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O Jordan Jefferson, How Little Can Change in Two Weeks

Tiger fans are tired of seeing the option
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Haven't we been here before? But let's cut the small talk, let's get to the facts.

North Carolina: 15/21, 151 yds, 71.4%, 2 TD, 1 INT, 153.7 rtg

Vanderbilt: 8/20, 96 yds, 40%, 0 TD, 1 INT, 70.3 rtg

Mississippi State: 10/16, 97 yds, 62.5%, 0 TD, 0 INT, 113.4 rtg

West Virginia: 10/22, 75 yds, 45.5%, 0 TD, 2 INT, 55.91 rtg

TOTAL: 43/79, 419 yds, 54.4%, 2 TD, 4 INT, 97.2 rtg

Now after seeing all of those stats, some might say:

"97.2 rating? Thats not bad."

After hearing that college passer rating is not calculated on the 158.3 scale that the NFL uses, but on a scale on which the max rating is 1261.6, they might then say:

"How the hell is this guy still playing?!?!"

That is a good question. A question Les Miles would most likely answer with a generic answer anyone with common sense would see as [enter your preferred way of saying BS here].

Needless to say, Jefferson's rating is good for last in the SEC and 108th in the nation. I would name notable signal-callers with better ratings, but just pick a starting quarterback from any FBS institution and he will most likely have a better rating than No. 9.

My last post goes into more detail about JJ's play at QB. Jefferson is not comfortable in the pocket (look at his happy feet when goes into a straight dropback), still doesn't believe in his ability to read a defense, and his mobility still has yet to make any kind of meaningful difference in the Tigers' offense.

The more I watch Jefferson, the more I see someone who just wants to ride the coattails of a dominant defense and a pretty good running game. Playing "not to lose" is not the way to go.

But against WVU, I saw something else. Someone who feels that he is almost out of a starting job. I don't have much to point out to support this, but I just felt a certain hesitancy in how he was playing that, combined with how he already played, does not bode well for any quarterback.

Oh yeah, he is a starting quarterback in the Southeastern Conference. The best conference in college football.

Now someone on the LSU sideline is showing something else. He knows he has got a shot coming and he has a chip on his shoulder from how his previous stint as the starter went.

Jarrett Lee isn't a freshman anymore and he is itching to prove that to LSU fans.

He wants to show that his overly-criticized redshirt freshman season in 2008 is behind him. You know, the year when nobody expected the Tigers to repeat, but when Lee came in against Auburn and showed some potential for the LSU passing game. Which then brought unrealistic expectations upon him thus leading LSU fans to "call for his head" when it looked as though he would not deliver on those said unrealistic expectations.

Now this is where I tell Tiger fans to cool their jets if/when Lee returns to the starting role.

Is Crowton on the hot seat?
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When he does take the field, the Tigers won't turn into the New Orleans Saints. They will still be a run-first team, just with a QB that will show more competency in the pocket when called upon to do so.

Lee's interceptions won't disappear. He still is going to have some rust from not having extensive game action. It will take some time for him (probably one quarter/one half) to get back into the groove of being a starting QB in the SEC.

The insertion of Lee won't change the play calling. Similar questionable playcalls will still find their way into LSU games  Gary Crowton and co. will still feel the need to run WR screens on 3rd and long.

All Tiger fans can hope for is that those transparent option calls turn into more playaction passes and other plays that attack the intermediate zones of opposing defenses. Hopefully those plays keep opposing linebackers from keying in so much on the run and open up some running lanes for Stevan Ridley, Alfred Blue, and Richard Murphy.

Increased passing calls would also make better use of Terrance Toliver, Rueben Randle, Russell Shepard and DeAngelo Peterson .

But for all of us to see if that will happen (notice that I'm saying that not saying it will 100% definitely happen), Miles needs to pull the trigger on a move that obviously can't make the Tigers offense any worse.


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