Who wants some playing time?
Editor’s Note: The following article is a weekly feature from Orange::44 correspondent John Brennan (twitter @jbren) that runs every Monday morning during the football season called Monday Morning Quarterback, assessing the quarterback situation of
While watching the South Florida vs. Florida game earlier on Saturday, I tweeted something along the lines of "They are who we thought they were" concerning Florida. After a slow start, they showed USF they were the better team. The Washington Huskies did pretty much the same thing to Syracuse, giving up a 10-0 lead early and then pouring it on to beat the Orange 41-20.
Let's focus on that early 10-0 lead, for now. The one person I can give credit to for that was none other than Ryan Nassib. The first drive of the game he led Syracuse down the field, then ran 28 yards himself for the touchdown. OK, obviously the extra point and the field goal later in the quarter can't be directly credited to Nassib, but you get the point. The Syracuse offense was hitting on all cylinders in the first quarter.
And then it gummed up like that junker you drove in high school that was about 12,000 miles overdue for an oil change.
Syracuse wouldn't put another point on the board until a Ross Krautman field goal early in the 4th quarter. By then Washington had put up 27 points. Nassib later added a 19-yard touchdown pass to Alec Lemon, but it was, as they say, too little, too late. The final stats on Nassib: 17 completions on 35 attempts (48.6%) for 202 yards, one touchdown, one interception, and 20 yards on the ground himself. He again spread the ball out, throwing to seven different receivers. Like last week, more often than not it was Van Chew or Aaron Weaver.
The completion percentage leaves much to be desired, especially after last week's was so high. This is due, in part, to the caliber of defense (Akron vs. Washington), but let's not keep the Syracuse offensive line out of the discussion. Nassib was forced to make quicker decisions and, thus, poorer decisions. Receivers weren't getting themselves open, or completely running their routes. Often times Nassib had to throw the ball when he didn't want to, which spelled trouble. But the good news is, we know what the problem is. Head Coach Doug Marrone should be able to assist this rather untalented O-line -- maybe not solve the problem -- but at least improve them.
Thankfully Syracuse can feast itself on Maine and Colgate the next two weeks.
Also of note in this game, Charley Loeb took some snaps in garbage time. He was two of two for 22 yards. Look for that perfect completion percentage to continue through his entire career.
Was it disappointing to see Syracuse lose to Washington? Absolutely. Was it a horrible loss? Nah. Syracuse was supposed to lose. Washington is good. Washington was at home. Syracuse has deficiencies. But Syracuse has some good talent out there, and as we saw with the rest of the Big East, this thing is still wide open. A loss always hurts, but dwelling on it won't get us anywhere.
Weekly QB Watch
Ryan Nassib has the potential to throw for 300+ yards and 3+ touchdowns against Maine this week in the home opener, but something tells me we'll be seeing a lot more of the running game this go around. So, I think more accurately we're looking at 220 yards and two touchdowns.