8/20 Scrimmage: Offensive notebook
It was a shaky performance from the offense in Saturday night's scrimmage at Arizona Stadium. The unit only reached the end zone once and found ways to make drives stall and commit turnovers. There were a few bright spots throughout Saturday's session, but overall the offense still has some kinks to work out.
Nick Foles had an up and down scrimmage. He was picked off twice by cornerback Trevin Wade but also found wide receiver Juron Criner for a 39-yard touchdown pass in what was the lone instance the Wildcats found the end zone in the scrimmage. Foles finished 10-for-16 for 136 yards with one touchdown and two picks.
Backup Matt Scott played this weekend after sitting out last week's scrimmage. He finished completing only four out of seven pass attempts for 42 yards. Scott didn't have a rushing attempt, instead focusing more on the passing aspect of his game.
True freshman Daxx Garman had a solid outing. He finished the session 8-for-11 with 91 yards through the air. Garman appears to be getting more comfortable as time passes and while it's highly unlikely he plays this year, he is definitely a player to keep an eye in terms of the future.
Daniel Jenkins had an overall good outing. He only gained 16 yards on five carries, but made noise in the passing game with four receptions for 40 yards. Jenkins' versatility provides UA with a player out of the backfield that should be able to contribute in running situations as well as passing.
KaDeem Carey had an excellent showing with 69 rushing yards on eight carries. Carey showed both power and elusiveness with the ball in his hands. It should be noted that Carey was most productive against the backups, but he was still very impressive nonetheless. The freshman also added a 40 yard kickoff return.
Taimi Tutogi was running the ball with purpose. The big fullback rushed for 35 yards on six carries and displayed the type of power Arizona needs in short-yardage situations.
As a team, UA gained 123 yards on the ground on 22 carries which equates to an average of 5.6 yards per carry. A week ago, the line struggled to open holes in the scrimmage at Fort Huachuca, but it was a much improved performance this time around.
Juron Criner had a productive day with three receptions for 49 yards and a score. Criner's touchdown was in impressive fashion as he caught it over-the-shoulder while cornerback Shaquille Richardson hounded him.
11 different receiving targets caught passes Saturday, but most were within 10-15 yards from the line of scrimmage. Arizona seemed to go very vanilla on offense in the passing game and hardly tested the defense down field. The few times they did they were successful for the most part, but the Wildcats were keeping things mostly basic for the final scrimmage. The offensive line did a solid job for the most part. There were a couple of penalties and slight miscues that cost them, but overall the group looks like it is progressing nicely as camp rolls along.
The offense was a bit sloppy on Saturday and suffered with penalties and turnovers. Despite the shortcomings, there is no question that this team will be able to move the ball with Foles under center. If the running game can replicate what it did Saturday in the regular season, the Wildcats' offense is going to be very difficult to contain as long as it limits its mistakes.
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