Photo by Jaime Valdez / USA Today
Oregon Football

The Missing Link

January 12, 2019

By now we’ve seen a lot of folks buying stock in this Oregon team for a big 2019 season. 

Mario Cristobal held the glue of this team together convincing Troy Dye and Justin Herbert to return, only losing Dillon Mitchell in the process. The loss of Mitchell however does leave a hole. One that we are all fully aware of at the moment.

This team was absent much of a passing threat this season. Not at quarterback, the Ducks have one of the best quarterbacks in the country and he’s a proven commodity. Justin Herbert was hampered by dropped passes and missed opportunities all season.

Even as good as he was, and he was, even Dillon Mitchell was plagued with the drops at times. Still he was by far Oregon’s most consistent and dynamic receiver by a wide margin.

And it feels like I’m picking on Schooler, Johnson, Redd and the others. Truth is those guys did everything they could all season to help the team win. They blocked and made some huge catches at times. There just wasn't much for consistency after Mitchell. 

The missing link is out there, waiting for an opportunity to move to a team with big-season potential. Oregon is actively evaluating the graduate transfer market at receiver. Two big names in Lawrence Cager and Juwan Johnson have hit the open market. And others could still hit the transfer portal between now and this Spring.

The Ducks just need an experienced, reliable option to put pressure on the defense. The right receiver should have a chance to step right in and see as many targets as they want. Short and intermediate routes coupled with opportunities for big plays in the offense. 

While Oregon has four standout receivers coming in by way of the 2019 class, an experienced receiver is the missing link to this team. A stout run game, a great offensive line, all components of this offense. The defense should be solid enough to keep Oregon in most games.

This Oregon team has a chance to win the Pac and possibly more in 2019, but right now there is one piece that needs to be filled. It should be easy right? Who wouldn’t want to catch passes from No. 10 in Eugene for a season?

Tags: Football, Oregon
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