2007 Monday Thoughts: Ohio

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The Virginia Tech coaching staff and its new starting quarterback, Tyrod
Taylor, are in a foot race with the schedule, trying to get Taylor ready for the
meat of the ACC schedule, especially that trip to Clemson on October 6th (with
apologies to UNC, coming to Lane Stadium on September 29th). The Hokies got out
of the blocks pretty well to start the Tyrod Taylor era, and things are on
schedule.

Taylor generally looked good on Saturday (18-of-31, 287 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INTs,
1 TD rushing), and what he brings to the table over his predecessor is clear.
It’s not just mobility, though I’ll admit that I was guilty last week of
accusing the VT coaches of wanting a guy who could bail and run when things
broke down.

What
Virginia Tech got instead with Taylor is a guy with very good pocket presence
… who moves around to the open spots … keeps his eyes downfield … and can
throw quickly and with accuracy on the run. Sure, he can break the pocket and
gain yards with his feet, but I see now that he can do a heck of a lot more than
that.

Call it the Michael Vick effect. Michael made so many great runs that we
think that’s what mobile QBs ought to do. But Tyrod isn’t just a guy who runs
for first downs when the pocket collapses. He can do a lot of things, most
notably extend a play with his feet and fire with accuracy even when he has been
flushed.

This is the thing that Sean Glennon struggles with the most: throwing with
accuracy while moving. Glennon is a mechanically sound QB when allowed to set up
and throw, but in the current state of VT’s offense, that’s a rare situation, so
enter Tyrod. The difference between the two showed itself on Taylor’s second
passing attempt of this game, when he darted up the middle of the pocket,
apparently ready to run, then suddenly straightened up and flicked a dart to
Josh Morgan, who was streaking across the middle and turned it into a 59-yard
gain.

That was just the first of many such plays that Taylor made on the day, on
his way to spurring the Tech offense to its best output (473 yards) since the
Hokies rolled up 509 yards in a 52-14 massacre

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