MnB: Every Speight Pass against Cincinnati, analyzed

Submitted by Eye of the Tiger on September 11th, 2017 at 4:14 AM

Basically, he made some great throws but the misses were terrible, and a couple might have been interceptions against a better opponent. 

[SORRY GUYS...I had a copy/paste fail. I've put the correct link in now. I've got a baby at home and am working on very little sleep.]




September 11th, 2017 at 5:09 AM ^

So, Speight did pretty well on most passes, but missed some wide open receivers with uncatchable balls sailing over the receiver's head. This seems to be a common theme. I'm no expert, but him sailing the balls over the receiver's head has to be caused at least in part by a lack of confidence, right? Throwing too high lessens the chances of an INT, unless there is a safety back there... 


September 11th, 2017 at 7:03 AM ^

What I've seen from people with more analytical abilities than myself is that the difference between Speight being on target or not is his footwork. Nick Baumgardner has three useful video/tweets showing this exact issue. When he properly sets his feet, he's delivering strikes. He appears to be affected by the inexperienced OL in front of him, which may not even be their fault. Maybe it's an issue of the offense becoming comfortable with and trusting eachother? I still say, when Speight is on, there's no reason he can't score plenty of points against solid defenses. Hopefully we start seeing the offense gel as a unit, with Speight showing more confidence in his teamates.


September 11th, 2017 at 9:01 AM ^

"When he gets pressured he rushes with his feet and doesn't throw off a sol[i]d base and his passes sail high."  Yep.  That's what Speight said in the postgame interview.  Although he's had some overthrows when he's not pressured, as well.  Hope he gets his footwork under control.


September 11th, 2017 at 2:59 PM ^

DPJ is on a path directly into coverage. His route is designed to find that honeyhole about 5 yards upfield and back about 3 yards. He runs the route too squared off with too much speed. He is the last read and the double clutch from Speight indicates he is not where he should be relative to how the play is designed. Timing was off on this one - just as much a pass route execution issue as it is a poor throw issue.


September 11th, 2017 at 8:01 AM ^

He is taking a shot at tight coverage but choosing the right place to miss it. High/hard at the sidelines and low across the middle. Some of these are like throw-aways + maybe you get a pass interference call.

Overall, this was a good enough passing day and progress for Speight. What hurt this offense was ball handling by the youngsters. DPJ did not have a good day, but he will learn. Bet it was nerves, first time in the BH, etc. Plus that Aussie really put up a wonky looking punt.


September 11th, 2017 at 8:36 AM ^

good enough passing day? against Cincinnati, this should absolutely not be any kind of sentiment to make anyone feel good. progress for Speight? haha, in for a long season if that's the progress we're hoping for. against a truly far inferior team.


September 11th, 2017 at 11:17 AM ^

You do know the 2 fumbles on offense were caused by a RS junior not keeping two hands on the ball and it slipping out of his hand, not youngsters. The most frustrating thing is Harbaugh knew this before hand and told Speight its only a matter of time until he fumbles in a game because of it.


September 11th, 2017 at 6:50 AM ^

If you include the two fumbled hand-offs, that killed drives.

Not sure when I read it, but Harbaugh has said he measures a quarterback by how well he moves the team down the field. Completing 1 yard passes on 3rd and 5 doesn't do that. I don't see how this one is even a mediocre outing for Speight. This level of performance will lose a game against at least 6 teams left on our schedule.


September 11th, 2017 at 12:05 PM ^

I would not say speight was a ton worse, as much as the offense as a whole was much worse. They missed so many blocking assignments on core plays like the pitch, and the wr's did not help speight out at all. There were several passes that should have been chain movers but where drops, and chesson let a freshman wr take a ball out of his hands for a pick.
The offense as a whole played like garbage that game.


September 11th, 2017 at 7:02 AM ^

Since at this time the link goes to a page of recomended books, I would also recomend Terry Pratchett. My favorite is his book called "Thud". It is about the approaching anniversary of a historic battle, and how tensions are high between different races in the city and beyond. Vimes, the comander of the City Watch, must try and keep the peace and keep his city safe. Oh, the races are dwarfs and trolls.

Toasted Yosties

September 11th, 2017 at 7:15 AM ^

"Throw 23: Grant Perry runs a quick slant to the right, and he’s wide open. Speight’s throw is too high and should have been thrown lower while hitting him in stride. The pass is caught by Perry nonetheless, as he makes a great and quick adjustment to catch it. Perry sheds a couple tackles and dives into the endzone for a touchdown. A 33 yard touchdown pass."

I've never been more disappointed in a touchdown pass than this one. I'm just waiting for the next pick-six interception or for Perry to get injured going up for one of these high passes.


September 11th, 2017 at 8:38 AM ^

I think that's just confirmation bias at this point.  You want to see a bad throw, so you see one.  It was a TD pass that was a great read and apparently a good enough throw that it allowed the WR to keep his momentum and score a long TD.  This is a good thing.  Passes for all QBs will be long, short, high, low.  It happens.  This is why you want good WR.  Could it be a better pass?  Sure.  But any pass good enough for the WR to make the catch, keep his feet, and keep running, is a good thing.

M_Born M_Believer

September 11th, 2017 at 12:41 PM ^

But I would "grade" my sons thorws (he played QB through High School) as 1's, 2's, or 3's.

A 1 is the "perfect" pass.  You hit the receiver on time, in rythem, in the hands chest high and the receiver did not have to break stride.  These passed usually lead to big gains cause you allow the recevier to make plays in the open field.

A 2 would be a good pass defined as on time and within the receivers catching radius.  These are good passes but the QB needed the WR to make a play on the ball to make the catch.  As a team sport, this happens often, but the QB did his job and needed the WR to make a play.  This is how I would have graded this throw, Speight made th right read, delivered the ball on time, and was within Perry's catching radius.  Perry is the one who will get the +1 on the play for his catch and YAC.  Speight did his job on that throw, Perry made it a big time play.

A 3 is just a bad throw, either too early, too late, or outside the catching radius.  Looking at the highlights, Speight is having too many of these throws and I believe that is what is bugging people.

His game ending number were ok, 17-29 (58.6%0, but there were 6-9 "3's" (pending on ones opinion) within the 27 opportunities.  Those are missed opportunities to make an impact on the game.  Certainly no one is perfect, but when 20% - 33% of your throws are 3's, that is not encouraging. 


September 11th, 2017 at 1:07 PM ^

Speight can certainly make those #1 throws, and when he does it's a thing of beauty.

I'm actually a litle more concerned with the preponderance of those #2s, or what I would call 2-s.

Speights accuracy and timing always seem a bit off to me.  His passes seem like they almost always require the reciever to go up, reach reach back, slow down, or dive to catch.  Regardless of of the style of pass the end result is that any potential for YAC is greatly diminished. Those frustrating passes short of the first down markers would be fine if they were hit in stride more often.

I don't know if it's footwork, timing or whatever?  I expect a few bad throws a game, thats sports.  But most of Wilton's throws seem to call for too much reciever adjustment.


September 11th, 2017 at 10:00 AM ^

I know what you mean. Why just the other day I found a ten-dollar bill on the sidewalk, and I've never been more disappointed in a ten in my life. It was wrinkly, stained, had some indecipherable scribbling on it, and one of the corners was torn off. I felt dirty putting it into my wallet since it wasn't up to my high standards for how free money was supposed to look.


September 11th, 2017 at 11:50 AM ^

I watched that play a couple of times and thought it was fine.  It was a little high, but Perry was able to catch it and then turn it into a TD.  QBs have been throwing those passes for generations, and sometimes you get a TD and sometimes you don't.  

The analysis was fine, but it basically broke down to "Speight was mostly fine, sometimes he let a ball sail.  He acknowledged those issues and will work on it."  Every QB is going to have bad throws, and usually they occur for the same reason -  bad mechanics and not going through their progressions.  Speight had a fine game.  I fully expect the UFR this week to highlight that and also point out other flaws the offense showed.


September 11th, 2017 at 7:54 AM ^

Man oh man, this isn't thread-worthy, but if you think we UM fans are tough on Speight, what's going on over on the OSU boards is brutal. I mean, people want JT benched (for a guy with a broken hand), and it seems almost unanimous. 

Plus, I read over there yesterday that OSU's troubles are part of a conspiracy by Kevin Wilson to tank the team so that Urban gets fired and he (Wilson) is hired to replace him. Many of the posters agreed with this assessment! :-OOOO


September 11th, 2017 at 9:10 AM ^

When you look at this from a corporate standpoint, it turns into not a bad idea - I mean, I am sure plenty of us have stories of watching people tank something and somehow get promoted because they were able to sell the disaster correctly.

Of course, this is a horrible way to manage your career in collegiate sports, but you can certainly try. 


September 11th, 2017 at 12:36 PM ^

Well if it is a true theory involving conspiracy, like the op said. Then Wilson needs to be in cohoots with others that want Meyers replaced with Wilson.
Therefore, combs can be in on it, and coaching the DB to never look back for the ball.
The wr can't get open because their route running is horrific. Therefore, if there is a conspiracy to get Meyers out for Wilson, coach "zone 6" Smith must be in on it too.