Browns57 Posted April 30, 2010 Report Share Posted April 30, 2010 Cleveland Browns' Colt McCoy impressed Ohio State coach Jim Tressel By Bill Livingston, The Plain Dealer April 29, 2010, 8:51PM Ohio State's Jim Tressel saw first-hand how dangerous Colt McCoy can be when McCoy led Texas to a last-second win over the Buckeyes in the 2009 Fiesta Bowl. "Boom" Herron crashed off tackle at the opposing 15-yard line, with nothing but synthetic grass ahead of him, and the roar from the Ohio State crowd engulfed him as he ran into the end zone. There were 2 minutes, 5 seconds to play, and underdog Ohio State had taken the lead from Texas, 21-17, in the 2009 Fiesta Bowl. Underneath the elation was unease. The Buckeyes, who had been trailing, 17-15, might have scored too soon. A field goal, taken after milking the clock, would have won it, too. No coach in his right mind, of course, would have told Herron not to score. You always take the bird in the hand. But Jim Tressel was unhappy at the thought of turning the game back over to Colt McCoy, Quarterback of the Future for the Browns. Ohio State's Jim Tressel saw first-hand how dangerous Colt McCoy can be when McCoy led Texas to a last-second win over the Buckeyes in the 2009 Fiesta Bowl."Throughout the drive we talked about burning as much clock as possible. That is why we ran the same basic off tackle play two times in a row. I'm not sure we expected to break one for a TD. When we scored with that much time on the clock it did concern me. However, I had confidence in our defense as well," said Tressel. McCoy -- who had no running game, who "had been hit like he had never been hit before," according to Tressel -- took the Longhorns 78 yards in 11 plays and won the game with 16 seconds to play. Tressel felt he had seen a ghost. The Colt McCoy of that game was far more mature than the redshirt freshman whose team had lost to the Buckeyes in Austin, Texas, in 2006. He reminded Tressel, an old Baldwin-Wallace quarterback, of Drew Brees before he became America's Quarterback and the saint of New Orleans. Preparing for Purdue's "basketball on grass" offense in 2001, Tressel, then a first-year head coach at OSU, watched film of Brees, who had graduated in 2000, passing the Buckeyes dizzy in a 31-27 comeback victory. McCoy, a Browns third-round draft pick, is about the same size as Brees. Has the same obvious leadership qualities. Led the same rally against the Buckeyes without anything to rely on except his arm. "Both Drew and Colt are first-class people, but it took time for Drew to become the player he is today," said Tressel. "I think, over time, Colt will play that position in the NFL. He certainly has one of the very, very best tutors in Mike Holmgren." At Ohio State, Tressel monitored the growth of Glenville's Troy Smith, as Smith went from a running quarterback to a Heisman Trophy-winning, pocket-passing, Michigan-killing monster. "The biggest thing with Troy was making him realize he had to see the big picture," said Tressel. He was referring not only to playbook options, but to learning to conduct himself like a leader off the field ,too. The Steelers' Ben Roethlisberger, among others, has not learned that yet. "I'm pretty sure Colt already knows that," Tressel said. He discounts criticism that quarterbacks from the spread offense are unsuited for the NFL game. "Almost all of the players in college now have run some spread in high school. It's becoming more of a presence in the NFL, too," said Tressel. "Peyton Manning is in the shotgun a lot. Tom Brady goes empty [with no one else in the backfield] and takes the Patriots right down the field. I don't think there's the same emphasis on the prototypical NFL quarterback." Asked the top quality a quarterback must have, Tressel said, bluntly, "Toughness." He thinks McCoy might have hung on to the ball, taking the big hits, too much in the most controversial moment of his college career. In the Big 12 championship game, sacked repeatedly by Nebraska's Ndamukong Suh, McCoy allowed all but one second to run off the clock before throwing the ball away. On the game's last play, Texas won on a field goal, 13-12. "He looked dazed at the end. That was one of those knockdown, drag-out, heavyweight title fight games," said Tressel. "Colt will probably have some of those at Browns Stadium with the Ravens and the Steelers." Tressel's only doubts about McCoy involve timing. "It's just so important," said Tressel. "I thought Marty Schottenheimer did a marvelous job when Bernie Kosar was a rookie, having him turn and hand off, turn and hand off, until he got used to the speed of the game and the athleticism of the players. Same with Mark Sanchez with the Jets. Run the ball, run the ball, and throw on safe passing downs. "In high school," he continued, "quarterbacks complete passes to receivers who are wide open. In college, they complete them to receivers who are open. In the pros, they complete them to receivers who are covered. The throw has to be to a spot." With the Browns, Tim Couch was battered because the offensive line was not ready. Derek Anderson was battered. Brady Quinn was battered. A lifelong Browns fan, Tressel said: "You don't want to get Colt beat up right away. Let him rest and learn. That way, he doesn't face that weekly grind of being the guy who has to come through. When he's ready, maybe the Browns will be ready too, and that wonderment of good timing will be with Cleveland, for once." Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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