You must ask yourself, which late-game play more epitomized Mississippi State’s passing game (and its glaring lack of chemistry) on Thursday night, this one (Chris Relf to Leon Berry on 2nd and 10 with the game on the line):
Or this one (Relf to open space on 4th and 10 with the game on the line):
....Which, of course, raises a couple questions amongst Cowbell Nation. First, did playing two quarterbacks hurt State against Auburn? And if so, is that okay?
Sometimes Chris Relf looked like he was gaining rhythm. Sometimes he looked like a cross between Wayne Madkin and a poor man’s JaMarcus Russell. But he can sure run that option and really open up the field.
Tyler Russell, on the other hand, is the future Bulldog fans have been waiting on, and frankly, one they’ve never had. Some drunk just drooled the name Kevin Fant. Go back to sleep, buddy.
But Russell, the green piece of fresh fish that he still is, doesn’t yet have the decision-making that can compensate for the plays Relf makes with his feet. But it will come in time, and that's why he needs to be on the field along with Relf.
Quickly, don’t let me leave without calling out the receivers, who were the culprits greater than quarterback moxie, or lack thereof, on Thursday night, the first SEC head-to-head on the year. Under the big lights, the palms buried the fingers in sand.
Chad Bumphis set a tone early with a drop ... although Dan Mullen did go to him on the next two snaps, instilling confidence in on of his top play-makers. But from TE Marcus Green’s drop in the end zone (at least State ended up scoring) to WR Leon Berry’s drop close to the end, I’d say hands drills need to be the focus in practice for the next several days.
But in the end, it will be two quarterbacks until Dan Mullen decides that it won’t be. And Mississippi State fans, you’ll take it. This team is developing with hope, not hoping for a premature destination.
Besides, I’d rather Tyler Russell be welcomed to the SEC sooner rather than later.