The Coach and Bolt Podcast: Episode 35 — SEC Preseason Preview #1, Top 5 Offensive Players in the SEC
Coach and Bolt are back with their latest podcast! The duo looks at Alabama and the five best SEC players on the offensive side of the ball.
Welcome to the Coach and Bolt Podcast here on the Tru Maroon Report! Today, we’re at the beginning of our SEC Preseason Preview series. We’re looking at the Alabama Crimson Tide to kick us off. Also later in the show, we rank our Top 5 Offensive Players in the SEC.
Nick Fitzgerald is coming off of an explosive 2016 as a first-year signal caller for the Bulldogs. Fitzgerald has quickly caught the attention of the nation as one of the best offensive players — not only in the SEC, but the entire country. Fitzgerald tallied 37 total TDs to go along with a total of 3,798 yards from scrimmage.
Fitzgerald’s raw abilities cannot be questioned, the only thing yet to be seen is if he can take the next step in his development as a QB under the tutelage of head coach Dan Mullen. That next step, of course, is his growth as a pocket passer. Fitz’s completion percentage last season was 54.3%. If history shows us anything, it’s that Dan Mullen’s quarterbacks progress year-by-year, going all the way back to the days of the “Relf Coast Offense”. Fitzgerald’s development depends on 3 things to me.
Number one, MSU needs two of the younger receivers to step up along with Donald Gray. Also, someone needs to take the tight end position by the throat and provide that big target that can control the hash and create match-up problems in the red zone.
Number two, Mr. Fitzgerald must realize that every pass doesn’t need to be 90–100 MPH. Nick Fitzgerald might have the strongest arm of any QB Mullen has had here at MSU; however, he has to learn how to harness that strength of his and turn it into an even more dangerous weapon by being able to take a little off and put more touch into his throws. This is, of course, a mechanical issue that Mullen should have no problem correcting.
Number three, Lastly Fitz must learn to fall in love with the “check down”. If you remember, Dak Prescott became the master of the check down during his last year in the maroon and white That helped him achieve a 66.2% completion percentage — which was tops in the SEC and one of the best in the nation. Mullen would love that, as he alluded to that very point during SEC Media Days. Young QBs love and have an infatuation with the deep ball , but Fitz must learn that he doesn’t have to get it all in one play and live to fight another down.
If these three things happen, it should make for a very exciting year in Starkville.