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The Davis Option

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Has anyone else noticed the absence of big plays being made at the TE position?  Matthew Kredell of The Daily News is wondering the same thing. Last year it seemed that TE Dominique Byrd was making plays right and left. He could always be counted on for a score or a big play to help SC move the ball. With Byrd moving on to the NFL Fred Davis stepped into the role that was shown to be an important piece of the puzzle during SC's season last year. This season though it seems that the TE position seems to play a less prominent role in the offense than in years past.

Fred Davis was a big part of the USC offense in the first four games, catching 17 passes in his first season starting at tight end.

With Dwayne Jarrett and Steve Smith limited by injuries, it made sense that Davis would become a bigger part of the offense over the past two games.

But it didn't happen. Davis had two catches for 15 yards two weeks ago against Washington, then had just one target and no receptions last week against Arizona State.

"I kind of thought it would be possible," Davis said of getting the ball more. "It's a little frustrating, but that's just the way it is."

One aspect that might be hurting Davis' opportunities is that inexperienced quarterback John David Booty often locks in on one receiver and doesn't go through the progressions to find Davis open the way Matt Leinart would.

The Booty inexperience factor has been noted by others but is really just one of the reasons for that lack of production on offense that we are used to seeing. Obviously,  this year is different with all the injuries on offence it has forced the coaching staff to modify the game plan to compensate for the talent that is on the field. The few plays that I have seen Davis make in the last couple of games have not been the big plays that we were so used to seeing like we did last year and at times it seems he has been susceptible to being stopped in the open field instead of taking tacklers head on and dragging them for a few more yards.

As has been discussed repeatedly this team is still finding its groove. With all the young talent that we have on this team it might take a little longer to work out all the bugs. Davis is still a big part of the game plan and he will continue to play a prominent role as the season progresses.