Ten Things We Learned From the 2019 Ohio State Spring Game
Another Ohio State spring game has come and gone, which means there are sweeping judgments to pass upon everyone and everything.This must be how mothers-in-law feel.The Gray Buckeyes put it on the Scarlet squad, running away with a 35-17 win.We saw Justin Fields and Matthew Baldwin compete on the field in front of a crowd for the first time, but they were hardly the entire story. We still learned some things about them, but we learned plenty of other things as well.
"The passing game won’t be as prolific this season as it was last year" - I am not at all convinced of that.
I think the increased rushing attack dials the passing numbers down, but they'll still be capable of 400 yards any given day.
Opposing D's need to fear both the run and the pass. Mid season 2018 teams didn't fear our run, hence the red zone % plunged, costing us at Purdue and unexpected close calls from MN, NE and MD. Adding the wrinkle of Haskin's legs, MI's revenge tour got embarrassed and WA was taken out of the game by the end of half time. I'd take a balance O over a prolific passing game any day of the week.
IF Baldwin or Fields improve their ball placement from now until opening day, and they likely will, this is going to be a really..........really fun offense to watch. With JT we had a great runner and a below average passer. With Dwayne we had a great passer and a guy who ran with 2 flat tires. Fields can be lethal with his legs, but needs to dial in his passing quite a bit. Baldwin throws a nice pass and has average wheels. It offense still revolves around a troublesome OLine, but, both of the QB's likely to start can change defenses with their ability to run. If the defenses have to hold more than a cursory observance to the QB's legs, it's GOING to open up rush lanes.
I think JK is a very good running back. He's not Zeke, but he doesn't have to be, and very few are or ever have been. What little we've actually seen of JK this Spring has been encouraging. Plant and go beats the hell out of "hop, dance, and go." That adjustment to JK's game could put him in elite National conversations again. I knew what to expect from Master Teague, but the surprise was Marcus Crowley. He showed the strength, patience and open field ability we should expect from 2nd or 3rd year guys. He's going to be a beast before his time at Ohio State is done.
I watched the game in the stadium and it's not the easiest way to focus on everything all at once. I recorded it though and have watched it several times now. Sorry, the linebackers still appear to be the biggest problem on the team. Bigger even than the OLine. Not even Jahsen's terrific performance yesterday could raise the linebacker unit to average. A LOT needs addressed in the middle point of high and low efficiency.The DLine could have accounted for 9 sacks had the game been full contact.....with ease The success in the running game is almost entirely the fault of MIA linebackers who can't shed blocks even when they're able to locate the football.
Really hard to tell much from this kind of scrimmage except that this team has a lot of talent, which we've known. The QB play was underwhelming but there is talent there and plenty of time for them to get comfortable and more natural. The O-line will be a question mark until they get healthy and some time together, but it should be fine. I look for the D ot be much improved because the coaching staff is. And I've said for two years now that Demario Hall is the best RB on the team. The problem is he can't stay healthy and was off the field again. Just can't count on someone like that. Too bad. Bottom line: this team is talented, should get better as the year goes on and could really surprise some people. It will be fun to watch.
WAS NOT IMPRESSED WITH THE QB PLAY. iNACCURATE PASSING FOR SURE. tHEY NEED TO GREATLY IMPROVE. tHE RUNNING GAME WILL NEED TO CARRY THE OFFENSE AND i BELIEVE THE TALENT MAYBE THERE TO DO SO.
In Day we trust, fully believe that no matter who throws the ball come this fall, that it will be much more proficient than what we saw Saturday.