JMR

Things I Think I Saw: AU vs Tennessee

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As always, thank you @JMR for your insight.  Very informative and I think you are very level headed.

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problem with stidham is that even with perfect protection, he still takes wayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy too long to make a decision. He has the arm strength and talent to get away with it sometimes but its still a terrible habit. It's pretty obvious that he has a real problem reading blitzes and coverages and this terrible OL just complicates matters for him.

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I saw several times where a guard pulled and never hit anyone. A couple of times, I also saw them turn around to see where the ball was. Hit someone!

That's how average plays turn into bigger ones. .... 

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20 minutes ago, JMR said:

we have arrived as officially the worst team in the SEC.

Thanks for stating what is currently the truth. From a top 10 preseason selection.

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On the last touchdown, I was certain the refs were going to review it. I was sure the WR was never in control of the ball, he simply slid it across his body and batted it away behind him while the Tennessee defender caught it. 

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Malik Miller should be getting the playing time that our single numbered RB is getting. I liked what I saw from him yesterday. Malik  and Worm should be the first two RBs on the field. 

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1 hour ago, JMR said:

Horton again went after the wrong man

Or went after no man, time and time again. He needs to be on the bench and Brahms needs to be sitting beside him. Maybe sit all the starters and let them watch at least for a couple of series. If we are going to run the ball it looks like we need to bring in two tight ends and an H-back to get any blocking at all.

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I,had to work yesterday, and didn't get to see the game live, but recorded it and watched it hurriedly last night.

Two plays stuck out to me that are indicative of where this team's troubles are. One is what I call half assed effort: On the fumble play Brahms got run over, then proceeded to half jog behind the play, and watch as multiple players on both sides fought for the ball. If that's as fast as he can run then he has no business being on an SEC roster. I don't know what goes on in film study at Auburn, but that kind of lackadaisical effort will get you benched at a lot of places.

The second one is the third, and five right before the missed 50+ field goal attempt. Not sure what we were trying to do there, but our right guard ( Horton I guess), is never going to get there trying to pull from the backside to block the defensive end! Why the hell can't our coaches see that? Again I ask " what goes on in film study at Auburn?"

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I was disappointed with the targeting foul on Jeremiah Dinson. I guess by the letter of the law, it was the correct call, but I still didn’t like it. As Dinson said after the game, “It is what it is”.

 

I thought that was a borderline call myself; Dinson didn't hit the Quarterback with the crown of his helmet, yes it was a high hit but was just a hit to the chest of the Quarterback.

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The problem on offense is Offensive Line and QB development. It’s amazing how un-prepared Malzahn’s QB’s seem to be. Stidham has regressed.

On defense, the problem is no pressure on the QB and our DB’s have terrible ball skills. I have heard several people praise Greg Brown, but our DB’s still refuse to look back for the ball. If it’s a jump ball just better believe our DB’s are going to lose that battle or be guilty of pass interference. I don’t what Auburn has to do to change that trend.

Big Kat Bryant is no Jeffrey Holland or Carl Lawson. He gets stuffed the majority of the time and looks like he had no technique once an OL gets their hands on him. The only way he wins is if he gets a great jump, which is rare.

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5 hours ago, AUDevil said:

Arkansas is the worst team in the SEC...not debatable.

They are improving every week, especially their offense.  If we played them yesterday I doubt we would beat them. 

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15 hours ago, AUDevil said:

Arkansas is the worst team in the SEC...not debatable.

Yes, but they are playing better now than they were 7 weeks ago. We aren’t. 

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15 hours ago, JMR said:

On the positive side, I am not seeing a lack of effort on the part of the players. Inexcusable mistakes, untimely bumbles and stumbles, yes. But lack of effort or “quit,” no.

Maybe not quit, but I was there and saw a lot of players casually walking back to the line of scrimmage after plays. One a couple of occasions it looked like they might not make it back to their position before the snap.  One WR has mastered that approach. 

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This is all we will get with this coach. He can’t leave fast enough for me. Can’t wait for a legit Auburn worthy coach to lead our team. I think Gary Patterson would do well at Auburn myself. 

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3 hours ago, Gowebb11 said:

Maybe not quit, but I was there and saw a lot of players casually walking back to the line of scrimmage after plays. One a couple of occasions it looked like they might not make it back to their position before the snap.  One WR has mastered that approach. 

Unfortunately, I saw the same on multiple occasions.  Couple that with the clip in RunInReds above post, and it could lead one to believe the coaches have lost the team.  There is zero aggression, zero focus or attention to detail, zero energy & enthusiasm, zero willingness to improve, drive or hold each other accountable.  

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11 hours ago, RunInRed said:

Fundamentals or just plain lack of effort? At times, it appears to be the latter ...

 

Total and complete lack of effort, that's a entire unit that didn't GAS to do their job. 

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18 hours ago, JMR said:
  • I thought Malik Miller acquitted himself fairly well this week. He is getting more and more playing time because of his pass protection ability, and his talent for catching the ball.  He’s a long ways from a speed guy, but he’s becoming an effective player.
I didn't realize how SLOW he is. I honestly thought he pulled a hammy and just couldn't go full speed. :laugh:
  • Lots to be discussed this week about Jarrett Stidham. He is exceptional when there is no pressure, but when there is, look out. I’ve considered that maybe Gus has harped on protecting the football so much that Stidham is reluctant to take chances. Nix that theory. Stidham is playing like he’s in a sandlot game, making some extremely poor decisions. Obviously some of his problems are on him, while others are on other elements of the offense. On his first pick yesterday, there was time enough to throw the ball away, but Stidham tried to extend the play, time ran out, and he tossed an easy pick. On the second pick, a trick play off a reverse/flea-flicker, Boobee Whitlow missed an easy block on a blitzing corner, and Stidham never had a chance to do anything other than eat the ball and take the loss. Better that than turn it over. On the sack/fumble turnover, Mike Horton inexplicably went after Driscoll’s man, leaving his own responsibility for Nick Brahms to take care of. Brahms got run over, and Stidham didn’t even have time to throw the ball away. Those kinds of plays do wonders….in a bad way….for a quarterback’s confidence.
Both INTs were 100% on Stidham though, no matter the pressure from the defense. The first, like you said, should've been thrown away. The second one should've been thrown at the turf in the area of Whitlow, not lobbed in the air for the defense to easily catch it. That one would've been a pick-six if Whitlow (I believe) hadn't chased him down.
  • Auburn’s secondary was abused by the UT wide receivers and even running backs. Javaris Davis might have had his worst game as a Tiger. I shudder to think about Ole Miss next week with their big, skilled wide receivers.
I want to say here that TN's QB and WRs were probably playing their best game as a unit this entire season. We contested so many of those catches and they still managed to come down with them. I was very impressed by them. If their QB continues to improve he's going to be VERY good. 
  • Even on an otherwise terrible day, it’s fun to watch Anthony Schwartz play. I’m not sure I’ve ever seen that kind of speed on a football field, and the kid is also a tough little player.
So many freshmen are out there making plays. We have all the players we need at skill positions to have a very exciting offense..... IF we had even a mediocre offensive line at this point. I'm absolutely floored that we not only aren't getting better but that we're looking worse week after week. :( 
  • I was disappointed with the targeting foul on Jeremiah Dinson. I guess by the letter of the law, it was the correct call, but I still didn’t like it. As Dinson said after the game, “It is what it is.”
I think he'd have stayed in the game had he not actually left his feet to hit the QB that high. Very stupid decision on his part but one that he won't make again, I'm sure. Not a bad hit at all, but like he said, it is what it is.

In addition to my responses within the quoted text - I have one more thing to add...

I believe that CGM is getting a LOT of unnecessary hate due to the offensive struggles. Does he have to take the blame? Yes, he's the head coach and that's what they do. Is it partly his fault? Yes, he has to approve the recruits and he has to hire the coaches. But what infuriates me are those people who also think Gus is out there throwing those interceptions or putting the football on the turf.

The changes we've seen on the offense the last two weeks have been for the better. We're spreading the ball around. We're getting the ball to play makers. We've had some nice runs. All of those things are the result of adjustments by the coaching staff to put us in better positions to be successful.

What the coaching staff cannot do - is make every throw. They can't make Stidham throw the ball away or just take a sack instead of trying to make something from nothing and throw pick after pick that kills all of our momentum. They can't block the guy Horton/Troxell/Tega/Cox/Whitlow misses. They can't catch the damn near perfect deep ball that Stidham throws to Slayton.

We apparently don't have a QB behind Stidham that can run our offense effectively. That's on Gus. We don't have the talent and experience we need on the o-line. That's on Gus (and Hand/Grimes). Some (not me) argue we don't have a legit RB. That'd be on Gus/Horton.

But we have also been in position to win EVERY. SINGLE. GAME. even with an atrocious offensive line. Guess what? That's on the coaches too. They're doing their part to try and salvage what they can but at the end of the day, they aren't on the field.

High expectations and sub-par results is unfortunately the Auburn way of life but it sure does bring out the worst in some people.

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I am convinced Shenker could be a force for this offense if they would utilize that position. 

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30 minutes ago, Linayus said:

I believe that CGM is getting a LOT of unnecessary hate due to the offensive struggles. 

It's not for 2018's offensive struggles....

It's for 2015's, 2016's, 2017's & 2018. 

Plus for ME, 2014 as well because he had a formula that worked beautifully but insisted on reducing what made NM so good by working to make him an "NFL" quarterback instead.

....and ever since he's tried to fit square peg QB's into his round hole offense.

I'm not going to say I "hate" him because that's just wrong but I am sick of him ruining the college football team that I love.

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10 minutes ago, AUsince72 said:

Plus for ME, 2014 as well because he had a formula that worked beautifully but insisted on reducing what made NM so good by working to make him an "NFL" quarterback instead.

I think that decision was just to make our offense more balanced. NM knew he wasn't going to be a QB in the NFL.

Quote

....and ever since he's tried to fit square peg QB's into his round hole offense.

I do 100% agree here. The dual threat QBs we have recruited just haven't worked out for us and Stidham, while he has great potential and can make throws all over the field when he has time to do so, just isn't the right fit for this offense. Or maybe it's not that he doesn't fit but the coaches are still keeping plays in there that do him no favors (like the zone read when you know he's going to hand the ball to the RB 98% of the time).

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