Film Room: Mitch Trubisky

The Inside Carolina staff convened to review and discuss film from the Spring Game. In this segment, beat writer Greg Barnes, columnist Buck Sanders and analyst Jason Staples discuss clips of quarterback Mitch Trubisky.

Jason: That's a really good throw. That's one that I measure quarterbacks by a lot, because that's a hard throw. This is one of the hardest throws in football. What I want to see is if a guy is able to put it in exactly the right spot where a guy is able to catch it moving away and not break stride. And if he's able to do that consistently, you've got a guy who's an accurate quarterback.

Buck: Singleton did a good job catching the ball with his hands.

Jason: Yeah, and a lot of that is because the pass was exactly where it's supposed to be. What you're supposed to do is put the ball a yard in front of him moving a little bit away so that he can catch it moving forward and away. A lot of people don't realize that that's a very difficult throw because you're throwing to someone moving away from you.

For me, in this offense, I want a quarterback that's going to get the ball out of his hands very quickly. I want somebody who is going to see that, get it to the flat, or move on.

Jason: That's a bad read. That's got to go to the slot. This is man coverage, so he's got to go to the slot. He just misread that. This is a smash route, so all you've got is a flag and that little inside smash underneath. What you're supposed to do as a quarterback is read that underneath corner, and if he sinks, you throw underneath and that's your immediate read. If he doesn't sink and you've got man, then you throw over the top to the flag. It's a simple two-man read.

Greg: He's not even looking on the top side of the screen because that's a 3-on-2 situation, so the bottom package is his best option.

Jason: You want to see where M.J. Stewart is playing. Stewart games him a little bit, but you can see that his hips are forward here, so Mitch should know when that happens that he's got to go to the flag. In rhythm, that's going to be a really quick decision, but if I'm the quarterbacks coach, I'm going to ask him what he saw and I'm going to say, ‘Well, you can take what you want there, but you might give it another beat…

Greg: And throw it down here inside the 20?

Jason: Yes. It's six and one-half dozen at some point, but I might want him to be a little more aggressive on first down.

Buck: The receiver should have probably caught this pass.

Jason: It should have been a better route by the receiver, but you cannot put a better throw in there than that, though. That's a confident throw and that's a really good throw…

That's good quarterbacking. What you have here is a kid who should be All-ACC second- or third-team.

Buck: Let me ask you a question. In this particular scrimmage – I suppose it's possible to read too much into it – Marquise was sacked six times and Trubisky was only sacked once. Is that a result of Trubisky getting rid of the ball quickly?

Jason: Absolutely.

Greg: That's how Trubisky explained it after the game. He told me he was really focused on getting the ball out fast.

Jason: Fedora at coaches' conferences has said: 'When the quarterback gets sacked in our offense, it's the quarterback's fault.'

To me, in this Spring Game film, the quarterback competition isn't close. You can read too much into it, but in going through this film, the quarterback competition isn't close.

Greg: And to our untrained eyes, this was the closest of the three scrimmages we watched.

He's definitely been sharp throughout this film. It's clear now how Trubisky led his team to 38 points in the Spring Game. What stands out to me is the lack of glaring mistakes in his play. His mechanics are solid, he understands the offense and he consistently makes quick decisions. If the play is not there, we've seen him promptly throw the ball away to live and see another play. We're nit-picking plays where he potentially makes the wrong read and still completes a pass for a short gain. All quarterbacks are going to make mistakes, but at least in this film, his appear to be minor. The only legitimate criticism is that he hasn't seen live game action and yet we're talking about a kid entering his red-shirt freshman season.

Buck: The first thing I think about when talking about a quarterback that's never played in a college game is what he's going to be like once the bullets are live and he's playing in front of the cameras. But judging from Trubisky's demeanor, he appears to be one of the less likely players to be impacted by those things.

Jason: The other side of this, though, is that now kids are constantly in these quarterback camps and in 7-on-7 tournaments that they're doing year-round in high school. They're coming in much more seasoned than they were 6-7-8 years ago. And so the bright lights actually have less impact.

Video by J.B. Cissell

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