The Huskers' Unknown Variable in 2016
Photo Credit: Aaron Babcock

‘Oh My Gosh, That’s a Good Play’

August 12, 2017

The Huskers concluded the second full week of fall camp Saturday with a 90-play scrimmage that included lots of “critical situation” stuff according to Coach Mike Riley.

Riley says the team worked on getting the ball after a touchback and driving it, then went to fringe field-goal range at the 45 and drove the ball and did red zone plus 2-minute drill.

Riley’s overall thought on the offensive performance today is that it played with a high level of efficiency.

“There were some snapshots there that look like a picture of what we want to be,” he said. “Some good play-action, down-the-field throws, good efficiency on third downs, made a nice touchdown pass in the red zone.

“Running the ball was pretty good, play-action off the run was pretty good, third-down efficiency looked good at times. Then you get down to the red zone, make a nice move and get a touchdown pass. It looked good.“

>>The Huskers will have one more week of training camp then two weeks of specific Arkansas State install.

>>Tre Bryant missed Thursday’s practice as a precautionary measure with his knee but was a full participant Saturday.

“Tre practiced today and participated,” Riley said. “He looked like he felt good. He did well.”

>>Earlier this week, former Cleveland Browns general manager and current executive director of the Senior Bowl Phil Savage became the latest person to say very positive things about quarterback Tanner Lee. Savage’s comments prompted Riley to be asked how he helps Lee temper the expectations with all the positive attention.

“Coach him and teach him,” Riley said. “We’re not all there yet. It’s not all perfect. So there’s daily evidence of stuff we need to improve. The one thing I’ve noted about Tanner Lee, there’s not a bunch of drama with him.
“High, low, goofy, crazy, mad, happy, it’s kind of like this [flat]. I really like that about him. Nothing much rattles him. I think he understands the process. I think he likes the work, which is, for me, the key. Guy’s got talent, likes to work and give us that everyday.”

>>Riley did nothing to slow down the camp buzz that Tristan Gebbia is firmly in the mix for the second-string quarterback job. He was asked directly if he has seen anything in camp that would change his preference to redshirt the freshman quarterback.

“Yes. I think that Tristan, by the time we get to the season, would function well in a game,” Riley said. “I really do. Now I don’t think that’s the best thing for him, I really don’t, but we also know that for a purpose we keep that room small, but he has to be ready.”
Riley went on to praise specific things about the former Calabasas standout.

“Vision and really he sees things and makes the throw. I’m still to the point where him being a freshman I’m going, ‘Oh my gosh, that was a good play.’ It’s one of those things, I just think he’s a player.
“I’ve been real, real impressed with his poise; his work ethic is off the charts. He is up there as much as the coaches. He is an amazing young man with his diligence.”

>>Riley did say that quarterback Patrick O’Brien had a couple great drives today and they are fortunate at that position even though they don’t have one guy that’s taken a snap at Nebraska.
>>Offensive tackle David Knevel is someone that Riley singled out as someone with huge upside, but he is being challenged to take the next step. Speaking of the next step, Riley felt good about the offensive line on Saturday.

“Offensive line, I think we took a step forward today. We just have to keep making that step every single day. That’s going to be key.”

>>Finding a featured running back has been a big camp topic. Riley wants to get that settled sooner than later.

“I think that if that doesn’t become clear-cut by the end of this next week, then it’s probably a rotation deal,” Riley said. “I have an idea right now, but it’s not clear.”

>>Riley also said that the young players got to finish practice with a 20-play scrimmage to get them some additional work.

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