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Maryland Film Review (by Ryan Bridges)


Harrison Wier
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5 minutes ago, Daniel Seahorn said:

I don't know how to explain it, but they didn't exactly have film on him going into that game, and as we learned ND wasn't great. He was dinged early often and he played hurt so it could explain some things, but not all. 

I didn't think Buechele the recruit had any elite qualities, so he probably hasn't developed any over the course of a year. He was always a high floor, but lower ceiling type of player because wasn't as "toolsy" as the elite guys. No QB on the roster is leading this team to 10 wins unless we stark improvement across the roster. 

If this staff saw Braxton Miller or Greg Ward in Heard he'd probably be playing right now. I don't see that kind of production getting squeezed out of Heard. 

Fair points, thanks. Could Buechele get better, absolutely. Should he be the automatic starter, absolutely not.

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While you guys are arguing about 10 wins and championship-caliber QB play, the coaches and players are trying to figure out how to rebound from losing to a mediocre team they were picked to beat by three scores.

Buechele is the QB because he's accurate, experienced (relative to the competition), mostly poised and can generally execute the passing concepts, as we saw in the spring game and more often than critics care to admit during actual games. Personally, I think Ehlinger can come close to matching his poise and a little less close to matching his accuracy, but he can't match his experience or, if the spring game is any indication, his ability to execute the passing game. That may have changed since April, but none of us know.

Heard can't match Buechele in any of those areas. He's a much better runner. How well do you expect him to run when there's no threat through the air and his offensive line is getting pushed around? You might start by watching the 2015 Iowa State game.

There are a lot of problems to fix. It's easy to start by blaming the QB because most people watch the ball, and he's usually got the ball. Getting the offensive line to give a damn, teaching the backs to identify holes, or injecting some creativity into the playcalling would do much, much more for the offensive production of this team than taking the passer off the field for a wide receiver playing running back.

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Taking anything from the 2015 season as it pertains the performance of Heard at QB is hard given that the bad OC was fired after 1 game, and the rest of the staff had no clear offensive strategy. Heard may be horrible at the position, but I'm not basing it off anything I saw that season given the visible staff infighting.

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7 minutes ago, Ryan Bridges said:

While you guys are arguing about 10 wins and championship-caliber QB play, the coaches and players are trying to figure out how to rebound from losing to a mediocre team they were picked to beat by three scores.

Buechele is the QB because he's accurate, experienced (relative to the competition), mostly poised and can generally execute the passing concepts, as we saw in the spring game and more often than critics care to admit during actual games. Personally, I think Ehlinger can come close to matching his poise and a little less close to matching his accuracy, but he can't match his experience or, if the spring game is any indication, his ability to execute the passing game. That may have changed since April, but none of us know.

Heard can't match Buechele in any of those areas. He's a much better runner. How well do you expect him to run when there's no threat through the air and his offensive line is getting pushed around? You might start by watching the 2015 Iowa State game.

There are a lot of problems to fix. It's easy to start by blaming the QB because most people watch the ball, and he's usually got the ball. Getting the offensive line to give a damn, teaching the backs to identify holes, or injecting some creativity into the playcalling would do much, much more for the offensive production of this team than taking the passer off the field for a wide receiver playing running back.

There you go "cherry-picking". The experts have told me that you can't base anything off one game :)

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31 minutes ago, Daniel Seahorn said:

I don't know how to explain it, but they didn't exactly have film on him going into that game, and as we learned ND wasn't great. He was dinged early often and he played hurt so it could explain some things, but not all. 

I didn't think Buechele the recruit had any elite qualities, so he probably hasn't developed any over the course of a year. He was always a high floor, but lower ceiling type of player because wasn't as "toolsy" as the elite guys. No QB on the roster is leading this team to 10 wins unless we stark improvement across the roster. 

If this staff saw Braxton Miller or Greg Ward in Heard he'd probably be playing right now. I don't see that kind of production getting squeezed out of Heard. 

Daniel, do you believe that the new staff even gave him a look?  I'm asking because I don't think they have.  And they didn't necessarily have a reason to. When this staff arrived, Shane was the returning starter and Sam was the star recruit.  Heard by this point was a converted wr.  I'm sure the staff figured that with the 2 qb's they had and the possibility of grabbing a transfer that there was no reason to even consider moving Heard back to qb.  Now after everything has shaken out and we weren't able to bring in a transfer qb, it makes sense to have Heard as an emergency qb and give him a few snaps here and there...

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54 minutes ago, Daniel Seahorn said:

I don't know how to explain it, but they didn't exactly have film on him going into that game, and as we learned ND wasn't great. He was dinged early often and he played hurt so it could explain some things, but not all. 

I didn't think Buechele the recruit had any elite qualities, so he probably hasn't developed any over the course of a year. He was always a high floor, but lower ceiling type of player because wasn't as "toolsy" as the elite guys. No QB on the roster is leading this team to 10 wins unless we stark improvement across the roster. 

If this staff saw Braxton Miller or Greg Ward in Heard he'd probably be playing right now. I don't see that kind of production getting squeezed out of Heard. 

I'm with you on what it will take to get to 10 wins. 

On offense we've got to see much better play from the RB's and OL. I'm not as concerned with the WR's but I also don't hold them up to be as good as everyone thinks they are  because we simply haven't seen elite play from that position group yet. But I do think that potential is there. 

Defense is probably more concerning to me than offense. After watching Ryan's film reviews and other film reviews, I'm really not sure we have players who can play with any natural instinct. It's only one game but, man, they looked bad. 

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Our rushing statistics are a little misleading. We only ran the ball 26 times the other 5 "rushing attempts" were sacks. Without the sacks Buechele ran the ball 10 times and I'm sure those were not all designed runs. Porter ran it 8 times for a whole 21 yards (2.6 avg.). Warren ran the ball 6 times for 31 yards (5.1 avg.) he had 3 attempts in the first half and 3 attempts on the first drive of the second half. Heard ran once for 4 yards and Humphrey once for 21 yards. The scouting report leading up to the game stated that Maryland's run defense was awful but they had a good pass rush. We never attempted to establish a running game. The fewest rushing attempts against Maryland last year in a game was 27. 2 teams ran the ball at least 30 times, 6 teams ran the ball at least 40 times, 3 teams ran the ball at least 50 times, and 1 ran it 60 times. The only thing we knew about our offense from last year was we could run the ball. The O-line was basically back and healthy. Foreman of course is gone and he averaged 6.3 yards per carry. The small sample for Warren last year in 4 games he averaged 5.9 yards per carry. In 8 games as a freshman he averaged 6.6 yards per carry. We don't have a TE this year but we haven't had a TE in forever. Mensa or not who goes in to a game knowing their greatest offensive strength is the opponents greatest defensive weakness and doesn't attempt to capitalize? Of course by his own admission Herman doesn't watch our game films from last year. That explains why Porter & Warren were considered even. Does he watch game film of our recruits or just go by and watch them practice? That whole scenario is ludicrous or pompous. Once again on defense one of my favorite excuses is back. The players are taking "bad angles". Most 8 year olds playing city league football take good angles. You see the guy with the ball and you run to the spot where you can meet him. Its not some calculation its an instinct. If your fat and slow you may not get there quick but you still know where you should probably aim. 99% of bad angles are created by bad positioning. Players either move themselves to a bad spot or they are told to go to a spot that ends up being bad. One play on Saturday I watched Malik leave his inside position prior to the snap and line up on the right edge to rush. Pigrome took the snap and ran right where Malik had been. I'm sure someone else was suppose to fill that spot but they probably took the long way to get there.  I watched Locke on an outside blitz from the right side take a path 3 feet to the right of Pigrome. I don't know where he was going but it sure wasn't toward the QB. Maybe Locke couldn't see him, maybe he was scared he might run in to him, or maybe he was told to blitz to an area that would force him back inside or keep him off the corner (which is what I suspect). Whatever the reason for the trajectory it was ill advised and did nothing to disrupt the play. If Locke took that angle because he thought it was the correct path to the QB all the coaching in the world won't help. As a matter of fact he needs someone to walk with him wherever he goes to make sure he isn't run over.  I find it so ironic that our coaches favorite catch phrase is "we cant get out of our own way" because obviously we never get in the opponents way. I apologize for being sooo negative but this is getting ridiculous. Coaches come in saying "I'm going fix this, I'm going to fix that, I'm going to make sure this never happens again" and the then after the game its "the players didn't do this, the players didn't do that, they need to remember this feeling" blah, blah, blah. I get it! the players are the ones that play the games. I just wish one time our coaches would take the Gundy approach "I'm a man, I'm 40 years old..." Whether its true or not just say "We (coaches) did not have a good plan, we didn't have these guys ready,"

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I like the idea of a package for Heard but nothing more than that, they will stack the box and dare him to throw.

Herman obviously doesn't think Sam is ready and regardless... If you don't fix the line and establish a running game your going to have two hurt QBs. 

USC, Oklahoma, TCU, WV, and a couple others have better defensive fronts than Maryland.

How many games has Shane cost Texas, actually cost Texas the game? One... Two... As a true freshman? He wasn't the problem Saturday and he wasn't the problem last year. Coaching, discipline, and defense  were the culprit these last two years (o-line and running game Saturday took. 

I remember Colt didn't exactly light the earth in fire as a red-shirt freshman. Texas won 10 games but it wasn't entirely because of a him, Texas had great special teams, defense, o-line and a running game. Very few QBs can have success without those components.

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38 minutes ago, Dbut82 said:

Daniel, do you believe that the new staff even gave him a look?  I'm asking because I don't think they have.  And they didn't necessarily have a reason to. When this staff arrived, Shane was the returning starter and Sam was the star recruit.  Heard by this point was a converted wr.  I'm sure the staff figured that with the 2 qb's they had and the possibility of grabbing a transfer that there was no reason to even consider moving Heard back to qb.  Now after everything has shaken out and we weren't able to bring in a transfer qb, it makes sense to have Heard as an emergency qb and give him a few snaps here and there...

As far as I know he's been working at WR full time from the moment the new staff arrived. Like you said they had a returning starter in Shane and Ehlinger arriving in January, so they never went that route. He's probably getting more reps now than he has since 2015, but is still viewed as the emergency guy. 

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I dont think Shane has been the same passer since he got the hell knocked out of him against Cal last year.  Against ND, his throws were on time & on the money, the start of the Cal game same thing.  After that hit, he was never the same passer.  He was probably all healed up & ready to go for the Maryland game, but taking the shot the 1st play didn't do him any favors, in fact, could've been when the shoulder injury occurred.  Makes me wonder if he played the rest of the game injured & that's why his timing was off & his throws were errant.  Hopefully he will be healed up for this week, because I think he's the best option at this point.  Hook 'em!

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8 minutes ago, Harrison Wier said:

As Daniel stated, if Heard was truly that great of a quarterback, he would be starting right now. No question about it. But he's not because in reality, he's really not a great QB.

As noted, he wasn't even given a look when the new staff arrived. I guess my point of it all is that he could be just as good if not better than Shane and Sam if given the opportunity.  He was injured while competing for the starting job a couple of seasons ago, switched positions, and has never really been given a look since.  And considering the type of athlete he is, I think that's a shame.  Especially considering what Herman has done at the position with similar athletes...

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32 minutes ago, Dbut82 said:

As noted, he wasn't even given a look when the new staff arrived. I guess my point of it all is that he could be just as good if not better than Shane and Sam if given the opportunity.  He was injured while competing for the starting job a couple of seasons ago, switched positions, and has never really been given a look since.  And considering the type of athlete he is, I think that's a shame.  Especially considering what Herman has done at the position with similar athletes...

Just to play devil's advocate a bit, I'm assuming to get that look, Heard would've had to pursue it with the new coaching staff. For all we know, he might want to pursue his future as a WR. For all we know, he sees WR as his best chance to play in the NFL.

BTW Dbut, not saying this to pick a fight with you. Just to toss out another perspective with respect to the staff not giving him a look when they came in.

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11 minutes ago, longhorn_mig said:

Just to play devil's advocate a bit, I'm assuming to get that look, Heard would've had to pursue it with the new coaching staff. For all we know, he might want to pursue his future as a WR. For all we know, he sees WR as his best chance to play in the NFL.

BTW Dbut, not saying this to pick a fight with you. Just to toss out another perspective with respect to the staff not giving him a look when they came in.

You good with me bro.  I don't take anyone's opinion on a message board personally.  And you could be 100% correct.  And I'm not even saying Heard is the "answer" at the position.  I do think that with Sam being a true frosh, Shane apparently being asked to play injured for the 2nd straight season, and Jerrod having played the position, that this new staff should exhaust all possibilities at the most important position on the field.  I just don't think they've done that.

But there's a reason TH is paid 5mil per and I'm sitting behind a computer screen commenting on message boards :D

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I'm glad when Ryan's breakdowns confirm what I saw with my eyes..

I thought after the game Malik played better he still isn't as physical as I would like but he was coming down hill more and not making tackles 5 yards in the defensive backfield like last year.

Wheeler seems lost and Johnson has to supplant him soon I would think.

 

Also I'm finally glad someone on this board supports my assersion that Buechele didn't play poorly!!

 

Good review as always Ryan

 

Onto the heard qb thing. Has anyone thought that Maybe the kid doesn't want to play QB. It doesn't take a rocket  scientist to realise that even though he maybe an adequate college QB he will never be a NFL QB. Maybe heard knows this and wants to play WR over QB

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11 minutes ago, noonan05 said:

Onto the heard qb thing. Has anyone thought that Maybe the kid doesn't want to play QB. It doesn't take a rocket  scientist to realise that even though he maybe an adequate college QB he will never be a NFL QB. Maybe heard knows this and wants to play WR over QB

Heard as little shot at the NFL at WR at this point, either.

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I postponed posting any thoughts following the Maryland game because I was admittedly way too unreasonable following the game. After having time to calm down, some thoughts:

  1. Shane didn't play a great game, but he is far from the most glaring issue with this team. He had some terrible reads, but the O-Line didn't help him. I'm sure that didn't help with his reads and progressions.
  2. Heard had his moments in the past, but the passing limitations he showed as time went on tell me that he's not the answer. If you ultimately want more mobility to cause headaches for the D and open up the run game, then Sam is your answer. It's not ideal to once again throw a true freshman out there, but sadly, that's starting to become an ongoing theme with the program.
  3. For now, as long as Shane is healthy, start him. Work Sam in with some packages, and if he's shown you enough by mid-season, re-evaluate the situation.
  4. All that said, I don't think Shane is the leader that Sam will eventually be at QB. Shane comes across as a quiet guy (even if he was yelling in practice), and with a team like this and a program in this state, you need a vocal leader at QB. Teams often take on the persona of their QB. Sam may have lost the Maryland game too, but from what I've read and seen, I'm pretty sure he would've gone down swinging. And for the Heard contingent on this message board, I'll give you that he'd probably be a stronger, more vocal leader than Shane too. Admittedly I have no hard proof, but I believe this team desperately needs that leader...and it's not Shane.
  5. I have seen enough of Tristan Nickelson. Just stop. Find someone else. Rotate the line around if you need to. Just no more Nickelson.
  6. I have seen enough carries from Kyle Porter. Just stop. Give Warren and Johnson 15 touches each. Injury concerns be damned. Make them prove to you they can make it through a game without getting hurt.
  7. I need to see some more playing time this week for Hager, Shark, and Johnson at LB. If Tom sees from them the ability to actually fill a gap and be fundamentally sound, then make the tough call and sit your "blue chipper." That's what you're being paid to do.
  8. Finally, please put Reggie in on kick returns as well as punt returns. Duvernay is not the answer on kick returns.

There are clearly other issues that make you want to reach for a whiskey drink, but no one has time to read that much text on this board.

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BTW, in response to a post I read on Saturday, yes, a lot of fans repeatedly threw debris on the field. Most of the debris was Southwest Airlines fans they handed out at the doors. We should be better than that, and I found the behavior depressing.

Also, I could be wrong, but I believe some, if not all, of the booing was directed at the team. I was pissed about the game, but booing these kids isn't going to help anything.

Finally, there were unfortunately multiple fights in my area of the stadium, including fights between older Longhorn fans. Another low point of the day.

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58 minutes ago, longhorn_mig said:

Also, I could be wrong, but I believe some, if not all, of the booing was directed at the team. I was pissed about the game, but booing these kids isn't going to help anything.

The booing coincided with the 2nd holding penalty on WIlliams, that nullified the 4th down conversion. That's when the fans hit turf.

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