Football Frustration Factor

This key Auburn player hopes to make more of a splash than he has done in the first five games.

Auburn, Ala.--Deandre Green says he is a team player. Green says as long as Auburn wins he is happy. Most players would be with the Tigers sitting on top of the SEC West at 3-0.

While there are plenty of reasons for Green to be happy, there are also reasons for a receiver of his caliber to be disappointed despite the success of his Tigers. And he says at times this season that has been just the case. "It has been kind of frustrating for me because I am used to getting the ball," Green says.

The former Blount High standout has just 11 catches for 101 yards in five games this season, but he has also been hampered by an ankle injury and back spasms for the last three games which have slowed his production.

Deandre Green is looking for an improved passing attack this week against Florida.

Coach Tommy Tuberville says Green is fine now. "He's almost 100 percent. He may not be quite there, but he's pretty close."

The coach predicts that the receivers are going to play a big role in this Saturday's game vs. the Florida Gators and that is something that brings a smile to Green's face. The Tigers have attempted only 78 fewer passes than the Gators have through each team's first five games. However, Florida holds a 25-3 margin in touchdown passes.

"Knowing that the coaches say we're going to open up a little bit, that makes me kind of happy because I feel this could be a breakout game for me," Green says. "I can catch more balls than I have been catching and make some things happen on offense."

The Tigers threw just 13 passes last week against Mississippi State and completed seven, but managed to win the game. Green contributed two receptions for eight yards vs. the Bulldogs, but should expect to see more passes from starting quarterback Jason Campbell. "I think with our offense Saturday we are going to have to open the game up a lot more, move the ball, keep the chains moving and try to keep our defense on the sidelines as much as possible," quarterback Campbell says. "We have to put points on the board, so we have a shot to win it."

Florida has not been held under 40 points by any of its five opponents this season. Campbell says he and his pass catchers are going to have to bring their "A games" to Jordan-Hare to be successful against the Gators, who are only allowing nine points a game. The redshirt freshman says he has complete confidence in his receivers and looks forward to throwing the ball their way.

"We have a great receiving corps," he says. "Anytime you get the chance to throw the ball to those guys, it is a great opportunity. They are going to make plays for you. It's just a matter of going out there and doing it."

Green says he is excited to be playing against a pass-happy team like the Gators and states that the Tigers are capable of doing the same thing. "They are a passing team and the way their defense plays, we feel like we can give them a taste of their own medicine, throw the ball right back at them."

While Green wants the football, he says he isn't losing sight of the big picture. "I'm a team player," he says. "As long as we're operating on offense or whoever is catching the ball, I'm with them. As long as we're winning, it really doesn't matter how many balls I get as long as we get the victory."

Tiger Ticket Extra: After missing significant practice in recent weeks because of injury problems, Green has been full speed in practice this week and is beginning to look like his old pre-injury self.


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