Photo by Andrew Giesemann
Oregon Football

Allan's Take: Stanford

October 15, 2017

Justin Herbert and the QB situation


Last night was another example of how instrumental Justin Herbert is in the success of Oregon football. Braxton Burmeister’s first two starts were against the two most difficult teams on the Oregon schedule. Understandably, Burmeister has had a rough start to his college career he is 19/36 for a total of 172 yards with 2 touchdowns and 4 interceptions. Last night he went 3 of 8 with 1 rushing touchdown and 2 interceptions. Taylor Alie also played last night and went 2 of 5 for ten yards before being replaced by Burmeister again to finish out the game. Oregon finished with a total of 33 yards through the air. For Oregon to succeed they'll need to develop the throwing game; Oregon had Nelson and Mitchell back which is as good as it is going to get this year for the Ducks. Taggart doesn’t have a simple choice until Herbert returns because Alie is more stable than Burmeister at the QB position but if he benches Burmeister not only does that waste him burning his redshirt but it would also hurt his confidence for the rest of his Oregon career.


Penalties! Oh my gosh the penalties! Oregon had so many big runs that would get consistently overturned due to holding penalties. At this point, the penalties are on the coaching staff and not being able to reinforce the idea of no penalties to the players.  The Oregon running game is elite, and with a powerful passing game, this team would be unstoppable. Unfortunately, for Duck fans, Oregon does not have a strong passing game this season which puts a lot of pressure on the Oregon run game. Royce Freeman, Tony Brooks-James, and Kani Benoit are an impressive group add to that Darrian Felix, and others and Oregon’s run game is one of the most elite in the country. Freeman is still a little banged up which showed in last nights’ game. After an impressive drive led by Freeman which ended with the only Duck touchdown, Freeman got extremely limited reps after that drive. Oregon has struggled these last couple of games on offense because Washington St. and Stanford both stacked the box because neither respected the passing game. Until Oregon starts throwing the ball more the Oregon offense will continue to stall out in games.


I am still impressed with the Oregon defense. Considering where they were at last year to this year, there are some good improvements. Troy Dye is still a monster who will continue to give 110% on every play. But unfortunately, Troy Dye cannot win games by himself. Last night showed that the secondary is still weak, Stanford was a strong run team but they are not that great through the air and Oregon made them look like a professional football team. They had 256 yards through the air; Whiteside had 112 yards and 2 touchdowns. I know Graham is a freshman, and he will still improve, but he and Springs got burnt way too many times to count. I have faith in Jim Leavitt and his ability to turn around a defense, and I know the turnaround won’t happen overnight.


I didn't have high hopes for last nights’ game; I knew it was going to be an uphill battle. When you factor in the injuries, I knew it was going to be near impossible. The penalties killed Oregon again last night and we need to get more disciplined on the LOS. I did think that Mitchell and Nelson would play a more significant part but can understand how Taggart was skeptical of letting them play after their recent injuries. It's probably going to have to get a whole lot worse before it gets better for the Ducks.

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