The quarterback position is the great equalizer. Yes, it would be nice to have a better O line and even a semi-competent defense. I suspect we will be better in both areas next year. But having a QB that can make plays with his feet, throw on the run, and avoid crucial mistakes is just key. It smooths over the rough edges that teams like Arkansas, with spotty recruiting success and talent deficiencies, nearly always have.
This game tonight was won because of DeShaun Watson. I know guys like him don’t grow on trees. Still, as a matter of offensive philosophy, I wish we’d ditch the pro style, spread it out, and try to find one of these Watson type players. The stress he puts on a defense – even Bama’s – is just unreal.
Just offering a different opinion, but I believe that Bama’s conservative play calling and below average QB play was as much a factor as Watson, who was very good especially late in the game. Hurts was not that sharp and the play book was really constricted for the biggest part of the game. The Tide relied too much on the defense to save the day and they were on the field too much due to limited offensive success. While good, Watson was not dazzling versus a fresh Tide defense.
I do not think last night was a mandate for a dual threat QB, but more a validation of the role that ball control can have on a game. The reason the Hog season contradicts this is greatly because of a porous defense and inconsistent OL play.
Hurts passing just was not up to the test. He missed receivers repeatedly, and they clearly did not trust him to throw the mid-range stuff that was going to be open with Clemson crowding the line. He hit one throw all night that went further than eight or nine yards from the line of scrimmage, the fake screen that went for a touchdown to Howard when Clemson busted the coverage.
More importantly, once Scarbrough got hurt they apparently had little faith in the power running game, which they badly needed as Clemson kept running plays and wearing down the Bama defense.
Clemson also showed that the way to rush Hurts is to contain and get your hands up. Three or four balls got tipped, and the overall accuracy was not good. Hurts is unlikely to get any taller(the claimed 6 foot 2 inches is a joke) so rush with the idea of containing scrambles and making him throw through the trees. If you happen to get a sack that’s great, but not necessary.
I’m fine with the pro-style attack. I think we are getting better quality QBs now than any time I can remember, and the offensive system overall looks plenty diverse.
I think Bama tried to protect him early and lean on the defense as noted. When they had no choice but to turn him loose with 3 minutes left and behind then you saw the handcuffs removed. The key was Clemson stopping Bama for 6 or more 3 and outs after Bo Scar. left in third and early fourth quarters. Clemson wore the Bama defense out with number of plays run and I think that is the key to beating them as the depth ultimately shows up even for Bama. That pass interference penalty in end zone was due to not being in position as result of fatigue in my opinion—sure the head ball coach had coached them on how to play this since he is their position coach.
Watson made some plays but his receivers were a big part of that. Some of those catches were almost unbelievable. Boulware made a big impact on defense as well. It wasn’t just the DW show, he had lots of help.
LMAO, I was gonna post something like “we need a recount”, er for the Heisman that is. Not to take anything away from Lamar Jackson and the season he had, Watson deserves the trophy. After the season, agreed.