From Devin's Facebook account, posted this morning:
EDIT: I got the screen grab to work now, I think:
Also responded which clears things up a bit:
I'm probably looking into this too much, but I think this might mean that he'll be a red zone threat. I'm thinking about the passes Borges draws up where a receiver is in the back of the end zone and has to grab the ball out of the sky (Hemingway in the Sugar Bowl, the two goal line fades thrown in the ND game are examples of the top of my head). With his size, he'd be a tough matchup for a DB (too short) or a linebacker (too slow).
Interesting stuff. Thanks for sharing.
I guess I thought that because he said he would be catching TD passes, specifically, I assumed that meant he'd be a red zone threat, rather than just a receiver in general. Of course, "catching" could have been the important word there rather than "TD's."
Also, do you think maybe he was working on his WR blocking because he needed more help there than on his actual route running and pass catching? I'm interested to hear your (and your father's) insight.
Our WRs are our weak part of our offense. Gardners athleticism will be a huge boost, as long as he can catch the ball and take a hit.
to be an elite college WR IF he can get open, catch the ball well, and hold onto it. We haven't really seen him do that yet, so it's hard to say. But being a QB and smart, I imagine his knowledge of the plays and routes is pretty good. So, it will probably come down to his ball skills mostly.
wearing the winged helmets. I'm sure he's still a solid dude overall.
Having a WR with passing skills, it seems like a natural to have him involved in end-arounds and passes to the QB. With his height and leaping ability, he could play some of the role of catching arm punts.
don't see how we can move our back-up QB when we only have three to begin with.
This has obviously been discussed a lot over the spring, and I don't think anyone's going to change anyone else's mind at this point. But I'd tend to agree with Ace's assessment that keeping Gardner off the field out of fear that Denard will get hurt (and the implied mentality that putting Gardner on the field is just asking for him to get hurt) is an overly cautious way to do it. It's not like WRs drop like flies. If both Denard (at QB) and Gardner (at WR) get hurt at the same time, that's a highly improbable and catastrophic series of events. I guess it's just a matter of how you view the balance of risk v. reward. I'd say the potential reward (assuming Gardner can actually play WR) outweighs the risk.
Plus, there are some recent examples of this working out well for other QB/WRs (the obvious being Tannehill, and I believe Nichol was the backup QB at MSU for a while when he first switched to WR).
To me, it is not about whether both will get hurt at the same time. It is about whether Denard gets hurt and if the replacement is suitable. The thinking being that having Devin takes reps and do preparations as a WR has to take away from his reps/preparation as a backup QB and Bellomy (spelling?) is an unknown at QB. That being said, if having Devin at WR allows us to put our best 11 out there, then I think that is the way to go.
Why can't he still take all of his reps as the #2 QB?
And then when he'd normally be sitting on the sideline watching Denard or Russ practice...instead, he'd be out there playing WR.
Why is that out of the question?
Are we worried about him practicing TOO much?
To be honest, I don't know how it works in football practice. Does taking reps at WR necessarily mean a reduction of QB reps? Seems like it would and even if it doesn't it certainly creates a distraction. However, in the working world I have never seen it work well when someone has "split" responsibilities. The theoretically paradigm of "your going to spend 1/2 your time doing what is normally a full time job and the other 1/2 doing a different full time job" always ends up in either one or both of the jobs not getting done (at least not very well) or the person working ungodly hours and burning out.
Keep in mind this was high school football, but I was in the same position DG is in now. After splitting starting duties at QB on the Freshman squad with a teammate of mine, I was promoted up to Varsity to back up our JR-stud qb for my sophomore year. Having spent all of training camp in a back-up roll (and wanting to play on the JV squad with my friends) I asked to be moved down. By then, my friend had the QB job nailed down so I moved to WR on offense while still assuming the roll of the backup QB.
I will tell you that it was quite possible to play WR and QB and not miss a step. You get less reps at each position and therefore may lose a little bit of your timing as a QB-- but if anything I think it gave me a better perspective of the field playing both pitcher and catcher. The key was that I put in extra time outside of practice (without coaches present) at both positions so if DG has the work ethic there's no reason he cant excel at both positions. The QB knows the responsibilities of every single person on the field in every formation, versus any defense. Footwork and technique may drop a little but there's no mental diadvantage to playing both positions.
See: Ryan Tannehill. He played WR for a couple years while being the backup QB and that worked out for him pretty well.
The biggest concern to me isn't who the backup to Denard is; I think we can all agree that Denard going down whatsoever would be decidedly catastrophic to us, no matter who is backing him up. If Gardner and Bellomy are at relatively the same level in terms of comprehension of the offense, and all indications seem that this is the case, I say throw Gardner out wide and let the kid play. He's been on the sidelines for two years now, why not let one of the most athletically gifted kids on team try it?
down would not be "catastrophic" to us. It would certainly be a bad thing, but not catastrophic. Otherwise, we will be in really big trouble next year when Denard graduates.
He's much more aggressive than Carr (and maybe Rodriguez); just think of how many times he went for it on fourth and short. It would be a calculated move with higher risk and higher upside.
Hoke seems to be the kind of coach who goes for it.
I look at brady like non-mercurial les miles. he makes the same aggressive decisions only without the hystrionics. did i use that term correctly - hystrionics? if my syntax is off i am sure i will hear about it.
Your syntax was on, but your spelling was off.
People talk like the odds are so high that if Devin plays receiver he'll get injured and be unavailable. Based upon what?. Receivers go through entire seasons major injury free constantly. And he's 6'4 and 220. Plus, if Denard gets hurt for the year or a few games, we are in trouble anyway. Bellamy has already been praised as a capable backup. And those basing their position on how good Devin is as a backup are literally basing their entiire case on his recruiting rating out of High School. They are not basing it on three years of spring game performances or spot duty, that's for sure.
the coaches are playing him there. That seems obvious.
and don't seem to worry too much about him getting hurt. When Devin is playing QB they will also have him running the ball some, so I don't see the big deal about him taking a few snaps at WR.
Whats more important, a starting WR or a backup QB?
Hell, what's more important, a #3 or #4 WR or a backup QB?
It's a legit argument. But he can get hurt in practice, IMO, you can't live in fear of him getting hurt over 20 plays a game at WR...5 of which he'll literally just be running around without getting touched by anyone.
Last year I felt as if we almost gave Devin plays just to keep him happy, but it KILLED our rhythm 9 times of out 10. Give him set formations at WR and he'll always have his head in the game waiting for those formations/sets to be called where he's involved. Whether he gets the ball or not, it just seems like he wants to play.
I personally think it would help, big time. I think you're naturally more involved in practice when you know you're going to play in the game. I think you're a better leader at QB, you have better body language and you're more involved when you're on the field. It's tough to be a leader because you're a QB, but be a backup...not everyone can do that.
For Devin's sake, I think he'd be a better QB by playing some WR. And if he's great, move him there perminantly and take your lumps with a Morris/Bellomy battle next year. If he's not so great, you know what you got at QB. Or maybe he's just good enough to get some snaps at WR, but next year he's still the #1 QB.
Doesn't matter, the thing is, the good outweighs the bad. And no matter what you're doing whats best for the team AND the player, IMO.
If I was a head ball coach, and i saw the other teams backup WR line up at wideout... Id walk a LB/SS over to jack him up every snap.
That being said... devin is 6'4 210 with gliding speed and way above average athleticism and a comprehensive understanding of WR routes.. I'll take it.
Just don't let him take any quick slants or crosses over the middle in zones.
It's not like that's a simple thing to do. Teams would do that to everyone if they could accomplish that.
You would probably also have your LB/SS whiff on him and let him get a wide open TD.
Plus if Gardner wants any shot at playing in the NFL, he needs to move to WR anyways.
Was going to write something, but Yost's post was more eloquent and spot-on.
Bottom-line: Devin's too good an athlete not to be on the field more. And I really suspect the more game time he gets, the more he will shine, no matter the position.
Do you believe it's guaranteed that if he plays 10-20 snaps a game there that he'll get injured? Or that if Denard gets hurt he won't be able to then step in at QB? Neither are true. If, and I say if, Devin is as good at WR as some observers Brian quoted have said, there is no legitimate reason at all to not play him there, none.
who can't see the picture the OP ostensibly posted?
I'm with you. Can't see it.
I deleted the picture that wasn't working and just put the text in.
this isn't one of those 3D optical illusion pictures, is it? because I can never see those either. :/
those are hoaxes, I have never seen them either so I have assumed it is a joke that I just miss on.
Completely Unrelated to DG to WR: I just saw your avatar and wanted you to know that I'm actually sitting in the Valpo Union right now. Far too many ND fans.
So the little red X means he's going to play the X wide receiver spot? Interesting!
Just make the move already. Having Gardner, Robinson, and Roundtree/Gallon at receiver is a lot more valuable than having a back up QB who really is struggling to keep up with the 3rd stringer as a passer at this time.
Plus hopefully we can redshirt Chesson or Darboh with Gardner at WR.
We all know how frustrating it is when you lose the main content of
From all accounts he's been a consistent performer. He gives a sound backup and also somebody who if excels is a pro-style guy to smooth the transition to post DR offense going forward. I think it is not as big of a chance putting DG on the field at WR where he is a significant threat. He might even enjoy being out there much more albeit not in his orginal position.
I think the fact that Russell Bellomy looked really good this spring should calm some of our fears. And again, maybe he'll just be a redzone threat or special package WR. Let's not all freak out here, we need a WR with big play ability, and he's it.
I'm all for moving Gardner to WR this year, but I still believe he is our #2 QB if something happens to D. Rob, and will be our "opening day" starter in 2013.
Okay, so if a reporter asked Brady Hoke, "Are you establishing some offensive packages that feature Devin Gardner as a reciever?" How do you suppose Hoke would answer? If Hoke's answer was, "Well, Devin is our Number 2 at QB, and we will try to figure out ways to creatively both Devin and Denard into the offense," would Al Borges feel comfortable supplying more information than that?
And so are we comfortable with Devin Tweeting more information than either Hoke or Borgess would supply to a reporter?
Just asking; not presuming anything one way or another.