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Wisdom of the crowds: Grading the Missouri offense after 9 games

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Your offensive MVPs for the middle portion of the season: Marcus Murphy, Bud Sasser, Russell Hansbrough, Evan Boehm, and Mitch Morse.

Paul Halfacre

The crowds were full of what I will politely call tough love.

Quarterback

Maty Mauk: 4.38 (last time: 5:85)

Comments:

"It stinks!" - Jay Sherman. But seriously, the UGA and UF games were the most inept offensive performances I've ever seen, and I remember the Kyle Orton-led 2005 Chicago Bears.

(This comment has been intercepted)

Bad Feet. Bad Reads. Predictable in pocket.

Definite improvement in the Kentucky game. Needs to continue to improve on going through progressions and moving vertically when leaving the pocket.

Definitely a roller coaster ride with Maty. He's definitely an athlete with great legs and a big arm but he needs to learn patience and has to learn not to get spooked and bail out of the pocket too early. There are a lot of times where he bails out to his right and he has open receivers to his left and to the middle that he just cannot see because he isn't tall enough. With that being said, he does need a lot more help from receivers not named Bud Sasser. They need to start working better to get open and need to work their way back to the ball to give Maty more options whenever the play breaks down. If we have to take one shaky year with Maty to get all of the cobwebs and kinks worked out for a couple of good years from him then its all worth it.

Disappointing. Hopefully he can figure out how to throw an accurate, catchable short pass over the offseason...if not, Mizzou might have another lackluster offense next season too.

Do we really have to go there?

Good enough for 2-1

Hard to watch in SEC play....but hey, it's "Money Season", he has the talent, just was a little too cocky this off season, following his success last year....maybe with him being humbled he'll improve his craft....honestly I think Drew Lock could do better today, I mean HS Elite 11 Drew Lock right now!

Has started to step up into the pocket, which will begin to pay big dividends. Is still prone to locking onto Sasser and not working through his progressions quick enough to find other open receivers ( watching film it seems there are enough opportunities ).

Having a difficult time reading defenses, and pieces around him not helping. Easy to say that from the sideline or TV, but looks like his confidence has been zapped.

He will mature and see the whole field. Good coaches, good players. We have had inconsistent quarterback play for decades prior to Brad Smith with some very great quarterbacks that were inconsistent.

I think what we've figured out is that Mauk can be Bo Wallace. We can win the East with that as long as he's not turning the ball over.

I've seen worse. (Gabbert in JAX comes to mind!)

improving after learning that he cannot do it all.

Incandescent at times, awful at times. But his WR choices are limited and often injured. Hope recruiters are scanning the U.S. map for WRs who've graduated.

Inconsistent. Too many dangerous throws outside the pocket. Not able to hit open receivers.

It appears to be getting better..slowly but surely.

Looked better these 3 games but still not a Mizzou Caliber QB we are used to.

Maty could have been more effective. However he is playing with 1 hand tied behind his back. With only Sasser as a reliable (Hunt/White) Hurt most of the season. He is doing this with Chicken wire.So to me considering the o-line has been up and down coupled with poor backup receiving depth. (blame Coaches). Henson not playcalling to his strengths or the teams and the running backs banged up with Pinkel refusing to play the freshmen. He has done an impossible job. Lest us remember if (DGB and Copelin ) were here my tune would be different. Both were starters with huge upside. But we know how that turned out.

Maty has a lot of growing to do still, but also needs more help.

Maty's trending in the right direction, but he's not there yet. Keep improving on the short routes, develop some consistency, and make the right plays with your legs, and we'll have something.

Not setting the world on fire but he seems to be getting better week by week

Ok, I was wrong about Mauk. He was very bad during the UF game, and not much better in the games before and after that one. At least it looks to be improving. -Mac6

Receiving corps's need to be more aggressive on their routes to give MM better targeted plus MM needs to be more aware of the defense and just relax he's trying not to make mistakes go for it.

Seems like he freaks out like Gabbert used to only maybe worse.

Since SEC play he has looked like one of the worst QB's in the FBS hopefully the recent improvement continues

Sophomore slump?

teams figured him out. Force him out of the pocket and he makes poor decisions. Underperforming thus far.

Too slow to find an open option, not enough zip on some passes, too many missed easy passes, some drops by WRs due to poor throws. Can be mobile at times. Shows toughness. Could benefit from more pass protection and shorter high-percentage passes to move the chains.

"Unfortunately he has regressed throughout the season, until the Kentucky game. Obviously, there is less offensive talent around him this year when compared to last year. But the O-Line has not been nearly has bad as some people like to point out, and while drops have happened, they have not happened at a record pace.

After a year of great promise in 2013, ""is this his ceiling"" is at least a fair question.

PS: I do not believe Mauk has maxed out his potential, but I also have a difficult time seeing him get there."

What happened?!

While Mauk has struggled as you would expect of a guy with less than 10 starts under his belt, he has improved in the areas that need specific improvement. Like stepping up in the pocket. He's young but he's not dumb and I expect his growth to continue and for him to be a real difference maker over the next two years.

Will have to make improvement in each of the last three games if Mizzou wants to make it to Atlanta. Is not getting a ton of help from his receivers or O line.

Running backs

Marcus Murphy: 7.92 (last time: 7.67)
Russell Hansbrough: 6.59 (7.76)
Ish Witter: 4.88 (4.28)

Coaches need to call more screens and swing passes plus more options to get them out in space.

Don't know about Witter or Walters as Pinkel refuses to play them . I think that is a shame considering that Steward will never play this year. And with 3 commitments for RB next year we could see transfer's (Hans and Murph) are as Pinkel says WE do what we do players. So both are play a role. But neither can be 20 touch a game guys

Hansbrough has dimmed a little, but maybe that's only in relation to the burning star that is Marcus Murphy.

How much has the injury to Steward hurt this group

I think that the RB's are very good but they aren't breaking many big runs, need some explosiveness in the running game.

Inconsistent, but saved our bacon in the SC game so some of that goodwill carries over. They still seem under-utilized at times.

Ish needs more snaps. We miss Steward.

It also seems like Russell has declined slightly and hasn't been as explosive and hitting his holes as he was in the non conference schedule. He's still a very strong runner who needs to work on his vision a little more. Marcus continues to wow with his vision and ability to take a hit and keep going. he is definitely the #1 play maker on the offense and we probably need to up his workload for the remaining 4(hopefully 5) games. Still just haven't seen enough from Ish to give any kind of accurate assessment.

Marcus Murphy is phenomenal!

Murph has been electric in return game. Still need more big plays in running game from both backs. However, considering the o-line's mediocre play Russ and Murph have been really good.

Murphy does it all. All-SEC utility player

No breakaway speed a la Josey.

No one is doing anything wrong. I just wish we had more big plays.

Often inspired. Wish the Tigers had a bruiser.

Our running backs are solid and sometimes spectacular!

Playing well, best unit on offense. Liked what I saw from Ish in the UK game.

RBs have been stellar, for the most part. Hansbrough just keeps running bigger than he is, and Murph does Murph things.

Run. Run. Run. When fully healthy both Murph and Hansborough have been the best players on the field.

Russell and Marcus look great. I would like to see Murphy break one soon. Ish finally looks like he is thinking about more than just "don't fumble", recently.

Russell is too often on his heels looking to cutback. Murph is a more downhill, looking for the seem type runner, which works best with this line. Ish just doesn't get enough carries ( hell of a way to burn a redshirt ).

Some have said Josey would have more success had he stayed, but I don't see the holes from the O-line. Cut back lanes aren't there, but I don't see them making the right decisions. Certainly getting their opportunities.

Still the best unit on offense. Mansbrough gets the TDs, but Murphy gets the 9 for his returns. -Mac6

They are all we have but we run terrible plays and barely block for them. I cant imagine how good they would be with good plays and good blocking. Im afraid their bodies cannot keep taking the punishment they take.

They are the men carrying the water for the offense, keeping doing what you do Running Backs.

We need more of it.

Wide Receivers

Bud Sasser: 7.31 (last time: 7.93)
Jimmie Hunt: 5.37 (6.57)
Nate Brown: 4.92 (N/A)
Darius White: 4.34 (6.13)
Lawrence Lee: 4.01 (3.81)
Wesley Leftwich: 3.66 (4.71)
Gavin Otte: 3.49 (3.62)

"Money Season"

Backups need some Gorilla Glue on their fingers.

Brown looked good last week. Leftwich, Lee, and Otte not so much. Bud is the man. Jimmie's looking like himself again. And I really hope we get Darius back after the bye.

Bud Sasser he's the man, and Nate Brown, he's becoming the man, and JIMMIE, get open!

Bud would be a great #2 on a good offense...that he is our #1 sums up the state of our wr corp. The other wrs leave much to be desired. Hope to see Brown more involved, he has a high ceiling.

Can't seem to get open. Nate Brown may be our best #2 if he can find the field.

Get well RIGHT NOW, Darius!

Hard to grade when you aren't getting balls thrown your way ( maybe route running is an issue ). I'm curious that J'mon isn't on here and I don't recall seeing him in the Kentucky game. He was beginning to show promise as is Nate Brown, but again, hell of a way to burn a redshirt.

Hold on to the passes

Lee, Moore, and Brown are starting to show up Sasser has been good...... otherwise its been scary

Love me some Nate Brown. Sasser has proved the only reliable threat. Other receivers are not able get separation, and have a case of butterfingers other times.

Most disappointing group of players, Sasser has been impressive but the rest of the receiving core has been disappointing.

Most disappointing unit on offense in my eyes. Jimmie Hunt has all but disappeared, not sure if that's a Jimmy thing or Mauk not looking his way, but he hasn't done much since his injury. Terrible that Darius White has been nagged so much by his injury. Liking what I'm seeing from Brown. Not really sure what, if anything Otte brings to the table.

Nate needs more snaps.

Otte needs more snaps.

Pinkel and Washington along with Henson have failed the Freshmen to this point. They all should be playing and playing early. Pinkel knew that (DGB and Copelin) were not playing. If you run a spread with 4 wideouts most of the time you need at least 10 wr's We only had 3 as the coaching staff refused to get the freshmen any experience. Richard and Blair will not see the field. Big mistake for next year. Dilosa out injury. so with (Wht/Hunt) hurt most of the year. again Mauk has played out of his head. Sasser is a servicable guy. But the Tigers miss the big game threat.

Play the younger guys more call more sets for Brown,Moore,Lee

Sasser gets teh most shots but he drops way too many.

Sasser has been good, the others have been kinda anonymous.

Sasser is the best of the top three, big drop off after that. Nate Brown looking better though. -Mac6

Sasser would be a 9 if he'd get his drop number down, but other that that he's been an incredible asset for a receiver core filled with player names I wouldn't know if I only had a passing interest. 7 for Nate Brown cause I like his potential

Sasser would be an awesome #2.

Stop dropping passes.

Thank goodness we have Air Bud! Jimmie Hunt has been somewhat disappointing. White got a 5 because he's been decent to good when healthy. The rest are getting enough reps to really make an impact

This group is not less talented than the Jerrell Jackson/Wes Kemp unit. They *generally* are sure-handed, but need to be thrown open.

Too many dropped balls

Too many MIAs

Tough to judge because of poor QB play. Sasser is the playmaker. Darius could have been great but can't stay healthy.

We are seriously lacking in production in this area of the offense. Bud Sasser continues to only be the real steady receiver. It seems like whenever the younger guys get in they are way too shell shocked and cannot reel in passes. I do think they need to do a better job of breaking off routes and coming back to the ball whenever the play isn't there so that Maty has options if the pocket breaks down or if he has to get out of it. We have the ability to win our last 3 regular season games and the way this group plays will have a huge outcome of those games.

We need better play out of the upperclassmen. Get Darius White in the game. Hunt and Leftwich need to catch the ball and be more physical when they are trying to get open. I thought Gavin Otte was a good receiver, now I have no idea.

White's injury caused more problems than most likely realized. Early in the season, he was an explosive threat that could take the focus off Sasser. Missouri will need White to bounce back these last three weeks to make a run at Atlanta.

Tight End

Sean Culkin: 5.19 (last time: 6.22)
Clayton Echard: 3.76 (4.27)
Jason Reese: 3.64 (3.87)

Again, not much here. If/when the passing game gets fully roaring again, maybe there will be more to look at.

All of them have been ok blockers but drops have been brutal

can Culkin catch a ball???

Catch the ball man.

Caulkin has to this point been a major disappointment. Has the measurables but his hands. Saw tape of him in Highschool has not shown that ability yet. Hope he bcomes a threat. Needs to catch 100 balls a day. The other players we dont know about other than can they block

Culkin also improving, but too many drops. -Mac6

Culkin is progressing, catching the ball, next thing up, yards after catch!

Culkin should be spending a lot of time with the juggs machine.

Culkin starting to get more involved and his hands of stone seems to be getting softer

Ditto about Gorilla Glue.

Hard to grade. Sean has had too many drops and I have seen plenty of missed blocking assignments.

I counted 3, THREE passes to Culkin in the first half last Saturday. I think I may have high-fived a fellow spectator after a gain of 5 on one of those passes.

I feel like Sean could be a huge weapon but has had issues catching the ball whenever his number is called. Probably the best passing play I've seen from Maty all year was in the Kentucky game where he stepped up in the pocket and delivered a strike to Culkin on what would have been a 21 yard play and he dropped the ball. He just like all other receivers need to work on getting open and catching the ball whenever its thrown is way.

It is good to see Culkin catching the ball. He has always been tough. TEs will have to be a big part of the passing game from now on.

Not enough throws to these guys. Not enough at ALL.

Not getting chances.

Sean Culkin- Hands of stone! He does seem to be improving, maybe it's just mental with him.

Sean Culkin, you are not Chase Coffman, you are also not Eric Waters, I'm actually not sure what you are. I know you have to start becoming a reliable underneath option.

Starting to notice the TEs doing good things. Culkin needs to work on his concentration, I think, but he's been a useful cog.

Stop dropping passes.

They're not using the talent at the TE spot need to exploit the dense with this group

Thought Culkin would for sure be more of a factor with all of the chatter we had heard previously about him being a threat in the receiving game.

Unable to get open.

Offensive line

Exterior
Mitch Morse: 6.11 (last time: 6.59)
Taylor Chappell: 5.09 (6.07)

3 false starts at home.... brutal

Above average.

Chappell is frustrating

Chappell, false starts and getting beat by the weakside DE, not great. Morse is steady.

Getting better and better.

Have been very consistent with run blocking but have to do a lot better at protecting the edge. Also need to be much more disciplined with the snap count and decreasing false start penalties. There is no excuse for that with as an experienced of line as we have.

Line has steadily improved. Chappell has had some issues, but I don't think the tackles have been the source of the line problems.

Looking better, less False Starts so that's good.

Morse has been ok but he is no Justin Britt

Morse has been steady. Chappell has been, meh.

Morse pretty good, Chappell has problems - esp. with false starts. -Mac6

Need game experience excluding Morse

Not good, not bad.

The play of Mauk and the lineman tell the story here. They are not good enough.

They have been solid all year

Yeah, Chappell needs to cut down on the penalties a lot.

Interior
Evan Boehm: 6.58 (last time: 6.33)
Connor McGovern: 6.04 (6.49)
Brad McNulty: 5.74 (5.67)
Mitch Hall: 5.43 (5.73)

Boehm and McGovern have been above average...the others..not so much.

Evan has been a model of consistency aside from one bad game in snapping the ball. Our guards and center have been very good in controlling the line of scrimmage but still need to be more disciplined overall.

Flummoxed about Boehm's performance.

Getting better and better.

I'd give Boehm a 9, except for the indy game.

Interior has improved in the last few games. Still needs bigger holes for the run game though. -Mac6

Interior line seems to be settling down. Boehm's got the snaps under control, and we seem to be figuring out life without Gatti. :(

Interior play has been suspect most of the season. Lets hope this changes down the stretch. They need to play together and that always helps. Hall up to this point has been a major disappointment

Keep forming that pocket for Maty!

McGovern I thought has been the best since he moved to guard, Boehm has been average but that other guard spot has been brutal all year

NOT good enough.

Seems like most of the line problems are on the right side. They are getting better. Cohesion is so important on the O-Line. Keep growing guys!

The interior has generally been crappy.

The line has not been up to snuff in general. I'm not enough of an expert to make a more insightful comment.

They are getting better I see a group that is feeling it along with the OT's

Tough with the shuffle, but I didn't think interior pressure would be the main reason for Mauk's Gabbertitis. Does not seem to have great communication and are not coming off the ball and getting a push on running plays.