Utah vs ASU – Travis Wilson’s decision making is making the difference

Utah Utes - Travis Wilson

Travis Wilson had arguably one of his best games at Utah.  This is also very impressive coming against ASU who he traditionally has struggled against.  Below is his stat line for the game.

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He threw for a season high 297 yards.  He was sacked 5 times against ASU where in the previous 5 games he has only been sacked a combined total of 2 times.  However, he was able to complete 72.2% of his passes and connect on some good chunk yardage plays.  His decision making this year has been the difference in games where Utah has struggled in the past.

Travis is doing things this year in the run and pass game that he didn’t do in previous years.  He’s progressing through his reads, stepping into the pocket, and reading defenses.  We can argue if past years was indeed his fault or the coaches, but the point is he’s a much better quarterback this year compared to last year and it’s not just the numbers, though, they will back it up as well.

 

Travis is reading defenses and calling plays at the line of scrimmage. 

Here is Booker’s TD off a option run to the right side.  Travis recognizes pressure is going to come from the left side.

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His first decision is to run the play to the opposite side of where the pressure is coming from.

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The 2nd decision he needs to make is if he is going to keep the ball himself or to pitch it to Booker.  He reads the defensive player perfectly.  Keeps the ball until the defensive player commits.  As soon as the defensive player commits he pitches the ball to Booker who is left with a HUGE lane.

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The blocking was great on this play.  Very well executed.

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Here are two different camera angles of the play.  Very impressed with Travis’ execution of the offense on this play.

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Travis is using his eyes and pump fakes to move defensive players away from his targets.

Check out the pressure Travis is seeing at the line of scrimmage.  He shows great poise by letting the play develop and trusting in his offensive line.

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On this play Covey fades out to the flat.  You see Travis look off to Covey, pump fake, and then deliver the pass to KScott.  When he pump fakes to the flat the guy defending KScott hestitates just long enough that KScott is able to move behind him and get open.

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Just a well designed play and Travis makes the right decision again.  Looking off DB’s and pump faking is a sign of a very good QB.  He’s got a great understanding of the offense and how it works.

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Travis is stepping into the pocket to deliver throws.

Too many times in previous years Travis either would throw off his back foot or he decided no one was open and would try to scramble before the WR’s really got into their routes.  He’s now trusting in his Oline and stepping into the pocket to deliver his throws.  The Oline and the ability of Booker to block should get a lot of credit for this progression in Wilson’s game because of the trust and protection they’ve given Travis.  It’s made a huge difference in my opinion.  Here are 3 different plays where it really demonstrates Travis’ poise in the pocket.

1 – Here is a play in the first quarter where ASU brings an extra guy from the right side.  Booker does a great job picking up the blitzer.  Instead of panicking Wilson steps into the pocket and delivers a strick to Kscott.

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2 – Throw to Hampel on a seam route.

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3 – Throw to Tyrone Smith.  Let a WR run around long enough and he’ll get open.  Travis again let’s his WR’s get into their routes and steps into the pocket.

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A ton of credit needs to go to the Oline and Booker for giving Travis the needed protection and picking up the blitzes.  However, Travis was sacked 5 times against ASU and it didn’t seem to really phase his game.     It’s great to see what a healthy Travis Wilson has been able to do this year without the limitations of an untrusting coach.  From what I can tell Travis has made huge strides this season.

 

Find me on Twitter @SouthJordanUte.  I’d love to hear your feedback.

About the author

Spencer Beesley

  • byulaw

    Great break down. Thank you.