McCoy-Chiles: Two, Too Good

The Colt McCoy-John Chiles quarterback package is starting to take shape at Denius Fields.

Just before August camp, Texas coach Mack Brown instructed his assistants to develop a mock 'draft board' in which players were ranked -- regardless of position -- according to their talent and expected levels of productivity. Backup QB John Chiles ranked so high that coaches determined they would get the ball into his hands early and often this season, Davis said. Evidence of that commitment was presented Wednesday, the Horns' third practice of the 2008 season. When not barking signals for the Twos, Chiles lined-up at flanker when Colt McCoy was behind center. Chiles would either motion into a RB spot or provide McCoy with another receiving target down field.

Although RB coach Major Applewhite concedes he has not paid particular attention to the QBs, he added that the schemes on public display represented the "meat and potatoes" of the offense, indicative that the McCoy-Chiles package will be a fixture -- rather than a wrinkle -- in this year's attack.

The genesis of the 'package' deal for the two QBs may have preceded the recent 'draft board' session, according to Chiles. Instead, the concept may have been given legs following a heart-to-heart between Chiles and Brown earlier this summer. That's when Chiles re-emphasized to his head coach that he was only interested in playing QB.

"He told me we'd try to work it out," Chiles said. "He told me during the off-season that if I wanted to stay at quarterback then I would stay at quarterback...I think Coach Brown supports me a lot at the quarterback position. One of the main reasons why I agreed to the package is because he believes in me."

Texas recruited Chiles as both a WR and an ATH, but Chiles told Inside Texas one month before Signing Day to list him solely at QB; he has never backed off from that stance. There were published reports in June that Chiles would either switch to WR or at least get more snaps at that spot, but Chiles has never consider a full-time move.

"It (switching) wasn't an option for me," Chiles continued. "Quarterback is my primary position. I'm just trying to develop. I'm at home at quarterback. That's where I'm most comfortable. I'm a leader. I like to be in charge. At the same time, if I know I can help the team, I want to help the team."

Chiles primarily took snaps at WR as a high school junior before completing his prep days at Mansfield Summit as a quarterback. All told, Chiles accounted for 694 receiving yards, 1,248 rushing yards and 2,036 passing yards during his final two seasons.

"I have to get used to catching again," Chiles continued. "Most of the balls they threw to me in high school were deeps balls, or out-and-ups. Colt has a good arm, so he throws them a little faster than what I was used to. I've talked to him about how I like the ball if I am in the package with the receivers."

Chiles' primary learning curve these days has to do with correcting the positioning of his feet wile throwing.

"I'm trying to get my footwork down as far as passing is concerned. I'm trying to lineup with the targets."

Arguably, the best catch of Wednesday's 11-on-11 drills was Quan Cosby's diving, one-handed snag of McCoy's left sideline toss in tight double-coverage against RCB Curtis Brown and safety Ishie Oduegwu. (From the looks of it, however, DE Brian Orakpo would have been credited with a sack of McCoy in a live situation). Chiles later came back on the same play, feathering a deep ball to James Kirkendoll for a goal line grab. It's only a matter of time, it seems, before McCoy will hook-up with Chiles.

"We're just messing with the package right now," McCoy said. "We're just playing around to see how we're going to use it. When you play quarterback, you have to know what everybody does on the field. I'm sure John has a feel for it already...He knows what to do. When we have him on the field, we have a chance to be pretty explosive."

Thursday's practice at Denius Field, the last session open to the public prior to the August 30 home-opener, is slated to begin at approximately 6:45 p.m.


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