Second Scrimmage much like the first

The second scrimmage of the spring ended much like the first — with the offense trotting off the field after an unsuccessful two-minute drill.

The Rutgers football team has still been unable to put much together offensively, completing just five of 19 passes during the drill period, failing to score all five times.

Despite that, head coach Greg Schiano was still impressed enough with the play of senior quarterback Domenic Natale to say that he has an edge over the pair of redshirt freshmen in open competition.

"I think Domenic has been displaying a better grasp of the system," Schiano said. "I think he's separating himself from the other two guys right now, but you know we have another week. Hopefully D.C. and Steve can gain back on him."

Natale was the most consistent quarterback throughout the day, completing 7-of-17 passes through a torrential downpour. He was also the only one to not turn the ball over as D.C. Jefferson threw two interceptions and Steve Shimko added a third to go along with a lost fumble on a killer hit from Colin McEvoy.

"[Natale] makes more plays, not that there's a ton of plays made anywhere, but he's making more than the other two right now in practice and in the scrimmage," Schiano said.

Schiano said that the struggles of the receiver group have also played a key role in the inability of the quarterbacks to sustain a drive.

Between the injuries to redshirt freshmen Eddie Poole and Marcus Cooper and a potential injury to senior Tim Brown (Schiano said that Brown got hurt at the scrimmage today, but did not disclose the severity or basis of the injury), the receivers are stretched thin.

Add in a ton of dropped passes and the group has done nothing to help the quarterbacks win the contested job.

"We're not making plays right now at the wide receiver position, period," Schiano said. "We're just not catching the ball. Timmy [Brown] is the only one who's catching it. We have to be able to catch it, and I'm not just talking about today. We're getting better because it was really, really lacking at the beginning of the spring."

The running game, however, continued to strive in the scrimmage setting with sophomore Joe Martinek leading the way with in excess of 120 yards on the day including a 59-yard run for the first team's lone offensive touchdown.

With walk-on sophomore running back Tyrone Putman now officially out with a broken arm, sophomore Ben Boursequot and freshman Damien Moore saw increased action.

Boursequot ran for in excess of 50 yards and the team's other touchdown on 10 attempts and Moore ran for in excess of 30 yards on just four attempts.

"We're all working hard, doing everything we can," Martinek said. "The running backs have to keep doing what we're doing — working hard and trying to be the best we can."

The defense played well as well, with Khaseem Greene, David Rowe, Al Ghaffaar Lane, Jim Dumont, Sorie Bayoh, Wayne Thomas and Al-Majid Hutchins excelling.

The defense also made three picks on the day with two coming from fifth-year senior Billy Anderson and the other coming from redshirt freshman Wayne Warren.


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