Jan 1, 2012; Foxboro, MA, USA; New England Patriots quarterback coach Bill O

Penn State's Quarterback Preview (Part I)

In the next few posts, I will analyze Penn State’s Quarterback situation.  In the first post, I will analyze the quarterback position generally.  Then, in order of seniority, I will analyze each quarterback on Penn State’s roster, as well as those who may be on the roster soon.  Finally, I will project a depth chart based on that analysis.

General Quarterback Situation

Unlike some Penn State fans, I am optimistic about Penn State’s quarterback situation.  I am optimistic for a variety of reasons.

The first reason why I am optimistic is Bill O’Brien.  Under Bill O’Brien, our passing game will be much more sophisticated, much less predictable, and accordingly more effective.  O’Brien has had a wide array of experience in a number of different offenses, both collegiate and professional.  His experience with the Patriots is undoubtedly going to positively impact our quarterback and offensive production.  O’Brien is planning to run a “game-plan” offense that uses a variety of formations and personnel to exploit mismatches against the defense.  This should put our quarterback in a favorable position to play smart and succeed.

Second, we have a plethora of offensive weapons that will be at the quarterback’s disposal.   Our eclectic personnel of wide receivers and running backs coupled with the ingenuity of O’Brien’s game-plan offense should provide an environment that will allow our quarterback to produce.

Third, the quarterback play will improve from last year because of the mere fact of naming a single starter.  Having multiple starters is detrimental to quarterback play on so many levels.   The quarterback position, more than any other position in football, depends on repetition, rhythm, timing, and confidence.  Having multiple starters contravenes all four of those characteristics.  With multiple starters, each quarterback’s repetitions decrease, not only in the game, but also in practice and in the film room.  This decreases each quarterback’s ability to develop timing with their receivers, which is imperative for an offense to succeed.  Finally, flip flopping quarterback’s during a game hurts each quarterback’s rhythm as well as their confidence.  Therefore, by virtue of having one quarterback, who will take all the reps, the quarterback play should be better off.

Fourth, we have a plethora of potential starters at the quarterback position.  Some with experience, grit, and determination, some with raw talent and athletic ability, and some with seemingly limitless potential.  With options like that, O’Brien and quarterbacks coach Charlie Fisher will undoubtedly have a quarterback groomed and ready on September 1 for a showdown with the first of two Ohio teams we play next season.

For these reasons, I am optimistic that our quarterback play will be very effective this upcoming season. In the upcoming posts, I will analyze each Penn State quarterback (and potentially soon to be), one by one, in order of seniority.

Next Quarterback Preview Post:  Analysis of Matt McGloin

Also, stay tuned for some spring practice updates in the coming weeks.  It should be very interesting to see who is getting first reps on the offensive and defensive side of the ball.  Check out a preview of some position battles to watch for come March 26.

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