On Saturday, Boston College football finished up their spring practices with their annual Jay McGillis Spring Football game. As the team moves into late spring-summer mode, let’s take a look at some of my position projections moving forward. Again these are not set in stone, they are just projections, and the coaching staff may think differently then what I am writing here. But here we go, today we are going to start with the quarterbacks, and over the next few weeks I will post on every other position on the team. These posts are going to include nuggets/stats from the Spring Game, but will be in lieu of a full game recap.
Losses: Johnny Langan to Rutgers
Additions: Sam Johnson (Fr.)
Projected Starter: Anthony Brown (Jr.)
Projected Backup: Matt Valecce or EJ Perry IV
Additional Depth: Sam Johnson, Matt McDonald, Dennis Grosel
Notes: Anthony Brown is going to be the starting quarterback moving forward in 2019, nothing that came out of spring camp indicates otherwise. In the Spring Game he was only used for a series or two going 3-5 for 25 yards, and then was held out. Between some coaching shifts and personal progression a few things are going to need to happen with Brown to help him continue to develop during his junior year. First, he is going to need to become more consistent on his passes, what we saw last year were some gorgeous throws, especially deep, but mixed with some extremely frustrating misfires specifically on the short and intermediate reads. The other piece Brown needs to continue to develop is his reads, especially on third down, where he would hit receivers 2-3 yards short of the sticks. That is partially on him, as he needs to know where he is on the field, but this is also partially on the coaching staff who design the plays and had receivers running routes shorts of the sticks. Hopefully a combination of his own personal development and Mike Bajakian/Steve Addazio’s system will work to address this.
The final piece would be to add something back to Brown’s game. During the Spring Game the offense ran a few RPO (run, pass, option), I’d love to see this added to the game plan. Now, I caution, I don’t want to see this turn into a Tyler Murphy offense, because Brown doesn’t have the explosiveness running the ball, but it could be a great added wrinkle to the gameplan that could keep defenses off balance. Given he had a catastrophic leg injury in 2017, he might not have felt as comfortable running it last year, but maybe with more time to build strength and heal, he will be doing more of what we saw in 2017 than ‘18 with his feet.
In terms of the depth behind Brown, I have a gut feeling that we will be seeing a new backup moving into this season. Matt Valecce ( 9-11, 78 yards in the Spring Game) had a strong spring game, and many of the practice reports highlighted his ability to really throw the ball well. While Perry (4-13, 49 yards in the Spring Game) has the experience, I project Valecce to have a higher upside, and most likely will get the QB2 nod when summer camp breaks. But of course this will continued to be clarified during summer practices, and a lot can change between now and August 31. Addazio has been know to throw the old OR on the depth chart in situations like this, so I wouldn’t be surprised to see Perry and Valecce listed as the backup come the VT game.
True freshman Sam Johnson is on campus, and practiced with the team this spring, going 2-7 for 25 yards in the Spring Game. He is going to need to continue to adjust to the speed of the college game, which may come to him during the summer practices, but I would expect him to land below Perry/Valecce on the depth chart. Unless he really explodes, I would expect that Addazio would want to work on developing him, and possibly redshirting him if they can.