We’ve been hearing the hype for quite some time now, and finally Drew Lock got to show what he could do at the college level. As we all saw, he was able to make some big plays and some really impressive throws. Let’s take a closer look at some of what allowed the true freshman quarterback to be so successful in his first collegiate action.
Drew Lock BENCH pass
A variation of the classic Smash route combo, Bench is used to isolate the furthest outside defender (the flat defender, in this case the outside linebacker) and force him to cover either the speed out route or the corner route coming behind him. Because the offense motions Sean Culkin over, creating a tight formation, the defense defaults to the linebacker covering the flat zone, giving the receiver a favorable matchup, running a corner against a cornerback that has inside leverage. The defender allows J’Mon Moore too much cushion and Lock is more than precise enough to take advantage.
Drew Lock SMASH
Mizzou’s coaching staff must have seen on film that they’d have a major advantage running Smash, because many of the big gains in the pass game were on this route combination. Like in Bench, Smash forces the flat defender to decide between a short route (a hitch, here) or the corner coming behind him. Like on the previous play, the cornerback allows the receiver too much cushion, and Nate Brown is able to get open by the sideline, and Lock once again puts it right on the money.
Drew Lock's 78 yard touchdown pass to Tyler Hunt
This was just a feat of pure athleticism. Once Lock felt the pocket breaking down, he was forced to scramble. When this happens receivers are often given rules for what to do when the quarterback is on the run, one of which is to get open deep, which Tyler Hunt does. Lock’s ability to get his body turned quickly and fire the ball deep downfield (47 yards and on the other side of the field) takes no small amount of skill.
All in all, Lock had a very successful college debut, even if it was against competition that was a pretty major step down from the teams the Tigers will be playing later in the season. Between the glowing practice reports and the exciting debut, the future of Missouri’s quarterback position certainly looks bright.