4/3 Practice Notes: Offensive Skill Positions

Inside Sparta Contributing Analyst Scott Cooley discusses the skill positions based on observations during Friday's San Jose State football Spring Practice. He lists those that stood out, and who could make an impact for the 2009 season.

On a windy Friday in San Jose, the San Jose State football team participated in its second installment of Spring Practice since returning from break, and fifth organized practice overall. This is what Inside Sparta gathered from the sidelines:

The intensity in every aspect of the game seems to be building steam. If someone showed up and had no idea what day of the year it was, one might believe this team was preparing for opening week against the USC Trojans. That is the level of tenacity being exuded between every whistle blown.

San Jose State senior quarterback Kyle Reed is put through drills by Spartan head coach Dick Tomey during Friday's Spring Practice.

The quarterback competition is being battled between Kyle Reed and Jordan La Secla. Both are running equal amount of plays in drills with Reed taking the lead in most of them, which likely indicates he is No. 1 on the depth chart at this point.

Reed without a question has the stronger arm but his accuracy is a concern. It also appears the coaching staff is trying to get him to play in a more cerebral mode.

At one point during a drill, Reed made a mental mistake so Coach Tomey took him aside and gave him a ball. Reed tossed the ball to Tomey, and the coach quickly batted it to the ground. Reed fell on the ball and covered it up as if it were a fumble. This action repeated five or six times and then Reed was allowed to return to the drill.

While Reed has the mobility and experience, which give him the advantage, La Secla looks to be the more pure pocket passer. He would remind WAC fans of Nevada's Colin Kaepernick.

San Jose State redshirt-junior Jordan La Secla will battle for the starting spot in 2009
La Secla is a long, lanky quarterback that stands very tall in the backfield. He has a long baseball-like delivery and throws a very nice, tight spiral. His accuracy can also be off at times, but he is definitely more on point than Reed with the majority of his passes.

Reiterating what Mike Morgan stated in his Spring Practice Notes from March 31, JUCO transfer running back Lamon Muldrow is a brick. He plays very similar to Maurice Jones-Drew with a low center of gravity and is as hard as a cinder block.

With Patrick Perry and "Mojo" in the backfield, the Spartans should have the missing pieces of the running game the team so desperately needed last season.

Kevin Jurovich seems to be back to form after missing 10 games last season with an illness. After watching receivers run through drills, he is without question San Jose State's top threat. At 6-0, 183-pounds, Jurovich resembles a poor man's Wes Welker (New England Patriots). Not the biggest or fastest guy on the field, but consistently getting open in tight windows and possessing the ability to catch the ball in traffic.

San Jose State junior wide receiver Marquis Avery is a junior college transfer who looks to get major playing time in 2009

Another playmaker turning heads at the wideout position is JUCO transfer Marquis Avery. He was donning a No. 5 jersey at practice but the official roster has him listed as No. 9. The confusion had everyone on the sideline who was watching the offensive unit whispering, "Who is this guy wearing the No. 5 jersey?"

People were taking notice and wanted to know because he looked really good. Avery is a big, physical receiver at 6-foot-4, 205-pounds who has already received high praise from the Spartan coaching staff and could be a legitimate threat in the red zone.

Execution at the tight end position this season will be a big determining factor as to whether the offense struggles or finds success.

The offense really seemed to be working on getting rid of the ball quicker, and having a tight end option is a way to do that. Don't be surprised to see the ball coming over the middle to tight ends like Terrance Williams (6-5, 225) with more frequency this season.




Scott Cooley is a Special Contributor to Inside Sparta. You may contact Scott with any questions, comments, or tips at scott@insidesparta.com

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