Player Q&A: Drew Weatherford Part 1

Monday, as he does every week, starting quarterback Drew Weatherford spoke extensively with the media about his team's performance. In part one of two, the sophomore discusses communication problems, the team's confidence and splitting time with Xavier Lee.

Q: After a game like the one you all played Saturday, is there the feeling now that you have made it to the other side of a rough patch of games?

A: Yeah, there's always that game during the season that the light come kind of comes on. I feel like for us last year … for me personally it was the Boston College game. You know, when I started and our offense really started to click. Yeah, we weren't playing against the toughest opponent (in Rice) but I don't necessarily think our problem on offense was – who we were playing against. It was almost to the point where we were trying to overcome the mistakes we had. (The ones) we had been making over and over again. Whether it be a fumble or incomplete pass, a dropped ball, a break down in protection. We just never seemed to be consistent and be able to maintain a drive and we finally did that several times. Sometimes you need that confidence. Everybody does, from running backs to receivers to the offensive line. To know that we can move the ball and I feel like that game gave us that confidence.

Q: You have been pretty self-critical of your play through the first three games this season. How do you evaluate yourself after Saturday's game?

A: I thought I played well. There's always plays I wish I would have made. For example, when I threw the ball to Greg Carr in the endzone, I left it a little too far inside and the DB made a play. If I had thrown it maybe two feet outside he would have probably scored there. Lorenzo Bookeron the wheel route. I went back (and looked at the film) and I ended up having more room than in the back of the endzone to throw it than I actually realized. We ended up getting pass interference because the guy was face guarding and I just threw it at his back because I knew they were going to call it. If I could go back I probably would have given him a chance in the back of the endzone. There's always things you can go back and look at to improve but all in all I thought I played pretty solid. Nothing spectacular. Just did what I was supposed to do.

Q: The coaches said that they had a plan to get Xavier Lee into the game on the third series no matter what. Were you aware of that plan?

A: Yeah, we talked about it. I guess it was the day before the game. They just let me know what the situation was going to be so I wasn't surprised by it or anything. I was fine with it because he needs to get reps when the game is on the line and not necessarily when the game's out of hand. It seems like he has always been put in really bad situations whether we are down or we are up by a lot and neither one of those gives you a really good look at … it doesn't give the coaches a real good evaluation time for him. They want to see him when the game's still in hand one way or the other and see how he plays and reacts and how our team does. How we execute.

Q: Jeff Bowden mentioned that there is still some miscommunication with you this season that there wasn't a year ago.

A: There's been little stuff. There's been little communication problems here and there. I really cant put my finger on what it is exactly. I don't know if it's a lack of concentration or what. I don't know. We've had little problems with communication the whole year. That's something we are going to need to fix.

Q: What kind of miscommunication is it?

A: There's been times where I've been audibling. We have certain plays where it's either or a run or pass and sometimes I'll check and half the line of scrimmage will be run-blocking and the other half of them will actually pass block. That's happened once this year which is kind of weird. It never happens at practice. There's been times where I got the wrong signal from the sideline. Not that the signal was wrong but I got it wrong. We do everything number-wise. I see nine instead of 19. It's (motioning with his hand to show one finger) and nine for 19 and I just see the nine. I call play nine and it's wrong. I think we have had a miscommunication problem at least once in every ballgame so far. I think we will get better at it. Actually, I think last game was the fewest amount of miscommunication problems so we've gotten better.

Q: Do you have the green light to call timeouts when you have those problems?

A: Yeah, without a doubt. They don't want us to run a play they didn't call and they don't want us to go out and execute a play ineffectively. It would be much better to use a timeout and regroup and come back and run another play. The worst thing that can happen is have something bad like that happen in a communication problem and go out … a lot of times one mistake will lead to several others and that can hurt you in a ballgame.

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