Posted this on scout originally, just some players that caught my attention and some speculation at the coaches' motives for how they ran the game.
So I've been watching the spring game over, a lot. And I've had a couple of takeaways so far that I'll just bullet by player. You guys watch it again and tell me what you think. It's offense only, and I'm trying to focus on POSITIVES with these.. the negatives would take a while. Also I didn't get into the OL, too much to look for.
Ezekiel Elliot - not much from him, but Urban didn't wanna hurt his No. 1. And he is that.
(25:18) shows us why he's No. 1 in the backfield, amazing ability to draw the defense in and bounce the run out - speed.
Mike Thomas - wow, he can be really good if he just gains some confidence and Brax can find him in stride. He's poised for an all B1G year if he proves he can do the little things.
(39:10) He is going to take a couple like these to the house this year. He looks very comfortable catching and turning with the ball. Braxton has to make these passes at 90%
(51:16) Shows amazing hands here. Mid-field threat.
(1:05:50) Ok, he should be catching these quick slants at will all year when teams are backing off to protect the seams. Please Brax, gotta complete these in your sleep.
(1:10:45) I don't see how he isn't named a starter already. His ability to catch this flash screen in stride at that speed makes him invaluable to our offense.
(1:16:18) Damn, hands team. Just get your feet down
Johnny Dixon - official "Project Pup" of the offense for 2014. Urban was really forcing the ball his way to see if he could go make a play. I think Johnny was one of the players Urb was talking about when he was mentioning evaluating players' responses to the moment.
(39:30) He will get the ball like this often, I presume.
(1:14:51) Urban pulls Johnny aside, gives him some directions. Next play we run a VERY quick in-route with the TE sticking at Johnny's break. Incomplete pass, but lethal combo. Hear Urban yelling GO JOHNNY GO. I like this.
JT Barrett - official heir to the offense in 2015. JT also might be the only QB on the roster, with Braxton and Cardale being run-first guys. But he also makes reads at a very high percentage - heady player. I think he could be a better version of KG next year.
(47:25) He shows great change of direction, vision is there too when running the ball. This is one to look at for 2015, he can run the hell outta the RO.
(51:16) Shows a lazer-beam, over-the-top release on this completion in the middle.
(1:05:50) Another throw to look at in 15. His form is gold when he has time.
(1:59:45) This is the play that convinced me JT is the heir to the offense. He is a very "wiggly" runner. Tough to know which hole he's going to hit and puts a lot of stress on the LB as a ball carrier.
(2:04:00) I still think he is being challenged this spring to continue working hard through the summer. He obviously shows much more potential in the RO as he takes this one in for a TD.
Brionte Dunn - the battering ram, I wanna see him on 3rd down and Urban does too.
(52:45) He loves contact
(52: 15) Again.
Warren Ball - the surprise offensive player of the spring game, and IMO the most well-rounded back
(1:08:00) This is why he will see the field. He has unique combination of running style and size. Explosive, short-box speed.
(1:11:15) Downfield vision and ability to get around safeties.
(1:12:45) Very serviceable run again.
(1:57:55) He is an every-down back, can run off tackle and take on the second level physically
Curtis Samuel - the Ezekiel Elliot of 2014
(1:42:55) I expect he will take one of these off-tackle handoffs to the house this year. He burns green faster than Cheech or Chong.
(1:55:00) You can tell people are excited about him. Cardale was translating this swing pass the whole way.
(2:08:15) One does not simply stop Curtis Samuel behind the line.
Cardale Jones - disappointment of the spring game. He is the back-up, and I'm not sure that's going to change even going into the season. But he is not the next starting QB at OSU.
(1:44:05) Finally makes the best throw of his day on this smash route. Decides to put some air on the ball and drops it in a barrel.
(1:45:20) I have a feeling Cardale will be doing this a lot this year, finds some space and falls forward for good yardage.
(1:53:50) Our OL actually gives him some time and he makes a D1 throw.
Corey Smith - he has a very traditional skill set, I think he could be one of the best route-runners on the team
(1:53:50) looks like an Ohio State WR.
(2:13:30) He can be a very good possession receiver. He should be on the outside when we go 4+ wide
Nick Vannett - just a damn solid TE
(1:58:30) This seam pass is absolutely essential to our route tree. If Nick makes a living out of this space, he'll be very productive
Jeff Greene - the dark horse. If this guy finds the field it means he has beaten some stiff competition. It also means that he's taking advantage of his freakish size and speed.
(2:02:45) A sighting! Man he looks comfy with the ball in his hands and catches the ball away from his body. Get this down to a science young man.
Some Defensive Quick-Hitters
(26:20) Armani Reeves is great at bump and run coverage.
(27:15) Tyquan Lewis has a GREAT motor
(29:15) How deep is this freakin' D-line? Rashad Frazier looked as fast as anyone we have on this play.
(32:15) and on this one!
(44:35) Cam Burrows undercuts a pass and shows some pretty nice hands. Great speed just to be there for the play, but he landed out of bounds.
(54:30) Eli Apple may be the quickest of the CBs
(1:03:20) Tyquan Lewis has it all, speed, motor, strength, leverage/pads
(1:16:18) Great catch by Thomas but Eli Apple makes a play on the receiver we haven't seen in a while to force the incompletion
(1:46:55) Joe Burger (no. 48?) makes a beastly hit, holy crap. Maybe the hardest so far
Is it fall yet?