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Article: Justin Thomas Will Replace Vad Lee

This is a discussion on Article: Justin Thomas Will Replace Vad Lee within the Georgia Tech Football forums, part of the Georgia Tech Sports Message Boards category; It's not going to be this week or the next, but Thomas will start for Lee sooner rather than later. ...

  1. #1
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    Justin Thomas will take over.

    It's not going to be this week or the next, but Thomas will start for Lee sooner rather than later.
    That is assuming, of course, that PJ remains our coach through the season.

    I'm not saying that it's what should happen - I don't know. Our poor performance certainly isn't Vad's fault primarily and he brings a lot of undeniable positives to the table. His option reads are about where you'd expect them to be, his arm is pretty darn good, and he's a tough kid with a good attitude.

    Despite all that, I think PJ will probably give Thomas the nod at some point this season.

    We lost because we're just not that good on offense. The defense made adjustments. The offense tried to and failed.

    Our injury-ravaged offensive line was probably as poor as its been in the CPJ era, a truly bewildering development when you look at the '08 and '09 lines, made up of former running backs, walk-on defensive tackles, and other square pegs. Those guys executed at a much higher level than this bunch and the fact that we're down to some backups due to injury is not really much of an excuse - no player should incur 3 false start penalties in one game, regardless of his position on the depth chart. Pass protection was an issue for the '08-10 teams because they weren't physically capable of blocking defensive linemen. Pass protection is an issue for the '13 team because they don't know what they're doing.

    The A-Backs and Wide Receivers looked fine. We are supposed to forever wail and gnash our teeth at the lack of talent at the latter position but Waller and Smelter manage to get open. Smelter, in particular, has an uncanny knack for finding free spots in zones and gaining favorable position versus man coverage.

    For the skill positions, where we're really suffering is obviously at the B-Back spot. That's Helluva's favorite point and he repeats it ad nauseam but he's right: we haven't recruited the position at the level we need to. I think Sims and Laskey are fine players with definite skill sets; I don't think either is a marquee back right now. Maybe Custis was or will be the guy, who knows. I did find it somewhat telling, however, that our leading rusher was Connors, off of one run, on which he looked better than the 2 to 3 scholarship guys ahead of him on the depth chart (though I think he got a 'ship this offseason, right?)

    Players win you games. It's a coaches job to prepare the players to win the games. A lot of people think of the coach's role as being confined to that 3 hour window on Saturdays, that it's all about playcalling. It's not and it's not. The meat of coaching is in drilling assignments, teaching technique, and endlessly repping fundamentals.

    At the collegiate level, one more role probably looms even larger: recruiting. Art, science, and psychology, it's a job that requires a deft touch and a lot of luck. Most schools are basically stuck in recruiting "tiers" - regardless of the palatability of any particular scheme or the charisma of any particular coach, a perennial loser in a lower conference isn't going to consistently beat out LSU or Bama for the biggest recruits. The goal of the drill, then, is to maximize your recruiting within any particular "tier" and start the slow climb upwards. We have not, as yet, done so. The reasons are undoubtedly numerous - bad luck (injuries to key recruits, highly-ranked recruits not performing as expected) has outweighed good luck (finding a Robbie Godhigh) - but I'm not going to spend all day dissecting every misstep or lauding every fortuitous strike.

    After years of bad defensive play which hampered a pretty good offense, we've found a defense which can effectively adjust to offensive schemes. It's a shame, then, that such a find only arrived when the offense is in its worst state in 5 years (imo, of course). I'm a CPJ fan still and believe him to be a very good coach. But our team's struggles on offense come down to coaching, as they always do. Someone needs to teach better, someone needs to drill better, someone needs to adjust better, and someone needs to recruit better. These are all easy for me to say, sitting on my couch on Sunday morning. It's the doing them that's the hard part and the reason why so few teams are consistent winners.

    I'm not going to give up on this team because that's simply not how I operate. I do think we'll see a change before too long at the QB position. Whether or not it's the best change is open to debate, a debate which will surely rage on all the message boards. I'm not sold on it but I do think it'll happen.
    Last edited by stylee; 10-13-2013 at 10:28 AM.


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    ...with the exception of that part about 'I'm a CPJ fan and believe him to be a very good coach'...

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    RE: JT...I was actually thinking the same thing myself. I've also had a feeling that Vad may not be long for GT if it keeps going this way. I hope I'm wrong, but right now it seems he's just not "meshing" (no pun intended) in terms of his skillset and what he'd like to accomplish as a QB versus what CPJ's vision of the offense is.

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    I don't think Vad's struggles are not as directly related to CPJ's offense as some others believe. I think when he has a bad game, it's generally because he's pressing too much. You can see that whenever we run Post-Wheel or Switch and he totally ignores the wheel guy. Or when he's running a load option and he bows out and compromises the pitch relationship. Or when we run a read out of the pistol set and he misses an easy read that he makes 99% of the time...except when he's pressing.

    I'm not pinning any of our losses on him. These have all been games that Tevin probably would have lost, Josh would have lost, and Justin would have lost. He can sling the ball around - witness the pass to Summers - and runs well too. I just think he's a guy that plays very differently when he's uncomfortable.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stylee View Post
    I don't think Vad's struggles are not as directly related to CPJ's offense as some others believe. I think when he has a bad game, it's generally because he's pressing too much. You can see that whenever we run Post-Wheel or Switch and he totally ignores the wheel guy. Or when he's running a load option and he bows out and compromises the pitch relationship. Or when we run a read out of the pistol set and he misses an easy read that he makes 99% of the time...except when he's pressing.

    I'm not pinning any of our losses on him. These have all been games that Tevin probably would have lost, Josh would have lost, and Justin would have lost. He can sling the ball around - witness the pass to Summers - and runs well too. I just think he's a guy that plays very differently when he's uncomfortable.
    I agree. That's why I thought it was a mistake on CPJ's part to advertise he was playing JT last week. I think for all of Vad's gifts, blocking out "the noise" around him isn't one of them. Hearing that his playing time is in danger, and getting yanked and replaced definitely affected him. Maybe Vad is just better at coming off the bench and being a change-up guy like last year. I alluded to it in my post about managing our QBs, but there are active players on the roster openly lobbying for JT to play. That's never a good thing. I don't want to see another Luginbill/Donnie Davis situation.

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    Good points, All

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    Vad carried the ball on 40% of our rushes. Someone tell me how that's a good thing unless he's averaging 5ypc.

    Vad may be talented but he's playing scared and confused. The reason Nesbitt was successful was he was ready to take the defense on when needed. Vad folds like a Walmart tent and he's folded so many times now he doesn't fit in the cheap bag any more.

    If CPJ benches Vad he destroys his confidence. If he plays him, he's stubborn and wants to lose. No win situation.

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    When JUstin played at the end of the game I noticed that he made risky pitches but he tried hard to get the ball outside. We'll make bigger plays with Justin in at qb. We can't turn the ball over anymore than we have been so I think he should play. If he gets a seam, he's gone. Lee doesn't seem to accelerate quickly enough to run the offense with this porous offensive line. Justin's speed can make up for that. But I say again. Fire SEWAK

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    If JT gets the nod so be it. But he'll risk losing Vad & destroying his confidence. If JT struggles, which he will, he may risk losing the team. This is Vad's first year as starter and he just faced some very tough opponents in VT, Miami, & BYU. Two of them on the road & all three have very sound defenses, one may be the best defense in the country, so it goes without saying he would struggle. You have to take your lumps with a new QB sometimes, it's very apparent he's no Johnny Manzell or Winston, but those offenses aren't designed like CPJ's and I'm not sure if CPJ has put the kid in the best position to succeed in the first place. In the end however, it's what's best for the team, if JT is a better option let's see. I have my doubts however.

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    I think that Vad will be the starter, and probably should be the starter, for the rest of the year. But Vad's problem is he tries too hard and tires himself out. I think Vad starts off as clearly the best QB, but then gets tired and starts making more mistakes. That lame pass interception last night was the right direction but too low. Vad just couldn't run the LB down.

    Hopefully we go to platooning the QBs. Give them each two series and let God sort out who is the best that day. And when Vad starts getting sloppy, pull him quick. We have two other QBs who are better than a sloppy Vad.

    I really don't care about Vad psyche. If he can take it fine, if he can't then he doesn't deserve to be the starting QB. Tough ****. Either he will get mentally tougher (which is what I expect) or he'll fold up. But it's up to him and he has had and will have his chances.

 

 
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