has to play their best. This post will take a look at the five players who need to step up this week against the Chippewas.

Next: 5. Michael Geiger