Ole Miss Football: Making The Grade, Game One, South Alabama Jaguars

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Offensive Grades

Ole Miss Rebels Football
Ole Miss Rebels Football /

Ole Miss Rebels Football

Overall this is an outstanding offense. They are dynamic with threats all over the field. However, when you break down the offense there is still room for improvement.

The one big gray elephant in the room (no pun intended) is the absence of a legitimate rushing attack. This is the one and only question mark on the offense for the entire game.

Rushing, Grade B-

When you break down the Rebels on the offensive side of the ball it’s hard to find fault in a win. However, we know once the grind of SEC play begins we have to have some sort of balance on that side of the ball. Last night was a great night but there was no balance.

Sure there were plenty of positive yards when it came to solo runs, however when you factor in the number of carries then we see we have a problem. Although the large part of the rushing attack relies on the passing ability there is still room for improvement when it comes to balance. On the night, Ole Miss running-backs accounted for a very meager 102 yards from scrimmage. However, those yards came on only 29 attempts.

D’Vaughn Pennamon was Ole Miss’ leading rusher on the night with 7 carries for 34 yards and a TD. Eric Swinney had 6 carries for 29 yards while Jordan Wilkins had 8 carries for 29 yards as well.

Passing, A+

The preseason hype was squarely on quarterback Shea Patterson and a bevy of talented wide receivers. This offense has the potential to score quick and often and did Saturday night thanks to a very dangerous quarterback in Patterson. Shea has the arm to make any pass on the field and the footwork to get out of pursuit.

Of course, when you have the receivers Patterson has then you can expect some big plays. That was the case against South Alabama. The Rebels saw two big catches go for TDs by Starkville native AJ Brown. Brown broke the single game receiving record with 8 receptions for 236 yards and the 2 TDs. DaMarkus Lodge also had a huge night with 5 catches for 51 yards and 2 TDs. DK Metcalf had 8 receptions for 84 yards and Van Jefferson had 2 receptions for 24 yards.

Overall, it was a prolific night offensively. Anytime you have a player with a record-breaking night then you know the offense was clicking hard. Saturday night that was the case for Coach Longo and Shea Patterson. The offense rolled against South Alabama to the tune of 531 yards of total offense.

Overall Offensive Grade, A-

This offense is very good however there is always room for improvement as stated earlier. In the SEC the defenses will be much better against the pass and there will have to be a Rebel rushing attack to keep the better defenses honest. Of course as long as Shea and his receivers can score at will then it’s easy to see a pass happy offense. Ole Miss football fans love the passing attack, however we have to have balance.

The Longo offense is well-known for its focus on passing and we’ll see much more of it very often in the next game. However, don’t be surprised to see more attention devoted to the rush in the next few games. Keep in mind, Longo’s offense is a running-backs garden of Eden when it gets moving.